Planning Commission Wants To Wait on Marijuana

Planning Commission Wants To Wait on Marijuana
Posted by CN Staff on June 03, 2005 at 17:52:35 PT
By Herb Smart
Source: Turlock Journal
California -- Turlock should bar medicinal marijuana sales in Turlock until the US Supreme Court makes a decision in coming months. That's what members of the Turlock Planning Commission said during a meeting on Thursday.Calling the issue difficult, Planning Manager Michael Cooke informed commissioners that no applications for medicinal marijuana shops have been filed with the city, but the City Council has asked to hear the commission's view on the issue.
"If we outright ban (the use of medicinal marijuana), we are looking for a fight that we don't need," Planning Commission Chairman Amos Reyes said at the meeting.Commissioner Mike Brem felt the zoning of possible medicinal marijuana shops was one of the city's less pressing concerns."Is this the most burning issue in the city?" Brem asked. "I don't think so. There are a lot of things to be done in this town."Commissioner Soraya Fregosi disagreed with Brem, pushing for the commission to take a proactive approach on the issue and discuss possible zoning or regulations of future medicinal marijuana shops.In a discussion with Turlock Police Department Chief Lonald Lott sometime before the meeting, Cooke said Lott was concerned about robberies at the shops - whether from the shops themselves or customers who may be robbed after exiting the shops.Cooke also noted since the state is behind in its efforts to provide proper registration for medical marijuana users, police officers have no way of knowing if people using the drug are using it for medical reasons.Reyes argued the commission should ponder strict regulations on medical marijuana shops if the Supreme Court deems their existence constitutional. He said extensive fingerprinting of customers, background checks for shop workers, and heavy security to protect customers are three possible items to consider.Most commissioners agreed it is not their role to decide the legality or ethics of medicinal marijuana use. Instead, members want to make sure there is a way to handle the process of medical marijuana shop operations and locations if they are legalized nationwide.Commissioner Ted Howze was worried of the repercussions that may occur as a result of going against federal law. Currently, the state - since the passing of Proposition 215 by voters in 1996 - deems medical marijuana use acceptable in some instances as long as it is recommended by a doctor. Federal law deems the use illegal, hence the current Supreme Court case.Howze questioned what would happen to the city's federal funding if the city opposed the "law of the land." He noted that was enough justification to impose a temporary halt - legally referred to as a moratorium - on any possible medical marijuana shops.As the meeting came to a close, commissioners arrived at a consensus that a moratorium would be the best way to handle the situation if any medical marijuana advocates chose to open a shop in Turlock. Cooke will advise the City Council of the commission's finding in the coming weeks.Complete Title: Planning Commission Wants To Wait on Medicinal MarijuanaSource: Turlock Journal (CA)Author: Herb SmartPublished: Friday, June 3, 2005 Copyright: 2005 Turlock Journal Contact: letters turlockjournal.comWebsite: CannabisNews Medical Marijuana Archives
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help

Post Comment