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Sarah Rice/SFGate
Lynnette Shaw ran Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana — the first in the state to be licensed, back in 1997. Now the Feds have shut it down.

By Jack Rikess
Toke of the Town
Northern California Correspondent
It’s really easy these days to be negative about cannabis. The Feds are waving their guns around like old-time Western town bullies. Playing with the tin-horns and the dandy Easterners alike, making them dance to a tune that we thought was long gone.
They sit outside protecting the saloon, leaning  back in their chairs, keeping the weak and poor in the sight of their weapons, not necessarily to shoot them, just scare ’em a little.
In the Golden State, where it must seem that progress burns bright, I mean, how can you complain when you can have your medicine, including edibles and anything else that’s on the menu delivered right to your door? What in the world could those spoiled Californians have to gripe about?
How about the closing of Lynnette Shaw’s Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana dispensary in Fairfax?  As most know by now, Lynnette’s dispensary was the first to be licensed in California back in ’97. The closure of this landmark is incredibly distressing. 

Graphic: 187CHUY

By Jed Midnight
Special to Toke of the Town
​For the past few years I’ve had the privilege and responsibility to be a Cannabis Assessor. It is my task or duty to sample medical marijuana for projective buyers. Thousands of dollars change hands based on my opinion of the herb.
My expertise is based on many decades of research and the ability to say what is good in one sitting. I’ve been a judge in a few cannabis cups and there are some who know me as an intelligent, sophisticated snob with a strong sense of separating the diggity-dank from the swag on the spot. 
And just like Peter Parker found out from Spidey, I know that with great power comes great responsibility.    

Photo: Frankie Frost/Marin Independent Journal
Lynette Shaw of Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana dispenses medical cannabis to a patient

​The U.S. Internal Revenue Service is thought to have begun audits on at least 12 medical marijuana dispensaries in California, under the decision that past business deductions are invalid because of a clause in the federal tax code prohibiting businesses that traffic in Schedule I or II drugs from making such deductions on their tax returns.

The move, which could bankrupt every dispensary it targets, is being fought by the Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana, the first dispensary to receive a final audit decision from the IRS, reports Kyle Daly at The American Independent. (The IRS claims MAMM owes millions of dollars in back taxes.)
Lynette Shaw, founder and owner of MAMM, hopes to strike back before the IRS can deliver more “final determinations” to other dispensaries currently being audited.

Photo: Jeff Vendsel/Marin Independent Journal
Lynette Shaw, founder and director of the Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana, which is being audited by the IRS.

​The Internal Revenue Service has notified the Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana in Fairfax, California that it owes millions of dollars in unpaid back taxes, according to the dispensary’s founder and director, Lynette Shaw.

Shaw said the IRS audited the Alliance’s tax returns for 2008 and 2009 — and disallowed all of the dispensary’s business deductions, reports Richard Halstead at the Marin Independent Journal.
Although dispensaries throughout California are reportedly being audited by the IRS, the Alliance is the first to be directly told it can’t deduct business expenses, according to Shaw.
“Every dispensary in the nation, past present and future is dead if this is upheld,” Shaw said.