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State Supreme Court Hearing On Pot Dispensaries Could Affect Los Gatos

The community is one of many cities whose dispensary ban on medical marijuana facilities will be affected by the ruling.

Whether towns such as Los Gatos can ban medical marijuana dispensaries will be the topic of a high-stakes court hearing.

On Tuesday, the California Supreme Court will hear arguments on whether communities can prohibit these marijuana facilities in light of the 1996 voter-approved law legalizing pot for medicinal uses in California.

As detailed in a San Jose Mercury News story, the hearing stems from a Southern California case where a wellness center sued to overturn Riverside's ban on marijuana dispensaries.

Los Gatos is one of more than 10 South Bay and Peninsula towns that have some sort of prohibition in place.

Los Gatos adopted an ordinance in 2011 that banned medical marijuana dispensaries, just as a two-year moratorium on opening and operating such establishments in the town was set to expire.

Town staff felt that Los Gatos medical marijuana patients could access their medication without much hardship; at the time there were six dispensaries within three miles of Los Gatos.

Other Santa Clara and San Mateo cities with bans are East Palo Alto, Gilroy, Hollister, Millbrae, Morgan Hill, Palo Alto, Redwood City, San Bruno, South San Francisco and Sunnyvale.

There are 21 East Bay cities with bans and two on the Monterey Bay that prohibit medicinal marijuana dispensaries.

The state Supreme Court will hear arguments Tuesday in San Francisco. A decision is expected in the spring.

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