Oakland city officials subject to arrest over pot laws
OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- Oakland is facing another possible legal hurdle in its efforts to regulate and tax marijuana farms.
The website California Watch obtained a letter sent by Alameda County district attorney to Mayor-elect Jean Quan. The district attorney warns that city officials could be subject to arrest by federal drug agents if they decide Oakland is violating California's medical marijuana law.
The Oakland city council approved an ordinance allowing marijuana cultivation in July. It is set to meet Tuesday to discuss the issue. Applications for marijuana growing permits are due the next day.
Former NM Gov. Gary Johnson: I smoked pot from 2005-2008
I was gonna join the Chamber of Commerce, but then I got high
I was gonna join the chamber, but then I got high
Don't think those suits over at the San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce are a bunch of stodgy old squares. On Wednesday, they'll link arms with the long-haired hipsters who run one of San Jose's premier medical marijuana shops -- Harborside Health Center -- for a ribbon-cutting.
Did the chamber types think Harborside was some chichi spa? Nope. Outgoing CEO Pat Dando said they were fully hip. They checked things out and concluded the dope distributors were worthy.
Harborside has been a chamber member for a year, Dando said, and its Oakland site has been a member of that city's chamber of commerce, too.
"They are a business in good standing with the city," Dando said.
Well, kind of. Harborside has certainly made every effort to comply with government rules. Wednesday's ribbon-cutting is billed as "an event to foster positive community relations." Harborside even boasts it has made contributions to the community by sponsoring toy and blood drives.
But San Jose technically doesn't allow medical marijuana outfits. While the city is considering possible medical marijuana zoning, that's yet to be approved; a council discussion is scheduled for Dec. 13. In the meantime, medical marijuana collectives remain about as legal under San Jose zoning as brothels.
Dando said that, much like city officials caught in the fog of conflicting marijuana laws, the chamber is feeling its way through the haze.
"It's one of those unusual circumstances we deal with," Dando said. "Truth be told, this is new territory."
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Good & Bad News for California Medical Marijuana Patients
First, the good news: California attorney general candidate Steve Cooleyconceded the election to his opponent, Kamala Harris. While Harris may not be the most outspoken supporter of Prop 215 or medical marijuana patients, she is sure to be a better option.
Marijuana Is NOT Medicine Until The FDA Say It's Medicine
What a freaking joke... the FDA is just another failed form of regulation. These people against medical marijuana should open their eyes and do some research before making claims that are purely absurd. The fact that he stated no scientific research has been done is just ridiculous.
Cart of burning cannabis sent into a police station for a protest
Wellington police will decide later today whether to lay charges against legalise cannabis protesters who pushed a shopping trolley full of burning marijuana into the central police station foyer.
Officers will study CCTV footage showing a shopping trolley loaded with the burning drug being pushed into the foyer of the central police station at the height of the protest.
The protest, part of the Armistice Tour -- a nationwide promotion of cannabis law reform -- began yesterday morning with more than 100 people gathered on Parliament's front lawn to promote what they say are the benefits of cannabis over its legal counterparts, alcohol and tobacco.
About 6pm the protestors gathered outside Wellington police station, where the "smoke bomb" was pushed into the foyer, Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party candidate Julian Crawford said.
The "smoke bomb" was a shopping trolley full of plastic cannabis leaves with real cannabis burning underneath, he said.
Police confiscated the trolley and escorted the protestors outside of the foyer, Mr Crawford, who is running in the Mana by election, told NZPA.
The protest started to wind down shortly after.
It had been a "vocal" but peaceful protest, Mr Crawford said.
Senior Sergeant Shannon Clifford of Wellington police said no one had been arrested after the protest moved to the police station, but police would be reviewing CCTV footage to determine whether anyone would face charges.
They had also seized the "item" pushed into the station as an exhibit and were investigating the contents of that, he told NZPA,
Despite the presence of police and parliamentary security guards this morning at parliament many of those present were openly smoking cannabis cigarettes.
Spokesman Dakta Green told NZPA cannabis was a more natural, healthier option than other drugs and did not fuel crime.
"You smoke ... a joint right now, you're not going to all of a sudden going to be overcome with the urge to go out and rob a bank or belt somebody over the head.
"There's nothing within cannabis that turns you into a criminal."
The illegality of cannabis was what attracted criminals to use and trade it, he said.
While some people used cannabis for medicinal purposes, Mr Green said he wanted to see full legalisation.
"You cannot overdose on cannabis. There are many people that have died from drinking too much alcohol, one night of heavy drinking and you can die, tobacco will almost certainly kill you.... cannabis has never killed anybody."
More than 400,000 people were part of the cannabis culture including lawyers, judges and teachers, Mr Green said.
That meant they were regular consumers of cannabis and enjoyed using it.
"You cannot keep locking us up when the science says cannabis is safer than alcohol or tobacco to the individual and to the community."
Those gathered today were asking MPs to make peace with members of the cannabis culture.
Senior Sergeant Scott Miller said today's protest was well organised and there was no trouble.
"Police maintained a monitoring role (during the protest).
"Police, the council and parliamentary security staff had liaised with protest leaders prior to the march."
He said the protesters obeyed all instructions from police and security officers.
A spokeswoman for Speaker Lockwood Smith said the police were responsible for maintaining the law.
Police Minister Judith Collins said she did not notice anyone smoking cannabis outside Parliament but said it was not her place to tell the police how to do their job.
The police would likely have been criticised if they had started arresting the protestors this morning, Ms Collins said.
Justice Minister Simon Power also said he did not know people were smoking up on the lawn.
"I would have thought that given the current legal status of cannabis that that matter may have been dealt with."
He would not be heeding the protesters demands for a cannabis amnesty during the rugby World Cup next year.
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