California, Kern

Medical marijuana by county.

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California, Kern

Postby palmspringsbum » Tue Jun 13, 2006 6:21 pm

KGET TV 17 wrote:Sheriff’s department to possibly monitor pot stores

<img src=../bin/video_icon.gif><a href=http://www.kget.com/mediacenter/?videoId=10352 target=_blank>Video</a>
Posted 6/9/06

BAKERSFIELD - Kern County Board of Supervisors will be considering an emergency ordinance to govern medical marijuana stores operating in the county.

If the ordinance passes Tuesday, the Sheriff's Department would get a list of every patient who fills a pot prescription.

Even though they’re illegal under Federal Law, there are four dispensaries operating in Kern County because State Law permits them.

Chief Deputy Sheriff Willy Wahl said those stores are completely un-regulated.

Wahl has asked Supervisors to enact legislation allowing the Sheriff's Department to license and inspect the stores, and to inspect all records of the facilities

That would include sources of the pot and who it's sold to.

Last edited by palmspringsbum on Sat Aug 12, 2006 3:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby palmspringsbum » Wed Jun 14, 2006 7:41 pm

"KERO TV 23 wrote:Supervisors Delay Marijuana Vote

KERO TV 23
POSTED: 10:21 am PDT June 14, 2006
UPDATED: 10:25 am PDT June 14, 2006

<a href=http://www.turnto23.com/news/9369535/detail.html# title="Click to view video" target=_blank><img class=postimg src=bin/bakersfield_kero_tv.jpg align=right></a>BAKERSFIELD -- Supervisors delayed a vote to determine whether the sheriff's department can regulate local medical marijuana dispensaries.

The Sheriff's Department said there is a need for regulation because of recent illegal activity at some of the dispensaries.

Medical marijuana users compare the dispensaries to pharmacies. They're concerned regulation will lead to a loss of confidentiality.

The issue goes back before the board on July 11.

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Deal OK'd to regulate legal pot shops

Postby budman » Wed Jul 12, 2006 3:07 pm

The Bakersfield Californian wrote:Deal OK'd to regulate legal pot shops

<table class=postbody width=100%><tr><td valign=top>The Bakersfield Californian
BY JAMES BURGER, Californian staff writer
e-mail: jburger@bakersfield.com
Tuesday, Jul 11 2006 9:55 PM
Last Updated: Tuesday, Jul 11 2006 9:59 PM</td><td align=right valign=top><img src=../bin/video_icon.gif><a href=http://www.kget.com/mediacenter/?videoId=10760 target=_blank title="http://www.kget.com/mediacenter/?videoId=10760">KGET TV 17 Video</a></td></tr></table>
Medical marijuana users and Kern County sheriff's officials have crafted an uneasy truce over rules to regulate legal pot shops.

Kern County supervisors approved an ordinance Tuesday morning that will give deputies the power to view the sales records of businesses that dispense medical marijuana and, with a warrant, know the names of the patients using the drug.

But sheriff's deputies won't be able to connect a patient's name to the exact amount of marijuana they've purchased.

That distinction was critical to crafting a compromise over the hot-button new rule, said Amanda Brazel, a spokeswoman for Americans for Safe Access, a pro-medical marijuana group.

Putting names and purchase records together, Brazel said, "builds evidence for the feds. To have that removed (from the ordinance) is a win for patients."

Marijuana advocates spoke out against an earlier version of the county ordinance, saying sheriff's deputies could use it to collect evidence for federal drug officials.

Medical marijuana is legal under California law. But it is still illegal under federal law.

Supervisor Ray Watson expressed concern that splitting up names and purchase records would allow dispensaries to funnel marijuana to criminal users.

Pot advocates said dispensaries don't sell enough to individual patients to make that possible.

Compromise language in the ordinance approved Tuesday was negotiated between pro-marijuana leaders and sheriff's officials.

Both sides gave ground.

Marijuana advocates wanted all oversight of their shops removed from the control of the Sheriff's Department. That didn't happen.

But they also wanted to keep the names of medical marijuana patients off sales records. That did happen.

"What this does is remove the points that, I guess you would call it, intrude on patient rights," said Chief Deputy Willy Wahl.

Both marijuana advocates and Sheriff's Department officials said they can live with the new ordinance.

"I think we've done a good balancing," Supervisor Jon McQuiston said. "I think we do have a better document than we had before."

Both sides said the true test of the ordinance will come when the paper document is acted on and enforced in the coming months.

Other provisions of the ordinance control where dispensaries can be located and a licensing fee for the businesses.

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County Passes Medical Marijuana Ordinance

Postby palmspringsbum » Mon Jul 17, 2006 11:25 am

<span class=postbold>See Also</span>: Ordinance G-7426

The Tehachapi News wrote:County Passes Medical Marijuana Ordinance

The Tehachapi News
by Carin Enovijas
Fri Jul 14, 2006 17:24:17 PDT

On July 11, the Kern County Board of Supervisors voted to adopt an ordinance which will require dispensaries of medical marijuana to register and be licensed by the county and to provide the Kern County Sheriff’s Department with access to financial records.

“It’s private medical information, it’s as simple as that,” said Gerald Loggins, an officer of the Cannabis Club of Tehachapi Valley, which has been in operation for two years.

The registered nonprofit organization serves local patients who have a doctor’s recommendation for the controlled substance. Loggins said his organization clearly identifies all of its product and maintains an open communication with local law enforcement officials.

“It’s my community too. Some may approve and some may not,” Loggins said.

“You are better off complying with the law. Without that, we have nothing,” he said.

Loggins said that Kern County Sheriff Sergeant Joe Guiffre has earned his respect, even if he doesn’t fully agree with the ordinance.

“Our sheriffs are true professionals. They are not for or against anybody, they just enforce the law,” he said.

Loggins urges others to act responsibly and show personal responsibility for their choices.

“You need to see your doctor and be in compliance with the law. It’s your life, your health and your choice. Therefore it’s your responsibility,” Loggins said.

The ordinance was revised through collaboration between the sheriff’s department and local marijuana advocates who were concerned that providing access to patient records would violate patient privacy issues.

During the county’s initial review of the ordinance on June 13, marijuana proponents, patients and caregivers expressed concerns that prejudice and workplace policies could cost them their jobs, if their legal marijuana use were to become public.

“We worked it out,” said deputy county counsel John Irby.

“We want to have a system under which the sheriff can inspect the premises to ensure they are complying with state medical marijuana law,” Irby said.

According to Kern County District Supervisor Don Maben, the revised ordinance would limit sheriff’s access to patient records to confirmation of compliance and regulation. However, a warrant must be issued to remove any patient records from a licensed dispensary.

Maben said that the ordinance was necessary because more dispensaries have recently been “popping up” across the county. He also said that although Proposition 215 makes medicinal use legal under California Health and Safety codes, regulatory controls and enforcement fall under the jurisdiction of the sheriff’s licensing detail.

While Maben personally discounted the veracity of marijuana’s medicinal properties, he said the county needs to be able to review records to make sure the dispensaries, patients and caregivers operate in compliance with state law.

There are currently four dispensaries operating in Kern County under the authority of health code regulations instituted by Proposition 215 (1996), which make medicinal use of the drug legal at a state level. However, growing and selling marijuana still remains a federal crime.

The American Medical Association currently proposes the medical use of marijuana for the following conditions: HIV wasting, cancer, cachexia, chemotherapy, glaucoma, Multiple Sclerosis, spasticity, and Extrapyramidal Movement Disorders.

The AMA continues to urge the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to implement administrative procedures to facilitate grant applications and the conduct of well-designed clinical research into the medical utility of marijuana.

This includes studies for non combustible delivery systems that would seriously reduce the health hazards associated with the combustion and inhalation of marijuana.

Editor’s note: If you would like to share your comments on this topic, please visit us online at www.tehachapinews.com.
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Board Votes to Keep Pot Law As Is

Postby palmspringsbum » Sun Dec 02, 2007 8:23 pm

The Bakersfield Californian wrote:Board Votes to Keep Pot Law As Is

<a href=http://www.bakersfield.com/ target=_blank>The Bakersfield Californian</a>, 22 Aug 2007
James Burger, Californian Staff Writer


Mired in Differences Amid Federal, State, Local Laws, Little Choice Was Available

Kern County supervisors on Tuesday struggled to find a clear path for themselves out of the legal morass that is medical marijuana in California.

The problem is there is no path.

So all five supervisors voted to stay put -- leaving county ordinances exactly as they are.

And that means a de-facto ban on medical marijuana dispensaries remains in place.

Federal law says growing, selling and using marijuana is illegal.

State law allows people to use it as medicine.

Kern County has an ordinance that allows six dispensaries in the county. But all of those shops closed voluntarily in the wake of federal drugs raids.

Patients without access to their marijuana flooded Tuesday's meeting, calling for a safe place to buy their medicine.

"Get dispensaries back online in compliance with state law," said Tom Beavers. "You may have closed six dispensaries but you've opened up a thousand dispensaries on the street."

But supervisors struggled with how they could reopen dispensaries without exposing county residents to drug raids and arrests.

"I think it's important that we retain some sort of ordinance," said Supervisor Mike Maggard. "There are folks who have come to rely on this for their therapeutic care. We're going to come up with an imperfect solution and disappoint some people, maybe almost everybody."

Doug McAfee, president of the Bakersfield NORML, pro-legalization group, called for the board to move control of county ordinances to the Department of Public Health.

Sheriff Donny Youngblood, who currently regulates medical marijuana dispensaries in Kern County, feels federal law should trump state law.

"Until Congress changes the law, or the Supreme Court changes the law, I think we're obligated to follow the law," Youngblood said. "I just think we need to say 'no' to dispensaries in Kern County, because it is the law of the land."

The comment raised a wave of jeers from patients in the audience.

But the core of Tuesday's discussion centered around what the county should do to regulate medical marijuana.

Supervisor Ray Watson laid out the situation clearly.

He asked County Counsel Bernard Barmann if moving control of county dispensary ordinances to the health department would prevent federal drug raids.

"Absolutely not," Barmann said.

Could the county prevent raids by putting more regulations on dispensaries, Watson asked.

"Not necessarily," Barmann said. "The feds are controlling this and local government and even state government is at the mercy of the feds."

Supervisor Michael Rubio said anything the county does will provide medical marijuana patients with a "false veil of security" that they are safe from federal raids.

And he was not willing to offer that false sense of security.

"The debate, I argue, does not belong in this chamber," Rubio said. "The debate belongs at the federal level."

His fellow supervisors agreed, and voted to leave the ordinance as it stands.

Medical marijuana supporters said that while the decision wasn't good, it could have been worse.

Dispensary licenses expire in December, McAfee said, and that may be a better time for patients to approach supervisors on the issue again.
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County weighs need for medical marijuana

Postby palmspringsbum » Fri Dec 07, 2007 2:22 pm

Fox News Bakersfield wrote:County weighs need for medical marijuana

Fox News Bakersfield
August 21st, 2007


<table class=posttable align=right width=300><tr><td class=postcell><a target=_blank class=postlink href="http://www.eyeoutforyou.com/news/local/9288911.html?video=YHI&t=a" title="Click to View. 21 Aug 07 - Sheriff Donny Youngblood addresses city council."><img class=postimg width=300 src=bin/youngblood_donny.jpg></a></td></tr></table>Kern County Supervisors are struggling over whether the county should oversee medical marijuana facilities or how they should do it.

It was a heated meeting during the morning session of the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday. Medical marijuana advocates, patients and activists packed the meeting to speak out in favor of the county regulating medical marijuana dispensaries in the county.

The six medical marijuana dispensaries that were once open, remain closed at this time and Sheriff Donny Youngblood will not issue any more dispensary licenses as he feels that he is helping people break the law. Youngblood made the decision after several DEA raids of the dispensaries earlier this year. It is legal to use medical marijuana under state law, but not federal law. All six dispensaries closed over the past few weeks; some of the after federal raids and others voluntarily to prevent being raided.

Supervisor Chairman Don Maben gave the crowd several warnings to keep quiet during the public session. Several of them made comments, even booed while Sheriff Youngblood addressed the supervisors.

Sheriff Youngblood says its his job to uphold the law, but advocates of medical marijuana say, if dispensaries are not open patients will be forced to get their pot illegally. But the county reminded the public that it is not the Sheriff's fault the DEA is enforcing federal law.

In the end the Kern County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to continue with the existing ordinance to issue licenses for medical marijuana dispensaries, but to ask for more review by county departments of which agency, if not the Sheriff's Department, should oversee the dispensaries.
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DA: Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Should Be Banned

Postby palmspringsbum » Fri Dec 07, 2007 2:28 pm

The Bakersfield Californian wrote:DA: Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Should Be Banned

The Bakersfield Californian
Wed, 10 Oct 2007
James Burger, Californian Staff Writer


Kern County District Attorney Ed Jagels offered two suggestions to Kern County supervisors on the medical marijuana controversy Tuesday morning.

Repeal the county's marijuana dispensary ordinance, he suggested.

Or as a preferred alternative, he said, ban dispensaries, cooperatives and collectives.

State law allows marijuana collectives and cooperatives under strict conditions.

But Jagels argued it is prohibitively difficult to operate a marijuana cooperative or collective that is actually legal under state law.

"It's almost impossible to operate one of these things that is legal," he said.

And dispensaries, like those that closed down recently in Bakersfield, are illegal under federal law, Jagels said.

"I agree with Mr. Jagels. It's nearly impossible to have legal operation," County Counsel Bernard Barmann said.

Supervisors struggled with the consequences of following Jagels' advice.

If they repeal the ordinance, supervisors said, they risk allowing dispensaries to proliferate without government regulation.

Jagels said the county ordinance puts the sheriff, and his office, in a bind when prosecuting violations of the law.

"If I'm in court prosecuting these individuals for distributing marijuana in violation of federal law, one of the things they're going to bring up is, 'I got a permit from the sheriff to do exactly that,'" Jagels said.

He suggested supervisors get rid of the law that permits local dispensaries.

"I do not think we benefit from the cooperative/collective licensing ordinance," Jagels said.

Supervisors asked him if his second recommendation -- banning all collectives and cooperatives -- didn't violate provisions in state law.

The county could "arguably be required to allow a valid cooperative or collective that distributes this stuff," Jagels said.

But other counties have banned those organizations and have not been sued because operating one that is legal under state law is so difficult.

Supervisors took no action on Jagels' recommendations Tuesday.

Barmann said his office will soon come back with another report and ask the supervisors to take an official stance on the issue.
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Doctor Calls Pot Good Medicine

Postby palmspringsbum » Fri Dec 07, 2007 7:14 pm

The Bakersfield Californian wrote:Doctor Calls Pot Good Medicine

The Bakersfield Californian
Tue, 30 Oct 2007
by Jason Kotowski, Californian staff writer

Doctors who recommend medical marijuana say it helps treat everything from nausea caused by cancer treatment to spinal pain.

Multiple sclerosis. Anorexia. Anxiety. Muscle spasms. Insomnia.

Dr. Michael Gitter, of Lake Forest, said he's seen medical marijuana help treat all those ailments and more. He believes marijuana should be among the drugs doctors can legally make available to their patients.

In California, medical marijuana is legal under state law. But federal law says marijuana is illegal and the Drug Enforcement Administration can bust medical marijuana dispensaries whenever they want to.

Raids during the summer resulted in the closure of Nature's Medicinal Cooperative, a medical marijuana dispensary in Oildale. All other dispensaries in the county closed in the following months because the owners feared being raided and arrested.

Doctors can legally write a recommendation for medical marijuana for qualified patients.

Gitter said the amount of research he's seen and the stories he's heard from other doctors, as well as his own experience, have him convinced marijuana is a worthwhile drug in treating various ailments.

"It has a good safety profile and is very effective for many conditions," Gitter said. "I wouldn't say there are a lot of drawbacks."

The DEA disagrees. Stephen Peterson, resident agent in charge of the DEA in Bakersfield, has said marijuana isn't harmless and use of the drug often leads to other types of substance abuse.

DEA assistant special agent in charge Gordon Taylor has said the medical marijuana dispensaries he has seen are mostly used by young people, most of whom are able-bodied and in some cases even physically fit. The possession, cultivation or distribution of marijuana for any purpose is illegal under federal law, except for approved scientific research, Taylor has said.

Gitter said marijuana is sometimes abused by people who don't need it, but no more than any other drug a doctor recommends or prescribes.

"Every time a doctor writes a prescription or a recommendation there will be times when his judgment is off or patients are manipulative," Gitter said.

That's no reason, however, for marijuana to be unavailable, Gitter said.

"With its broad range of uses, it's one of the most useful medicines I've come across," he said.

Numerous calls made to local doctors were either not returned or the doctors declined to comment.

District Attorney Ed Jagels said at a Kern County supervisors meeting earlier this month that the county should either repeal the marijuana dispensary ordinance or ban dispensaries, cooperatives and collectives. County Counsel Bernard Barmann said at the meeting that his office will come back with another report and ask supervisors to take an official stance on the issue.

For now, there's no place in the county where marijuana can be legally purchased under state law.
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Supes vote against marijuana ordinance

Postby palmspringsbum » Thu Apr 02, 2009 7:55 pm

BakersfieldNow.com wrote:Bakersfield, California

Supes vote against marijuana ordinance
by BakersfieldNow.com Staff, 23 Mar 2009

Originally printed at http://www.bakersfieldnow.com/news/local/41728867.html

<object height="264" width="320"><param name="movie" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" value="http://www.bakersfieldnow.com/v/?i=41728867" /><param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always" /><param name="wmode" value="transparent" /><param name="AllowFullScreen" value="true" /><embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" src="http://www.bakersfieldnow.com/v/?i=41728867" AllowFullScreen="true" allowScriptAccess="always" height="264" wmode="transparent" width="320" align="right"></embed></object>The Kern County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to reject an ordinance that limits the number of medical marijuana shops.

Though California voters approved the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes in 1996, it clashes with federal law. Under federal law, marijuana use remains illegal for any purpose.

County counsel recommended rejecting the ordinance, because it extricates the county from problems that may be associated with regulating the marijuana shops.

Six marijuana dispensaries were raided in the summer of 2007 and shut down by the sheriff's office and Drug Enforcement Administration.

The supervisors voted 4-1 to reject the ordinance, with Mike Maggard casting the lone dissenting vote.

Where it all comes together...
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Supervisors drop pot shop regulation

Postby palmspringsbum » Thu Apr 02, 2009 9:22 pm

KGET TV 17 wrote:Update: Supervisors drop pot shop regulation, but sheriff issues warning

[url=http://www.kget.com/news/local/story/Update-Supervisors-drop-pot-shop-regulation-but/AjnusfE2LEqnjQYE3l7ipQ.cspx[/url]KGET TV 17[/url]
Last Update: 3/24 8:17 pm


The Board of Supervisors dropped laws governing pot shops in Kern County Tuesday. This all comes after the Obama administration announced federal prosecutors will not pursue medical marijuana cases if they operate legally under California law. The issue stirred a heated debate at the county building Tuesday.

"That's right, I don't have to register anything with you, I follow state guidelines," a medical marijuana advocate said to Sheriff Donny Youngblood.

A group of medical marijuana confronted the sheriff outside supervisor's chambers. The board voted to drop laws governing pot shops after the Obama administration announced federal agents no longer will raid pot shops that follow California law.

But the sheriff issued a stern warning and said medical marijuana may be legal in California, but for-profit dispensaries are not.

“One letter I got this week says it is our intention to reopen the dispensary. You are going to go to jail. Dispensaries are illegal,” the sheriff said before the board.

County attorney John Irby also explained to supervisors that the only type of pot shops legal in California are collectives. And Irby says everyone involved in a collective must be a qualified patient or caregiver and can not make a profit.

But medical marijuana patient Roger Lawrence says he does not see a problem with dispensaries. He says marijuana is the only thing that helped him regain his appetite after a brain surgery so the more places people get it, the better.

“I had some surgery done and I was kind of wilting away. I lost 17 pounds in less than 2 weeks,“ Lawrence said.

“If these dispensaries were open we would no longer have these problems or these issues. We would no have issues of people trying to rob residential areas for their marijuana, Nathan Wright said.

But at the end of the meeting Sheriff Youngblood went before the board again. He said he wanted to make himself very clear that anyone who tries to make a profit selling marijuana, will go to jail.

“A dispensary is like a 7-Eleven. They sell a product to people who come in with a card and they make a profit. One of them made an excess of $8 million in less than a year while they were open ... This isn't rock science these people are in business to make money," the sheriff said.

Youngblood says his department will be checking and insuring that marijuana collectives follow state law.

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