Bay Area Goes to Bat for Dispensaries

Mayor Tom Bates
Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates: ’Stop these asset forfeiture cases.’

Oakland and Berkeley want the Feds to butt out of their marijuana business. Both East Bay cities have sued to keep successful medical cannabis centers like Harborside Health and Berkeley Patients Group open.

In the case of HHC, Oakland won a ruling that indefinitely prevents the dispensary from being evicted from its building at 1840 Embarcadero.

In Berkeley, Mayor Tom Bates raved about BPG, which did shut down last May and reopened recently as a delivery-only service. "It is time for the federal government to wake up and stop these asset forfeiture cases," Bates says. "The federal government should not use its scarce resources to harass local law-abiding businesses."

The city famous for its support of left-wing causes filed a claim with the federal government to block its efforts to close dispensaries.

Harborside was the focus of Weed Wars on Discovery in 2011 and recently on Morgan Spurlock: Inside Man on CNN.

Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.