CALIFORNIA—On Wednesday, November 18, a Fresno County Superior Court Judge dismissed a lawsuit, which attempted to overturn a statewide rule that allows cannabis to be home delivered, regardless of those communities banning commercial marijuana sales.
Judge Rosemary McGuire made her ruling, based on the opinion that various regulations and local ordinances “do not occupy the same field and are not in conflict.” In other words, if there is no conflict, the matter being addressed in this case cannot be adjudicated.
McGuire expanded further, stating that any kind of regulation currently set applies to the cannabis license holders in California, not local governments, who have to follow the laws set by state lawmakers.
Seeing as how the state of California has legalized marijuana for medical and recreational purposes, on behalf of people over the age of 21, that law overrides any and all laws certain counties may put forth. This renders moot any local regulations on marijuana that are potentially put into law.
While state regulation does not decide what local jurisdictions can and can’t do, McGuire added, “It does not command local jurisdictions … to permit delivery. Nor does it override their local ordinances prohibiting or regulating delivery.”
Attorneys representing local governments, who are pushing for more regulations on marijuana, argue that the rights of cities and counties to regulate, or prohibit, the substance from being delivered have not been affected.
Pro-marijuana advocates and attorneys consider this ruling a temporary victory in the fight for full legalization, as they also know it doesn’t really do much to advance their larger cause. “[This] doesn’t really do anything to advance industry interests or increase access to state-legal cannabis for consumers,” attorney Hilary Blinken stated.
“It’s going to be up for interpretation moving forward. I don’t think we’re done having this discussion,” said Josh Drayton, from the California Cannabis Industry Association. “It’s not settled. We are still in the midst of a cultural shift with cannabis.”
Home deliveries for marijuana-based products have become useful for many California residents, as local counties have banned commercial use, which cuts them off from making purchases.