In November, California will consider whether to legalize
recreational marijuana, and voters seem ready to approve the idea.
But the question of legalization is out of date, and is derived from
the mistaken idea that all pot is created equal and that most of it
is fairly weak.
A question we ought to ask ourselves is just as important if
legalization is to succeed: What kind of marijuana should we legalize?
The hyper-potent mutant strains that pass for marijuana today have
little relation to naturally grown pot associated with Northern
California hippie growers of the 1970s. Levels of THC
tetrahydrocannabinol, the chemical that creates the high in pot now
reach 20 to 30 percent, which is seven to 15 times the potency of a
few decades ago.
[continues 736 words]
EDITOR: Santa Rosa is a destination for tourism, dining, wine
tasting, boutique breweries, cycling, and the list goes on. Job
growth and increasing real estate values are all the more reason not
to encourage an industry such as the production of cannabis to be a
part of our local economy ("SR aims to be epicenter of legal pot
industry," Aug. 14). It brings with it health and safety hazards and
environmental concerns. The industry also encourages low-wage earners
and has low-density employment.
[continues 59 words]
You would be forgiven for not recognizing the nondescript brick
warehouse in Phoenix's Grand Avenue industrial district as the site
of a high-tech agricultural facility.
But as soon as you step inside, the smell of hundreds of marijuana
plants is overwhelming. As you make your way through the small rooms
that line the main hallway, you can hear the whoosh of ventilation
fans and the gentle hum of huge artificial lights suspended above a
lush green canopy of leaves. Reggae, old-school hip-hop, and pop-punk
blare from a portable speaker as a crew of 30 or so workers trim,
water, and inspect the all-female crop of cannabis plants casually
known as "the ladies."
[continues 3709 words]
A Statewide Ballot Measure on Adult Recreational Use Is Complicated -
and Highly Likely to Pass.
SACRAMENTO - I know you've been distracted/disgusted/gobsmacked by
the presidential campaign all summer.
But history, polling and common sense tell us that California's
electoral votes already belong to Hillary Clinton (sorry, Donald
Trump fans). So stop wasting time worrying about that, Golden State
types, and turn your attention to the doorstop of a ballot that
you'll be facing when you vote Nov. 8.
[continues 1094 words]
Marijuana use big issue for employers, expert says
Darrin Rogowski said he is launching a human rights complaint after
his employer let him go in late July because he uses medical marijuana
Rogowski, 30, was working for Inertia Environmental - an Okotoks-based
hydrovacing company. He worked on the company's trucks, which use
high-pressure water to move earth when excavation by other means isn't
"When I got my medical marijuana licence back in May, I told one of my
supervisors I had it, and nothing else was really said about it," he
[continues 262 words]
Larry Schaeffer has grown marijuana in Sonoma County for more than a decade.
His Cherry Kola Farms outside Penngrove supplies award-winning
strains of pungent pot to one of Sonoma County's largest medical
cannabis collectives, as well as discerning dispensaries around the state.
But after years of operating in a quasi-legal status as a nonprofit
collective, Schaeffer is ready to go legit. He wants to be an
above-board business, in an approved location with proper permits,
and pay taxes like any other legitimate enterprise.
[continues 2814 words]
Two North Coast Legislators' Medical Pot Tax Bills Go Down to Defeat
Two medical marijuana tax proposals submitted by North Coast
lawmakers have failed in Sacramento, leaving California voters to
decide on higher taxes incorporated in a pot legalization measure on
the November ballot.
The tax rates in Proposition 64, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act,
exceed the rates in the two failed bills by state Sen. Mike McGuire
and Assemblyman Jim Wood, both Healdsburg Democrats whose districts
include the pot-rich Emerald Triangle.
[continues 318 words]
A growing number of Southern California law enforcement organizations
and leaders are voicing objections to a state ballot measure that
would legalize recreational marijuana, saying it would make the state
"I'm vehemently opposed to it," Orange County Sheriff Sandra Hutchens
said. "I think that it would be a terrible move for California to make."
San Bernardino County District Attorney Mike Ramos said the
initiative to legalize marijuana "will do nothing to curb
black-market activity in California." He is one of several police
officials who is actively opposing the measure, a group that includes
the Riverside Sheriffs' Association, the Association for Los Angeles
Deputy Sheriffs and the California Police Chiefs Association.
[continues 1296 words]
Ottawa says it's dangerous. Dispensaries say it's safe. The Globe
subjected unregulated weed to a battery of tests to find the truth
Inside a sterile facility, the lab technician holds up a petri dish to
show the intricate pattern of bacteria that are quickly multiplying.
"Looks like something is already growing," she says, surprised by how
much has amassed in less than a day and a half.
In any other context, the dish would be a sight to behold, with an
attractive swirl of shapes that resembles an oil painting. But the
bacteria growing inside are Citrobacter freundii, a human pathogen
that can lead to serious infections, particularly in the elderly and
[continues 6688 words]
A series of town hall meetings are underway to help Sonoma County
create a comprehensive set of rules to regulate and capitalize on a
burgeoning marijuana industry, from seeds in the ground to
manufacturing, delivery and sales.
County supervisors have signaled their intent to bring marijuana
cultivation and related businesses into the legal sphere - and under
local control - before regulations and license programs under the
state's landmark Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act are
likely operational in 2018.
No draft rules have yet been written. County staff from nearly every
department are taking part in the meetings to gather public input.
Three meetings remain, including town hall events Wednesday in
Sebastopol and Thursday in Santa Rosa.
[continues 423 words]
Mendocino County voters can expect two competing marijuana tax
initiatives on the November ballot, one proffered by county officials
and one by cannabis cultivators.
The Mendocino County Board of Supervisors approved Tuesday a 2.5
percent business tax on gross sales from marijuana cultivation and
dispensaries, along with a $2,500 annual fee on marijuana
distributors, delivery services, nurseries and testing laboratories.
That business tax could be raised in increments of 2.5 percent up to
a maximum of 10 percent, whether on medicinal or recreational pot.
[continues 474 words]
the Citizen's Council for Human Rights (Cchr) Strongly Condemns the
Escalating Number of Killings of Suspected Drug Pushers and
Dependents WHO Said to Have Died Either During So-Called Legitimate
Police Operations or at the Hands of Unknown Gunmen.
the Surge in Fatalities Is Too Alarming to Be Ignored: From January 1
to May 9 This Year (129 Days), Reported Deaths From Drug-Related
Violence Was 39. but the Death Count Suddenly Swelled After May 10.
in a Matter of 64 Days, 251 Deaths Have Already Been Reported. What
Makes These Spate of Executions Most Worrisome Is That This Was
Prompted by President Duterte's Pronouncements, Made Even Before His
Assumption into Office, That Urged the Police, Ordinary Citizens and
Later, the New Peoples Army to Kill All Those Involved in the Illegal
Drug Trade, With the Promise That He Would Shield Them Against Any
[continues 1200 words]
Last night's needles line the sidewalks at dawn along the blighted
blocks where Massachusetts Avenue and Southampton Street meet. People
emerge from shelters and halfway houses and trudge toward the
methadone clinics that lend this place its ugly nickname.
An open-air drug market is in full swing on the corner outside a
convenience store, where offers of drugs trill like music.
"Clonidines-Clonidines-Clonidines-Clonidines!" "Does anybody need
Xani Bars?" Phenergans, Pins, Johnnies? A man grimaces one chilly
morning, unsteady on his feet. He opens his mouth to reveal a knotted
bag of heroin, double-wrapped and ready to be swallowed should police
wade into the crowd. "This is all I have left," he says.
[continues 5437 words]
How much marijuana is being grown in Humboldt County? We've all heard
some store porch supposition on the subject, but there's little
actual data to back it up. A recent article, published in the April
edition of Environmental Research Letters, may help fill this vacuum.
University of California Berkeley research specialist Van Butsic, and
Jacob C. Brenner, a professor at Ithaca College, spent almost a year
analyzing satellite imagery from Humboldt County, counting
greenhouses and extrapolating to come up with a figure of 4,428 grow
sites spread over 60 watersheds. The project was inspired by what the
researchers called "an urgent need for systemic empirical research."
[continues 377 words]
New proposed rules for medical marijuana grows led to anger on
Tuesday as some medicinal cannabis proponents said they couldn't
support the new recommendations while urging supervisors to compromise.
County officials, however, said they had to consider environmental
concerns and secure four out of five supervisor votes on July 26 to
pass interim grow rules and repeal the existing outdoor grow ban.
An ad hoc marijuana grow committee met Tuesday for the third time in
its attempts to craft an interim grow ordinance in the wake of
Measure W's failure. An advisory committee is expected to help write
a permanent ordinance over the following months.
[continues 458 words]
County Has Permitted About 800 Growers
The destruction left by the Butte Fire was still evident Thursday
morning in remnants of charred, leafless trees and gaping holes on
hillsides, but vegetation does grow from the ruins: marijuana.
In an area hit hardest last year, not far from Baker Riley Way in
Mokelumne Hill, lies a pocket of cannabis cultivators.
Among them is Max Cirello, 19. He said Calaveras County officials
told him he was among the youngest in the area to obtain a commercial
license last week.
[continues 935 words]
It's rare that Osoyoos town council splits on an issue, but that
happened Monday on the issue of medical marijuana outlets.
The issue arose as council debated a staff recommendation to bring in
a zoning bylaw that would effectively prohibit all marijuana
operations except medical marijuana grow operations on land zoned as
To be clear, none of council opposes medical marijuana for those who
need it, and none support unrestricted retail outlets.
The debate was whether the town needs a bylaw that Alain Cunningham,
director of planning and development services, described as "a
temporary and transitional zoning amendment" until the federal
government clarifies the law on sales of medical marijuana.
[continues 620 words]
Union leaders are talking about normal union concerns in a dimly lit
Arcata bar. There are cocktails all around.
They talk about safety, protecting jobs, keeping wages high, changing
laws and providing training and education for workers and employers.
Although these sound like run-of-the-mill union concerns, this is not
your typical union. This is the Humboldt Medical Cannabis Union
(HMCU), a group working to protect cannabis jobs in Humboldt County
and bring farmers and workers out from the underground and into legitimacy.
[continues 1226 words]
Since his election on October 19 last year as Canada's 23rd Prime
Minister, Justin Trudeau has ushered in an astounding shift in
Canada's political atmosphere. No longer are we enjoined by an angry,
suspicious, and hateful government to live in fear and loathing of
those who might trigger our xenophobic tendencies because of
different beliefs, customs, or even methods of preparing foods. We
are no longer asked to spy on our neighbours and rat out 'suspicious
behaviour or, God help us, have 'Barbaric Practices. Age-old habits
of homophobia and loathing of other gender identities are no longer
encouraged by a fundamentalist leadership and scientists are no
longer gagged, filtered, and silenced, Natives are no longer ignored
or despised by government and generally, the air of oppression that
hung over the country during the Harper decade has vanished into thin air.
[continues 965 words]
Mendocino County is back in the marijuana business.
Not that its citizens ever stopped growing, and not that the Emerald
Triangle's cash-rich economy found another cash crop. But after a few
years' hiatus, Mendocino is again using cannabis as a funding source
- - for law enforcement, with the county sheriff taking in $150,000
from marijuana in a single day, and all of it willingly paid.
Tired of receiving 911 calls from neighbors complaining about the pot
garden next door, only to send a deputy out to investigate what
turned out to be a legal grow - wasting an hour's worth of time in
the process - Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman came up with a
novel plan in 2010. His office would inspect and license legitimate
grows, and charge the growers for the privilege.
[continues 808 words]