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Oakland city attorney withdraws counsel from grow ordinance

Posted on February 6th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

CaliforniaOakland City Attorney John Russo has withdrawn his legal counsel from plans to tax and license large-scale cannabis farms, and told the City Council to hire their own attorney.

The city's original cannabis cultivation ordinance set no limits on the size of the cultivation facilities, which would operate as stand-alone businesses separate from dispensaries. The council had hoped to start licensing the farms as early as last month, but suspended action on the licenses in December so the ordinance could be revised to more closely comply with state law.

Medical clubs sprout in Washington state

Posted on February 6th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

cannabisIn the past seven months, cannabis dispensaries have sprouted across Washington state, exploiting a loophole in the state's medical marijuana law that neither explicitly allows nor prohibits them. State tax officials estimate at least 120 are open, mostly in the Puget Sound area. Dozens more likely remain underground. Under pressure from all sides to "clear the haze," the Legislature is considering a bill, SB 5073, that would legalize, regulate and tax dispensaries and create the state's first authorized commercial cannabis farms. (Seattle Times, Jan. 29)

Medical marijuana employment rights bill introduced in California

Posted on February 1st, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , .

CaliforniaState Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) introduced legislation Jan. 27 that would prevent California employers from discriminating against medical marijuana patients. Senate Bill 129 would not change current law, which prohibits employees from using medical marijuana at the workplace. According to Leno, his bill "simply establishes a medical cannabis patient's right to work." SB 129 would reverse a 2008 California Supreme Court ruling that granted employers the right to fire or refuse to hire workers with a physician's recommendation for medical marijuana. Advocates have estimated that more than 400,000 medical marijuana patients live in California.

Colorado medical provider gets five years

Posted on January 28th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

cannabisChristopher Bartkowicz of suburban Denver was sentenced to five years in federal prison Jan. 28 after pleading guilty to three cannabis-related charges—despite his claim to protection under Colorado's medical marijuana law. Federal agents raided Bartkowicz's Highlands Ranch home last February and seized hundreds of plants growing in his basement. If he had gone to trial, Bartkowicz could have faced a life term because of a previous drug conviction. His release will be followed by eight years of supervision.

Montana mulls new medical measure

Posted on January 28th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

cannabisOn Jan. 21, more than 100 people came out to Montana's capitol building in Helena for hearings on on what the state's new medicinal cannabis policy should look like. Ironically, a bill pending in the state house is opposed by cannabis advocates as well as those who want to repeal the 2004 state ballot initiative that legalized medical use.

Oakland mulls new cultivation plan

Posted on January 28th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

CaliforniaOakland's City Council is considering a new medical cannabis cultivation plan that would scale back the size of the growing operations and tie them more directly to dispensaries, according to a draft obtained by local media. Written up by council member Desley Brooks, the changes are meant to address legal concerns over the original plan, which would have allowed for four large-scale farms to supply several dispensaries.

Patients protest raids on SLO delivery services

Posted on January 28th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , .

CaliforniaPatients and medical cannabis advocates protested outside of the San Luis Obispo County Superior Court earlier this month to draw attention to the heavy-handed raids and arrests that took place the week of Dec. 27. During a three-day period, as many as 50 Narcotics Task Force officers from local and state enforcement agencies raided seven collectively-run medical cannabis delivery services, arresting 15 people on felony charges and held them on bails of up to $100,000. Several of those arrested were charged with child endangerment, after Child Protective Services removed at least six children from the homes of three different families.

Medical advocates support case over private patient records

Posted on January 27th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

cannabisThe country's leading medical cannabis advocacy group, Americans for Safe Access (ASA), filed an amicus ("friend of the court") brief Jan. 27 defending the privacy rights of patients across the US. The federal case US v. Michigan Department of Community Health is the response to the Justice Department seeking private patient records from the state's medical marijuana program.

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