Supreme Court over rules local ordinances

Medical marijuana allowed throughout Michigan

Angie Stoecklin
Copy Editor

As marijuana related bills make their way through the senate, the Supreme Court took on a case ruling in favor of the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act.
Before the ruling, a few local ordinances in cities such as Livonia, Birmingham, and Bloomfield hills were put into effect to ban the use of medical marijuana in their respective communities.
The ordinance itself states that anything prohibited by federal or state law is forbidden.
For example, if a brothel existed in Livonia, because federal law prohibits that, it is not legal to operate. In the case of marijuana, since it is illegal federally, it was included in the ordinance.
However, the court ruled that because the ordinance directly conflicts with Michigan’s state law, which allows patients with debilitating medical conditions to use marijuana through their registered caregiver, the part of the ordinance pertaining to medical marijuana cannot remain in effect.
Donald Knapp, city attorney of Livonia said, “Local ordinances can’t overturn state law, but the prime question for the court was, ‘does the Federal Controlled Substances Act, which makes marijuana use and possession illegal, preempt state law?’”
Although marijuana is still illegal on a federal basis, it is not enough ground to stand on for cities who wish to ban marijuana’s medical use.
“Effectively what the court said was, ‘well if the federal government wants to go after these people they certainly can, but there’s nothing requiring municipalities to enforce federal law,” Knapp said.
With the court’s ruling, medical marijuana is allowed throughout the entire state. As long as a person has obtained their card and has established a registered caregiver (a person who grows and cultivates marijuana) there are no longer city ordinances to prohibit such actions.

Contact Angie at angelastoecklin0814@gmail.com

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