Will Sheriffs Babysit Your Marijuana? The Answer Is..
San Francisco Sheriff's deputies will keep a watchful eye on your pot stash while you go about your business in city buildings.
While those with medical marijuana cards are free to waltz into police headquarters, City Hall, or courthouses with their greenery untouched, it turns out recreational users of the herb will not be having much fun.
SF Weekly had noticed a man leaving his marijuana with deputies at the Hall of Justice and claiming he'd be back in 15 minutes. While this certainly looked like a pot-check, we were told by the city employees on duty that he never returned.
In fact, the department later noted that the unknown man pulled a variation of the trick every 18-year-old hoping to buy beer used when asked for ID. The old "I left it in the car" followed by a peel-out routine. The man in question told deputies he'd forgotten his medical marijuana card, left, and ran like hell.
For what it's worth, this is the Sheriff's Department's policy on toting drugs into a building:
No drugs are allowed in the building and those attempting to bring them in are subject to arrest. The only exception is for those individuals who are authorized to possess medical marijuana and have amounts which comply with their authorization.
It seems like there are no exceptions to "the only exception." Drag.
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Use of Medical Marijuana in Montana May be Repealed by July
A vote in the Montana House of Representatives may be the start of repealing the State's medical marijuana bill. Will the Senate kill the bill?
The Montana House of Representatives voted 63 to 37 to repeal the state's six-year-old medical marijuana bill. The vote, mostly along party lines with Republicans voting for repel and Democrats against, does not mean the law will now be repelled; it must now go before the Montana State Senate.
"We were duped...the law has been a pretext for encouraging recreational use and creating a path to full legalization of marijuana," the Republican House speaker Mike Millburn, a champion of overturning the bill, said on the floor before the vote. “It is starting to undermine the entire fabric of our state. It is time to take back our state and our culture and do what is best for Montana.”
Montana Passed Medical Marijuana Bill in 2004
Montana passed the medical marijuana bill in a ballet initiative, Initiative 148, in 2004 in a 62 to 37 percent vote. Some feel that since then that the industry has grown too large and that too many are being granted a card. The State has 975,000 citizens and some 30,000 of them have a medical marijuana card. Most of those are granted for 'chronic pain' and Millburn feels the law is being taken advantage of.
Other Montana politicians, more the Democrats but some Republicans, too, feel that the answer is to tighten the laws and to move to regulate the marijuana industry in Montana more. The attempt to repeal the medical marijuana law is expected to have a much tougher time in front of the State Senate.
However were it to be passed by the Senate, controlled by Republicans, it would land upon the desk of Montana's Democratic governor, Gov. Brian Schweitzer. While Schweitzer is on record as saying that he feels the medical marijuana laws should be tightened he has not spoken out for or against repeal.
Medical Marijuana in 15 U.S. States
The ability to get a medical marijuana card and use marijuana for medical conditions exists now in 15 U.S. states, the last one getting the right was Arizona, which narrowly passed a bill to grant medical marijuana licenses in the November election.
California, which passed a bill allowing medical marijuana in 1996, went to the polls in 2010 to vote on Proposition 19, a controversial bill to legalize the possession and growing of marijuana for recreational personal use. That bill was defeated.
If the Millburn bill is successful it would come into effect on July 1 and Montana would become the first state to have allowed the use of medical marijuana only to take that use away.
Judge Okays Walmartâs Firing of Medical Marijuana User
It has not been a good 24 hours for medical marijuana users.
Michigan federal judge Robert Jonker today ruled that Walmart had the right to fire an employee who was using marijuana to treat the side effects of an inoperable brain tumor. The state’s medical marijuana laws protect licensed users from arrest but do not trump employers’ policies banning the use of dope, the judge held.
Here’s a report from the Grand Rapids Press. (And click hereto read the opinion.) Finally, click here for a LB post from last August on the case; here for a story on the case from the WSJ’s Stephanie Simon.
The plaintiff, Joseph Casias, 30, who was the Associate of the Year at the Walmart in Battle Creek, Michigan, was fired by the retailer in 2008 after he tested positive for dope.
He claimed he only used marijuana after his work shift, the Press reports. Even so, state law does not require private employers to “accommodate the use of medical marijuana outside of the workplace,” Judge Jonker wrote.
Walmart’s attorneys contend that Michigan’s medical marijuana law wasn’t intended to regulate businesses, according to the Grand Rapids Press.
The American Civil Liberties Union, counsel to Casias, has said it will appeal. “Today’s ruling does not uphold the will of Michigan voters, who clearly wanted to protect medical marijuana and facilitate its use by very sick people like Joseph Casias,” the ACLU said in a statement. “A choice between adequate pain relief and gainful employment is an untenable one.”
In other dope news, the Montana House of Representatives yesterday voted to repeal the state’s medical marijuana law, the New York Times reports.
The sponsor of the repeal bill told the times that the state law legalizing medical marijuana had been a pretext for encouraging recreational use and he said he feared the law could lead to gang drug wars in Montana’s cities. “We were duped,” said Montana’s House speak Mike Milburn.
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