Unsurprisingly, the recreational marijuana business in California is booming right now since recreational cannabis just became legal. But there’s one place that’s not experiencing the boom yet: Los Angeles.
While cities throughout California have begun selling legal marijuana, the city of Los Angeles has yet to give out a permit to a dispensary to begin selling recreational cannabis. The city passed the laws and regulations marijuana businesses would have to follow last month hoping to have permits ready by the new year. But the city has still not given any out.
Marijuana business owners are not happy with the city’s slow action. Over 100 recreational dispensaries are already operating in California, and many are reporting record business numbers. In fact, some businesses are reporting three times as many sales in 2018 than when they operated as medical marijuana only.
Another issue for business owners is cities surrounding Los Angeles have already given out permits. West Hollywood and Santa Ana have already licensed dispensaries within their jurisdiction, and many Los Angelenos are flocking to those neighboring areas to purchase their marijuana. It’s possible that some of these customers will stay with the dispensaries that are already open out of loyalty, meaning Los Angeles dispensaries are not only missing out on sales now but also losing customers to other cities.
The city of Los Angeles says they’d rather make sure the marijuana industry is operating safely and legally before giving out permits, and that being first isn’t the number one priority. They said applicants for recreational marijuana permits should receive a reply by January 24th.