DC Council approves permanent ban on marijuana clubs

WASHINGTON (AP) -- District of Columbia lawmakers have voted to enact a permanent ban on smoking marijuana in private clubs.

Possession of pot for personal use has been legal in the District since early last year. But Congress blocked the city from any further liberalization of its marijuana laws, and Democratic Mayor Muriel Bowser moved quickly to clarify that pot clubs wouldn't be allowed.

However, some members of the D.C. Council argued that there was still room for allowing smoking in designated places that charge a membership fee. The council created a task force to study the issue. But Council Chairman Phil Mendelson says the ban needed to move forward regardless because the city has no power to regulate pot clubs. It was approved Tuesday by a 7-6 vote.