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A California lawmaker has dropped his bid to regulate and allow taxation of California's medical marijuana industry.

Assemblyman Tom Ammiano today canceled a scheduled Senate committee vote on Assembly Bill 2312, saying he has decided to allow the Businesses, Professions and Economic Development Committee to hold more committee hearings and issue a report on the issue after the legislative session adjourns.

Ammiano said in a statement that while the bill "represents my best effort to regulate this industry that has existed in a patchwork of regulations and laws for the past 15 years," additional study could create an even better product.

"There is no doubt that my colleagues understand the need for this legislation, and I have a lot of faith in this committee that we can hammer out a well-balanced regulatory policy during the fall to answer calls from local governments, law enforcement including our Attorney General, patients, and the public to enact a highly regulated system for medical marijuana and provide a clear set of rules for everybody," Ammiano said.

The bill, which squeaked out of the state Assembly earlier this month on a vote of 41-28, would create a state Bureau of Medical Marijuana Enforcement to provide oversight of many aspects of the medical marijuana industry. It would also allow local governments to tax marijuana products.

Supporters said such steps would help protect California's medical cannabis growers, sellers and users in the wake of a medical marijuana crackdown by federal authorities. Law enforcement associations opposed to the bill complained that the measure was "really a giant permission slip for medical marijuana stores to operate in a virtual unfettered manner."

RELATED STORIES:

California Assembly passes pot regulation bill



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