Marijuana Ordinance Approved

Marijuana Ordinance Approved
Posted by CN Staff on January 21, 2005 at 10:42:09 PT
By David Edwards, The Daily Journal
Source: Ukiah Daily Journal 
Despite warnings that lawsuits would ensue, the Ukiah City Council on Wednesday passed a sweeping new marijuana ordinance. The council gave unanimous consent, although the 4-0 vote reflected the absence of Council member Doug Crane. Crane had said previously he didn't like the wording of any of the draft ordinances he'd seen.
Even if Crane had been there Wednesday to dissent, though, it was clear almost from the outset of the discussion that the council had enough votes for passage.Once the ordinance takes effect, growers in residential areas will be limited to six plants per parcel. The max in non-residential zones is six mature plants and 12 immature ones. Also, the property owner must sign a statement acknowledging that growing marijuana may lead to federal prosecution. All growers, regardless of the location of their operation, must obtain a permit from the city. The permit is good for up to one year; after that the grower must renew it to stay legal. Moreover, all pot must be grown indoors in a secure location. The ordinance also forbids marijuana growing within 300 feet of certain places such as schools, parks, churches and day-care centers.Because the council intends to use zoning regulations to rein in unfettered pot growing, the ordinance now must go before the Planning Commission. That means there will be another public hearing, and planning commissioners can do whatever they want to the text.Wednesday's vote made all of that a formality, though, and planning commissioners will essentially deal with a foregone conclusion. Even if they find fault with the ordinance, the council left no doubt about its intent."The number of findings (I included) is overkill," City Attorney David Rapport told the council. "The reason for that is I wanted to establish a factual basis for the ordinance."Those 16 findings take up nearly three pages of the eight-page ordinance. The first one mentions Proposition 215, which California voters passed in 1996, thus legalizing medicinal marijuana use. Another finding refers to a "popular strain of marijuana (that) is called skunk' or super skunk.'"Such details might be more than council members ever wanted to know about the drug, but Rapport was trying to cover all the bases.In doing so, he and the council overreached, said Dane Wilkins and Bob Boyd, representatives of the Northern California chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.When Wilkins, the chapter's executive director, stepped to the podium to address the council, an audience member chuckled and said, "Here we go." Wilkins gave an example of a patient with multiple sclerosis who cannot afford an indoor greenhouse. Such a person would be deprived of the medicine they're entitled to under the law, Wilkins said. He offered to assist the council in making the ordinance more "compassionate."Boyd, a local attorney and NORML supporter, said the council was "eviscerating" Proposition 215 and asking for someone to "take this to the courthouse."Vice Mayor Phil Baldwin reiterated his support for legalizing marijuana, and he suggested NORML members review the organization's original mission. Baldwin said Prop. 215 "has turned out to be a disaster." He added that growers and sellers have completely distorted the voters' intent.Separate high-profile robbery attempts in past months put pressure on council members to address the public safety concerns surrounding backyard marijuana gardens. Baldwin has been the most vocal, and a lack of precedent has not deterred him from promoting the ordinance. But did good intentions cause a rush to act? Critics of the ordinance say yes. And as Crane pointed out in an earlier interview, "There's no prize for being first." Source: Ukiah Daily Journal (CA)Author: David Edwards, The Daily JournalPublished: Friday, January 21, 2005 Copyright: 2005 Ukiah Daily JournalContact: udj pacific.netWebsite: Articles & Web Site:California NORML Seeks To Limit Medical Pot Looks at Restrictions on Pot Growing Pot Causing Stink in Mendocino County 
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Comment #6 posted by Hope on January 22, 2005 at 06:38:16 PT
Your thinking about "ordnance".
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Comment #5 posted by The GCW on January 22, 2005 at 06:30:29 PT
Even the word "Ordinance" is suspect.
Is't Ordinance, artillery?The heck with loving one another...Creating orders...
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Comment #4 posted by Hope on January 21, 2005 at 17:06:44 PT
JustGetnby , I loved, "strtejic lawsuits". Take that, you legalese speakers.Made me smile, and I treasure every smile I find.Thanks.
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Comment #3 posted by sam adams on January 21, 2005 at 13:19:28 PT
duh...I didn't read the first line:Despite warnings that lawsuits would ensue, the Ukiah City Council on Wednesday passed a sweeping new marijuana ordinance.Looks like the good people of Ukiah are going to have a lousy law for a year or two, and then they'll have to pay a big settlement to someone with their taxes when the city loses its lawsuit. Wonderful!
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Comment #2 posted by JustGetnby on January 21, 2005 at 11:51:12 PT
  SB420/Prop 215
  I believe the Ca. constitution states that a Prosition passed by a vote of the people cannot be cancelled or altered, except by the initiative process.  Up front and honest, I havn't read the Ca. state constitution in a number of years, but thats my recollection.If I am correct, it will only require a few strtejic lawsuits to get a higher court to throw these laws out.  We can only hope
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Comment #1 posted by Sam Adams on January 21, 2005 at 11:23:31 PT
Can they do this under SB420?
Looks like a lawsuit is coming - isn't some of this stuff illegal under SB420?
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