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Mobile City Council has heated debate over medical marijuana dispensaries coming to the Port City

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MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – Heated discussions on Tuesday among Mobile City Council members on whether or not medical marijuana should be brought to Mobile.

The ordinance being discussed would allow dispensaries for cannabis.

Several people in the community came out to voice their favor, or opposition, to the ordinance.

“We already have real medical cannabis available to patients. We do not need pot shops in our community,” one woman said.

The Mobile city council got its first look at an ordinance Tuesday.

It would authorize medical cannabis dispensaries to operate within the city limits.

According to Alabama’s medical cannabis legislation, cities must pass ordinances to allow dispensaries that can distribute medical marijuana to patients who have consent from their doctor.

Dave Riley, a disabled veteran, says medical marijuana helped save his life.

“I don’t know much about the medical marijuana problem or the CBD thing all I know is that that’s what saved my life,” Riley said. “And there are many veterans out there who are in the same exact predicament as me.”

District 6 Councilman Scott Jones who is also a veteran, does not agree with the use of marijuana for medical treatment.

“It’s not about veterans. I’m a veteran. There’s no such thing as medical marijuana, it’s cannabis,” Jones said. “It’s in a different form. I don’t care if you smoke it. I don’t care if you take a gummy. I don’t care if you take a pill. It’s got the same mind-altering effects.”

In response to Councilman Jones’ comments, District 2 Councilman William Carroll felt it would be better to have it legalized as opposed to people continuing to sell it illegally in the streets.

“We all know that there are more illegal dispensaries on the street than there will ever be dispensaries that are legalized,” Carroll said. “And how are you going to prevent people from buying it off the streets? Wouldn’t you rather have it controlled?”

One woman who was in opposition to medical dispensaries in Mobile feels it would do more harm than good.

“The city of Mobile does not need to add to the harmfulness of this bad legislation by implementing it locally,” she said. “Those who say dispensaries should be approved because they’ve heard marijuana helps a lot of people are making a critical safety and quality of life decision for a city.”

Council is expected to vote on this ordinance Tuesday.

Some other cities in our area including Daphne, Loxley, Foley, and Spanish Fort have all passed ordinances or resolutions to allow these businesses to operate within their city limits.

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