Pubdate: Wed, 20 Apr 2011
Source: Corning Observer (Corning, CA)
Copyright: 2011 Freedom Communications
Author: Julie R. Johnson, Tri-County Newspapers
Bookmark: (California)
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Medicinal - U.S.)


Tehama County officials, like authorities in Corning, are working on 
a medical marijuana dispensary ordinance, and both are under the gun 
to get the project done.

On Tuesday, the Tehama County Board of Supervisors held its second 
pot dispensary study session in an effort to decide which way it is 
going to swing - regulating dispensaries, or banning them outright.

The county's moratorium on medical marijuana dispensaries expires on 
Sept. 14. If the board wants to have a permanent ordinance in place, 
it will need to do so 30 days previous to that date.

Arthur Wylene, assistant county counsel, provided the board two draft 
ordinances for consideration. The first alternative would regulate 
marijuana dispensaries under various conditions as determined by the 
board. The second draft would prohibit the operation of pot 
dispensaries in unincorporated areas of Tehama County.

"You are infringing on medical marijuana patients. I'm just sorry the 
shamans aren't still out there in tents on the plains making it 
possible to use marijuana like it used to be used," said Donna Will, 
a local medical marijuana proponent who held the county's first 
cannabis expo in the summer of 2010.

She said it was a higher power that gave marijuana to be used.

John Prinz, another vocal advocate for medical marijuana, said pot 
saved his life and the county is wasting its time and money on 
fighting dispensaries.

Frustrated, he yelled out his concerns to the board as he left the meeting.

Robert Alejandre, a veteran who lives in the Cottonwood area, said 
such ranting as Prinz's and others at the meeting does more harm than 
good to the efforts of legitimate medical marijuana users.

"I have conducted five years of intensive study on the subject and I 
am convinced there is a need in the community. But I also believe if 
there are dispensaries they should have to hire site technicians and 
security should be extremely tight," he said.

Ken Prather and his wife Kathy, who opened a pot dispensary in 
Corning, the former Tehama Herbal Collective, also attended the study session.

"We fought hard to get (medical marijuana) patients access here. We 
tried to do everything legally, but we ended up getting raided by law 
enforcement. I would like the slate wiped clean because we want to 
work with you to get the community access," Ken Prather said. "We 
aren't criminals trying to sneak something in, we're just trying to 
help the community."

In the end, the board asked Wylene and interim county Planner John 
Stoufer to make some changes to the language in the draft ordinance 
that regulates dispensaries and then come back with both draft 
options for another study session on May 3.

In the meantime, each supervisor is hoping interested parties in the 
community will get a copy of the draft ordinances and communicate 
with the board any concerns and suggestions they have with them.

Copies of the draft ordinances are available online at or the Tehama County Board of Supervisors Office 
at 727 Oak St., Red Bluff.  
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