County OKs Cannabis Ordinance

County OKs Cannabis Ordinance
Posted by CN Staff on February 08, 2005 at 19:41:08 PT
By Chris Nichols
Source: Union Democrat
Medical marijuana backers won a major victory yesterday when Calaveras County supervisors opened the door for cannabis dispensaries in the county. The board's 3-to-2 vote will make buying medical marijuana easier for many patients and their caretakers who now travel to cannabis clubs in the Bay Area, said San Andreas resident Kim Cue, who applied last fall to open the county's first cannabis club.
"I cannot put into words how excited I am," Cue said. "My bones are just shaking." California voters approved the limited harvest and sale of medical marijuana in 1996 by passing Proposition 215, known as the Compassionate Use Act. But only a handful of counties  including San Francisco, Alameda, Sacramento and Amador  have approved the operation of cannabis dispensaries. Cue and county officials estimate there are more than 200 medical marijuana patients in Calaveras County. Under the county's first ever cannabis ordinance, Cue must still apply for a permit to open her club and will be subject to strict guidelines on where and how she operates the business. Cue said she is considering two vacant storefronts in San Andreas, including 596 E. St. Charles Street near Mountain Ranch Road and 154 E. St. Charles Street next door to Anchor Prints. She said she hopes to open a dispensary by April 1. No dispensary can be located within 1,000 feet of a school or youth-related establishment, according to the county law. Background checks on owners and audits of financial records will be standard for all dispensaries. Tuolumne County officials have discussed, but have not finalized a cannabis ordinance. Calaveras County supervisors Merita Callaway, Tom Tryon and Steve Wilensky voted for the ordinance. Victoria Erickson and Bill Claudino voted against it. "I think we owe it to what the voters of California voted for," Callaway said, speaking at yesterday's Board of Supervisors meeting. The three supervisors favoring the ordinance said any cannabis club will have to follow strict security measures to prevent marijuana from being sold to nonpatients and to minors. Under California law, the sale of medical marijuana is limited to patients who have received a physician's recommendation. Claudino said he was skeptical about the recommendations made by some doctors, adding that nonpatients and teenagers can easily obtain prescriptions for cannabis. "I don't think it's in the best interest of the residents of Calaveras County," Claudino said. Sheriff Dennis Downum said the dispensaries put law enforcement officials in a difficult position. Under federal law, the sale or use of marijuana for any purpose remains illegal. Downum said his department will regulate any dispensaries according to the county ordinance. But he said his department will also cooperate with federal authorities in shutting down any cannabis club, if requested. Numerous clubs in other counties have been raided and shut down by federal authorities. Downum said he expects the same will happen in Calaveras County. "It'll happen," Downum said after yesterday's meeting. Public reaction to yesterday's ruling was mixed. Several residents in San Andreas, where Cue hopes to open a dispensary, said they sympathize with patients who use medical marijuana, but oppose a dispensary opening in the county seat. "It's not good for our town," said Shirley Holligan, pausing outside Anchor Prints at 156 E. Saint Charles St. Holligan, who has lived in San Andreas for 35 years, said she would support medical marijuana sales if they were done through regulated pharmacies, but not at separate storefronts. Reaction at nearby Hemptation, a smoking accessories shop, was decidedly different. "I think it's great," said Tina Graham, who works at the shop. "(Medical marijuana) helps out a lot of people." Graham added that many of Hemptation's customers are medical marijuana patients. Seated on a bench across the street from the shop, 17-year-old Bret Cassel  like many county officials over the past few months  wrestled with whether a cannabis club was a good idea. "There'd probably be more crime," said Cassel, who attends Mountain Oaks Home School. "On a positive note, it would be easier for people who need it to get it. It'd probably be easier for kids to get a hold of it, too. It has good and bad."Source: Union Democrat, The (CA)Author: Chris NicholsPublished: February 8, 2005Copyright: 2005 Western Communications, Inc.Website: letters uniondemocrat.comRelated Articles & Web Site:Medicinal Cannabis Research Links Supervisors Approve Marijuana Dispensaries Issue Simmers on Divided Board Want To Snuff Pot Clubs
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Comment #4 posted by kaptinemo on February 09, 2005 at 07:56:22 PT:
Unrelated: Barthwell dodges debate by lawmakers
From Pete Guither at DrugWarRant we have the following link:Medical marijuana issue heats up 
State legislator wants debate with doctor who is challenging practice Larry McKeon, D-Chicago, has challenged Dr. Andrea Barthwell to a public debate about medical marijuana. Barthwell declined the challenge. McKeown is saying Barthwell's work is a 'smear campaign' against his House Bill 407 proposal.Barthwell denigrates debate as 'street theater'. but you can only run for so long, Andrea dear; you may as well face us now and get it over with. You aren't working for The Man now. You have no shield anymore protecting you from the requirements any private citizen has WHEN SUBPOENEAD TO TESTIFY (hint, hint, hint for you lawyer activists in Illinois; a great method to make her stand and deliver in front of a legislative forum to prove allegations of cannabis's 'dangerous qualities'; she's such an 'expert', you know).But get this: one of the provisions of the bill would make it a crime for State LEO's to 'refer' MMJ cases to the Feds when their hands are tied by State laws. The cops whine it's 'draconian', as Laimutis Nargelenas of the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police put it.Fancy that; they get their footsies jammed in the same tight shoes we live with, and they start crying and hollering. Awwwwww, poor baaaaaabies!
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Comment #3 posted by siege on February 09, 2005 at 07:23:49 PT
1983 clinical trial
Locally, a 1983 clinical trial conducted by the Tennessee Board of
Pharmacy (performed in compliance with the state's former medical
marijuana law) found marijuana to be a valuable anti-nauseant for
patients undergoing cancer chemotherapy. The Board concluded: "We found
marijuana smoking and THC capsules to be effective anti-emetics. We
found an approximate 23 percent higher success rate among those patients
smoking than those administered THC capsules." Notably, all of the
patients in the trial had been previously unresponsive to conventional
medications.To deny an effective medication to the sick and dying in order to "send
a strong message to kids" against drug abuse is cruel and
unconscionable, and improperly interferes with the relationship between
a patient and his or her physician. State and federal laws already
allow the medical use of many drugs, such as cocaine and morphine, which
can be abused in a non-medical setting. Basic compassion and common
sense demand that we allow the seriously ill to use whatever medication
provides safe and effective relief. That is why 8 out of 10 American
voters now say they support the legalization of marijuana for medical
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on February 08, 2005 at 20:27:52 PT
Just a Comment
I think Kim Cue winning the right to have a dispensary is really a miracle considering the times we live in under this administration. I wish her much success. One small step but one full of hope.
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Comment #1 posted by sixtyfps on February 08, 2005 at 20:10:11 PT
Big Pharma Meditations doubt some of you will enjoy this.
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