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The Weed Blog

A proposed ballot measure to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries in the city of San Diego which would also impose a tax on dispensary operators won’t be on the ballot in November, supporters announced on Monday.

The dispensary-sponsored groups Citizens for Patient Rights and the Patient Care Association were unsuccessful in getting 62,057 signatures by Monday’s deadline to qualify. The number of signatures collected fell badly short at under 20,000, less than a third of what was required.
“Qualifying a ballot initiative in the City of San Diego is extremely cost prohibitive,” the group said in a Monday press release. “Recently, the proponents of the successful Proposition B spent over 1.1 million to qualify their initiative for the ballot, according to the San Diego Union Tribune.”

California Cannabis Coalition
Members of the California Cannabis Coalition invite you to join them in San Diego on Tuesday, October 18 from noon to 2 p.m., for a rally to defend medical marijuana coops and collectives

​Attorney General Eric Holder has said he will no longer respect the rights of patients or the laws of California and is prosecuting medical marijuana collectives and cooperatives.

Activists with the California Cannabis Coalition are responding this Tuesday, October 18, with a rally to defend medicinal cannabis, from 12 noon until 2 p.m., in San Diego. The rally will begin at the Civic Center, 1200 Third Avenue, at noon and go from there to the Federal Building, 880 Front Street.
In San Diego, the local U.S. Attorney, Laura Duffy, has issued letters to every medical marijuana collective and their landlords ordering that they cease operation within 45 days, or federal officials will confiscate the buildings in which they reside.

Courtesy Craig Beresh
Craig Beresh, Randy Welty and Phil Ganong give last-minute instructions and prepare to turn in 26,000 signatures collected in 30 days to reverse the ban on medical marijuana dispensaries in Kern County, California. “We then started the victory party!” Beresh said.

It’s a huge victory for the medical marijuana community in Kern County, California. Cannabis proponents have met the deadline to gather enough signatures to block a county ordinance that would have banned dispensaries.

A ban on storefront sales of medical marijuana, approved by the Kern County Board of Supervisors on August 9, would have gone into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, reports Mark Christian at Turn To 23 in Bakersfield.
Late Thursday afternoon, Kern Citizens For Patient Rights marched to the Kern County Board of Elections to turn in the signatures needed to protest and block the ordinance, about one hour before they were due.

Photo: California Cannabis Coalition
Members of California Cannabis Coalition and Patient Care Association celebrate after repeal of San Diego’s highly restrictive medical marijuana ordinance

​On Monday, the San Diego City Council repealed an ordinance that would have forced almost all currently operating medical marijuana dispensaries in the city to close their doors.

If the ordinance had taken effect, only a couple of collectives would have been allowed to open after they came in compliance with with one of the most restrictive ordinances in the state and the most restrictive zoning and operational requirements imposed on any businesses in San Diego, according to the California Cannabis Coalition.
According to critics, the city council ignored its own task force in establishing the highly restrictive rules that would have severely limited the number of dispensaries. Medical marijuana activist Eugene Z. Davidovich, in fact, said the original ordinance effectively banned dispensaries from San Diego, reports Neiko Will at KPBS.

Graphic: The North Carolina Cannabis Patients Network

If you or someone you care about has cancer or another debilitating medical condition that modern medicine is not helping — or the medicine is causing more side effects than it is worth — and you’ve considered using medical cannabis, you know how important legal access can be.

North Carolina House Bill 577, the “North Carolina Cannabis Act” would help seriously ill patients by providing them with safe and legal access to medical marijuana, and a public forum has been scheduled for Tuesday, June 7, to help educate legislators and the public about the bill.
The day will kick off with a press conference at 9:30 a.m., in room LB 1328. The North Carolina Cannabis Act House Bill 577 of 2011’s Public Forum is scheduled for 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Legislative Auditorium between the House and Senate Chambers. A lunch break at 1 p.m. out on the Halifax Mall, between the legislative buildings, will be sponsored by the North Carolina Cannabis Patients Network (NCCPN).

Photo: California Cannabis Coalition
Craig Beresh of the California Cannabis Coalition turns in 47,000 voter signatures at the registrar’s office in San Diego at 4:20 Friday afternoon.

​Strict new medical marijuana rules were scheduled to take effect on Friday in San Diego — amounting to a de facto ban, according to many activists — but the action has been suspended since 47,000 signatures were filed for a referendum to end the ban on medicinal cannabis in the city, according to the California Cannabis Coalition and Patient Care Association of California.

“We needed 32,000 signatures for the referendum to end the ban,” said Craig Beresh of the California Cannabis Coalition just before the referendum was filed.
“We will turn today over 47,000 signatures,” Beresh said. “This will suspend the ordinance. The ban on medical marijuana in San Diego will be suspended until the registrar verifies the signatures.”
“We filed at 4:20 today,” Beresh said. “So the end result… THE BAN HAS BEEN SUSPENDED AS OF 4:20 TODAY!”

Photo: Laurie Avocado, Wikimedia Commons

​A San Diego task force has released its recommendations for the city council regarding medical marijuana dispensaries.

The task force said, among other things, that dispensaries should go through a permitting process, limit hours of operation, abide by zoning restrictions, and should be more than 1,000 feet from schools, libraries, or playgrounds. Dispensaries would also be restricted from bring less than 500 feet away from each other.
Some local marijuana supporters are on board with the proposed regulations. “I think it’s balanced and pretty fair,” Craig Beresh told the local NBC affiliate. “I think it’s going to work for both the medical marijuana community and the city of San Diego.”