By the end of March it will be decided which Washington DC collectives will be opening this summer. Cultivation centers are beginning to lease space. Ironically, many of these collectives and dispensaries will be only miles from the offices of the DEA, which has been orchestrating crackdowns on medical marijuana dispensaries throughout the country in recent months.
Washington’s medical marijuana law is stricter than that of some other states. Patients must be diagnosed by a doctor with a terminal or chronic illness such as cancer, glaucoma, or HIV. Patients will not be allowed to smoke in dispensaries or in public. They will only be allowed to carry up to 2 ounces of marijuana at a time.
The medical marijuana initiative in Washington DC received significant support when it was initially approved by 69% of the voters in 1998, but it has been repeatedly rejected by Congress. The measure was finally approved by the City Council in 2010, and Congress agreed to let the program move forward.
So far, the District of Columbia Justice Department has not taken any actions to stop or discourage medical marijuana collectives or cultivation centers from opening in its legislative jurisdiction.