Measure W’s aftermath: It’s still about process

In grey the Yes votes, in green the No votes on Measure W as of June 13, 2016.

NEVADA CITY, Calif. June 13, 2016 – The controversy about Measure W – Nevada County’s ballot measure designed to tweak the existing urgency ordinance and the outdoor growing ban on all marijuana – was not just about the ban, it was about the process. Now, we might be in for more of the same. Chair Miller has declined to let media attend and report on a meeting between the county and stakeholders.

It was about the process when newly-minted Chair Dan Miller on January 12, 2016 forgot to open public comment on the ballot measure itself and the vote was expedited in record time. Granted, it came after an exhaustive public comment period on the proposed ordinance, but the public never got to comment on the ballot measure itself.

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It was about process when we discovered that a Yes or a No vote on the ballot measure were basically the same – a No vote simply meaning that the existing ordinance and the ban would remain in place.

It was about process when the Board of Supervisors, on February 9, 2016 had to pass a resolution “clarifying” the language of the ballot measure stating If the Ballot Measure is not approved by a majority of the registered voters voting on the measure, it is the intent of the Board of Supervisors to reject the Ballot Measure, to repeal the ban on outdoor cultivation of marijuana and to consider and adopt other outdoor regulations at the next available meeting after the results of the election have been certified by the County Elections Official.

It was about process when Forrest Hurd filed a writ against the language of the impartial analysis of Measure W. The court decided on March 8, 2016 that five issues with the analysis needed to be rectified before the measure could appear on the June ballot.

The voters appear to have dealt the final blow to Measure W and its processes by a 58 to 42 margin.

No media allowed

Now, Chair Miller is convening a meeting on Wednesday to discuss with a small stakeholder group what will replace the outdoor growing ban.

According to Patricia Smith, the Nevada County chapter Chair of ASA, Miller has indicated he wants to bring the item before the BOS at their June 28th meeting.

What he does not want is media in the room.

Earlier this morning, Chair Miller could not meet even briefly with this reporter, stating he was “late for a meeting.” Ten minutes later, as he left County Counsel’s office, he studiously avoided to look over to the reception desk and respond to a question.

The Union newspaper was also informed their reporter was not welcome, it would be “inappropriate.”

In an email to Miller asking him to reconsider his position, Patricia Smith wrote: “Since anything discussed in the meeting will get to the press anyway, why not take the high road and invite them. It will go a long way toward healing the division Measure W has caused our community.”

We agree.