Illegal pot shop closures continue in Palm Springs

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. - The ban on illegal pot shops continues in Palm Springs. The city's cracking down on medicinal marijuana dispensaries operating without a proper license.  Organic Solutions of the Desert continues to welcome new business as one of the three licensed and legal medical marijuana dispensaries in Palm Springs.  "We're definitely seeing more and more patients looking for a new dispensary, because of the illegals closing down," said Shanden Sessions, the manager of the store. 

The city's closed about 15 unsanctioned pot shops in the last few months.  Palm Springs city attorney Douglas Holland says, there's still work to be done. "Three more in the process of being closed," said Holland. 

Soon, only dispensaries with licenses from the city may operate, weeding out all but the council's set number of three.   "The council has only approved three, there are only three that are allowed within the city," said Holland.  "There's no talk about a fourth one."

We spoke to a customer who wanted to remain anonymous.  He chooses to shop at Organic Solutions of the Desert because it's legal.  "I would prefer to get my medication from some place that's legal, just like a regular pharmacy that gives you the medication," said the customer.

Still, he worries about the consequences of cutting down customer options. 
"Price gouging, it can open up the door for street vendors," said the customer. 

OSD's manager argues closing the illegal stores will actually do the opposite.
"Just because we're seeing this spike in business doesn't mean we're going to raise our prices," said Sessions.  "It'll actually help us lower our prices, so that we can get more patients coming in."

Holland says the city hopes to have all the illegal stores shut down in the next two to four months.

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