The Herald Tribune reports that medical marijuana dispensaries have been rejected in Sarasota, Florida for nine months as city leaders discuss the possible ramifications of Amendment 2 being passed in November. The City Commission is accepting the idea that the amendment will pass, and Assistant City Attorney John Shamsey says that “the moratorium is just for the city, our office, the police and the zoning department to get together and figure out what’s going to be the best way to come up with a regulatory scheme that works and is fair and will allow this to be implemented in a way that everyone wants. We’re not looking to outlaw legal medical marijuana use in any way.”
For now, there are no marijuana dispensaries in Sarasota. If Amendment 2 were to pass, businesses would most likely approach them to open up shop. The Florida Department of Health will be issuing guidelines, but these guidelines would not be ready until around June.
That’s why said moratorium would allow city and police officials to have a better understanding of how best to apply new laws to Sarasota. Since the city regulates pain clinics differently than they regulate normal businesses, they’ll have to create a new model to define, place and regulate dispensaries in zoning districts in Sarasota.