Frank Carnovale describes himself as a "fearless father" and a "proud
He's certainly no fan of medical marijuana.
In a stinging letter to the Birmingham City Commission, Carnovale said
allowing medical marijuana grow facilities to operate in the city's
Rail District will turn the east side of Birmingham into a "ghetto."
City officials feel their hands are tied.
Birmingham, like numerous other municipalities across the state,
previously outlawed medical marijuana establishments since they were
prohibited by federal law. As a result of recent court rulings, the
city can no longer prohibit such establishments as they are expressly
permitted under the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act passed by the
voters in 2008.
[continues 458 words]
Birmingham is in the process of allowing medical marijuana facilities
to operate in the city's Rail District.
On Wednesday, the Planning Board voted 6-0 to amend local zoning
ordinances and allow medical marijuana establishments as a permitted
use. The amendment still needs to go before the City Commission before
Up to now, Birmingham has resisted allowing such facilities to open in
the city on the grounds that marijuana is still considered a
controlled substance under federal law. Last year, however, the
Michigan Supreme Court ruled municipalities must follow provisions
relating to the state's Medical Marijuana Act and allow for the facilities.
[continues 335 words]
Another reason to legalize and regulate the extremely popular and
relatively safe plant cannabis (marijuana) that doesn't get mentioned
("McKinnon: Drop marijuana laws," Dec. 11, is because it is biblically
correct since God (the Ecologician) indicates he created all the
seed-bearing plants, saying they are all good, on literally the very
first page (see Genesis 1:11-12 and 29-30).
The only biblical restriction placed on cannabis is to accept it with
thankfulness (1 Timothy 4:1-5).
Exactly what kind of people cages its citizens for using what God says
Former Detroit Police Chief Ike McKinnon believes decriminalizing
marijuana completely is the best route.
Speaking to an audience of about 70 people at the Baldwin Public
Library on Dec. 6, McKinnon said in his 33 years as a police officer,
drunks were always a bigger problem to deal with than marijuana users.
Legalizing the drug would free up police resources for more important
cases, he said.
Birmingham resident Mike Whitty, an adjunct professor at the
University of Detroit Mercy and a vocal advocate on reforming
marijuana laws, organized the event as part of the library's lecture
[continues 181 words]
LVW/Oakland Hosts Panel Discussion May 5
It's time to talk about marijuana.
With all the confusion about the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act, not
to mention the lawsuits and arrests, a public debate on the topic
seems more than timely.
The League of Women Voters-Oakland Area will host a panel discussion
on "Impact of Medical Marijuana," 7 p.m. Thursday, May 5, at the
Bloomfield Township Hall. A panel will discuss the impact of medical
marijuana on local communities and issues related to implementing its
usage from the viewpoint of patients, cities and law enforcement. The
members of the panel are as follows:
[continues 78 words]
Like many others across the state of Michigan, Matt Newburg is
surprised at how the medical marijuana debate has played out.
"I don't think anyone could have anticipated the volume of people who
applied for cards," he said. "And I don't think anyone could have
anticipated all the questions that have surfaced since the measure passed."
Newburg is a criminal defense attorney who specializes in medical
marijuana issues. He plans to discuss some of those issues in a
presentation before the Birmingham Compassion Club at 7 p.m. Monday,
Jan. 10, at the Baldwin Public Library.
[continues 416 words]
Bloomfield Township has been slapped with a lawsuit over its medical
On Tuesday, the Law Offices of Thomas M. Loeb, Esq. of Farmington
Hills, and Neil Rockind, P.C. of Southfield, filed a joint law suit
in the Oakland County Circuit Court against the township. The case,
which will be heard by Judge Denise Langford-Morris, challenges the
medical marijuana ordinance passed by the township in October.
"We filed the suit on behalf of two township residents who are
impacted by the ordinances," Rockind said Wednesday. "We think the
township ordinances are not only unconstitutional, but they directly
conflict with the state law that was passed by 63 percent of the people."
[continues 268 words]
Linda and Robert Lott want to grow marijuana in a Livonia warehouse
and smoke it at a private social club Bloomfield Hills.
They also want to smoke marijuana inside their home in Birmingham.
Linda, 61, suffers from multiple sclerosis. Robert, 61, was recently
diagnosed with glaucoma. Both husband and wife possess
state-certified cards qualifying them as medical marijuana patients.
Yet they claim local ordinances in the three communities won't let them.
"When Michigan voters passed the medical marijuana ballot initiative,
I was relieved," said Linda. "My doctor and I knew that it would help
me fight the muscle spasms and painful symptoms of multiple
sclerosis. What we didn't realize is that it would be temporary.
Instead of relief, I now live in fear that I could be arrested by
local officials for following state law."
[continues 275 words]
The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan filed a lawsuit today
against the cities of Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills and Livonia on
behalf of a registered medical marijuana patient with multiple
sclerosis and her husband who fear arrest and prosecution by local
officials if they grow or use medical marijuana in compliance with state law.
Linda Lott, 61, is a Birmingham resident who has suffered from
multiple sclerosis for 28 years. Confined to a wheelchair and blind,
Lott experiences painful and relentless muscle spasms that can no
longer be controlled by conventional medications. Soon after Michigan
enacted its medical marijuana law, Lott received approval from her
doctor to register as a medical marijuana patient.
[continues 292 words]
Medical marijuana patients in Bloomfield Township will have to go
outside the township to fill their prescriptions and have to register
with the township police under the specifications of two ordinances
approved by the township board Monday.
The township has been wrestling with the medical marijuana issue for
months, and had placed a moratorium on dealing with it as it weighed
the impact of the state law allowing medical marijuana, which was
approved by voters in 2008.
"The law is a total mess," Township Attorney William Hampton said.
"The Legislature must do something about this. It's such a poorly
[continues 263 words]
Joining a host of other communities around Michigan, the Beverly Hills
Council voted Tuesday to place a 180-day moratorium on the
establishment of any medical marijuana dispensaries within the village.
"This resolution will protect the village until this matter is fully
vetted by the planning board and council," Village Attorney Tom Ryan
told the council. "I recommend that you approve it."
Ryan noted the moratorium has a reasonable limitation of six months
and an appeal measure for commercial property owners who feel the
action has a negative economic impact on the use of their land.
[continues 147 words]
While Bloomfield Township has extended its moratorium on allowing
medical marijuana outlets it's likely just a matter of time before
they come into town.
The township had placed a 30-day moratorium on allowing such
facilities to open. The moratorium was to expire on Aug. 12 but has
been extended to Sept. 12.
Township Clerk Janet Roncelli said the township board took the action
Monday "to give ourselves more time to discuss it." The township "is
looking at how we can regulate this so it's safe for the grower, the
caregiver and the township ... and also safe for our public safety
[continues 189 words]