California Has Until Friday To Pass Medical Marijuana Regulations

An effort to at last regulate California's medical marijuana industry — something a local lawmaker has been trying to do for nearly his entire term in office — is back again, and this time, with a heavy hitter in its corner: The federal government.

After setbacks in May and in 2012, Assemblyman Tom Ammiano's “Medical Cannabis Regulation and Control Act” — which would create a division of the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control to oversee first-ever uniform rules on medical pot — is back, thanks in no small part to the August memo from the Department of Justice, which says states with “strong regulatory framework” would be left alone by the feds.

That sounds good to California, where the DOJ has shut down hundreds of dispensaries over the last two years. But there's not much time: lawmakers in Sac have until Friday to get the bill passed, and the same forces that killed it the last time — law enforcement lobbies — are still there.

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