GENERAL / CULTURE
Madison on Park in San Diego Rolls Out Its First Cannabis Cocktail
Madison on Park in San Diego’s University Heights neighborhood continues to impress with an innovative cocktail program, having recently added their first cannabis cocktail to the menu. Mr. Nice Guy, $18, is crafted with Mezcal, Cannabidiol Oil, Matcha, Pineapple, Coconut Milk and Lime. A tropical cocktail with hints of citrus, the Mr. Nice Guy has a rich mouth feel and a silky dryness.
California Gets Into the Weeds of Pot Marketing
Canndescent drew inspiration from such luxury brands as Tiffany’s, Hermes and Apple in designing a line of cannabis products whose elegant packaging wouldn’t look out of place on the shelves of Neiman Marcus.
But the California cultivator might not be able to emblazon its name or Chanel-influenced flower logo on T-shirts, hats or other items if the state’s legislature approves a bill that would ban the use of branded merchandise to promote pot products.
The measure is one of several initiatives moving through the California legislature that are intended to keep cannabis out of the hands of children, after the state’s voters overwhelmingly opted last fall to legalize adult recreational use. These bills would impose restrictions on the marketing, labeling and even the shape of pot products, in hopes of reducing its allure for those under 21.
“This is all about making sure, in the context of the legalization of marijuana, that you don’t end up inadvertently leading so many of our young people into drug abuse,” says the bill’s author, California state Sen. Ben Allen, a Democrat representing Hollywood. “This is about protecting kids.”
Existing law, the Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act, which includes the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA), enacted by the voters at the November 8, 2016, regulates the cultivation, distribution, and use of cannabis for medical purposes and for nonmedical purposes by people 21 years of age and older. Existing law places specified restrictions on the advertising or marketing of cannabis and cannabis products, including prohibiting advertising or marketing cannabis or cannabis products in a manner intended to encourage persons under 21 years of age to consume cannabis or cannabis products.
AUMA authorizes legislative amendment of specified sections of AUMA to implement specified substantive provisions of the proposition by a majority vote of each house if the amendments further specified purposes and intent.
This bill would specify that advertising or marketing cannabis or cannabis products in a manner intended to encourage persons under 21 years of age to consume cannabis or cannabis products includes all advertising of cannabis or cannabis products through the use of branded merchandise, including, but not limited to, clothing, hats, or other merchandise with the name or logo of the product.
This bill states findings and declarations of the Legislature and would declare that its provisions further specified purposes and the intent of the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act.
Humboldt County launches campaign against illegal indoor cannabis grows
“Six plants is not the problem that we’re looking at,” Deputy Jamie Barney said. “It’s the big ones.”
The Humboldt County Deputy Sheriff’s Organization launched a public outreach and advertising campaign this week against illegal indoor cannabis grows and is calling on the public to weigh in on potential solutions.
The union’s president, local Deputy Jamie Barney said one option they have been advocating for is for the county to implement an excessive energy use tax similar to what Arcata approved in 2012.
“Why can’t the county do that also?” Barney said. “… We have talked about that in the past. It never seemed to go anywhere. We’re also asking the community if they have other ideas.”
Montebello takes first step to legalize marijuana growing, laboratories, manufacturing
Oceanside continues crafting medical marijuana ordinance
Cannabis consumers, consultants and dispensary representatives offered their ideas this week on how Oceanside can create a medical marijuana ordinance unique to its needs.
“The real issue is going to be on the dispensary side,” said Oceanside Councilman Jerry Kern. He’s one of four members of the city’s medical marijuana ad hoc committee, which is ironing out details of the proposed legalization.
Oceanside allows medical marijuana deliveries but has no legal dispensaries in the city.
Oceanside is trying to stay ahead of both the new state law and the Cannabis Professionals by crafting its own ordinance for some form of legalization. Leading that effort is the ad hoc committee of Kern, acting Mayor Chuck Lowery, patient advocate Gloria Ryan and physician Wendy Wiehl.
Oceanside’s City Council has been divided on the issue so far, with Kern and Lowery favoring legalization, and Jack Feller and Esther Sanchez opposed. Mayor Jim Wood, who’s been out on a long-term medical leave, also has opposed legalization. The council approved deliveries last year on a 3-2 vote with Feller and Wood opposed.
Shops currently still illegal in unincorporated areas
The Riverside County Board of Supervisors approved a plan to change its ordinances regarding the legality of pot, marijuana or cannabis. The immediate changes will be consistent with Proposition 64, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act, approved last November.
However, these changes are intended to “… maintain the status quo and avoid the state issuing licenses for cannabis businesses and cannabis activities in the unincorporated areas.”
The key event to the legalization of these activities in the Riverside County will be a vote in November 2018 on imposing a tax on marijuana or cannabis.
Following its March 21 workshop, the board’s Cannabis ad hoc committee, composed of Supervisors Chuck Washington (District 3) and Kevin Jeffries (District 1), has drafted a plan to modify existing ordinances and to impose new taxes in order to change the regulatory environment in the county for marijuana or cannabis businesses.
But the board has stressed and is amending existing ordinances to clarify that any marijuana business — medical or adult-use — continues to be prohibited throughout the unincorporated areas of Riverside County.
The report to the board stated, “… no permit of any type shall be issued for cannabis businesses or cannabis activities until the county adopts a comprehensive regulatory framework for medical and adult-use cannabis.”
The board and staff will begin working on comprehensive cannabis regulatory policies. But Tuesday, the board amended four ordinances —348, 866, 925, and 928 — to strengthen and clarify the current prohibition of cannabis business.
On Aug. 2, the County Planning Commission approved the changes to Ordinance 348 regarding the current prohibition of cannabis business or activity within any county land-use zone.
The changes will also clarify that cultivation of six plants inside a private residence or a secure fully enclosed structure of the private residence is now permitted.
The ad hoc committee report and staff report for the board meeting emphasized that all the recent state legislation — including Senate Bill 94, the Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act, enacted and signed this June — clearly recognizes and does not limit the county’s authority to adopt and enforce local ordinances to regulate cannabis businesses.
Regulating state licensed cannabis business is within the scope of this legislation and extends to a county’s right to ban cannabis activity.
The ad hoc committee felt that authorizing the legal cannabis businesses could help reduce the illegal market
The board did direct county staff drafting the new ordinances to reach out to communities through the use of public meetings to solicit the public’s thoughts about this issue.
Some of the issues to be addressed include the careful location of these businesses away from schools, parks and neighborhoods.
Approval of the tax measure will be the critical step in the future legality of cannabis businesses in the county. All county voters, not just in the unincorporated areas, will vote on the tax measure.
The board has not yet determined the level or amount of the tax. One important reason for the tax revenue is to provide funding for any additional staff necessary to enforce and to over see these activities.
The ad hoc committee emphasized the importance of the tax measure’s approval with this statement to its board colleagues, “If the tax initiative fails, it is recommended that any ordinances or ordinance amendments establishing a comprehensive regulatory framework to permit cannabis businesses and cannabis activities not be enacted.
The Riverside County Board of Supervisors
SAN BENITO COUNTY
Supes delay cannabis business ordinance until November, demand immediate prosecution of illegal grows
After Supervisor Robert Rivas reverses his position on cannabis ordinance, board moves hearing to November, as some push to immediately prosecute illegal operators.
After a lengthy discussion and a surprise reversal of Supervisor Robert Rivas’ position, on Aug. 22 the San Benito County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to continue public hearings on the cannabis businesses ordinance until Nov. 7 in order to present an ordinance for consideration or even a ban or moratorium. Supervisors also pushed to immediately prosecute illegal marijuana operations.
The turnabout began when Supervisor Jerry Muenzer stated that the Planning Commission was not educated about the ordinance before considering it. He said that information needs to be provided either by consultant Victor Gomez or the cannabis ad hoc committee meeting with the commission to bring it up to date. Gomez said he had reached out to the planning commission, suggesting he would be available to meet with the commission as a whole or on an individual basis to discuss cannabis policy and the ordinance.
San Benito County Board of Supervisors
A controversial marijuana possession case settled into the Yolo County Superior Court again on Tuesday, starting up yet another discussion regarding the legality of cannabis in the county.
Paul Fullerton Jr. and his wife Maricel appeared before the court again for a preliminary hearing. Paul faces felony charges for possessing marijuana for sale, as well as charges and enhancements including firearms and child endangerment based on those firearms.
Paul and his wife, Maricel, are codefendants represented by defense attorney Joseph Tully. Maricel also faces charges related to the firearms and the cultivation and processing of marijuana. The couple pleaded not guilty to all charges in March.
The case has tested the boundaries of medical marijuana laws, as Paul — who was once a UC Davis Fire captain who suffered a spinal injury — has a medical marijuana license. His Woodland store, Lil’ Shop of Growers, sells hydroponics, soil, fertilizer and equipment with a focus on marijuana grows.
In previous court proceedings, Tully has claimed that Paul’s possession of medical marijuana proved perfectly legal, given his medical condition. Moreover, Paul should be able to collectively associate with other medical marijuana users, so long as there is no profit and all dealings occur with cash.
The case arose when Yolo Narcotic Enforcement Teams received word that the business was also illegally selling marijuana; they searched Paul’s business and the Fullerton home. Searches yielded seven pounds of marijuana at the business and 22 pounds at the house.