Oakland went on to contend, that it is in its best interest of the city’s fiscal health to safeguard legal, state compliant businesses
In the city of Oakland, California, politics is never a straightforward business. As the federal government has attempted to flex its muscle and crush the burgeoning medical marijuana industry in the Bay Area, the city of Oakland has recently repeated its demands in an attempt to stop all federal forfeiture proceedings against Harborside Health Center.
As usual — the U.S. federal government has tried to dismiss the notion that the city of Oakland has any credible standing within the judicial system, as the city prepare themselves to try to fight the federal government, preventing them from seizing Harborside Health Center. Oakland went on to contend, that it is in its best interest of the city’s fiscal health to safeguard legal, state compliant businesses that add to the County tax base.
The feds originated the marijuana collective’s forfeiture proceedings against Steve DeAngelo of Harborside Health Center’s two locations back in July of 2012. One dispensary is located in Oakland CA, the other is in San Jose, CA. both dispensaries sell medical weed in direct violation of the federal government’s Controlled Substances Act (CSA). While it may be true that medical pot is legal in California (thanks prop 215), and yes, the wise and prudent electorates of both Colorado and Washington voted to approve for the recreational consumption of marijuana, it is still unlawful under federal law.
The landlords of the two locations asked the court for an order prohibiting the continued sale of marijuana at the locations, and the government supported those requests.
After the dispensaries’ owner, Steve DeAngelo, opposed, the city of Oakland sued the government for abandoning its alleged promises not to interfere with a state’s plan to regulate medical marijuana shops.
“Oakland is not a claimant to the real property, so it need not file a claim in the forfeiture proceedings,” the brief states. “Rather, Oakland has standing to protect its economic and regulatory/public health and safety interests by bringing its own independent claims under the Administrative Procedure Act.”
The city has standing to “vindicate … proprietary interests as might be congruent with the interests of their inhabitants,” including “sales tax revenues, and ‘the possibility of actual injury to its ability to function as a municipality in regulating persons and property within its jurisdiction control,'” the brief states.
“federal government exceeded its authority by illegally enforcing the CSA through the forfeiture proceedings, thereby jeopardizing the public welfare of Oakland and its residents. Illegal enforcement of the CSA will also cause economic harm from lost tax revenue, and increased costs of police enforcement, in addition to untold costs associated with channeling thousands of patients into an unregulated black market.”