Flex Your MJ Muscle + 420 Party

 

asa_lobby_day_2017a.pngAssert Your Power It's Your Government
Join Us at the ASA/CaNORML
Citizens MJ Lobby Day in Sacramento

The ASA/CaNORML Citizen Lobby Day in Sacramento has always been a special event that is informative, productive and fun. For 2019 they are putting together the largest, most rewarding and successful Citizen Lobby Day ever and you can be a part of it!!!

On Monday, May 6, they are expecting over 200 participants representing patients, advocates, providers, industry workers and others to participate in the state's largest cannabis lobby day.

capitol-of-california.jpgIt’s an amazing experience in the democratic process as you take part in the legislative briefing and lobbyist training which will give you the information and skills you need to meet with your state assembly member and state senator at California's state Capitol that very same day. Citizen lobbying works - Research shows that an in-person visit from a constituent like you is six times more likely to influence an undecided lawmaker than a visit from a paid lobbyist.

asa_lobby_day_citizen_hotel.JPGLobby day begins with a continental breakfast at 8:00 AM in the Metropolitan Terrace on the 7th Floor of the Citizen Hotel located at 926 J Street, Sacramento. The morning program starts at 9:00 AM, where you will be presented an overview of the bills on which you will be lobbying, along with tips for effective lobbying. You will then be armed with fact sheets on all the bills for your afternoon meetings with lawmakers, along with forms to report on your meetings. Return the forms at the evening VIP reception for lawmakers and attendees in the Scandal Lounge back at the Citizen Hotel starting at 5:30 PM.

Here are some of the bills you will learn about and be trained to lobby for:

bill.jpgSB 34 (Wiener) to protect compassion programs in California

AB 286 (Bonta) To Temporarily Lower Cannabis Taxes

SB 233 (Hill)To Allow Medical Cannabis Access in Schools

AB 1465 (Bloom) To License Cannabis Consumption Cafés and Lounges

SB 305 (Hueso) To Allow Qualified Patients Medical Cannabis Access in Healthcare Facilities

ASA/CaNORML’s Citizen Lobby Day has always been extraordinary – everyone who has participated has always felt it was one of the most satisfying days they have spent in a long long time and look forward to participating again

Want to join in – you can!

party_van.jpgEvery year we rent a van and bring 10 to 15 IE residents to Sacramento for Citizen Lobby Day. Let me assure you that getting there is half the fun!

We will leave on Sunday, May 5 at 8:30 a.m. from Palm Springs and will pick up at several locations along the travel route in the IE from Palm Spring to Riverside and San Bernardino. We arrive in Sacramento at around 6 p.m. and check in at a local motel. We go for dinner and after dinner get together for a social cannabis-friendly event.

Senator_Stone___2015_Lobby_Day.JPGOn Monday, May 6 we go to the Legislative Briefing and Lobbyist Training at the Citizen’s Hotel in downtown Sacramento. In the afternoon you will go to the State Capitol Building and to the offices of your state assembly member and senator. ASA will make appointments for you, so you will be expected. You will most likely meet with the legislator’s Chief Legislative Aide, but it is not unusual to meet with your actual state assembly member and senator.

After the lobbying, we reconvene in the Scandal Lounge at 5:30 p.m. in the Citizen Hotel for a VIP Reception with lawmakers and other state officials. We leave about 7:00 p.m. for home arriving back in the IE around 2 or 3 a.m.

calif_mj.jpgYes it is a very full day – one that you will tell everyone you know about. You are not on the sideline looking in – you actually participate in our democracy! And it’s all for cannabis – your right to safe, reliable, local and affordable access in California.

Yes you will actually be able tell your grandkids what you did to end marijuana prohibition.

Roy_Inn.jpgThe cost is only $85 per person. This includes transportation, lodging (two to a room) and all registration and reception fees. We will dine together if you chose, but all food purchases are on your own. We will be staying at the Red Lion Roy Inn in Sacramento. All rooms have microwaves and refrigerators as well as free-internet. Although there is a continental breakfast served at the Citizen Lobby Day morning briefing, there is also a continental breakfast served at the hotel. For those inclined, there is also a fitness center.

There is only room for 12 people in the party van and there are only six seats left – so don’t delay and miss out on this enlightening and fun trip. Email me at lanny@marijuananews.org and reserve your seat in the van, your room in the Inn and most of all you participation in grassroots cannabis activism.

scholarship.jpgFor those who want to go but need some FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE, we have a limited number of SCHOLARSHIPS to cover all costs except for meals. Just ask when you make your reservation.

If you can take off on Sunday May 5 and Monday May 6 and don’t need much sleep to function on Tuesday or can just sleep on Tuesday, then don’t miss this extraordinary day. I guarantee you will not regret attending and will look back on it for many years as something that you participated in and accomplished and are very proud of.

Space is limited so if you want to join us, contact me ASAP. Send that email to lanny@marijuananews.org and I will get back to you to sign you up for an experience that will make you feel proud to be an American, a Californian and a cannabis consumer!!!!!!

420_day_party.jpgLOOKING FOR A 420 PARTY ON 420 DAY?

There is one in Palm Springs and It's FREE!!!!

As if you ever needed an excuse to come to Palm Springs, how about a 420 DAY celebration party with live bands, DJs spinning hot dance music, speakers, information booths and more - it is everything you could ever want in a 420 Day celebration except for maybe consuming cannabis. Palm Springs has some weird on-site consumption laws and even though the location is a licensed dispensary where you can buy enough weed to zap a cat, on-site consumption is still verboten.

No matter what PS does and doesn't, the event takes place on Saturday, April 20 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the PSA Organica Dispensary, a licensed facility just east of downtown Palm Springs. It is an open-air event and since it is Palm Springs, you know the weather is going to be just perfect.

420blinking.gifThere will be a special ceremony at 4:20 p.m. honoring the amazing health and recreational uses of this ancient medicinal herb. You don’t want to miss celebrating the rapidly approaching collapse of marijuana prohibition and the end of 80 years of reefer madness.

Best of all it’s all FREE – all you need to bring with you is proof that you are at least 21 years of age and you can be a part of an amazing 420 Party.

PSA Organica is located at 400 E Sunny Dunes Rd, Palm Springs, CA 92264. For more information, call them at: (760) 778-1053

keep_going.jpgCelebrate 420 DAY all year - feel good all year by helping us all year!

420_club_bldg.pngJoin MAPP’s 420 Club and donate $4.20 every month to keep us going, going, going.

From working with local governments to establish reasonable and workable regulations for cannabis businesses to protecting cannabis consumers from losing their jobs for using legal cannabis, MAPP is there. Please help us be there for you.

CLICK HERE TO JOIN MAPP'S 420 CLUB

CLICK HERE TO MAKE A ONE-TIME DONATION

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Riverside BOS votes on preposterous MJ biz ordinance plus MAPP meets

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Riverside County Will Lose $30 Million with Proposed Marijuana Biz Ordinance

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Riverside County has just released its proposed ordinance on marijuana businesses and will hold a Board of Supervisors hearing on the morning of Tuesday, Jan. 29 at 9 a.m. As expected, the ordinance is a morass of overly complex regulations, byzantine bureaucratic application procedures designed as a full employment program for lawyers and a Developer Agreement finance scheme that will result in massive losses of tax revenues to Riverside County.

Now am I sure about what I wrote above? No I am not because this ordinance is as transparent as lead. There are 9 lengthy, complex and obtuse attachments for the BOS to consider when this ordinance comes up for consideration on Tuesday, Jan. 29. If you want to peruse this entangled amalgamate of regulations, permits, fees and more CLICK HERE.

Under this ordinance the county will issue 100 permits broken down into 50 for cultivators, 19 for retailers, 22 for manufacturers, 4 for nurseries, 4 for distributors and one testing laboratory. The rational behind these off-the-wall numbers is that this is the most the Planning staff can handle in 2019.

The major flaw in this entire ordinance is that it is based on a Developer’s Agreement model instead of a Regulate and Tax model which is used by every other municipality that has allowed cannabis businesses to exist. The problem with a Developer's Agreement is that fees cannot be based on sales as then it would be a tax and would require a vote of the people.

magnify.pngIf you do not know what a Developer Agreement model is and how absurd it is to apply to cannabis businesses, check out my Oct. 2018 newsletter by CLICKING HERE. With an understanding of what a Developer Agreement is and what it does, it becomes crystal-clear see why no other city or county in California has gone the Developer Agreement route.

confused_one.jpgconfused_two.pngThe Riverside County BOS had no concept of what they were doing when they went along with Supervisor Chuck Washington’s insistence that a Developer’s Agreement be used for legalizing cannabis businesses. After passing this absurd ordinance, they dumped the problem on figuring out how to implement a Developer’s Agreement onto the backs of the Riverside Co. Planning Dept.  The Planning Dept. had no idea how to do this so they spent an unknown amount of taxpayer dollars to hire HdL Consulting Company.

accountant.jpgHdL bills themselves as “the only consulting firm with professionals who have direct experience regulating cannabis operations at the local and state level.” They have made millions developing ordinances, writing regulations, crafting licenses and constructing tax programs for befuddled cities and counties throughout the state.

Not knowing what to do the Riverside County Planning staff punted to HdL to essentially reinvent the wheel as no one has ever done this before with cannabis businesses.

Did the County get its money’s worth? As far as I can tell from my reading of the HdL Companies report, they didn’t - that is if they were expecting a scheme to produce the same $30 to $40 million a year in revenue that a traditional regulate and tax system would produce.

ass.jpgWhy is this? It’s the nature of the beast of what a Developer’s Agreement is and is supposed to do. The ordinance is exceedingly complex but I will endeavor to make the following explanation easy to understand. If you take the time to methodically explore it with me, I believe you will come away with an understanding of why this is a prime example of our county government not knowing its ass from a hole in the ground.

In explaining what a public benefit fee does the HdL report noted “The public benefit contribution presents an anticipated range of additional benefits that cannabis business applicants may offer and commit to as a competitive part of the development agreement process.”

The report then offers an example of a typical public benefit fee.

public_benefits.jpg“For example, a cannabis business applicant may offer to pay an additional contribution per square foot (on top of the baseline fee), or they may offer to fund a specific service, such as the full or partial cost of an additional Sheriff’s Deputy, or a public works project that improves the neighborhood where the business intends to locate.”

Here is where it really gets cagey as the report notes:

“These public benefit contributions are presented as a range, from high to low.  These ranges are based upon common cannabis tax rates among 25 local government ballot measures on this past November’s ballot.  It is common to base cannabis cultivation taxes on square footage, but it is uncommon to do so for retailers, manufacturers or other types of cannabis businesses.”

The report tries to pull its punches by saying “it is uncommon to do so for retailers . . .” – the fact is it is beyond uncommon – it is non-existent.

goofy.pngNow the HdL report shows just how goofy a Developer’s Agreement is when applied to cannabis businesses  when it states:

In this case, the public benefit contribution is not intended to be proportional to earnings in any way, but is rather intended to be proportional to the amount of impact that the business may have broadly on the community.

This is followed up with this zinger:

“The rates are generally tiered so that smaller operations (by square footage) pay a lower rate than larger operations.”

For a retailer, that means a dispensary with 1,000 square feet and $100,000 a month in sales will pay a lower Community Benefit Fee then a dispensary with 2,000 square feet but only $60,000 a month in sales.

The HdL report then list four scenarios for how much money Riverside County will generate using the Developer’s Agreement. Depending on the scenario the amount of money generated from retail sales will range from $2,870,000 to $4,300,000 – a far cry from the $30 to $40 million the county could have earned from conventional regulate and tax programs.

To explain how they arrived at the figures in these hypothetical scenarios, HdL presents a truly off-the-wall and disingenuous justification:

“The range of public benefit contributions is intended to approximate the amount of contributions that cannabis businesses around the State are able to reasonably provide, based upon typical profit margins and operational costs converted to a reasonable square-foot apportionment.

marx.jpgThe HdL report is totally silent on how to actually in a real-world sense determine a benefit fee “based upon typical profit margins and operational costs converted to a reasonable square-foot apportionment.”  I guess they are dumping that on the County, but since HdL couldn’t figure it out I doubt if the County’s Planning staff can either.  

The HdL report is a rip-off and Riverside County should ask for their money back. Then again they were asking HdL to do the impossible so they shouldn’t be surprised when HdL can’t do the impossible but writes a report in order to justify the amount of money the County paid them to write a report.

Now it may be argued that the lower fees under the Developer Agreement model will mean lower costs for cannabis consumers. Now that would be worth celebrating but I really doubt if cannabis consumers will see much in cannabis price reductions. They certainly haven't seen much in retail price reductions even though wholesale prices of cannabis have plummeted from an average $2,500/pound pre-Prop. 64 to about $1,250/pound post-Prop. 64.

no_idea.jpgI have no idea what Riverside County is going to do with the HdL report and the ordinance under consideration at the Tuesday, Jan. 29 meeting of the BOS. If you are looking to get into the cannabis business in Riverside County then you need to be at this meeting if you are ever going to understand what is  happening in Riverside County and what you will have to do if you want to have a cannabis business whether it is a farm, an edible’s manufacturer, a dispensary or a mom-and-pop microbusiness.

It is possible that the BOS may just put this off for another year or two, so if you are a cannabis consumer, you should be there too and let the County know that you expect to have safe, reliable and local access sooner rather than later.

For political junkies who live to see elected officials tie themselves up in knots made under the influence of reefer-madness, this will be a most entertaining government meeting.

The Riverside County BOS meeting will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 29. The meeting begins at 9 a.m. but it is anybody’s guess when it will come up for consideration. I have been told by a reliable source that it is unlikely to be discussed before 10 a.m. BUT if you want to testify it might be best to get there earlier just in case the BOS limits public testimony to just one hour.

riv_co_bldg.jpgThe Riverside County BOS meeting is held in the first floor council chambers in the Riverside Co. Administration Building at 4080 Lemon St., in downtown Riverside 92501.

conference_call.pngI will be making contact with Riverside County staff and officials on Monday and I may learn a few things – like I got everything wrong and I don’t know what I am talking about or I may get my worst fears confirmed. For those who are interested in learning about what I learn on Monday, I will be holding an open-to-all teleconference on Monday, Jan. 26 at 9 p.m. If you would like to participate in the teleconference, call 605-475-3235 and use access code 275905# to join the conversation.

MAPP_Logo.jpgFebruary MAPP Meetings

Learn about what happened in Riverside, get the latest news, join in the discussions, network, make new friends, stay in touch with old friends, enjoy cookies with milk and win a genuine silicon pipe.

Coachella Valley/Palm Springs MAPP meeting – Saturday, Feb. 2 at 12 noon at the exotic Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon in downtown Palm Springs 92262.

Morongo Basin/Joshua Tree MAPP meeting – Saturday, Feb. 2 at 3 p.m. at the legendary Beatnik Lounge, 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree CA 92252.

Western IE/Riverside MAPP meeting – Our meeting place has closed so the Feb. meeting is canceled until a new place to meet is located..

420_club_bldg.pngvalentine_pot.pngCelebrate Valentine's Day and show your LOVE for cannabis by joining MAPP’s 420 Club and donating $4.20 every month to help us keep you informed and solidify your right to safe, reliable, local and affordable access.

From working with Riverside County to establish reasonable and workable regulations for cannabis businesses to protecting cannabis consumers from losing their jobs for using legal cannabis, MAPP is there. Please help us be there for you.

CLICK HERE TO JOIN MAPP'S 420 CLUB

CLICK HERE TO MAKE A ONE-TIME DONATION

2019_ad_with_us-page-001.jpg#marijuana #marijuananews #marijuanalegalization #cannabis #medicalmarijuana #MAPP #marijuanaantiprohibitionproject #drugpolicyreform marijuanalawreform #marijuanaaccess #drugwar #warondrugs #reefermadness #marijuanacompassionandcommonsense #riversidecounty #marijuanaregulations #marijuanaliceneses
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Reefer Recovery - 2019 Top 10 - Tokin' Women - MAPP meets

world_pot_leaf.jpgAs America Recovers from 80 Years of Reefer Madness, So Does the World

important-page-001.jpgAs 2018 comes to a close and 2019 looms, Americans, according to most pundits, are as divided and polarized as they have ever been going all the way back to the times of the Civil War. One of the very few issues that is enjoying bipartisan support across the political and cultural spectrum is the end of marijuana prohibition and the beginnings of various state sanctioned legalization programs.

2018topten-page-001.jpgPolls universally show the majority of Americans support marijuana legalization. A June 2018 poll conducted by GBA Strategies for The Center for American Progress found 68% of voters support marijuana legalization. This support cuts across party lines with 77 percent of Democrats, 57 percent of Republicans and 62 percent of independents supporting legalization.

arms_thumbs_up.jpgSupport for legalization also cuts across racial lines with 72 percent of African-Americans, 69 percent of whites and 64 percent of Latinos in favor. There use to be a major gender gap with women opposing legalization, but now the sexes see marijuana almost identically with 69 percent of women and 66 percent of men supporting the legalization of cannabis.

With Michigan legalizing the recreational sales of marijuana in 2018, nearly 80 million Americans — 25 percent of the total U.S. population — live in a state or jurisdiction that has legalized recreational marijuana.  What began with California’s passage of Prop 215 legalizing the medical use of marijuana has morphed into a nationwide push for ending marijuana prohibition that appears unstoppable. The genie is definitely out of the bottle.

80_years_of_reefer_madness.pngAs America recovers from eight decades of reefer madness, it should be expected that there will be bumps in the road as states implement their own legalization programs with varying degrees of success. The predictions by marijuana opponents of rampant crime, addicted children, carnage on the highways and the end of civilization have not materialized.

open_for_business.JPGWith over $8 billion in sales in 2018, which are expected to reach over $23 billion in just four years, marijuana businesses are springing up like flowers in spring. Overcoming the byzantine regulations and licensing systems enacted by nervous-Nellie legislators and government agencies, these newly enfranchised businesses are a remarkably diverse lot notably giving the lie to the predictions of the "nattering nabobs of negativism" who claimed that legalization will lead to the take-over of the marijuana trade by Monsanto and Marlboro.

As noted in a previous newsletter, with the Democrats taking control of the House of Representatives, there is a real possibility that federal marijuana prohibition may end in 2019. As proof of their commitment to allowing states to move forward with legalization programs, the Democratic staff of the congressional Joint Economic Committee published The National Cannabis Economy highlighting the “economic benefits of legalized cannabis at the state and national levels.” To read the full report CLICK HERE.

end_reef_madness-page-001.jpgSince it was the United States that spread reefer madness throughout the world, it is incumbent upon the United States to spread reefer sanity. Fortunately other countries are not waiting for the United States to start the process before they legalize cannabis. Canada legalized cannabis sales throughout the country in July 2018 and Mexico, whose Supreme Court already declared that it is unconstitutional to prohibit the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by individuals, has a new president who is committed to not just legalizing marijuana but upending America’s War on Drugs.

It is not just Western industrialized nations that are changing their attitudes on marijuana. In the African continent  Lesotho and Zimbabwe have legalized marijuana for medical use and the South African Supreme Court unanimously legalized the private use of cannabis ruling that it was “unconstitutional and therefore invalid” to criminalize the drug.

asia_growing_mj.jpgMost significantly as reported by Newsweek Magazine, a number of Asian nations, with some of the most severe and repressive laws “have taken note of cannabis legalization movements in North America and other countries, with several moving to chart a similar path.” Citing progress in Asian countries as diverse as Thailand, Malaysia and South Korea, the magazine noted that “India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan also becoming interested in looking at medical cannabis in part because they see how much money the rest of the world’s companies and countries are getting out of it.”

Hmmmm – “how much money” they “are getting out of it.” No matter how much we might wish it was otherwise, the bottom line of marijuana legalization, like just about everything else, is that it’s all about money. We may very well have “freed the weed,” but weed still has its price.

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tokin_women.jpgTOKIN' WOMEN

A 4,000 Year Herstory of Women and Marijuana

radio_show.jpgBe dazzled and inspired by the newest edition of Marijuana Compassion and Common Sense when you learn about Tokin' Women, a must-read book that delivers amazing descriptions of amazing women who over the last 4,000 years have been been consumers and purveyors of cannabis from the ancient goddesses of milleniums past right up to the film goddesses of today.

Elaborately researched, delightfully written and colorfully illustrated, author Nola Evangelista, seeks to counter today's male dominated marijuana culture by infusing the spirit of women along with the freedom to enjoy this most celebrated herb. Tokin' Women reveals the story of over 50 remarkable women and their intimate connection to the world of cannabis.

ellen_komp.jpgOur interview is with Ellen Komp, Assistant Executive Director of California NORML, who has chosen the pseudonym Nola Evangelista to be the listed author of the book. Discussing why she wrote the book, the work that went into research and its relevance to the current age where marijuana is once again reclaiming its rightful place alongside humanity, Ellen will explain why the subjugation of women in human culture has conincided with the supression of healing herbs and plants like cannabis.

Hear Tokin' Women author Ellen Komp right now - just CLICK HERE or log in anytime 24/7 to www.blogtalkradio.com/marijuananews.

MAPP_Logo.jpgCELEBRATE THE YEAR OF CANNABIS AT  MAPP MEETINGS

IMPORTANT: Riverside County has received the report from HdL on how to implement the absurd and obscene Developer's Agreement for the proposed Cannabis Business ordinance. The Planning Dept. is refusing to release it to the public - I am working on getting it. The Board of Supervisors will be discussing the ordinance and the HdL plan at their Jan. 29 Board meeting. I will present at the January MAPP meetings what I have learned about this.

In addition there will be a free-wheeling and open-ended discussion of marijuana in 2018 and what needs to happen and will happen in 2019. We have come a long way so recount some of your stories of how you got to where you and we are with marijuana. Please see the special note about the Moreno Valley meeting.

Network, socialize, get informed, enjoy a delicious assortment of cookies, milk and punch and win a genuine silicon pipe.

Moreno Valley/Western IE MAPP meeting - Wednesday, January 2 at 7:30 p.m. -. This will be the last meeting of MAPP at Greenview Medical as the office is closing mid-January. Locating a new meeting place will be discussed. Meeting takes place at Greenview Medical, 22275 Alessandro Blvd, Moreno Valley CA 92553

Palm Springs/Coachella Valley MAPP meeting – Saturday, January 5 at 12 noon - Meeting to take place at Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon, downtown Palm Springs 92262.

Joshua Tree/Morongo Basin MAPP meeting - Saturday, January 5 at 3 p.m. -. Meeting takes place at the fabulous Beatnik Lounge, 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree CA 92252.

rightfoot2.jpgJust before the clock strikes midnight on December 31, raise your left leg so that you will start off the year on the right foot.

420_club_bldg.pngThen continue 2019 on the right foot by joining MAPP’s 420 Club and donating $4.20 every month to keep us going throughout 2019.

From working with Riverside County to establish reasonable and workable regulations for cannabis businesses to protecting cannabis consumers from losing their jobs for using legal cannabis, MAPP is there. Please help us be there for you.

CLICK HERE TO JOIN MAPP'S 420 CLUB

CLICK HERE TO MAKE A ONE-TIME DONATION

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#marijuana #marijuananews #marijuanalegalization #cannabis #medicalmarijuana #MAPP #marijuanaantiprohibitionproject #drugpolicyreform #drugwar #warondrugs #DrugPolicyAlliance #reefermadness #feminist #womenandmarijuana #marijuanacompassionandcommonsense

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Will Dems End Marijuana Prohibition in 2019?

new-paradigm-ahead.jpgIs Marijuana Prohibition Coming to an End?

Although President Trump attempted to put a positive spin on the outcome of the November 6 election, there was no getting around the fact that the equation in Washington DC has undergone a major change.  Although the Senate remains in control by the Republicans, the Democrats picked up an impressive 39 seats in the House of Representatives.

house_of_reps.jpgBeing in control of the House gives the Democrats tremendous clout as under the Constitution, they now have the exclusive authority to initiate tax and spending legislation. Other powers the Democrats didn’t have but now do is the ability to summon cabinet officers and other officials to appear before various House committees to explain and defend Executive policy, rule making, conduct and more.

Oh, oh - they also now have the power to initiate impeachment proceedings.

Most importantly as far as cannabis consumers are concerned is that they now have the power to not only introduce legislation but to get it out of committee and onto the floor for a vote. Except for continuing to remain a part of the bi-partisan coalition behind the Rohrabacher/Farr amendment (now the Rohrabacher/Blumenauer amendment after Rep. Sam Farr retired) which began back in the days of President Obama and prevents the Department of Justice from spending any money to enforce federal marijuana law in do_nothing.jpgstates that have legalized the use of medical marijuana and enacted a state regulatory program, the Republicans have done essentially nothing during the two years in which they had total and complete control over both the Legislative and Executive branches of government.

pete_sessions2.jpgWith the Republicans in control of the House, marijuana reform legislation never made it to the House floor as Republican representative Pete Sessions used his position as Chairman of the House Rules Committee to block House floor members from voting on over three-dozen cannabis related bills and amendments. Sessions blocked a number of popular, bipartisan-led reforms — such as facilitating medical cannabis access to military veterans and amending federal banking laws so that licensed marijuana businesses are treated like other legal industries.

If Session had allowed these bills to be sent to the floor for a vote, the vast majority of Democrats and about 1/3 of the Republicans would have supported them giving them enough votes to be passed. But he didn’t so they couldn't.

allred.jpgRep. Sessions was caught by the blue-wave and failed in his re-election bid for Texas’ 32nd Congressional District, being defeated by Democratic challenger Colin Allred. As noted by former Republican Representative Bob Barr on FOX News, “the question of marijuana legalization appears to have been a factor in his race.” Sessions received an F grade in NORML’s latest Congressional Scorecard. By contrast, Allred received a B+ grade as a result of his stated support for cannabis decriminalization and medical marijuana access.

Chairperson of the House Rules Committee is one of the most powerful chairpersonships in Congress and it will not go to a freshman like Allred. That position is going to Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) which portends good times ahead.

With McGovern as chairperson, 2019 may very well be the year the cannabis paradigm undergoes a seismic shift as reform legislation is expected to move forward in the now Democratic-led House of Representatives.

mcgovern.jpgThe Boston Globe reported that McGovern has promised to permit federal lawmakers to debate and vote on marijuana-related amendments when he assumes control of the Committee in January. “Unlike my predecessor, I’m not going to block amendments for marijuana. Citizens are passing ballot initiatives, legislatures are passing laws, and we need to respect that. Federal laws and statutes are way behind.”

Rep. McGovern intends to prioritize legislative measures that limit federal interference in legal marijuana states, expand medical cannabis access for veterans and amend federal banking restrictions on the legal cannabis industry.

Can we trust Democrats to do what they say? With the Party’s platform and almost two-thirds of Democrats across the county in support of marijuana legalization, I expect we can.

feet_fire-converted-page-001.jpgThat doesn’t mean we should let our guard down and take a Pollyanna attitude. We need to hold Dems’ feet to the fire and that means letting your Congressional Reps, whether they are Democrat or Republican, know of your support of marijuana reform legislation. That means taking some of your precious time to send letters and emails, phone their offices and absolutely best of all if you want to make your voice heard for sure, making in-person visits to their offices and speaking up at their town hall meetings.

Of course the fly in the ointment is that the Senate is still in control of the Republicans. It’s not that the reform legislation wouldn’t pass in the Senate – it would as there are enough Democrats and Republicans who support marijuana reform to get it passed, but Republican leadership may prevent it from going to the floor for a vote.

mcconnel2.jpgForeshadowing Senate Republican leadership antipathy to marijuana reform legislation is the reaction of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to the First Step Act, a criminal justice reform bill that has bipartisan support including the support of President Trump.

The House passed a version of the First Step Act in spring, but the House version was limited to reforms on the “back end,” such as slightly increasing good time credits for federal prisoners and providing higher levels of reentry and rehabilitation services.

pull_prison_bar_open.jpgRevised in the Senate, the First Step Act now lowers mandatory minimum sentences for some drug offenses, reduces life sentences for drug offenders with three convictions (“three strikes”) to 25 years, allows thousands of prisoners sentenced for crack cocaine offenses to petition for a reduced sentence and provides enhanced services for reentry and rehabilitation programs.

Just because McConnell has come to his senses regarding industrial hemp doesn’t necessarily portend well for ending federal marijuana prohibition as McConnell’s support for hemp is due to the financial desperation Kentucky’s farmers are undergoing as the nation continues its revulsion to tobacco.

mcconnell_white_rabbit-1-page-001.jpgMcConnell, claiming there isn’t enough time to bring the bill to the floor, said he will not allow the bill to be voted on this year. His claims of not enough time is bogus and showcases his antagonism to any criminal justice reform legislation even when supported by a bi-partisan coalition of Senators and the President. This is not a good omen for marijuana reform legislation that makes it out of the House and into the Senate.

Since marijuana legalization is now supported by a majority of Americans including Republicans, there is always the possibility that McConnell and other Senate Republicans might come to their senses especially when they recognize that stakes for Republicans in the Senate for being re-elected are very problematic. In 2020 there will be 20 Republicans up for re-election and only 12 Democrats almost the reverse of this year when 26 Democratic Senate seats were up for election and only 9 Republicans.

d_vs_r-page-001.jpgCould marijuana be a factor in which party takes control? If House Democrats fail to pass marijuana reform legislation or if Senate Republicans fail to pass the legislation sent from the House or if President Trump veto’s these bills, then it most surely will be a major issue for the House, the Senate and the Presidency in 2020.

Will 2019 be a banner year for marijuana law reform or will it fall victim to machinations of timid Democrats and reefer mad Republicans? Whatever happens will be fascinating to watch and even more exciting to get down in the trenches and be involved in.

mapp_meetsit_onbutt-1-page-001.jpgGETTING DOWN IN THE TRENCHES AT DECEMBER MAPP MEETINGS

All three December MAPP meetings will be about gearing up to end marijuana prohibition once and for all. Up for discussion and analysis will be what bills will most likely be considered in 2019, what the legislative path will be, who in Congress will be supportive and who will be opposed to reason and common sense.

mj_leaf_jailbreakout.jpg2019 may be the year that the feds get out of the marijuana prohibition business – it could happen and will be more likely if you get involved. If you live in the IE or just happen to be visiting, join us at the MAPP meeting nearest you.

silicone_pipe.jpgPlus win one of two silicone pipes plus network with friends and enjoy a delightful assortment of cookies with milk at each meeting.

Palm Springs/Coachella Valley MAPP meeting - December 1 at 12 noon - Meeting to take place at Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon, downtown Palm Springs 92262.

Joshua Tree/Morongo Basin MAPP meeting - Saturday, December 1 at 3 p.m. -. Meeting takes place at the fabulous Beatnik Lounge, 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree CA 92252.

Moreno Valley/Western IE MAPP meeting - Wednesday, December 5 at 7:30 p.m. -. Meeting takes place at Greenview Medical, 22275 Alessandro Blvd, Moreno Valley CA 92553.

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BIG WIN: Fontana personal cultivation ordinance eviscerated - celebrate at MAPP meet

 big_win.pngJudge guts Fontana personal cultivation ordinance thumbs-up-.jpg

Celebrate at MAPP meet

A San Bernardino County Superior Court judge has eviscerated an ordinance enacted by the city of Fontana that was so onerous and restrictive that it was effectively a defacto ban. In the two years it was in force, not one single resident applied for a permit to cultivate six plants indoors as permitted under Prop. 64.

attorney_pic-page-001.jpgA lawsuit filed on behalf of Fontana resident Michael Harris by the Drug Policy Alliance and the ACLU contended that the ordinance contradicts state law, sets unreasonable personal conduct and growing space restrictions and charges an arbitrarily high fee to obtain and renew a permit. With the ACLU and a team of lawyers from O’Melveny and Meyers, one of the largest and most respected law firms in California, representing Harris, the suit is the first legal test of how far a California city or county can go in restricting a residents’ right to grow six plants as permitted by Prop. 64.

info_logo-page-001.jpgThat the intent of the Fontana ordinance was to restrict rather than regulate was made clear in January when Fontana City Manager Ken Hunt told council members “It is our intent behind this that this ordinance is not a permissive regulation, it is a restrictive regulation, By adopting this, you are placing more restrictions on the personal growth of marijuana.”

Prop. 64 does give cities and counties authority to ban all marijuana businesses but they cannot ban personal indoor cultivation of six plants. They cannot limit or undo by restrictive regulations the legal right of adults to cultivate marijuana in their homes for their own personal use.

Of particular concern was that Fontana’s ordinance made it a misdemeanor to grow six plants at home without a permit., thereby criminalizing the very conduct that Prop. 64 had made legal.

radio_show_with_mike-page-001.jpgOn  Friday, October 26 Judge David Cohn released his ruling in which he agreed with the plaintiffs that the ordinance was too restrictive and was not "reasonable" as required by Prop. 64. Among the many provisions the judged tossed included the need to have a separate room for growing cannabis, paying for fingerprinting/background checks, having no felony convictions within the previous five years, having no outstanding payments due to the city, obtaining a landlord’s permission to grow as well as the permitting fee itself.

Elucidating on the portion of the ordinance requiring a separate room for growing marijuana, Judge Cohn pointed out that the requirement would restrict cultivation only to people wealthy enough to have a room in their homes that can be set aside specifically for growing.

21.jpgJudge Cohen admonished Jeff Dunn, the attorney for BB&K representing Fontana (who was also the same attorney in the lawsuit filed by Riverside against the Inland Empire Patients Health and Wellness Center  which resulted in the disastrous California Supreme Court decision that cities could ban medical marijuana dispensaries under their zoning ordinances) that the only restriction Prop. 64 put in place for the personal cultivation of marijuana was that the person had to be at least 21 years of age.

In his tentative ruling before the final ruling was released, Judge Cohn had stated that “What the city has done here with its ordinance is it has completely prohibited certain persons who are 21 years of age from possessing the six plants. The city has narrowed the population of who can do this.”

For Fontana to put in place any further restrictions on who could and could not grow, such as not allowing anyone who owed any money to Fontana or didn’t have a spare room to cultivate marijuana in, is impermissible and violates the intent of the voters when they passed Prop. 64.

Although Fontana could rewrite the ordinance in a way that it could be compliant with the Judge Cohn’s ruling, that is unlikely as that would require the city to write reasonable regulations that would allow Fontana residents to grow marijuana essentially free from any interference from the city.

fontana-mayor-acquanetta-warren.jpgFontana Mayor Acquanetta Warren acknowledged that the ordinance had been intentionally drawn up to make it as difficult as possible to grow marijuana as “This town has been a town of safety. And we’re trying with this initiative to make sure that we keep our residents safe — particularly our young people,”

mapp_meet-page-001-1.jpgFontana has ­­­­­60 days to file an appeal after the court enters its final judgement which should happen fairly soon. It is expected that Fontana will appeal all the way to the California  Supreme Court. Although it is hoped that this case will eventually serve as an example of what cities can and cannot do in regulating personal cultivation, the answer is at least one year away and maybe longer.

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Scary Marijuana Tales for Halloween + MAPP Meets

 

BOO.gif

Frightening Halloween tales of goblins, witches and vampires may send shivers down the spines of children, but pale in comparison to the fear of marijuana coursing through the minds of adults from the tales of savagery, debauchery and horror pedaled by U.S. government anti-drug warriors and their paid researchers.

ANSLNGER2FLIP.jpgIn the 1920s most Americans had no idea that the cannabis sold at their local corner drugstore was the demon weed “marijuana” that early prohibitionists like our first “drug czar” Henry Anslinger labeled as the “most violence-causing drug in the history of mankind.”

Rising from the ashes of the Bureau of Prohibition, Anslinger was determined to make his Bureau of Narcotics a powerhouse police agency of munificent proportions. Newspapers and movie newsreels gave headline treatment to his frightening tales that “Marijuana is an addictive drug which produces in its user’s insanity, criminality, and death” and that “You smoke a joint and you’re likely to kill your brother.”

Laguardia_report-page-001.jpgOpenly skeptical of Anslinger’s claims, New York Mayor Fiorello La Guardia, commissioned a study in 1939 on “The Marijuana Problem in the City of New York.”

Known as the LaGuardia report, the study, which was undertaken by the New York Academy of Medicine and published in 1944, found that smoking marijuana did not lead to addiction or the use of harder drugs, did not cause violent, anti-social behavior or uncontrolled sexual urges and thatThe publicity concerning the catastrophic effects of marijuana smoking in New York City is unfounded.”

kennedy_and_anslinger.jpgThe report was given little notice in the media. Anslinger’s lies about marijuana continued to flourish even after his retirement in 1962 evidenced by the Outstanding Record Citation bestowed on him by President John Kennedy.

maj_lung_damage_nida.jpgAlthough the government no longer peddles Anslinger’s murder, mayhem and insanity tales as the boogey-man of marijuana, it now peddles fake and faulty science. The most often sited scary health story that even some respectable medical researchers accept is that since smoking marijuana produces similar carcinogens as when tobacco is smoked, smoking marijuana causes lung cancer.

Believing the connection to be there and looking forward to the publication of the definitive scholarly paper connecting marijuana to lung cancer, the National Institute for Drug Abuse provided Dr. Donald Tashkin, a renowned pulmonologist and researcher at the UCLA School of Medicine, with so much money that he undertook one of the largest population based studies ever conducted on the relationship of marijuana to lung cancer.

tashkin_interview-page-001.jpgNot only did his research not find any connection between smoking marijuana and lung cancer, his paper was one of the first to present evidence that marijuana reduces the incidence of cancer. One of the groups in the study showed that the people who smoke marijuana had a lower incidence of lung cancer than people who did not smoke anything at all.

Another oft repeated your-gonna-die scare story is that smoking marijuana can lead to heart attacks. The government continues to peddle that tale even though the authors of the original study claiming a link to a slight increase in susceptibility to heart attacks repudiated the study. In a subsequent publication the authors wrote that the reported increase “did not reach nominal statistical significance” – i.e. there was no increase.

FAKE_NEWS-page-001.jpgA New Zealand study that claimed children who smoke marijuana had an 8 point lower IQ score than children who had not smoked marijuana is the nexus for the government’s “it-will-make-you-stupid” tale to scare parents and children stupid enough to fall for this line.  Except that a subsequent study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reported the original study was faulty as the fall in IQ is more likely correlated with socio-economic status than marijuana use.

reefer_madness_poster.jpgWhether it is for funding their own police agencies or to prevent a viable product from competing with the multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical and alcohol industries, the Reefer-Madness crowd for over 80 years has spread tales of mayhem, murder, heart attacks and stupidity.

They have never been concerned with science, compassion or common sense. Just like the age-old Halloween stories of ghosts, gremlins and demons told to innocent and gullible children, they will continue fermenting scary tales of marijuana forewarning of tokes in the night and marijuana under the bed.

What's Happening, Why It's Happening plus Friends, Networking and Win a Genuine Silicone Pipe at

MAPP_Logo.jpgNOVEMBER MAPP MEETINGS

Palm Springs/Coachella Valley MAPP meeting - Saturday, November 3 at 12 noon - Riverside County passed its ordinance to allow marijuana businesses on Oct. 23. It is a complex ordinance but it is workable and might actually result in a lower county taxes/fees than anywhere else in California. If you have any desire to get into the marijuana business in Riverside County, here's the information you need. Meeting to take place at Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon, downtown Palm Springs 92262.

Joshua Tree/Morongo Basin MAPP meeting - Saturday, November 3 at 3 p.m. - With 1/3 of California cities and counties now allowing cannabis businesses and with 82 cannabis-related ballot measures slated to go before voters in cities and counties around the state, why is so little happening in San Bernardino County. Join us for an analysis of the paralysis in SB County and let's see if we can figure out what can be done about it. Meeting takes place at the fabulous Beatnik Lounge, 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree CA 92252. The meeting always ends at 4:20 and, if you would like to join in, everyone is welcome to dine with us after the meeting at Shaos Asian Buffet in Yucca Valley.

Moreno Valley/Western IE MAPP meeting - Wednesday, November 7 at 7:30 p.m. - Will we be celebrating or will we be commiserating? With ballot measures to legalize recreational and medical marijuana in half-a-dozen states and the subject of marijuana a central issue in many elections, a review of the election results from November 6 will be undertaken with an analysis of what the election results portend for marijuana law reform. Meeting takes place at Greenview Medical, 22275 Alessandro Blvd, Moreno Valley CA 92553.

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Riverside's STAR TREK MJ Ordinance + Voter Guides

 

bosstartresk4-page-001.jpgRiverside County to boldly go where no one has gone before.”

Riverside County is about to take another big semi- step toward implementing regulations for cannabis businesses in its unincorporated areas with a hearing by the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, Oct. 23.

open_for_cannabis_biz.pngEnacting the business provisions allowed for in Prop. 64, the 62 page ordinance covers everything from cultivation to sales with a complex licensing system, bureaucratic regulations and a financing program that is so byzantine that the County still has no idea what it will look like, how it will operate and what it will even do.

hoops.jpgIn many ways the ordinance is a boiler-plate repetition of the various licensing and regulation schemes already enacted in about a third of California’s counties and cities. Lots of hoops to jump through but not any more onerous than those found in most other ordinances.

One of the more controversial provisions is over where marijuana can be cultivated. Large rural areas that are designated rural residential and rural agricultural are being denied the right to commercially cultivate. A lot of people with large amounts of acreage feel this is wrong and negatively impacts their ability to earn a living and even more importantly the value of their land. This will be one of the sections that will be hotly contested at the October 23 BOS hearing.

As I have discussed in previous emails what makes the Riverside County cannabis ordinance different in a major way from ALL other cannabis business ordinances in California is it money-raising provisions. Rather than utilizing a license and tax system that is used by every other city and county currently allowing cannabis businesses, the Riverside County ordinance calls for a Developer’s Agreement.

female-pile-of-paperwork.jpgA Development Agreement requires Riverside County to make a separate agreement with each applicant for a marijuana license whether it is for cultivation, manufacture or distribution. There is no such thing as a cookie-cutter Development Agreement - a separate and unique agreement with each cultivator, manufacturer and retailer must be created.

Politicians love Developer Agreements as they impose a “community benefit fee” which is not considered a tax and does not need a vote of the people which would be required by Prop. 218 if it was a tax.

walk_talk_tax.jpgSince any kind of assessment based on sales is a tax, the multi-million dollar question then is how do you use a Developer Agreement to get money if you cannot impose a tax? If the “fee” looks like a tax, walks like a tax and smells like a tax then it is a tax and bypassing a vote by calling a tax a “community benefit fee” or any other name is forbidden by Prop. 218.

This is why there is not a single Developer Agreement model being used anywhere in California for any municipality that is licensing anything more than just a couple dispensaries. Stanislaus County is the only other county that is trying to use a Developer’s Agreement but after close to a year trying to make it work, the County still has no working model of what a “community benefit fee” will be or more importantly what the “base rate” (how much businesses will pay) will be.

Neither does Riverside County. What will happen on Tuesday, Oct. 23 is that if the BOS approves the ordinance then the County will begin a study to determine what the “community benefit fee” and “base rate” will be. This “community benefit fee” is no small appendage to the ordinance. It is the heart and soul of the ordinance and what the “community benefit fee” and “base rate” is and how it is implemented will be the major determinant if the ordinance succeeds or fails.

Palm Desert, a city of 48,000, will vote on a cannabis business tax on Nov. 6. It is estimated to take in about $5.5 million in taxes each year. Unincorporated Riverside County has a population of approximately 360,000 or seven times the size of Palm Desert. If Riverside Co. taxed cannabis businesses at the same rate as Palm Desert, the County would take in over $38 million dollars a year. Can a community benefit fee bring in an equal amount?

Maybe we have a very unusual situation here in that the Riverside Co. BOS realizes that cannabis is so critical for the health and welfare of the community that consumers should not have to pay high taxes for this product. BTW the sun is coming up in the west tomorrow.

leach_2.jpgAccording to an email I received from Charissa Leach, assistant director of Riverside County’s Transportation and Land Management agency, the community benefit fee “determination will be made if and after the Board approves the Ordinance.  If the Board approves a contract with HdL Consultants (a private consulting firm) and if the Board approves the Ordinance it will be effective 60-days after approval.  During those 60-days we will be working with HdL to determine the Base Rate.”.

bad_word.jpgHere’s where it gets really weird. As if using the word “business” is verboten when applied to cannabis, Ms. Leach used the word “project” instead of “business” when referring to an individual cannabis business writing “each project will propose how they will contribute to the community that they are impacting, working with the community and the County to come up with a negotiated Additional Public Benefit.  It is intended that this Additional Public Benefit will be negotiated on a project specific basis, looking at the community where the project is located and the needs of that community.”

business_paperwork.jpgCould you even begin to imagine the complexity, volumes of paperwork and bureaucratic entanglements that would be involved if every business in Riverside County had to go through the above in order to obtain a business license – business activity would grind to a halt!

A Developer’s Agreement is a guaranteed full employment program for lawyers. Applied to an entire industry and not to just a very singular and unusual business activity (which is what Developer Agreements were created for) is absurd, unworkable and just plain bizarre. Makes one wonder what the BOS have been drinking.

I have no idea how much money Riverside County is paying HdL to “invent the wheel,” but it will be interesting to see if the taxpayers get their money’s worth and HdL can find a way for Riverside County to boldly go where no one has gone before.”

If the BOS approves the ordinance on Oct. 23, then it goes into effect on Dec. 24. Will HdL be able to "invent the wheel" in that 60 day period? It really would be great if they can, but holdings one's breath could be hazardous to your health. If they can't come up with a workable Developer's Agreement, then the ordinance will not go into effect and the ban on commercial marijuana businesses will remain in effect.

Not to be conspiratorial, but most of the members of the BOS were opposed to Prop. 64 even though the majority of Riverside County voters approved Prop. 64 and rightfully expect it to be fully implemented including allowing cannabis businesses to operate. Perhaps some of the BOS members have championed the Developer Agreement model knowing full well that it would fail thereby thwarting one of the major components of Prop. 64.  They could still claim that they were doing their best to implement its commercial business provisions and they are sincerely sorry that it didn't work out and the ban is still in effect.

If you want to read the ordinance and the hundreds of pages of staff reports, implementation processes, policies and all the other assorted bureaucratic folderol, CLICK HERE.

riverside_co_admins_bldg.jpgIf you want to see what the fuss is all about, make a 3 minute presentation to the BOS of your opinion on the ordinance and witness real live BOS reefer madness, then mark your calendar for the Riverside County BOS meeting on Tuesday, October 23 at Riverside County Administration Center at 4080 Lemon St, Riverside, CA 92501.

speak_meet.gifThe meeting starts at 9 a.m. but consideration of the ordinance is listed on the agenda for 10:30 a.m. It is possible the BOS may limit the number of speakers they will put up with, so if you want to testify, you might want to get there considerably earlier than 10:30 a.m. to sign up.

 VOTE.jpgCannabis Voting Guides

 

Mail-In-Ballot.jpgFor those voting by mail ballot in California, you should have received your ballot by now. If you have not already received it, you should in the next couple days. If you don’t have it by Monday, better contact your county registrar of voters to find out why you haven’t.

Excellent California voter guides have been issued by CaNORML and the Drug Policy Alliance. CaNORML has tailored the guide to the district in which you live. To get CaNORML’s voter guide customized for your area CLICK HERE. To get DPA’s more generalized voter guide, CLICK HERE.

mj_bill.pngCannabis’s success in the 2018 California legislature was more negative than positive. With Gov. Brown vetoing quite a few of the bills that passed, the record was even more dismal.

Even worse has been our success on the local level with the majority of city councils and county boards refusing to implement ordinances to allow cannabis businesses and passing bans on outdoor personal cultivation.

clout.jpgThe depressing record can be laid at the feet of the relative lack of clout cannabis businesses and consumers have on our elected officials whether on the state or local level. We need to do better in 2019. Who is elected to office makes a big difference – so check out the voter guides and then vote – your vote does make a difference. Get your family, friends, co-workers and the curmudgeon down the street to vote too – all your votes really make a difference.

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YES! Defacto Grow Ban Goes to IE Court plus MAPP speakers

 

no_grow-page-001.jpgYour Right to Cultivate

Hangs in the Balance

As permitted by the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act and some allege the Calif. Supreme Court decision in Riverside vs. Inland Empire Heath and Wellness Center, many cities banned all medical marijuana cultivation indoor as well as outdoor. The passage of Prop. 64 put an end to that as it gave all residents 21 and over the right to cultivate up to 6 plants.

Prop. 64 does allow cities to ban outdoor cultivation but penalizes cities that do by denying them any state money from the billion plus dollars the state is supposed to take in from taxes and license fees. That has not kept cities and counties from banning outdoor cultivation, but then again the state has not yet started distributing and hence denying money to municipalities that have passed outdoor bans. We have yet to see how many outdoor bans will fall when money is denied to those that have outdoor bans in place.

However, Prop. 64 does allow cities to enact "reasonable" regulations on indoor cultivation. Reasonable is in the eye of the grower and many cities have enacted regulations that they consider reasonable but that many personal cultivators would consider so onerous and burdensome that they amount to a defacto ban.

fontana_council_2_rec.jpgCiting everything under the sun from crime to children to odors, the Fontana City Council enacted regulations requiring permitting fees of over $400, allowing police, fire and code inspectors to inspect a homeowner’s premises at any time, enacting elaborate and expensive code requirements and more.

dpaaclu-page-001.jpgTo put an end to these defacto bans, the Drug Policy Alliance, the major big league player behind Prop. 64, decided to initiate an action against the city of Fontana and along with the ACLU took the recalcitrant city to court. They needed to find a person who lived in Fontana that would like to grow their own marijuana but found the regulations so overly burdensome that they chose not to exercise their right to grow.

They found Mike Harris.

mike_harris_edit.pngA retired ironworker and RN, Mike is a long time marijuana activist. He has attended and spoken at many local government hearings, attends MAPP meetings regularly, is an active member of the Human Solution which provides court support to people charged with marijuana law violations and showed up and cheered me on at my trial for my alleged push of reefer mad drug warrior Paul Chabot. (I was found not guilty and eventually sued Chabot for false arrest which I won.)

With Mike as their poster-child plaintiff, the ACLU filed suit against Fontana alleging that the regulations are onerous and unreasonable. Over the last year, motions have been filed, discovery requested and a passel full of other court procedures undertaken in preparation for a hearing.

sb_court.jpgThe groundwork has been laid and now the first hearing in the precedent setting case has been scheduled for Friday, Oct. 5 at 8:30 a.m. in San Bernardino Superior Court courtroom S26 at 247 W. 3rd St., San Bernardino CA 92415. This is an open hearing so anyone can attend. It would be most excellent to pack the courtroom with supporters.

It seems kind of fitting that this precedent setting defacto ban cultivation case takes place in the Inland Empire as the precedent setting case on whether cities can ban medical marijuana dispensaries under their zoning ordinances took place in the IE as well. Hopefully the outcome will be better than what happened in the dispensary case.

Since the DPA and the ACLU have retained a team of lawyers from O’Melveny and Meyers, one of the largest and most respected law firms in California, a favorable outcome is far more likely than the dispensary case.

prop_64_ca_flag.pngHistory will be made in this courtroom as this is a precedent setting case defending Prop. 64's provisions allowing people to grow their own. This lawsuit will eventually affect every city and county in the state that has passed defacto bans on personal indoor marijuana cultivation. Whichever side loses in this first hearing will appeal the decision. It is expected that this case will eventually wind up in the state Supreme Court, but that will take at least a year and possibly two.

In the meantime you are encouraged to attend the hearing on Friday, Oct. 5. It would be beneficial for us to fill every seat in the court room – justice may be blind but the judge isn’t and seeing a court room packed with citizens concerned about their right to cultivate marijuana is bound to have some kind of influence.

Once again the hearing will be held on Friday, Oct. 5 at 8:30 a.m. in San Bernardino Superior Court courtroom S26 at 247 W. 3rd St., San Bernardino CA 92415.

Mike will be the guest speaker at the MAPP meeting on Wed. Oct. 3 at 7:30 p.m. in Moreno Valley and is also the featured guest on the radio show Marijuana Compassion and Common Sense. Information on attending the meeting and listening to the radio show can be found below.

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October MAPP meetings

Great Speakers mean Great Meetings

Mike Harris Fights Fontana’s Defacto Cultivation Ban

Ruth Hill and the Cannabis Nurse Navigator

 

silicone_pipe.jpgThe October MAPP meetings are really extra special with speakers you will want to meet and hear. Plus we will be giving away two of those new-fangled unbreakable take them anywhere silicone ganja pipes at each MAPP meeting.

Hear and Meet Mike Harris at Moreno Valley MAPP meeting

Wed. Oct. 3 at 7:30 p.m. – Moreno Valley MAPP meeting – You read all about Mike and the upcoming hearing on defacto cultivation bans – now meet and hear him in person. You can even have your picture taken with him. Meeting is at the Greenview Medical Clinic, 22275 Alessandro Blvd., Moreno Valley, CA 92553

ruth_hill.jpgRN and Cannabis Columnist Ruth Hill to speak at Palm Springs and Joshua Tree MAPP meetings.

There are pediatric nurses, oncologist nurses, hospice nurses and nurse for almost every specific medical therapy and now welcome to the 21st Century and the Cannabis Nurse Navigator.

With medical literature on marijuana growing by leaps and bounds, public recognition of its health and medical benefits soaring and with 29 states passing laws allowing the legal use of cannabis for medical reasons, the need for a nursing workforce well versed in the many ways marijuana can be used medicinally is more important than ever.

RN Ruth Hill will explain the role of the Cannabis Nurse Navigator in the modern health care system, how this new health specialty came to be, what services a Cannabis Nurse Navigator provides and how this can be of benefit to people everywhere.

Ruth brings over 50 years in nursing from a multitude of settings including hospice, palliative care and executive management in the home health industry. She has worked in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Washington, Arizona, California, and the 97th General Hospital in Frankfort Germany. Ruth spent the last seventeen years in hospice and palliative care most recently in Coachella Valley, CA.

An entrepreneur having started a six-bed residential facility for the elderly, consultant for home health agencies and educating clients on palliative care all providing an effective segue into cannabis for symptom management.

am_can_nurse_assoc.jpgRuth is a writer of poetry and essays on numerous medical topics of the day. She writes on a variety of marijuana issues for the Coachella Valley Weekly and is a member of the Hospice and Palliative Nursing Association, the Oncology Nursing Society and the American Cannabis Nurses Association as well as membership in The Palm Springs Writers Guild and the Rancho Mirage WordKeepers.

Meet, hear and converse with Ruth at both the Palm Springs and Joshua Tree MAPP meetings.

Saturday, October 6 at 12 noon – Palm Springs/Coachella Valley MAPP meeting - Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon, downtown Palm Springs CA 92262

Saturday, October 6 at 3 p.m. – Joshua Tree/Morongo Basin MAPP meeting - The Beatnik Café, 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree CA 92252.

milk_and_cookies_by_drawingalchemist4.jpgIn addition to having a chance to win a cool silicone pipe, there will be a delectable assortment of cookies with milk and punch for all to enjoy. Bring yourself, your friends, family members and that neighbor of yours who needs to learn all about marijuana.

radio_ad.jpg radio_show.jpgDefacto Personal Marijuana Cultivation Ban Goes to Court

 

Hear Mike Harris tell the story of his involvement in this precedent setting case. Learn the background, Fontana’s regulatory horrors, the legal issues, the personal story and more as Mike recounts his involvement and extensive knowledge of what is about to unfold.

To hear the radio show now CLICK HERE or go to www.blogtalkradio.com/marijuananews anytime you want 24/7.

 

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Trumps Secret War on Marijuana + special MAPP meet

DEVILS_HARVEST.jpgTRUMP LAUNCHES SECRET WAR ON MARIJUANA WITH "FAKE NEWS"

walk_don't_walk.jpgGetting mixed signals from the Trump administration is nothing new under the sun, but it so vexing, perplexing and unsettling.

In a stunning breaking news article entitled Inside The Trump Administration’s Secret War on Weed, on line news website Buzzfeed reported that the Trump administration “has secretly amassed a committee of federal agencies from across the government to combat public support for marijuana and cast state legalization measures in a negative light, while attempting to portray the drug as a national threat.”

trump_2_side-page-001.jpgShocking? Isn’t that flying in the face of what Trump has said recently about allowing states to precede with their marijuana legalization laws without federal interference? Or is it just par for the course for this President to say one thing and do another. After all Trump's equivocations are legendary and as much as we would like it, marijuana is not exempted from the rule.

As for marijuana equivocations there was the campaign rally in Reno on Oct. 29, 2015 where Trump said: “In terms of marijuana and legalization, I think that should be a state issue, state-by-state. Marijuana is such a big thing. I think medical should. And then I really believe we should leave it up to the states.”

TRUMP_SESSIONS.jpgBut after he was elected President he selected Jeff Sessions as his Attorney General. Sessions is an old-line drug warrior who has never seen an anti-drug bill he didn’t support and who has said that “Good people don’t smoke marijuana” and that “we need grown-ups in charge in Washington to say marijuana is not the kind of thing that ought to be legalized… that it is, in fact, a very real danger.”

cole_memo.jpgIgnoring Trump's campaign statement, Sessions put his words into action by rescinding the Obama era Cole Memo which kept the feds from enforcing federal marijuana law in states with legal distribution systems.

In support of his state’s marijuana legalization laws, Colorado Senator Cory Gardner blocked all of Trump’s Justice Department nominations until Trump rescinded Sessions’ recession of the Cole memo. Gardner’s action created a major stumbling block for Trump who is trying to stack the Dept. of Justice with new employees to sidetrack the Mueller investigation.

In order to get Gardener to rescind his hold on his nominees, Trump promised Gardner that he would respect Colorado’s laws. After a meeting with Trump, Gardner made the following statement:

cory_gardner.jpg"Late Wednesday, I received a commitment from the President that the Department of Justice’s rescission of the Cole memo will not impact Colorado’s legal marijuana industry. Furthermore, President Trump has assured me that he will support a federalism-based legislative solution to fix this states’ rights issue once and for all."

With this assurance from the President, Gardner lifted his holds on Justice Department nominees.

marijuana-green-light.jpgGardner’s statement seemed to be corroborated when on June 7, 2018 reporters asked Trump about a bill introduced by Gardner and Senator Elizabeth Warren that would protect the nine states and D.C. that have legalized marijuana from any federal interference. If enacted this bill would allow businesses that sell marijuana to operate without fear of prosecution by the Justice Department.

As he was preparing to leave the White House for the Group of Seven economic summit in Canada, Trump told the reporters “I know exactly what he’s doing. We’re looking at it. But I probably will end up supporting that.”

amazing-4.pngAnd that is where all things marijuana stood relating to Trump until Buzzfeed broke the story on the secretly created Marijuana Policy Coordination Committee (MPCC). To read this amazing story with all its revelations of chicanery and skullduggery CLICK HERE.

Overseen and coordinated by the Office of National Control Policy (ONDCP), the MPCC is a consortium of 14 federal agencies and the Drug Enforcement Administration with a mission to submit “data demonstrating the most significant negative trends” about marijuana and the “threats” it poses to the country.

A summary of a July 27 White House meeting with department officials reads:  "The prevailing marijuana narrative in the U.S. is partial, one-sided, and inaccurate. Staff believe that if the administration is to turn the tide on increasing marijuana use there is an urgent need to message the facts about the negative impacts of marijuana use, production, and trafficking on national health, safety, and security."

ondcp.gifLet’s be clear – the ONDCP is part of the executive office of the President – it is a White House agency and this is Trump's White House. This is not AG Sessions, a disgruntled cabinet member or some reefer-mad anti-drug warrior employed by some federal agency spouting off some cockamamie fantasy. As he did to Gardner, Trump is saying one thing to mollify Republicans and others who support marijuana law reform but allowing his office to do just the opposite.

MAPP_Logo.jpgMoreno Valley Mayoral Candidate Discusses City's Marijuana Policies Moreno-Valley-logo.jpgand Local Issues at Moreno Valley MAPP Meeting Wednesday Sept. 5

 

denise_fleming.jpgMoreno Valley Mayoral Candidate Dr. Denise Fleming is the featured speaker at the Wednesday, September 5 meeting of the Marijuana Anti-Prohibition Project in Moreno Valley.

On the cusp of allowing marijuana businesses to operate, Moreno Valley will be joining a handful of other cities that are currently regulating, licensing and taxing these businesses in Riverside County. Along with other issues, Dr. Fleming will be presenting her views on how Moreno Valley should address the issues of allowing marijuana businesses to cultivate, manufacture and distribute marijuana to Moreno Valley and area residents.

Dr. Fleming is an educator and business professional currently serving on the Board of the Moreno Valley Unified School District. A veteran of Desert Storm, she has served in the United States Navy Reserves for the last ten years.

She is the Educational Chair for the Director of the African American Coalition in Moreno Valley and was the Regional Director for Region 13 for the African American Caucus. Dr. Fleming is a member of the California Women Caucus, Veteran Caucus, and Disability Caucus and is currently serving on the Riverside County Home Support Services (IHSS) Advisory Board.

She received many awards and certificates for her dedication and service to the community including “Women of Distinction Award from the California State Assembly” Woman of the Year, County of Riverside, Fifth District 2017, and “Girls Rock” for her dedication to assisting our communities.

The Wednesday, September 5 meeting of MAPP begins at 7:30 p.m. and takes place at Greenview Medical, 22275 Alessandro Blvd, Moreno Valley, CA 92553.

shirtless_man_smoke_mj-page-001.jpg420_club_bldg.pngIt's Sizzling Hot Outside Do Something Cool

Light Up and Join our 420 Club

Donate $4.20 a month

automatically, privately & coolly from your credit card

CLICK HERE TO JOIN MAPP'S 420 CLUB

CLICK HERE TO MAKE A ONE-TIME DONATION

 

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For info email

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or call 760-799-2055

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I'm RUNNING for Office + Assembly & Mayor Candidates at MAPP meets

 

biz_card_flyer_revfinal-page-001.jpgmy_hat_in_ring-page-001.jpg

I couldn’t think of a better place to make my formal announcement of my run for public office then in the pages of MAPP’s MarijuanaNews.org newsletter – so here it is.

I am running for a position on the Board of Director’s of the San Gorgonio Memorial Health Care District which oversees the operation of the San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital and associated facilities in Banning, Beaumont, Cabazon, Cherry Valley and Whitewater. I am doing so at the urging of a significant number of local community residents, Pass Democratic Club members and quite a few folks who have been urging me to run for some kind of public office for years. So how does cannabis fit into the picture? CLICK HERE FOR THE ENTIRE LOW DOWN.

aaron-sandusky-bod.jpgAARON SANDUSKY DESERVES A PARDON FROM PRESIDENT TRUMP

In the last newsletter I wrote about Aaron Sandusky, a local IE man serving ten years in federal prison for operating a medical marijuana dispensary in Upland as permitted by state law. If you didn’t read it or want to refresh your memory CLICK HERE.

Working with the CAN-DO Foundation, Aaron is trying to get a pardon from President Trump. At the July MAPP meetings letters were written on his behalf and sent to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.  Letters are still needed so if you could take a couple minutes and write one and send it to our President maybe he will twitter about how he is magnanimously freeing Aaron and other non-violent marijuana prisoners. It would certainly make headlines and with 89% of Americans supporting medical marijuana and 57% supporting outright legalization, it might just add some points to his dismal poll numbers.

The letter doesn’t and shouldn’t be long. Won’t take but a couple minutes to do it. For more information on what to write and where to send it CLICK HERE.

SPEAKER_GIF.gifAssembly and Mayor Candidates to speak at September MAPP meetings

MAPP_Logo.jpg42nd AD Candidate Takes on the Issues at Palm Springs & Joshua Tree MAPP meetings Saturday, September 1

deni_cu.jpg42nd Assembly District Candidate Deni-Antonette Mazingo is the featured speaker at the Marijuana Anti-Prohibition Project meetings Saturday, September 1 at 12 noon at Crystal Fantasy in Palm Springs and at 3 p.m. at the Beatnik Café in Joshua Tree.

In her professional life, Deni is a practicing attorney, but in her community life she is an involved activist on housing, healthcare, equality and education.

She is a commissioner on the Riverside County Commission for Women, an active member of Soroptimist International and in 2016 she was awarded Riverside County Woman of the Year by Sen. Mike Morrell. Endorsed by Gavin Newsom, Deni has made countless contributions to the community with a special focus on improving the lives of seniors, women and girls.

With a progressive and forward looking campaign, Deni will present her views on how the state legislature should deal with the many issues facing California today including the issues of medical and adult-use marijuana and the implementation of Prop. 64.

The Palm Springs and Joshua Tree MAPP meetings are free and open to all members of the public. The Palm Springs MAPP meeting begins at 12 noon on Saturday, September 1 at Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon, Palm Springs 92262 and the Joshua Tree MAPP meeting begins at 3 p.m. at the legendary Beatnik Café at 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree 92252.

Moreno-Valley-logo.jpgMoreno Valley Mayoral Candidate Discusses City's Marijuana Policies & Local Issues at Moreno Valley MAPP Meeting Wednesday Sept. 5

fleminf.jpgMoreno Valley Mayoral Candidate Dr. Denise Fleming is the featured speaker at the Wednesday, September 5 meeting of the Marijuana Anti-Prohibition Project in Moreno Valley.

On the cusp of allowing marijuana businesses to operate, Moreno Valley will be joining a handful of other cities that are currently regulating, licensing and taxing these businesses in Riverside County. Along with other issues, Dr. Fleming will be presenting her views on how Moreno Valley should address the issues of allowing marijuana businesses to cultivate, manufacture and distribute marijuana to Moreno Valley and area residents.

Dr. Fleming is an educator and business professional currently serving on the Board of the Moreno Valley Unified School District. A veteran of Desert Storm, she has served in the United States Navy Reserves for the last ten years.

She is the Educational Chair for the Director of the African American Coalition in Moreno Valley and was the Regional Director for Region 13 for the African American Caucus. Dr. Fleming is a member of the California Women Caucus, Veteran Caucus, and Disability Caucus and is currently serving on the Riverside County Home Support Services (IHSS) Advisory Board.

She received many awards and certificates for her dedication and service to the community including “Women of Distinction Award from the California State Assembly” Woman of the Year, County of Riverside, Fifth District 2017, and “Girls Rock” for her dedication to assisting our communities.

The Wednesday, September 5 meeting of MAPP begins at 7:30 p.m. and takes place at Greenview Medical, 22275 Alessandro Blvd, Moreno Valley, CA 92553.

shirtless_man_smoke_mj-page-001.jpg420_club_bldg.pngIt's Sizzling Hot Outside Do Something Cool - Light Up and Join our 420 Club

Donate $4.20 a month

automatically, privately & coolly from your credit card

CLICK HERE TO JOIN MAPP'S 420 CLUB

CLICK HERE TO MAKE A ONE-TIME DONATION

 

advertise.jpg

Help Your Business

Help MAPP

For info email

lanny@marijuananews.org

or call 760-799-2055

Add your reaction Share