Put MMJ Under State’s Recreational-Pot System
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Put MMJ Under State’s Recreational-Pot System
Posted by CN Staff on January 06, 2015 at 09:07:28 PT
By Evan Bush, Seattle Times Staff Reporter
Source: Seattle Times 
Seattle -- Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes urged the Legislature to fold medical marijuana into the state’s recreational system in a wide-ranging policy memoMonday. He also pushed the city of Seattle to crack down on medical-marijuana businesses not following state law or city regulations. Some businesses aren’t operating with proper permits. Others have not paid local business and occupation taxes. Some opened after the City Council passed an intended moratorium on new medical-marijuana businesses.
Holmes said he published the memo to clarify any confusion about medical-marijuana laws.“If you’re a commercial (medical-marijuana) operation lacking a 502 license (Initiative 502), it’s a felony operation. Period,” said Holmes.Holmes said he hopes his memo reframes the debate about medical marijuana. He said recent court decisions have made it clear that medical-marijuana providers have a “limited affirmative defense” in court, but that’s it.“I have talked to some medical producers who are clearly commercial,” Holmes said. “They say, ‘Are you going to make it illegal?’ This memo is clear: You’re already illegal.”He said the “debate should no longer be about if, but when” medical-marijuana businesses cease operating or join the Initiative 502 system.In the memo, Holmes endorsed state Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles’ proposal to fold medical marijuana into the state’s highly regulated recreational system. He also pushed for “marijuana lounges” that would allow users to vaporize or consume edibles on site. State law does not allow consumption of pot at marijuana stores, so those at pot lounges would need to bring their own weed.Mayor Ed Murray announced plans last month to propose new regulations for medical marijuana, including a licensing system.The mayor Monday said he intends to send the City Council a draft ordinance that will protect patient access to safe, medical-grade marijuana.“Shutting down all collective gardens is not the right solution because it leaves our patients out in the cold,” he said in a statement.Holmes said he would prefer the Legislature address medical marijuana and that a city license would stand on questionable legal ground.He wrote in the memo: “Licensing commercial marijuana activity outside the I-502 system ... would send a message that the city endorses a parallel but different system for such activity, perhaps conflicting with state law and undercutting arguments for legislation at the state level.”He said that doesn’t mean his vision conflicts with the mayor’s.“There’s so many moving pieces,” said Holmes. “What the mayor has proposed is something we’ll really need if the Legislature punts again.”Although Holmes’ memo encouraged more legal action against marijuana businesses, his office primarily handles civil enforcement against them.Felony criminal charges are handled by King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg. Holmes said he was pleased Satterberg filed charges against Matthew Segal and several employees who were operating several medical-marijuana businesses, including Rain City Medical. Seattle police raided Segal’s multimillion-dollar operation in last June. Satterberg’s office charged Segal in December.“I commend Satterberg for filing criminal charges against Rain City,” said Holmes. “My office advised SPD they could raid the establishment and seize the plants.”Holmes acknowledged he was limited in his ability to carry out his vision for pot policy, but hoped the 20-page memo would persuade legislators to take action on medical marijuana.“I don’t have the legislative power in the city or state,” he said. “All I can do is offer my good-faith opinion.”Holmes said he plans to be active in Olympia sharing his vision. Source: Seattle Times (WA)Author: Evan Bush, Seattle Times Staff ReporterPublished: January 5, 2015Copyright: 2015 The Seattle Times CompanyContact: opinion seatimes.comWebsite:   -- Cannabis Archives 
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Comment #3 posted by Sam Adams on January 07, 2015 at 20:09:34 PT
yes, the political class and mainstream media are acting totally hostile toward MJ - no surprise there! Did we expect otherwise?The right questions to ask are about the people who passed this law - if I'm not mistaken, that includes Drug Policy Alliance, the ACLU, Rick Steves, and a few others.What were they thinking??? This law is Prohibition, not legalization, and should be widely condemned by the cannabis community.  Cannabis users have faithfully supported organization like DPA and the ACLU for many years, providing these professional activists with jobs and careers, only to be sold out like sharecropper black people after the Civil War.Did you know that DPA is gearing up right now to run California's legalization referendum in 2016? My guess is that they'll be looking to finish the dismantling of Prop. 215I remember during the campaign for Washington's law that propopents excoriated medical patients for opposing the law. Well, turns out the medical patiens were 100% to oppose this, they are squarely in the cross-hairs of the Drug War machine as I type.
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Comment #2 posted by observer on January 07, 2015 at 16:07:51 PT
Show Homes the Door
re: "- Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes urged the Legislature to fold medical marijuana into the state’s recreational system in a wide-ranging policy memo Monday."Recreational pot in Washington State is so restrictive, professional police-staters like chief prosecutor Pete Holmes know they can bust more people, and feed their police state more with the punitive, highly restrictive "recreational" pot laws there, than they can with medical pot. People in Washington voted for both, and never voted to take away medical marijuana rights or laws, which they had voted for a few years before. Homes and his ilk need to be shown the door, put out to pasture, and sent back to school to study truth, liberty, freedom, and the rights of man - as opposed to lies, trickery, plausible deniability, cover stories, secrecy, SIGINT intercepts, parallel construction, prison industrial complex slavery, and general Machiavellian (to put it nicely) skulduggery. Which is what government seems to move toward, as a compass points to North. The temptations are just too much for government to resist.
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Comment #1 posted by PatrioticDissension on January 07, 2015 at 06:42:39 PT
Indiana democrats wanna talk pot
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