Ban on medical marijuana dispensaries adopted in Atascadero

The Atascadero City Council on Tuesday adopted a permanent ban on medical marijuana dispensaries.

In March, council members unanimously approved the ban after numerous members of the public, including medical marijuana users, asked the council to reconsider.

On Tuesday, the council approved 4-0 the second reading of the ordinance which adopts it into city law. Mayor Roberta Fonzi was absent.

One exception officials made is to allow caregivers to deliver to qualified medical marijuana patients inside city limits, which the ordinance as originally presented in March hadn’t allowed.

That exemption doesn’t allow dispensaries to deliver into Atascadero.

In 1996, California voters approved Proposition 215, which allows the use of medical marijuana under certain circumstances.

Fourteen states that allow medical marijuana are at odds with federal law, under which it is illegal. However, the Obama administration in 2009 said that the Justice Department would no longer prosecute medical marijuana dispensaries as long as they follow state laws.