LA’s Illegal Cannabis Storefronts May Disappear From Weedmaps

California’s legal industry is hoping to stop illegal shops from getting customers

More than a year after recreational cannabis sales became legal in California, cannabis businesses that are following state rules are struggling to compete with a black market that’s still thriving.

Now, legal shop owners are backing a new state assembly bill that would stop websites from hosting ads for unlicensed weed businesses.

Assembly Bill 1417 would require online review sites like Weedmaps (think Yelp, but for weed) to include state license numbers on all of their digital pot shop ads. The aim: to get rid of ads for illegal shops that currently dominate search results in cities like Los Angeles. Each violation would cost websites up to $2,500 per day.

“Our goal is to hold a level of accountability for these technology platforms that claim to just be a directory,” said Jerred Kiloh, president of the industry group United Cannabis Business Association, which is backing the bill, and owner of a Sherman Oaks dispensary.

“They’re not taking any responsibility that they are emboldening an illicit market,” he said.

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