San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee approves recreational pot rules

This is an undated image of a jar of marijuana. (KGO-TV)

San Francisco could have recreational weed for sale the first week of January under legislation signed by San Francisco's mayor.

Mayor Ed Lee on Wednesday approved legislation that sets up a permitting system and dictates where future pot shops can be located.

All marijuana businesses need a local permit in order to apply for a state license that is required to operate in 2018.

Lee released a statement saying: "Today, I signed legislation that establishes comprehensive regulations for commercial cannabis activity in San Francisco and allows for the sale of adult-use cannabis in our city. This legislation strikes the right balance for San Francisco residents and businesses. It brings the cannabis industry out of the shadows, addresses safety and public health concerns and takes a substantive approach to atoning for the harmful effects of the War on Drugs by establishing an equity program.
This has been a contentious issue, but we have developed a system that will allow for a measured rollout of these new rules while ensuring input and feedback from the community. As with any emerging industry, we will be continuously evaluating the impacts of this legislation and remain flexible and open to adaptation as necessary."

San Francisco will not be ready for sales on New Year's Day when recreational weed becomes legal statewide. More than 40 city outlets now authorized to sell medical marijuana could start selling adult-use pot Jan. 6 if they meet local and state requirements.

The Los Angeles City Council also approved its rules for commercial sales Wednesday.

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