FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media contact: Ruth Ruiz, (714) 765-5060 office, (714) 420-7797 cell
CITY OF ANAHEIM SERVES CEASE OPERATION NOTICES TO MEDICAL MARIJUANA DISPENSARIES
Action follows the California Supreme Court’s unanimous decision that cities can ban dispensaries
ANAHEIM, CA – (May 17, 2013) The City of Anaheim today issued notice to cease operations to the 11 operating medical marijuana dispensaries (MMDs) in the City, following the unanimous California Supreme Court ruling of May 6, 2013 affirming the right of cities to enact MMD bans.
According to United States law, a dispensary’s operations involving sales and distribution of marijuana, regardless of whether the marijuana is dispensed for medicinal purposes, are illegal and subject to criminal prosecution and civil enforcement actions. Anaheim’s Municipal Code bans all operation of MMDs and has done so since 2007. The Anaheim City Attorney’s office has vigorously defended this position in court since that time, despite legal action against the City. It is the City’s position that medical marijuana dispensaries violate City law and are illegal, and the recent Supreme Court opinion has vindicated the City’s position.
Failure to close operations by May 24 at 1 p.m. will result in enforcement action against the MMD, which may include criminal charges being filed against any person found to be in operation of the MMD, fines in the amount of $1,000 for each day that the MMD continues to operate, the filing of a civil action, or any combination of the above.
On August 7, 2007, the City Council adopted Ordinance 4.20.030 prohibiting MMDs.
On Jan. 18, 2011 the Anaheim City Council enacted a moratorium to prohibit MMDs within City limits. As many as 143 businesses had opened in Anaheim, however thanks to the input of community members, Code Enforcement and the Anaheim Police Department, the City has closed all but 11 MMDs, seven of which opened prior to the moratorium.
The City will continue to monitor this illegal activity. Anyone in observance of MMD business operations or activity related to MMDs can report information to Code Enforcement at 714-765-5158, or online through Anaheim Anytime. Additionally, any criminal activity should immediately be reported to the Anaheim Police Department at 714-765-1900. Callers and those utilizing the Anaheim Anytime online system do have the option to remain anonymous.
ABOUT ANAHEIM –The City of Anaheim, founded in 1857, is one of the nation’s premier municipalities and is one of California’s most populous cities. Anaheim covers 50 square miles with more than 343,000 residents and more than 2,950 City employees. The municipal corporation’s annual budget is $1.5 billion. Anaheim supports a thriving business community with companies such as Carl Karcher Enterprises, Inc., L-3 Communications, Pacific Sunwear, and Disneyland Resort. Successful sports franchises call Anaheim home, including Angels Baseball, Anaheim Ducks, the U.S. Men’s National Volleyball Team, the 2012 Olympic Games Silver Medal winning U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team, and the Professional Arena Soccer League Anaheim Bolts. Anaheim also boasts world-class meeting and entertainment venues with the Anaheim Convention Center, LEED-certified and the largest on the west coast, Honda Center, City National Grove of Anaheim, Anaheim GardenWalk, and Angel Stadium of Anaheim. In addition, Anaheim embraces its vibrant cultural arts community, including the world-renowned Anaheim Ballet. Annually, Anaheim welcomes millions of visitors to the city, truly making it where the world comes to live, work and play. For more information, please visit www.anaheim.net.