LA County to Crack Down on Unlicensed Cannabis Dispensaries

Los Angeles, CA—Today, the LA County Board of Supervisors passed a motion authored by Supervisor Hilda Solis and coauthored by Supervisor Janice Hahn to expand the County’s efforts to shut down illegal cannabis dispensaries operating in County unincorporated areas.

Even though all types of cannabis-related businesses are banned in the unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County, over 80 businesses are illegally conducting cannabis activities in defiance of the County’s ban.

“Our current process for shutting down illegal, unlicensed cannabis dispensaries in our unincorporated areas is not working,” said Supervisor Janice Hahn. “We need a better and more effective strategy that uses every tool at our disposal to shut down illegal dispensaries quickly and permanently.”

In a motion passed at today’s Board of Supervisors meeting, Supervisor Hahn and Supervisor Solis instructed County staff to report back in 90 days with a comprehensive plan to permanently close the unlicensed cannabis operations in unincorporated areas of the County.  In addition to enhanced enforcement, the plan will also include public education and outreach so consumers know which businesses are licensed and how to report an unlicensed cannabis business. The plan may also include outreach to property owners about the potential legal and financial risks of leasing space to an unlicensed business.

“For the past year and a half I have been working closely with many community members from my district to combat illegally operating marijuana businesses,” said Supervisor Solis. “Before the County considers recommendations for expanding marijuana businesses, we must put into place effective measures to end illegal operators. Today’s action is a step forward in ending this countywide game of ‘whack-a-mole’ and reassuring our communities that LA County will protect our residents, consumers, and our neighborhoods.”