Republicans – High Desert: We will use Federal agents, wiretapping and ‘address database’ among tools lawmakers want to combat illegal cannabis grows in High Desert

Republican lawmakers are pursuing new policing tools in the High Desert and a rollback of California’s cannabis decriminalization as part of a crackdown they say will target illegal farms “in a way we never have” — including by enlisting federal agents, creating a multi-county “address database,” seizing property and wiretapping.

Federal, state and county officials spoke to an audience of around 250 people Tuesday night, Aug. 3, at a meeting hosted by the Lucerne Valley Economic Development Association in the local high school’s gymnasium. Included among the speakers were U.S. Rep. Jay Obernolte, 33rd District state Assemblyman Thurston “Smitty” Smith and state Sen. Shannon Grove, who was the Republican minority leader in her chamber until this year.

The meeting centered around illegal cannabis grows, which residents and law enforcement officials say are springing up at a rising rate in the High Desert with a specific concentration in communities like Lucerne Valley, Barstow and Hinkley.


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