San Diego Marijuana Businesses Worried About Possible Trump Crackdown

By David Garrick
The San Diego Union-Tribune

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) With the potential that the new Trump administration could reverse years of expansion, many marijuana entrepreneurs are in “wait-and-see” mode.

The San Diego Union-Tribune

San Diego’s marijuana industry is bracing for a potential crackdown by the Trump administration that could roll back years of steady expansion and prevent the city’s medical dispensaries from adding recreational sales next year.

The crackdown fears are fueled by recent comments from administration officials that enforcement of the federal marijuana ban could resume nearly five years after the Obama administration stopped interfering with states that have legalized the drug.

While dispensaries and pot farms in the city aren’t shutting down or abandoning expansion plans, they are anxiously waiting to see how aggressive any revived federal enforcement might be and what form it could take.

Previous crackdowns have included raids on dispensaries in 2011 and 2012, prosecution of individual business owners and attempts to freeze or seize the assets of business owners and their landlords.

Such efforts have been based on the federal government’s continued classification of marijuana as a “Schedule I” drug, making it as illegal as heroin and cocaine.

A coalition of legal dispensaries in San Diego, the only city in the region to allow marijuana sales, said any type of federal crackdown would be a mistake.

“The local cannabis industry is obviously deeply concerned about the statements coming out of the White House indicating plans to reverse years of cautious progress on both medicinal cannabis legalization and recreational decriminalization,” the group, the United Medical Marijuana Coalition, said in a statement.

“We are watching it closely, recognizing that policy changes could be swift and harmful not just to our future business prospects, but also to our patients and their ability to treat their illnesses.”

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