California State Senate Restricts Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

CBS Los Angeles

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California would take steps to regulate the sale of medical marijuana under a bill approved Monday by the state Senate, restricting cannabis dispensaries that federal prosecutors say have grown out of control.

California voters first supported legalizing marijuana to treat illness in 1996, but federal prosecutors recently cracked down. They said the industry has grown enormously profitable and has made marijuana essentially available for recreational use.

The Senate sent the bill to the Assembly on a 22-12 vote and without any Republican support.

The legislation makes it clear that dispensaries cannot operate at a profit, but that the owners can receive reasonable compensation and reimbursement for expenses.

“This bill is not about the legalization of marijuana,” said Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento. “It does seek to assure that patients who need medical cannabis have access to it. It is intended to assure that…

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