Utah League of Cities and Towns Leaders Fear Losing Local Zoning, Police Powers if Medical Marijuana is Legalized

Utah League of Cities and Towns Leaders Fear Losing Local Zoning, Police Powers if Medical Marijuana is Legalized

The league held a lengthy discussion Sept. 11 on the public effects and potential risks of legalizing medical marijuana in the state.

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September 13, 2018
The Salt Lake Tribune
State by State: Utah

The Utah League of Cities and Towns stopped just short of formally opposing November’s Proposition 2 on Tuesday after a lengthy discussion on the public effects and potential risks of legalizing medical marijuana in the state.

Marijuana does have medicinal benefits, a resolution approved by the league’s board of directors states, but a ballot initiative on the topic would preempt and infringe on the ability of cities to oversee land use, business licensing, law enforcement and zoning.

“Cities and towns oppose any action to preempt traditional local authority to enact ordinances that are vital to the public safety, health, and welfare of our communities.”

Proposition 2 includes language that prohibits cities from specifically discriminating against cannabis dispensaries. DJ Schanz, director of the Utah Patients Coalition, said the provisions mirror the state’s approach to liquor stores and tobacco shops and that city and county leaders retain authority over broad zoning categories and designations.

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Top Image: © Carsten Reisinger | Adobe Stock

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