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January 22, 2016 – Thought you should know that Nevada County BOS meeting on 1/12/2016 was mentioned at a round table discussion on 1/19/2016 with policy architects and public attendees at the Crest Theatre in Sacramento as one of the least professional government proceedings in the State. This forum was co-hosted by Cal Heritage and California Cannabis Industry Association (CCIA).

Later that day, at the California State Assembly Joint Hearing of the Commitees on Agriculture Business and Professions and Health in Room 4204 of the State Capitol, Assembly Member Jim Wood, author of AB21, who is removing the unintended March 1 deadline, noted that though bans are very easy to rush into, bans are very difficult to undo. While Assembly Member Ray Bonta suggested that rather than a swift ban, a thoughtful regulatory process is preferred.

What steps can be taken to direct Nevada County to a more responsible path of reasonable regulation and representative government?

Is the BOS prepared to recognize the many requests made on 1/12/2016 by voting citizens for a stakeholder advisory committee? Can we add the following language to prevent the ordinance voted on in such undue haste from being such a permanent, binding and ill-advised part of law in Nevada County?

“Cal NORML recommends adding “sunset” clause to any pending bans, as suggested to the Alameda County Supervisors by attorney Andrew Scher of Henry Wykowski & Associates, who represents Diana Kirby in her suit against Fresno’s ban. The clause was adopted by the Board on January 6 and reads:

“This ordinance shall be repealed by its own terms upon the adoption of state legislation repealing or eliminating the March 1, 2016 deadline in Health and Safety Code section 11362.777c4.”

Following my signature, I am copying you on the full context of Cal NORML’s letter, written by Ellen Komp, Deputy Director, with Ellen’s consent to publish.

Thank you,

Pamela Biery
Nevada County Resident

Letter issued 1/19/2016 by Ellen Komp, Cal NORML, Deputy Director

The California Assembly Business & Professions, Agriculture, & Health Committees held a “joint” hearing on 1/19/2016 to discuss MMRSA implementation. Testifying were Dept of Consumer Affairs chief Awet Kidane; Jim Houston, Undersecretary of Dept. of Food and Ag; Karen Smith, head of the Department of Public Health; and California Police Chiefs head Christopher Boyd. All said they were working on implementing MMRSA by January 1, 2018.

That far-off date made the March 1, 2016 deadline for local jurisdictions to act or supposedly lose their licensing authority even more troublesome. Rep. Wood spoke of Alameda’s sunset clause (see below) and said he wishes someone had thought of it sooner. Even if the March 1 deadline stays in place and/or is repealed later, cities and counties won’t be punished, Wood said.

Tim Cromartie of the League of Cities, which has been criticized for pushing bans, said, “We knew promulgating bans was controversial, but developing meaningful regulation takes time [and there wasn’t time before the March 1 deadline]. “The bans will be temporary,” Cromartie said, siting Grass Valley and Eureka as two examples of places the made a point of the temporary nature of what they were passing. He also mentioned the Alameda sunset clause and thanked Assemblyman Wood for stepping up to erase the March 1 deadline in MMRSA, saying he supports AB 21 (which will have a hearing in the Senate Health Committee tomorrow [Wednesday] afternoon.)

Sarah Carillo, Tuolumne County counsel, said “There should be ample time to give locals time to draft regulations in a thoughtful manner…There is concern that municipalities are rushing into bans.”

Hezekiah Allen of California Growers Association told the committee that the “Absolute, most pressing issue” is bans. Nate Bradley of the California Cannabis Industry Assn. said a better option than bans is Placer County’s regulatory plans. “Once it’s over [the banapalooza] with we hope to work with cities on models for better regulations,” he said. Bradley mentioned NORML as a group working to get information about medical marijuana laws out to our members.

Cal NORML recommends adding “sunset” clause to any pending bans, as suggested to the Alameda County Supervisors by attorney Andrew Scher of Henry Wykowski & Associates, who represents Diana Kirby in her suit against Fresno’s ban. The clause was adopted by the Board on January 6 and reads:

“This ordinance shall be repealed by its own terms upon the adoption of state legislation repealing or eliminating the March 1, 2016 deadline in Health and Safety Code section 11362.777c4.”

More at: http://www.canorml.org/news/Gov_Brown_Supports_Fix_to_MMRSA_Deadline