By Josh Kelety | Phoenix New Times
In October, less than a month before Arizona voters resoundingly approved legal recreational marijuana through Proposition 207, the Gilbert Town Council held a vote of its own.
At issue was an ordinance that would preemptively ban new recreational marijuana dispensaries in Gilbert should Prop 207 pass. Nearly all the Gilbert residents who submitted public comments — 78 out of 81 respondents — were opposed to the ordinance.
Jon Udell, an attorney at Rose Law Group and spokesperson for Arizona NORML, a pro-cannabis legalization organization, argued that jurisdictions that ban recreational marijuana facilities are preventing competition and causing cannabis prices to rise, in addition to losing out on tax revenue.
“These local jurisdictions should be trying to look out for consumers,” he said. “It’s misguided, whether it’s being driven by lobbying by dispensaries or it’s out of socially conservative views of government leaders.”