I voted YES on Prop. 64

Plumas

Please note: The Citizens Group For A Responsible Cannabis Ordinance (CGRCO) does not want to restrict anyone’s right to consume marijuana, either for medical or recreational use, nor do we wish to prohibit anyone from growing up to six plants. Rather, we are working to prohibit commercial cannabis activity in Plumas County.

I have favored the legalization of marijuana since I was in high school. In 1996, I voted in favor of the Compassionate Use Act, which legalized the medical use of marijuana. In 2016, I voted in favor of Prop. 64, which allows recreational marijuana use.

However, Prop 64 is now ushering in to California large-scale commercial cannabis activity—something most of us who voted in favor of Prop. 64 did not understand or approve. After reviewing the 2016 Voter’s Guide, I realize now that it fails to discuss the commercial cannabis activity component of Prop. 64. The voter’s guide contains the following legal activities and restrictions:

Proposition 64 Legalizes Non-medical Marijuana Activities, With Restrictions

Legal activities:

  • Smoking marijuana in a private home or at a business licensed for on-site marijuana consumption.
  • Possession of up to one ounce of marijuana and up to 8 grams of concentrated marijuana (such as hash).
  • Growing up to six plants and keeping the marijuana produced by the plants within a private home.
  • Giving away to other adults up to 28.5 grams of marijuana NS UP RO 8 GRAMS of concentrated marijuana.

Restricted activities:

  • While driving a car, in any public place, anywhere smoking tobacco is prohibited.
  • On the grounds of a school, day care center, or youth center while children are present.
  • Growing in an area that is unlocked or visible from a public place.
  • Providing marijuana to minors under the age of 21 for non-medical use.
The Argument In Favor of Proposition 64 in the voter information guide states the following:

California Medical Association supports Prop. 64 because it incorporates best practices from states that already legalized adult marijuana use, and adheres closely to the recommendations of California’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Marijuana Policy, which included law enforcement and public health experts.

How Prop. 64 Works:

  • Under this law, adults 21+ will be allowed to possess small amounts of nonmedical marijuana, and to grow small amounts at home for personal use. Sale of nonmedical marijuana will be legal only at highly regulated, licensed marijuana businesses, and only adults 21+ will be permitted to enter. Bars will not sell marijuana, nor will liquor stores or grocery stores.

Child Protections:

  • Drug dealers don’t ask for proof of age and today can sell marijuana laced with dangerous drugs and chemicals. 64 includes toughest-in-the-nation protections for children, requiring purchasers to be 21, banning advertising directed to children, and requiring clear labeling and independent product testing to ensure safety. Prop. 64 prohibits marijuana businesses next to schools.
Yes for Prop. 64; Yes for commercial cannabis?

I voted for legal recreational use and the growing of six plants per residence. I did not know I was voting for the possibility of commercial cannabis in Plumas County.

We who voted for Prop. 64 were sold a bill of goods by its proponents. We thought we were voting to decriminalize marijuana consumption and to allow folks to grow a little pot. We also thought we were voting to allow citizens to decide for themselves how to live their own lives as long as they did not negatively impact others.

Prop. 64 has opened the floodgates to commercial cannabis activity. In Plumas County, we now have many illegal large cannabis grows and unwanted commercial cannabis activity. In Sierra Valley, there is a commercial site with several thousand plants, 24/7 armed security guards, and drones flying for security. Had I known then what I know now…?

Out of proportion

All societal problems increase proportionally to scale. My neighbors consuming marijuana or growing a few plants would likely have limited negative impact on the quality of my life or on the lives of my neighbors. Those same cannabis neighbors growing hundreds or thousands of plants in large, ugly hoop houses will invite “bad actors” and cause environmental damage. This will negatively impact the quality and fabric of not just my life, but also the lives of all my neighbors.

Those of us who have chosen to make Plumas County our home have established our lives, families, and citizenship long before the issue of commercial cannabis activity arose. As a small, rural community, why would we knowingly choose to allow and/or support any activity with the potential to negatively impact neighbors and the community we all love and cherish?

This is why the CGRCO is working to stop commercial cannabis activity in Plumas County. We want to do so while ensuring our friends and neighbors can enjoy the personal provisions Prop. 64 allows.

8 comments on “I voted YES on Prop. 64

  1. Bill Martin says:

    John,

    This is the best explanation yet on how Prop. 64 works and how CGRCO intends to protect the rights of legal marijuana consumers in Plumas County. It is supported by examples of your personal civic experience and (I think) displays a combination of tolerance balanced by protection for citizens’ rights.

    From being part of CGRCO for the past few months, I’ve had to re-learn some of the legal guidelines that guarantee a chance for citizens to protect and preserve their quality of life in Plumas County from anyone else whose financial self-interest takes us down a path of they win—we lose. I’m talking about the National Environmental Policy act and the California Environmental Quality Act, here.

    Like you, I am committed to protecting our marijuana enthusiasts of legal age and all of our medical users, too, while we oppose commercial marijuana activities from becoming established here. Thank you for your message. And thank you for your skill in fine-tuning the ordinance that CGRCO has recently modified to better suit Plumas County.

    1. William Stivers says:

      I could not have said it better. Thanks, Bill

  2. Sharon Covington says:

    Very helpful and clarifying, John. Thank you!

  3. Taurin Wilson says:

    I can see that you have made an attempt to demonstrate a willingness to revise your ordinance to better serve the needs of Plumas citizens; this gesture is noticed and the intention appreciated.
    However, people who are growing six plants currently, have more rights, and more access to cannabis than they would under your ordinance. Do you disagree?
    I feel like personal and medical growers are getting caught in the crossfire between no-commercial and pro-commercial, groups.

    Thank you

    1. Webmaster says:

      Thanks. I agree that Plumas citizens who are growing six plants per residence can, at this time, grow with less restriction than they’ll be able to once a cannabis ordinance is adopted. As you know, Prop. 64 grants counties and municipalities the right to restrict how and where residents grow.

      The Plumas BOS is tasked with adopting an ordinance that complies with Prop. 64 AND is fair and equitable to its residents. Some residents may consider outdoor six-plant grows in a neighbor’s yard a nuisance. Some landlords may consider indoor six-plant grows detrimental to the integrity of their properties.

      Bottom line: Our group supports Prop. 64 because it’s the law. We also want a fair and commonsense ordinance that protects residents’ use and grow rights—and the rights of those who choose not to grow.

      If you haven’t read this article and would like to, it explores the pros and cons of indoor and outdoor growing: https://plumasgrow.com/indoor-cannabis-growing-pros-cons/

      Thanks for your thoughtful comments and questions.

  4. Taurin Wilson says:

    Not trying to be a thorn in your side, I know there are a lot of good people in this group; I just feel like the voice of the little guy is being drowned out in the shouting match between the opposing groups.

    1. Webmaster says:

      No worries. We’re trying to keep things real and be as courteous and graceful as possible. It’s difficult, but doable. Appreciate your comments.

  5. Greg Kinne says:

    CGRCO repeatedly states that it is “protecting the rights of MJ consumers” when in fact it’s ordinance does everything possible to restrict those rights. For instance, why restrict delivery to medical? Recreational delivery has no negative impacts and serves a community need. I think this is just a way for CGRCO to say they are compromising when in substance they are not. CGRCO considers this a “fight”, I consider it a process to meet the needs of our entire community, not just those against MJ. If you want to see a fair personal cultivation ordinance that mitigates all of the negative impacts and serves ALL of the community read Ralph Koehne’s plan. It is structured as a replacement for section 4 of the CGRCO ordinance. We need to separate the consideration of personal and commercial cultivation, because the impacts and mitigations are very different. Thanks for the effort.

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