County Establishes Rules For Medical Marijuana Dispensaries And Cultivation Locations

January 29, 2014

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors has passed new zoning rules for growing and selling medical marijuana on county land. The county had been blocking applications from medical pot businesses, but a court ruling late last year found that "overly restrictive." Wednesday's ordinance allows for dispensaries in all industrial and two kinds of commercial zoning districts.

Darren Gerard is deputy director in the county's planning and development department. Gerard said dispensaries must be located at least 1,500 feet away from, "a house of worship, a school, park, adult-oriented business, or other medical marijuana facility. It allows for medical marijuana offsite cultivation locations in the industrial zoning districts subject to those same conditions. The board's chief goal here is to keep dispensaries out of residential areas, and the ordinance they've adopted does that."

Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery is appealing last year's court ruling and continuing his efforts to block dispensaries on county land.