by Rachel Dovey
No doubt you've seen the slew of headlines positing that a Supreme Court case this week could clarify the federal/state/local muddle about who-if anyone-is actually regulating dispensaries.
The City of Riverside vs. Inland Empire Patient's Health and Wellness Center has been making its way through the court system for over a year now.
At stake is the question of whether local governments can ban dispensaries via zoning ordinances. It's yet another page in the same story of Prop 215-Vs. the federal government, and, according to this Mercury News piece, the justices seemed swayed by the fact that Prop 215 (otherwise known as The Compassionate Use Act) does not prohibit cities from banning dispensaries via zoning ordinances. Of course, advocates content that, while it may not do exactly that, it does legalize marijuana for medicinal uses in California, and local zoning prohibitions are against the spirit of the law.
As we've said before, it's only one piece of the smokin' hot mess that is medical MJ and the law.
There's this mess, in which lowly harvesters are targeted and then flood the courts, using public dollars and defenders.
And there's this mess, in which confidential patient information is targeted by the feds in Mendocino.