ASA California Roundup: May 26, 2014

May 26, 2014 | Don Duncan

CA Sen. Lou CorreaContents:

Message from the CA Director - Support SB 1262 in California

California News

  • Pot growers face charges -- in state where pot is legal (National)
  • U.S. Says Legal Marijuana Growers Can't Use Federal Irrigation Water (National)
  • Experts Debate Use of Cannabis to Control Seizures (National)
  • Calif. law would require cops to return seized pot if charges are dropped (California)
  • John Vasconcellos, longtime Silicon Valley lawmaker, dies at 82  (California)
  • Medical Marijuana Opponents File for an Initiative (Santa Monica)
  • Medical marijuana measure qualifies for June 2015 ballot (Riverside)
  • Editorial: Riverside again ground zero in medical pot fight (Riverside)
  • A Balanced Plan for Medical Cannabis Regulation in San Jose (San Jose)
  • San Jose City Council to Vote on Medical Marijuana Rules (San Jose)
  • Cannaroma: The Werc Shop Unveils Terpene-Enhanced Product Line (Pasadena)
  • County’s marijuana eradication/suppression program (San Bernardino County)
  • LA Pot Politics Spreads Statewide (Los Angeles)
  • Santa Cruz County mulls marijuana dispensary tax (Santa Cruz)
  • Teen arraigned in deadly pot dispensary robbery (San Diego)
  • Yabba dabba do(n't): An uncertain future and a legal gray area shade the growing trend of cannabis concentrates (San Luis Obispo)

Events

  • Wednesday, May 28, 2014 – Sacramento County Board of Supervisors Meeting (Sacramento)
  • Saturday, May 31, 2014 – ASA Spring Membership Drive Ends (Nationwide)
  • Monday, August 4, 2014 – CA Citizen Lobby Day (Sacramento)

Court Support

  • Friday, May 30, 2014 – Court Support for Tavi Gonzales (Rancho Cucamonga)

Take Action

  • Support SB 1262 in California
  • Join Americans for Safe Access (ASA)

ASA Website Spotlight

  • Joining a Movement

ASA Chapter & Affiliate Meetings

  • Tuesday, May 27, 2014 - San Diego ASA (North County)
  • Thursday, May 29, 2014 - Sacramento ASA (Sacramento)

Message from the CA Director



The California Senate Appropriations Committee passed an amended version of SB 1262 on Friday morning, which included another important change supported by Americans for Safe Access (ASA). We had already succeeded in persuading the Author and his colleagues to remove language that would have imposed tough restrictions on doctors who recommend medical cannabis. This was an important first step in making this regulatory bill work. We scored another win for patients on Friday, when the Author accepted an amendment putting regulatory control and licensing for commercial medical cannabis activity in the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) – an agency whose mission and experience already include protecting consumers and licensing businesses.

SB 1262, by Senator Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana), is an important step towards better regulating commercial medical cannabis activity in California. This matters for patients. Our research and experience show that sensible regulations preserve safe and dignified access to medicine, while reducing crime and complaints in neighborhoods. If adopted, the bill may also be an incentive for cities and counties to move ahead with local permitting for medical cannabis cultivation and distribution by creating clear state guidelines for what is legal in California. That may help to reverse, in part, the recent trend of cities and counties banning medical cannabis activity.

SB 1262 represents a milestone in the long campaign for statewide regulations. The bill is sponsored by the California Police Chiefs Association and the League of California Cities, two powerful lobby organizations that have opposed regulatory bills until now. It is remarkable to see these two organizations standing with medical cannabis patients and behind a good bill. We have a long way to go to get this bill passed by both houses and signed by the Governor. You can help make that happen by asking your California Senator to support SB 1262 when it comes for a vote before the full  Senate this week.

There are other pieces of legislation on the table this year, and we have big plans for 2015. Mark your calendar right now for the biggest and most important CA Citizen Lobby Day in California on Monday, August 4, 2014. Hundreds of ASA Members and allies will be in Sacramento that day to fight for good bills and make plans for the future. Don’t miss out. Details will follow soon.


California News



Pot growers face charges -- in state where pot is legal (National)
Jolie Lee, USA Today

Five people are in Washington state are facing marijuana charges -- in a state where marijuana is legal. The group, called the Kettle Falls 5, will be on trial for growing 68 plants in rural eastern  Washington. The trial is set for July 28. Why are they facing prosecution? Because it's a federal case, and one that could change the legal landscape in states where pot has been legalized.
Read more here.

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U.S. Says Legal Marijuana Growers Can't Use Federal Irrigation Water (National)
Hasini Gittens, NBC

Marijuana growers operating legally in Colorado and Washington state took another hit from the federal government on Tuesday when the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation announced that pot growers are (still) not allowed to use federal irrigation waters. Since 1902, the bureau has been charged with maintaining dams, power plants and canals in the 17 "western states" — from North Dakota, Nebraska and Texas to Washington, Oregon and California.
Read more here.

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Experts Debate Use of Cannabis to Control Seizures (National)
Pauline Anderson, Medscape

Debate is heating up over the use of cannabis to control epilepsy, particularly in children. In a series of articles published online May 22 in Epilepsia, experts in the field weigh in on the past, present, and future role of cannabis in the treatment of this disease.
Read more here.

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Calif. law would require cops to return seized pot if charges are dropped (California)
Chris Ornelas, ABC 23

A bill in the state legislature would require police to return seized marijuana if charges are dropped. SB 1193 would require California law-enforcement agencies that file charges against medical  marijuana users to return the pot or reimburse the person for it if the charges later get dropped. The other part of the bill would also limit the amount of marijuana law enforcement agencies have to keep as evidence while a case is in the courts.
Read more here.

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John Vasconcellos, longtime Silicon Valley lawmaker, dies at 82  (California)
Los Angeles Times

John Vasconcellos, a longtime Democratic lawmaker from Santa Clara who made headlines for backing medical marijuana and pressing for a commission to study self-esteem, died Saturday at his home in San Jose after a period of declining health. He was 82. His assistant, Sonia Avitia, confirmed his death. A native of San Jose, Vasconcellos received a law degree from the University of Santa Clara and began his career as an aide to former Gov. Pat Brown.
Read more here.

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Medical Marijuana Opponents File for an Initiative (Santa Monica)
Daniel Larios, Santa Monica Lookout

Opponents of medical marijuana plan to circulate a petition for a ballot measure that would regulate dispensaries in Santa Monica.The initiative filed with the City Clerk’s office Wednesday afternoon would preempt a proposed Zoning Ordinance update that would allow space for as many as two medical marijuana facilities in the bayside city.
Read more here.

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Medical marijuana measure qualifies for June 2015 ballot (Riverside)
Alicia Robinson, The Press Enterprise

Riverside residents will likely get to vote in June 2015 on a measure that would legalize, tax and regulate a small number of medical marijuana dispensaries. After more than four months of circulating petitions, initiative supporters turned in enough signatures to qualify for a ballot, according to the Riverside County Registrar of Voters. “People (backing the measure) are excited that all their hard work has paid off, and they’re excited to have the opportunity to educate the community because they know there’s just so much misinformation out there,” said Jason Thompson, an attorney working with Riverside Safe Access, the group that drafted the initiative.
Read more here.

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Editorial: Riverside again ground zero in medical pot fight (Riverside)
The Press Enterprise

The national debate over marijuana continues to waft through the city of Riverside. A city initiative allowing medical-marijuana dispensaries has qualified for the ballot in June 2015. Reported the Press-Enterprise, “Riverside, which now bans dispensaries through the zoning code, could prove a battleground for medical marijuana supporters and opponents.”
Read more here.

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A Balanced Plan for Medical Cannabis Regulation in San Jose (San Jose)
James Anthony, San Jose Inside

Last Tuesday afternoon, the San Jose City Council did something it had never done before—it questioned and challenged the city manager’s staff on their approach to medical cannabis regulation.  Staff purports to be objective and “just following the law,” but they have a distinct bias against medical cannabis. It is strongly reminiscent of the narrow, restrictive, pro-drug-war view held by some in  Southern California law enforcement. San Jose policy should not be based on the ideology of the likes of Los Angeles County District Attorney and failed candidate for Attorney General, Steve Cooley.
Read more here.

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San Jose City Council to Vote on Medical Marijuana Rules (San Jose)
Matt Crawford SF Station

While other U.S. cities enjoy the recreational use of medical marijuana, California cities are still struggling to define policies for regulating medical marijuana. Officials in San Jose, the city with the  largest population in the Bay Area and the 10th largest in the U.S., are expected to vote on Tuesday on new laws to regulate its numerous medical marijuana dispensaries.
Read more here.

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Cannaroma: The Werc Shop Unveils Terpene-Enhanced Product Line (Pasadena)
Drake Dorm, Medical Jane

As we know, terpenes are compounds found in the essential oils of cannabis that cause its aroma. We’ve discussed the idea of isolating terpenoids and potentially using them to improve the  effectiveness of medical marijuana in the past, and a new line of products looks to take things one step further.
Read more here.

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County’s marijuana eradication/suppression program (San Bernardino County)
S. E. Williams, Alpenhorn News

The United States Department of Justice, Drug Enforcement Administration recently approved 2014 funding that will enable the county’s continued participation in the Domestic Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Program. The federal program is designed to defray local costs related to eradication and suppression of illicit marijuana. It includes a number of key activities aimed at suppressing illegal use of the drug. Such activities include gathering and reporting intelligence data related to illegal cultivation; possession and distribution as well as the investigation and reporting of instances that involve the trafficking of controlled substances; and, the arrests and referral of cases for prosecution.
Read more here.

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LA Pot Politics Spreads Statewide (Los Angeles)
James Poulos, Public CEO

Thanks to Los Angeles, the politics of marijuana is lighting up in California this election season. Not only are L.A. laws, attitudes and consumption habits influencing neighboring counties, they’re  impacting the statewide debate. The situation is that Proposition 215, which voters approved in 1996, legalized medical marijuana, but left regulation largely up to counties, not the state.
Read more here.

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Santa Cruz County mulls marijuana dispensary tax (Santa Cruz)
Jason Hoppin, Santa Cruz Sentinel

If pot prices in Santa Cruz County are a pocketbook issue, some locals may be about to feel a pinch. The county is mulling a tax on medical marijuana dispensaries that could go before voters in  November. But local operators are crying foul, saying the proposed 7 percent rate is too high and would increase prices for patients. It's a pretty significant disadvantage for these folks," said attorney  Ben Rice, who works with several pot clubs. "They're all fine with paying money to make this work for everybody, but they also don't want to be put out of business."
Read more here.

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Teen arraigned in deadly pot dispensary robbery (San Diego)
KFMB 760 AM

A 17-year-old gang member who allegedly participated in the armed robbery of a North Park medical marijuana dispensary in which his accomplice was shot and killed by a security guard pleaded not guilty Thursday to charges of murder, attempted murder and robbery. Kurese Bell -- who is charged as an adult -- faces life in prison if convicted.
Read more here.

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Yabba dabba do(n't): An uncertain future and a legal gray area shade the growing trend of cannabis concentrates (San Luis Obispo)
Jono Kinkade, New Times SLO

Sunday, April 27, was like any other spring day in San Luis Obispo. The breeze blew through the trees, and the weather lingered in that pleasantly mild zone that so often settles on this part of the coast.  At 2:15 in the afternoon, personnel from the San Luis Obispo Fire Department responded to a reported structure fire in the neighborhood of Stoneridge Drive, where southwestern adobe-style houses dot the hillside. When firefighters arrived, they found flames in the residence’s garage, apparently generating from a square glass baking dish holding a gooey, resiny substance. Once they’d spotted the telltale canisters of butane, they notified police.
Read more here.


Events



Wednesday, May 28, 2014 – Sacramento County Board of Supervisors Meeting (Sacramento)
Save the date. The Sacramento County Board will discuss an ordinance regulating indoor cultivation at this meeting. Details are coming soon. The meeting will be 2:00 – 6:00 PM in Board Chambers at 700 H Street, Suite 1450, Sacramento, CA 95814.

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Saturday, May 31, 2014 – ASA Spring Membership Drive Ends (Nationwide)
This is the last day to take advantage of special membership incentives as part of ASA’s Spring Membership Drive. Stand up and be counted. Join ASA today!

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Monday, August 4, 2014 – CA Citizen Lobby Day (Sacramento)
Save the date. Hundreds of ASA Members and allies will meet in Sacramento for a legislative briefing and citizen lobby day in support for sensible legislation to better regulate commercial medical cannabis activity and protect patients’ rights. Mark your calendar now and plan to be in Sacramento. Details to follow.


Court Support



What is Court Support and how do I get involved?

Friday, May 30, 2014 – Court Support for Tavi Gonzales (Rancho Cucamonga)
Please support medical cannabis defendant Tavi Gonzales at 1:30 PM at 8303 Haven Ave., Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730-3848. Dress in a professional manner and obey all courtroom rules to best support the defendants. Thanks to The Human Solution for tracking this case.


Take Action



Support SB 1262 in California

Contact your California State Senator and ask him or her to vote yes on SB 1262 this week. SB 1262 is a bill by Senator Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana) that would regulate commercial medical cannabis activity in the state. In its newly amended form, the bill places state regulatory control and licensing in the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) and sets common-sense standards for cultivation and distribution. ASA supports SB 1262 because our research and experience show that sensible regulations preserve safe and dignified access to medical cannabis for patients, while reducing crime and complaints in neighborhoods.

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Join Americans for Safe Access (ASA)

This is the final week of ASA’s Spring Membership Drive. Have you joined yet?  Be sure to take advantage of some great membership incentives right now. 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 Website Spotlight



Joining a Movement

This is the last in a five part series on ASA’s innovative Medical Cannabis Advocates Training Center, a free online resource for patient-advocacy skills building. This week, we are spotlighting the "Joining a Movement" section of the website. When joining a movement, you are making not only a commitment to an issue, but a commitment to other individuals in our struggle. In our movement, our brothers and sisters are vulnerable to criminal sanctions. This section will go over programs and projects you can incorporate into your advocacy that support our movement. Be sure to have a look at the “Resources for Organizers” section, too.

ASA believes that good policy is created when those who are most affected are at the table. Just because you are medical cannabis patient, it doesn't mean that you automatically have a degree in public policy. ASA has always been committed to demystifying political systems and providing advocates the tools they need to participate in the processes in a meaningful way. Learn all about grassroots organizing, citizen lobbying, media spokesperson training, and much more using the Medical Cannabis Advocates Training Center.



ASA Chapter & Affiliate Meetings



Tuesday, May 27, 2014 - San Diego ASA (North County)
The meeting starts at 7:00 PM at Captain Keno's - 158 N Coast Highway 101, Encinitas, CA 92024. Email sandiegoasa@gmail.com for more for more information.

Thursday, May 29, 2014 - Sacramento ASA (Sacramento)
The meeting starts at 7:00 PM at 2315 K St, Sacramento, CA 95816. Email safeaccesssacramento@gmail.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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