Where Next For Marijuana Reform? Berkeley Conference Jan. 29


Graphic: California NORML

​In the aftermath of Proposition 19, California NORML will host a statewide conference to discuss the future of marijuana reform efforts in California on January 29 in Berkeley.

The conference, at the David Brower Center, will feature a public discussion with drug reform leaders, legislators, attorneys, physicians, medical marijuana groups and the press.
The first part of the conference will cover lessons from the Prop 19 campaign; where to go from here, and what changes in wording and tactics should be adopted in future legalization efforts.

Assemblyman Tom Ammiano is expected to introduce another legalization bill this year, and parallel efforts are underway to develop ballot language for a 2012 initiative.
The second major focus will be California’s medical marijuana system. Fourteen years after passage of Prop 215, patient access remains problematic in many parts of the state, as local governments have moved to ban dispensaries and restrict cultivation by patients and collectives.
California’s current law governing distribution, sale, processing, delivery and cultivation, SB 420, is vague and ambiguous, leading to scores of lawsuits that are still unresolved.
At the local level, activists are pursuing innovative proposals to license collective gardens and sales. At the state level, advocates are pushing for renewed legislation to protect patients’ rights, such as the Medical Cannabis Patient Rights Bill that was co-sponsored by then-Assemblyman Mark Leno but vetoed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2008.
“This timely event will present an opportunity for NORML members and friends to participate in an open public discussion of essential issues that will frame the struggle over the next two years,” said Dale Gieringer, who heads up California NORML.
The conference will run from 9:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.; the preregistration fee of $30 includes lunch.
The Brower Center is a smoke-free facility located at 2150 Allston Street and Oxford Street, near the Berkeley Center BART Shop.
For registration information, click here.