The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors on Wednesday changed county zoning rules to disallow medical-marijuana dispensaries or cultivation sites on county land unless marijuana becomes a federally approved drug.
The county got rid of its zoning definitions for dispensaries and cultivation sites and reclassified them as buildings whose uses must not be in conflict with any federal, state or county law. Marijuana is prohibited under the federal Controlled Substances Act.
The change was prompted by County Attorney Bill Montgomery's advice to the board to opt out of the state's medical-marijuana program for fear of a federal backlash against county employees who carry out the law.
Voters approved Proposition 203, the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act, last November.
But the medical-marijuana program is on hold pending adjudication of a lawsuit seeking clarification from a federal judge on the law's implications for state and local employees.
by Michelle Ye Hee Lee The Arizona Republic Sept. 1, 2011 12:00 AM
Board of Supervisors won't allow medical-marijuana sites on Maricopa County land
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