Court: City Cannot Outlaw Medical Marijuana

Aug 1, 2012

The Michigan Court of Appeals says local governments cannot stop people from growing or using medical marijuana.

The court struck down a local medical marijuana ban in the city of Wyoming. The cities of Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills and Livonia have similar laws on their books.

The three-judge panel was unanimous in its ruling. It said the state’s medical marijuana law preempts local ordinances. The law was approved by voters in 2008. It allows people who get a medical marijuana card to grow and use medical marijuana as a treatment for the symptoms of chronic or terminal illnesses.

The court said local governments cannot use the fact that possession of marijuana remains a federal crime as a way to get around the state law.

The Legislature is working on amendments to the medical marijuana law to define the rules surrounding issues like zoning and dispensaries.