The strange bedfellows’ society was definitely in session at a recent Assembly Public Safety Committee hearing.
Medical marijuana supporters like Committee Chair Tom Ammiano and longtime opponents from law enforcement groups and the League of California Cities all praised each other for working on a regulatory and licensing framework – not just for dispensaries but for growers, processors and physicians.
"We are feeling very optimistic," says Ammiano."And I very much appreciate the cooperation of everyone at the table."
The League of Cities’ Tim Cromartie says his group recognizes the need for strong marijuana regulations.
"California in the long run may very well legalize it, and we don’t want a situation – which is what they have in Colorado – where you have chaos," says Cromartie.
The bill would make the state Department of Consumer Affairs responsible for regulation of medical marijuana, subject to local rules set by cities and counties. There are still some sticking points, such as how to pay for the regulatory efforts and who should be eligible to get licensed.
Those questions will be addressed in the next few weeks before potential final votes in August.