The Town Council unanimously voted on Tuesday night to continue the discussion on permanently banning medical marijuana dispensaries within town limits. The permanent ban is a follow up to a 45-day moratorium on medical marijuana distributors adopted in October 2009 and extended twice since.
"This ordinance would add a provision to the zoning ordinance that medical marijuana dispensaries are not a permitted use anywhere in town or within the zoning district," said City Attorney Rob Ewing.
While conflicts remain between state law, which allows marijuana for medical uses, and federal law, which doesn't recognize the difference between legal medical marijuana and recreationally used, the recently passed State Assembly Bill 1300 allows cities to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries. Danville hopes to take advantage of that law.
"I have not heard from anyone in the community that we should open a dispensary," said Vice Mayor Candace Andersen. "Quite the contrary, I have heard great opposition in our local blogs."
Although the permanent pan would prohibit dispensaries and forbid conditional land use permits, variances or licenses for distribution, Councilmember Robert Storer was unsure whether the ordinance would cover the "third part of triangle" -- people that bake marijuana laced food.
"(Cultivation) is a little dicer issue because the law allows qualified patients to cultivate up to a certain amount of their own marijuana," Ewing said.
The council will reconvene on Tuesday, Sept. 20 to read the ordinance for a second time, discuss the issue of cultivation and consider adoption. If the ban passes, it will be enacted within 30 days.