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In an effort to combat illegal cannabis growing operations and dispensaries in Los Angeles County, Supervisor Kathryn Barger, 5th District, introduced a motion on Jan. 11 to implement a nuisance abatement ordinance and to charge offenders up to $30,000 per day if they are non-compliant.
“Our county is working aggressively to protect our communities against the harm inflicted upon them by illegal cannabis operations,” Barger said. “We lack legally enforceable options to combat dangerous operations that are continually putting neighborhoods at risk. [This] motion is about addressing that gap.”
“California voters legalized recreational cannabis in order to create a system that assured consumers of [the] product safety while prohibiting cannabis access to minors, but illegal cannabis operations continue to undermine the will of the people,” added Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, 3rd District, who co-authored the motion. “This motion puts teeth in enforcement and ensures that unpermitted dispensaries face stiff penalties in the future.”
Despite efforts by county departments, the growth of unpermitted cannabis dispensaries and growing operations outpaces enforcement, the supervisors said. In response, an ordinance will declare any unpermitted commercial cannabis activity in unincorporated areas of the county to be illegal and a public nuisance, and establishes procedures for abatement.
Los Angeles County is currently developing a study with recommendations for addressing legal cannabis operations including retail, manufacturing, distribution, growth, testing, regulation and enforcement.
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