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3 medical marijuana dispensaries close in Newport Beach

August 5, 2011 |  9:19 am

Three medicinal marijuana dispensaries in Newport Beach have closed rather than face a civil order from the city, officials told the Daily Pilot.

Two of the dispensaries are in Santa Ana Heights, while the third is on the Balboa Peninsula.

The stores -- the West Coast Cure, Nature's Alternative Solutions, the Healing Tree -- shuttered last month after the Newport Beach City Council authorized nuisance-abatement proceedings in late May. Each dispensary received notices of zoning violations stating the city would file a civil nuisance abatement action with the Orange County Superior Court if it didn't close, said city spokeswoman Tara Finnigan.

West Coast Cure manager Jerett Wasserman said he was disappointed that his store was forced to close. He said he is looking into reopening in another city, possibly Costa Mesa.

"I did want to fight for my patients," Wasserman said, adding that it was "a battle" he couldn't win against the city.

In a closed-session City Council meeting in May, the council decided to take legal action against the dispensaries and authorized staff to begin nuisance-abatement proceedings.


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-- Lauren Williams, Times Community News

Photo: Medical marijuana. Credit: Joshua Lott / Reuters