March 8, 2013 - Americans for Safe Access-Nevada County will discuss plans to combat the County's Cannabis Cultivation Ordinance at their next membership meeting on March 12. The meeting will be held at the Nevada County Contractors Association, 149 Crown Point Court, in Grass Valley beginning at 6pm.
The group is in the final preparations for a planned initiative drive after their request for mediation was rejected by the Board in a closed door session. Attorney Jeff Lake, who successfully negotiated a compromise ordinance in Yuba County, is bringing the proposed initiative for the group's final approval later this week.
ASA-NC has conducted a massive phone survey to assess the public's feelings toward cannabis cultivation in Nevada County. Preliminary results indicate support for the group's activities is topping 70%, according to Brad Peceimer-Glass who is tabulating the data.
"We are getting support from people who are young and old, Democrats and Republicans, HOA members and renters," according to Peceimer-Glass.
"I don't think the Board realizes that when they rejected our requests for mediation, they weren't rejecting ASA-NC - they were rejecting the citizens of Nevada County who overwhelming support our position," stated Patricia Smith, chair of the local chapter. "If the Board won't listen to the people, the people will let the Board know their wishes at the ballot box."
Expecting the results of the poll would be challenged, the group used the same standards employed by Gallup and other major polling organizations. Voter registration lists were obtained from the Elections Office and after eliminating names without phone numbers and people who hadn't voted in the last four years, every 6th name was put on the contact list to ensure a random sampling.
ASA-NC will be conducting in-person surveys at various locations throughout the county to crosscheck the results against the phone survey.
Although the Board refused to mediate, they will be voting on small revisions to the Ordinance at their meeting on March 26. The revised draft acknowledges the right of collective grows but does not increase the garden size based on the number of people in the collective.
"It appears that nothing has changed except an attempt by the County to cover their bets," Smith declared. "Unless you live on twenty acres or more, the ordinance doesn't allow enough room to grow for more than one patient - and unless you live on at least ten acres, you do not have room to grow enough medicine for yourself. Saying it's OK then not making allowances to accommodate additional members is deceptive at best."
Meanwhile, ASA-NC's lawsuit challenging the legality of the Ordinance continues to make its way through the court system. The two parties are scheduled for a settlement hearing on April 22.
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