Marijuana growing suit against City of Yukon dismissed

Yukon mayor ‘glad this is behind us’ after court case closed

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By Conrad Dudderar
Senior Staff Writer

A petition filed this fall to challenge the City of Yukon’s marijuana ordinance has been dismissed.

Attorney T. Matthew Smith on Nov. 25 filed a motion for dismissal without prejudice in Canadian County District Court.

Smith represents plaintiffs 4-Eyed Buds LLC, and its owners Tamara Crenshaw and Tracy Crenshaw, who had sued the City of Yukon over their plans to operate a medical marijuana growing business in Yukon city limits.

They were seeking a declaratory judgment against the City of Yukon in a petition filed Sept 17.

The case had been assigned to Canadian County District Judge Jack D. McCurdy.

Yukon Mayor Shelli Selby

“We’re always pleased when a case against the city is dismissed,” Yukon Mayor Shelli Selby said. “We’re glad this is behind us so we can move forward and focus our attention on more pressing issues facing the City of Yukon.”

Since the case has been dismissed without prejudice, the plaintiffs may bring a new suit on the same cause of action.

The plaintiffs own a 25-acre property at 2880 N Mustang Road and “intend to become a licensed commercial medical marijuana cultivation operation in the City of Yukon,” according to their civil suit.

“However, the City of Yukon disallows growing, processing and wholesale medical marijuana businesses.”

In their petition for declaratory judgment, the plaintiffs asserted the Yukon City Council’s actions to prohibit growing medical marijuana were “not consistent” with the Constitution or Oklahoma state statutes and exceeded their “lawful authority.”

A City of Yukon ordinance enacted in February 2019 disallows growing, processing and wholesale medical marijuana businesses.

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‘PROPER EXERCISE’

The City of Yukon, through attorney John J. Love, filed a motion to dismiss the case Oct. 21. A hearing on that motion had been set Dec. 18 before Judge McCurdy.

“(T)he ordinance in question was a proper exercise of the City’s police powers and not in violation of Oklahoma law,” the City of Yukon’s attorney argued in the court document.

The City of Yukon, in February 2019, adopted ordinance 1385 with the specific stated intent to prohibit growing medical marijuana inside Yukon city limits. Ordinance 1385 also restricted where medical marijuana dispensaries could be inside Yukon city limits.

The Yukon City Council approved the ordinance after State Question 788 passed in June 2018 by a 57% majority of Oklahoma voters, legalizing medical marijuana statewide.

The City of Yukon’s motion to dismiss referred to a November 2019 ruling by the Oklahoma Supreme Court, which held that all cities in Oklahoma have the full authority to prohibit commercial marijuana growing operations within their city limits.

Canadian County District Judge Paul Hesse in April 2019 issued an order upholding the validity of the City of Yukon’s ordinance:

“(T)he City’s power to regulate or restrict marijuana growers and processors is derived from its broad police powers. …

“The decision to regulate or prohibit commercial marijuana growing and processing activities was left to the cities of this state.”