The West Hollywood City Council last night declined a request by Mayor Lauren Meister and Councilmember John Duran that they state the council state its opposition to a proposed state law that would let landlords ban smoking of medical marijuana in the apartments they own.
AB 2300, brought forth by state Assembly member Jim Wood (D-Somona County), has been approved unanimously by the Assembly and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee. It is supported by a number of real estate and health organizations.
“AB 2300 poses a risk to tenants’ rights, as it provides a legal basis for landlords to evict tenants as a consequence of legal use of medical marijuana,” the Meister/Duran proposal states. “The effects of secondhand cannabis smoke have not fully been studied, and there is insufficient evidence to conclude that marijuana has negative health impacts. The City of West Hollywood was founded on the principle of tenants’ rights and has a long history of advocating for protections for medical marijuana users. The City of West Hollywood was an early supporter of Proposition 215, the 1996 ballot initiative approved by voters to authorize the use of medical marijuana in California. The City was one of the first to embrace regulating the sales and land use aspects of marijuana dispensaries. City opposition to AB 2300 is consistent with the City’s policies of protecting the rights of tenants and the medical necessity of marijuana usage.”
Councilmember John Heilman asked that the request be put on hold indefinitely after fellow council members John d’Amico and Lindsey Horvath expressed concerns about it. “I’m just not comfortable with all the ways in which we don’t know how medical marijuana is dispensed, who it is dispensed to, how it’s used and under what circumstances,” D’Amico said. “People can negotiate with their landlords.”
The city and state have rules governing the sale of marijuana that required it be offered only for medical purposes. However it is quite easy in West Hollywood for someone to obtain a prescription without actually seeing or talking with a physician.