Arizona Superior Court Judge Michael Gordon has overturned a zoning ordinance in Maricopa County which, according to the judge, is a “transparent attempt” to keep medical cannabis dispensaries out of unincorporated areas of the county. The ruling came as part of a pretrial verdict in favor of White Mountain Health Center, which plans to open a dispensary in Sun City.
In his verdict, Judge Gordon said that the ordinance amounts to an effective ban on dispensaries in some of the county’s cities, and noted that there is no available property in Sun City that meets the county’s requirements.
Gordon says that the ordinance “suggests a transparent attempt to prevent the implementation of the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act“.
According to the ruling, county’s have authority to zone dispensaries, but don’t have the authority to zone them in a manner that bans them outright. Gordon will listen to further arguments on practical effects of his ruling from both sides on Monday.