ASA California Roundup: April 14, 2014

April 14, 2014 | Don Duncan

Message from the CA Director - A New Medical Cannabis Bill in CA

California News

  • Medical-Marijuana Advocates Descend on Capitol Hill (National)
  • California Gets Stricter Medical Marijuana Regulations (California)
  • Marijuana: Another Contributor to California's Drought (California)
  • How medical marijuana is helping Californian children with epilepsy (California)
  • Vague state marijuana rules cost cities (California)
  • Medical marijuana supporters launch effort (Costa Mesa)
  • Medical marijuana activist sues Redondo police (Redondo Beach)
  • Marijuana addressed by Gridley City Council (Gridley)
  • Permit issued for Arnold medical collective (Calveras County)
  • Lathrop just says no to medical pot dispensaries (Lathrop)
  • Long Beach voters favor Measure A tax on medical marijuana (Long Beach)

Events

  • Wednesday, April 16, 2014 – San Diego Public Safety Committee Hearing (San Diego)
  • Saturday, April 19, 2014 – CBD Seminar (Grass Valley)
  • Monday, April 21, 2014 – CA Senate Business, Professions, and Economic Development Committee Hearing on SB 1262 (Sacramento)
  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 – CA Assembly Public Safety Committee Hearing on AB 1894 (Sacramento)
  • Wednesday, April 23, 2014 – Medical Cannabis Forum with District Attorney Candidates (Sonoma)

Court Support

  • Monday, April 14, 2014 – Court Support for Ronnie Chang (San Diego)
  • Wednesday, April 16, 2014 – Court Support for Taryn Hughey & Ryan Metroka (Oroville)
  • Thursday, April 17, 2014 – Court Support for Joe Grumbine (Long Beach)

Take Action

  • National: Support HR 689 and HR 710
  • Join Americans for Safe Access (ASA)

ASA Website Spotlight

  • ASA Live

ASA CA Chapter Spotlight

  • San Francisco ASA

ASA Chapter & Affiliate Meetings

  • Tuesday, April 15, 2014 - San Francisco ASA (San Francisco)
  • Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - East Bay ASA (Oakland)
  • Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - Lake County ASA (Clearlake Oaks)

 


Message from the CA Director



California Assembly Member Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) has introduced a new medical cannabis bill in the state legislature. AB 1894 combines elements of his previously introduced legislation (AB 604), portions of a now dormant bill (SB 439) by Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento), and new regulatory elements. Like AB 604, this new legislation puts regulatory control of medical cannabis in the Department of Alcoholic beverage Control and charges that agency with writing and enforcing guidelines for mandatory registration. Borrowing from SB 439, Assembly Member Ammiano’s bill seeks to reign in doctors by requiring a good faith examination and medical justification for recommending medical cannabis. AB 1894 also puts limits on the additional taxes that cities and counties can charge on commercial medical cannabis activity. Read more about the bill on our California legislation webpage.

AB 1894 will be heard before the Assembly Public Safety Committee, which Assembly Member Ammiano chairs, on Tuesday, April 22 – just one day after the Senate Business, Professions, and Economic Development Committee hears a differing regulatory proposal form Senator Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana). Senator Correa’s SB 1262 would place regulatory control in the Department of Health and impose severe restrictions on doctors who recommend medical cannabis. We may have a better idea where the legislature is heading on medical cannabis regulations after those two hearings. Keep an eye on the CA Weekly Roundup, the ASA Blog, and our California legislation page for updates and opportunities to participate.

ASA strongly supports sensible regulations for the commercial cultivation, processing, distribution, and testing of medical cannabis. Research conducted by ASA and the experience from nearly ten years of local ordinances show that regulations preserve access for patients, while reducing crime and complaints around medical cannabis facilities. That is a win-win for everyone. The devil, of course, is in the details. You can read ASA’s memos and letters about pending legislation on our website, but lawmakers need to hear from you, too. Remember that it is always a good idea to send your comments in writing and in advance. Use ASA’s Medical Cannabis Advocates Training Center to build citizen advocacy skills and get the contact information for each committee in the “Events” section of this message.


California News



Medical-Marijuana Advocates Descend on Capitol Hill (National)
Alex Rogers, Time

Medical-marijuana supporters flocked to Capitol Hill on Monday to push for legislation that would prohibit the federal government from restricting state medical-marijuana laws. “We’re doing this work,” said Steph Sherer, executive director of Americans for Safe Access, a pro-medical-pot group that brought 152 people to Washington to lobby 300 members of Congress. “It’s not just a bunch of potheads [saying], Please let us do this.”
Read more here.

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California Gets Stricter Medical Marijuana Regulations (California)
Sarah Wright, Liberty Voice

After multiple failed attempts to normalize California’s haphazard medical marijuana program, one state lawmaker has introduced legislation he believes will finally get the state stricter medical marijuana regulations.  Assembly member Tom Ammiano introduced a measure last month that would create statewide rules for marijuana businesses in California. Ammiano says he is cautiously optimistic and that people have seen that the more regulation you have, the less chaos there is. Ammiano has sponsored several similar bills in recent years. Each of these bills has either lost support or was stopped by opposition who felt the regulation did not address crucial issues. These issues include the impacts marijuana cultivation has on the environment and the income tax potential local governments would have on the product.  Tom Ammiano says measure, AB 1894, addresses these issues.
Read more here.

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Marijuana: Another Contributor to California's Drought (California)
Sean Breslin, The Weather Channel

Marijuana growing is a budding business in America as laws are relaxed on pot use in several states, but as California's drought continues to worsen, these thirsty plants, whether grown lawfully or illegally, aren't helping the problem. Along the coast of Northern California, where there are thousands of pot plants hydrated by a single, stressed water source, each plant requires as much as six gallons of water per day in the summer months, according to NPR. As an already extensive drought likely gets even more dire this summer, marijuana farms are going to guzzle up a lot of the state's water if dry, sunny conditions persist.
Read more here.

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How medical marijuana is helping Californian children with epilepsy (California)
Jason Henry, San Gabriel Valley Tribune

After 25 failed epilepsy medications, Nazy Nouri had two treatment choices for her 9-year-old daughter: cutting out part of the little girl’s brain or marijuana. “I really felt like we had nothing to lose; this was the last resort,” Nouri said. “If it doesn’t work, then we were going to maybe go with brain surgery.” Her daughter Kiana started using an oil extract from cannabis in December. The oil comes from Realm of Caring California, a group trying to find a permanent home in the Southland after the city of Los Angeles shuttered its North Hills facility.
Read more here.

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Vague state marijuana rules cost cities (California)
Laura Olsen, Orange County Register

Asked about legalizing marijuana during a recent interview, Gov. Jerry Brown answered with a question: “How many people can get stoned and still have a great state or a great nation?” His remark on NBC’s “Meet the Press” did more than shoot down the old image of “Governor Moonbeam” and draw chuckles from the television panelists. Coming from the leader of a state accustomed to leading the pack on controversial issues, Brown’s comment highlighted not only how far Colorado and Washington have sped ahead of California by legalizing recreational pot, it also highlighted the long-running and costly stalemate in Sacramento over how medical marijuana should be regulated.
Read more here.

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Medical marijuana supporters launch effort (Costa Mesa)
Bradley Zint, Daily Pilot

Proponents of allowing medical marijuana businesses to operate in Costa Mesa have taken their case to City Hall in the hopes of bringing the issue before city voters this November. Organizers characterize their ARRO Initiative, or Act to Restrict and Regulate the Operation of Medical Marijuana Businesses, as a "conservative approach" that provides "dignified access" to medical marijuana for users, as allowed by the voter-approved Compassionate Use Act of 1996.
Read more here.

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Medical marijuana activist sues Redondo police (Redondo Beach)
Ellen Robinson, The Beach Reporter

Medical marijuana patient/activist Susan Soares has filed a 26-count lawsuit against the City of Redondo Beach and the Redondo Beach Police Department. Soares, 55, a former Redondo Beach resident, alleges that police violated her civil rights to free speech, to freedom of association, unreasonable search and seizure, the constitutional right to petition the government for regressive grievances, and the right to freedom of commerce in the purchase and possession of a legal substance for medical needs.
Read more here.

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Marijuana addressed by Gridley City Council (Gridley)
Lisa Van de Hay, Gridley Hearld

Consideration of “Special Situations,” pertaining to the City of Gridley's Medical Marijuana Ordinance were discussed in a special Study Session held Monday preceding the regular Council meeting. The City of Gridley adopted a chapter entitled “Special Situations,” on May 19, 2008 to regulate the cultivation of marijuana for medicinal purposes consistent with State legislation. The community has experienced regulatory issues since the adoption of the code related to the the number of plants allowed at locations in zoning districts, nuisance control from growing the plants, increased power use at residential sites that overload the existing systems and questions of occupancy for a person who has a medical prescription for the use of marijuana and, the caregiver and/or provider who may or may not reside at the patient's location.
Read more here.

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Permit issued for Arnold medical collective (Calveras County)
Stephen Crane, Calaveras Enterprise

The chamber was standing room only for Tuesday’s Calaveras County Board of Supervisors meeting and most people in the crowd showed up for one reason: the issue of medical marijuana. District 4 Supervisor and board Chairwoman Debbie Ponte did her best to set the tone for the topic before the presentation even began.
Read more here.

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Lathrop just says no to medical pot dispensaries (Lathrop)
Jason Campbell, Manteca Bulletin

Barber poles let people know where they can get a trim. Red crosses on a building or a blue sign with a white H? That means that you’re either at or nearing a hospital. So how about the green cross? Well, in Lathrop it really doesn’t mean anything since the City Council decided on Monday on a 4-0 vote to outlaw medical marijuana collectives, cooperatives and dispensaries that have appropriated the symbol as an identifier after California allowed “compassionate use” with the passing of Proposition 215 in 1996.
Read more here.

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Long Beach voters favor Measure A tax on medical marijuana (Long Beach)
Andrew Edwards, Press Telegram

Voters overwhelmingly favored a ballot measure that would allow the city to collect taxes on medical marijuana transactions, provided that the City Council allows dispensaries to operate in the city. Measure A passed with 74 percent of the vote, according to unofficial results released Wednesday, which includes all of the city’s 268 precincts and mail-in ballots.
Read more here.


Events



Wednesday, April 16, 2014 – San Diego Public Safety Committee Hearing (San Diego)
The San Diego Public Safety Committee will be looking into further regulations of the production and sales of edibles, concentrates and other medical marijuana products, as well as a wide range of other possible regulations, including further restrictions on labeling and testing for medical marijuana products, delivery and cultivation regulations. The hearing starts at 2:00 PM in the City Council Committee Room, 12th Floor, San Diego City Hall, 202 C ST, San Diego, CA 92101. Call (858) 598-4215 for more information.

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Saturday, April 19, 2014 – CBD Seminar (Grass Valley)
Join Nevada County ASA from 2:00 - 5:00 pm at the Banner Grange, 12692 McCourtney Road, Grass Valley, CA 95949. First there will be a screening of Charlotte's Web, a documentary by Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Following the film, we will hear from the parents of two remarkable children who suffer from the same ailment as Charlotte Fiji.  There also will be a Q & A session so you can get information from someone who has been there and done that.

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Monday, April 21, 2014 – CA Senate Business, Professions, and Economic Development Committee Hearing on SB 1262 (Sacramento)
The California Senate Business, Professions, and Economic Development Committee will hear testimony and vote on SB 1262, a bill by CA Senator Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana) that will regulate doctors who make medical cannabis recommendations and dispensaries. Read more about the bill and ASA’s suggested improvements online. You may submit comments to the committee in advance. The hearing starts at 1:00 PM or as soon as the Senate adjourns in Room 3191 in the State Capitol Building

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Tuesday, April 22, 2014 – CA Assembly Public Safety Committee Hearing on AB 1894 (Sacramento)
The California Assembly Public Safety Committee will hear testimony and vote on AB 1894, a new bill from Assembly Member Tom Ammiano that will create regulations for commercial medical cannabis activity and address unprofessional conduct by recommending physicians. Read more about this bill online. You may submit comments to the committee in advance.The hearing will be at 9:00 AM in Room 126 in the State Capitol Building.

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Wednesday, April 23, 2014 – Medical Cannabis Forum with District Attorney Candidates (Sonoma)
The candidates’ forum will be held at the Sonoma County Library located downtown at 211 E Street (corner of 3rd Street) in Santa Rosa, CA 95404.  There will be a Meet and Greet beginning at 5:00pm with the forum starting at 5:30pm. Admission is free and the public is invited. Contact Kumari Sivadas at samm215@sonic.net or 707-522-0292 for information.


Court Support



Monday, April 14, 2014 – Court Support for Ronnie Chang (San Diego)
Support medical cannabis defendant Ronnie Chang at his sentencing hearing. Read more about Mr. Chang’s case on the San Diego ASA website. Dress in a professional manner and obey all court room rules to best help the defendant. The hearing starts at 9:00 AM at Suite 3130 Courtroom 3A - 3rd Floor of the Schwartz Federal Courthouse at 221 W. Broadway, San Diego 92101.

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Wednesday April 16, 2014 – Court Support for Taryn Hughey & Ryan Metroka (Oroville)
Support these medical cannabis defendants at their hearing on Wednesday at 8:30 AM at 1 Court St. Oroville, CA 95965. Dress in a professional manner and obey all court room rules to best help the defendants. Thanks to The Human Solution for tracking this case.

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Thursday, April 17, 2014 – Court Support for Joe Grumbine (Long Beach)
Support medical cannabis defendant and advocate Joe Grumbine. His hearing starts at 8:30 AM in Judge Arthur Jean’s courtroom at 275 Magnolia Ave., Long Beach, CA 90802. Dress in a professional manner and obey all court room rules to best help the defendant. Thanks to The Human Solution for tracking this case.


Take Action



National: Support HR 689 and HR 710

US Representatives Earl Blumenauer and Sam Farr are cosponsors on legislation that will end the federal conflict with state medical cannabis programs.  Blumenauer’s bill, titled the States’ Medical Marijuana Patient Protections Act (HR 689), will move cannabis out of Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act and allow for medical research to be controlled by an agency other than the National Institute of Drug Abuse. Farr’s bill, the Truth in Trials Act (HR 710), will allow patients, caregivers and providers who are in compliance with state law to offer evidence of the medical necessity for their use of cannabis. Please take a minute to urge your Representative in the House to cosponsor HR 689, the States' Medical Cannabis Patient Protection Act, and HR 710, the Truth in Trials Act. Demand Congress show their support today.

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Join Americans for Safe Access (ASA)

ASA is the nation’s leading medical cannabis patients’ advocacy organization. The patients, medical professionals, scientists, concerned citizens, and other who comprise ASA are committed to promoting safe and legal access to cannabis for therapeutic use and research. ASA works in partnership with state, local and national legislators to overcome barriers and create policies that improve access to cannabis for patients and researchers. ASA provides legal training for and medical information to patients, attorneys, health and medical professionals and policymakers throughout the United States. We also organize media support for court cases, rapid response to law enforcement raids, and capacity-building for advocates. Your support makes it all possible. Join ASA or renew your membership today.


ASA Website Spotlight



ASA Live

Keep an eye on your inbox for announcements about live webcasts on the ASA Live webpage. The page has archived videos you can watch right now. Watch a panel of scientists and other excerpts discuss cannabis as a genuine botanical medicine, see a program about CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta’s game-changing documentary, and more.


ASA CA Chapter Spotlight



San Francisco ASA

Founded in 2003, the San Francisco Chapter of ASA is the oldest local chapters in the country. It is also deeply rooted in the early days of the contemporary medical cannabis movement. Activists who would eventually found the SF-ASA played key roles in gathering signatures to adopt Proposition 215, founding pioneering patients’ cooperatives and collectives, and adopting the first local ordinances protecting patients’ access. SF-ASA members helped create and implement the city’s forward-looking medical cannabis ordinance, and are still active in shaping local policies. The chapter also plays a key role in organizing the medical cannabis community and speaking for patients at the state and federal level. SF-ASA members are well-represented in state lobby days in Sacramento and Washington, DC. The next SF-ASA meeting is at 7:30 PM on Tuesday, April 15, at Lounge 847, 847 Howard St, San Francisco, CA 94103.


ASA Chapter & Affiliate Meetings



Tuesday, April 15, 2014 - San Francisco ASA (San Francisco)
The meeting starts at 7:30 PM at Lounge 847, 847 Howard St, San Francisco, CA 94103. Email tony@safeaccessnow.org for more information.

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - East Bay ASA (Oakland)
The meeting starts at 6:30 PM at the Oaksterdam Student Union, 1915 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94612. Email eastbayasa@gmail.com for more information.

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - Lake County ASA (Clearlake Oaks)
The meeting starts at 6:30 PM at the Moose Lodge, 15900 East Highway 20, Clearlake Oaks, CA 95423. Email boo5416@yahoo.com for more information.


Have something to share?

The “California Weekly Roundup” is a once-a-week email for ASA Members and Friends that focuses on relevant news and important updates, action alerts, meetings and special events. Send items for the California Weekly Roundup to CARoundup@SafeAccessNow.org before 12:00 PM on Friday to be included in Monday's distribution.


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