Everett City Council declares medical marijuana a nuisance

EVERETT, Wash. -- The Everett City Council declared medical cannabis a nuisance Wednesday evening, suggesting medical pot likely presents issues with public safety, odor, public welfare and the protection of minors.

Medical marijuana, for which there is an affirmative defense under state law, was deemed to be a nuisance by Everett. The nuisance ordinance bars collective garden's from operating inside Everett city limits. The measure will expire after 18 months.

The vote by the council came in anticipation of the expiration of the city's moratorium on medical cannabis collective gardens.

The ordinance was passed in part, city officials said, because, "the city lacks the necessary tools to address associated impacts of medical cannabis activities and their effects on public health, safety and welfare."

Any violation of the ordinance is subject to law enforcement and financial penalties.

Area patients who feel strongly about medical marijuana said the vote is a controversial act, and could likely lead to legal action against the city.Medical marijuana patients said the ruling goes against what voters of Washington want.

Earlier this year, the Washington State Supreme Court put a stay on a Kent ruling banning collective gardens.

The nuisance ordinance made no mention of I-502, which legalizes the recreational use of marijuana in the state.