Judge Rejects Counties' Challenge to CA MMJ Law

  Judge Rejects Counties' Challenge to CA MMJ Law

Posted by CN Staff on December 06, 2006 at 18:20:59 PT
By Allison Hoffman, Associated Press Writer 
Source: Associated Press 

San Diego, CA -- A state judge on Wednesday upheld California's law permitting the use of medical marijuana for medical purposes, rejecting a lawsuit by three counties challenging the decade-old statute.The counties, led by San Diego, argued that local governments shouldn't be bound to uphold state laws that are weaker than the federal blanket ban on marijuana.
San Diego County sued California and its health services director in February over a state requirement that counties issue identification cards for medical marijuana users and maintain a registry of people who apply for the cards. San Bernardino and Merced counties joined the suit.State attorneys responded that California was entitled to pass its own laws suspending state prosecution for medical marijuana use, and to legislate programs enabling qualified users to access the drug.Marijuana users in California can still be prosecuted under federal drug laws.Superior Court Judge William R. Nevitt, Jr., wrote in his ruling counties would not be breaking federal law by giving out state identification cards."Requiring the counties to issue identification cards for the purpose of identifying those whom California chooses not to arrest and prosecute for certain activities involving marijuana use does not create a 'positive conflict,'" Nevitt wrote.The ruling affirmed a tentative judgment Nevitt issued in November.The judge emphasized that he was not weighing in on the question of whether marijuana has medical benefits.Since 55 percent of California voters approved the law in a 1996 vote, 10 other states have adopted measures protecting qualified patients from prosecution. They are Alaska, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.Thomas Bunton, a county attorney who argued the case, said no decision had been made whether to seek an appeal.Nevitt's ruling stopped short of forcing the counties to begin issuing the cards. Fewer than half of California's 58 counties have so far complied with the state program.Source: Associated Press (Wire)Author: Allison Hoffman, Associated Press WriterPublished:  Wednesday, December 6, 2006Copyright: 2006 Associated Press CannabisNews Medical Marijuana Archives

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Comment #4 posted by FoM on December 07, 2006 at 07:04:54 PT
doc james
What I hope is that the drive and spirit of the California Activists comes east. It takes about 10 years for a fad to make it from the west to the east. Medicinal Cannabis isn't a fad but good medicine and it has been 10 years. I will just keep on wishing and hoping and thinking and praying that it happens for everyone.
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Comment #3 posted by doc james on December 07, 2006 at 06:21:45 PT:
eyes wide shut
I totally agree with you both. Cali should take it further and secede from the USSA along with the other western states to make a stoner homeland as Terry mitchell envisioned over 20 years ago with the green panther movement. I would be the first to go west old man!
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Comment #2 posted by potpal on December 06, 2006 at 20:18:27 PT

How sweet it is
Now send the DEA packing. Stop CA leos (they are paid by CA taxpayers) from helping federal agents (also paid with some of CA taxes) hassle medicinal patients and raid dispensaries (both pay taxes).
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on December 06, 2006 at 18:23:55 PT

Go California!
California has always been the leader when it comes to change and I sure appreciate all the efforts by all the people that are working so hard and fighting so hard to protect the rights of patients to possess Cannabis.
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