DC Council Flips Decision on Marijuana Clubs

Council Flips Decision

On Jan. 5, 2016, the Council of the District of Columbia voted 7-6 to keep the ban on private marijuana clubs; however, it went to a second vote. According to the Council, if the first vote was allowed to stand, the lack of a majority would have meant the ban on private marijuana clubs would expire, but votes on emergency legislation require a supermajority of nine to pass.

With the window of opportunity open, Mayor Muriel Bowser’s administration lobbied council members before the second vote, resulting in a supermajority of  9-4, keeping the ban in place.

According to NBC Washington, Bowser was worried that the rule would create more problems than solutions by muddying the waters with local law enforcement about what is and is not legal.

“By allowing the current law to lapse in a couple of weeks, there would actually be some disorder,” said Phil Mendelson, Council Chairman. “Several members realized that actually was more of a problem than they had realized on the initiative vote.”

According to The Washington Post, the council has agreed to reconsider the issue within the next month.

William Sumner, a freelance writer and marijuana journalist, was a staff writer for MJINews from May 2014 through February 2018. You can follow him on Twitter @W_Sumner.

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