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Ter Beek v. City of Wyoming

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Brief Fact Summary.

Plaintiff seeks a declaratory judgment on the grounds that he cannot comply with the city code and the state law at the same time because they are in conflict with each other.

Synopsis of Rule of Law.

A city ordinance is deemed preempted when it directly conflicts with a state statue.

Points of Law - Legal Principles in this Case for Law Students.

The Supremacy Clause invalidates state laws that interfere with, or are contrary to federal law.

View Full Point of Law

The Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (MMMA) provides immunity to registered qualifying patients from “arrest, prosecution, or penality  [  . . . ] fro the medical use of marihuana.†Under the city code, violations of the city ordinance, which prohibits any land uses that are contrary to federal law and subjects individuals to civil sanctions. Plaintiff, John Ter Beek, is a qualifying patient under the MMMA, but his conduct would be penalized under the federal law. However, after the city’s adoption of the ordinance, Plaintiff initiate this action against the city seeking a declaratory judgment that the ordinance is preempted by the MMMA.


Whether the City ordinance is preempted by the MMMA.


Yes, the City ordinance is preempted by the MMMA.


Under the Michigan Constitution, the City has the power to adopt its own resolutions and ordinances for its municipal, subject to the Constitution and the law of Michigan. Further, the City if precluded from enacting an ordinance if it is in conflict with Michigan law. Here, the ordinance is in direct conflict with Michigan Law, the MMMA, because one cannot comply with both laws at the same time. Therefore, the ordinance is preempted by the MMMA.

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