Prosecutors Targeting MMJ Club Member Fees
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Prosecutors Targeting MMJ Club Member Fees
Posted by CN Staff on August 30, 2011 at 04:40:24 PT
By Nigel Duara, The Associated Press
Source: Associated Press 
Oregon -- A Portland-area medical marijuana club got busted primarily for charging street prices for a product that is supposed to be donated from grower to patient. But membership fees required by the Wake ’n Bake Cannabis Lounge were also singled out by prosecutors, and that has other clubs worried they could be next.The owner of Wake ’n Bake pleaded guilty to two counts of distribution of marijuana last week. An undercover Washington County Sheriff’s Office investigation used a hidden camera to film a whiteboard listing prices for different strains — charging up to $180 an ounce.
During plea negotiations, prosecutors maintained that membership fees charged by the club in Aloha were also a violation of the law, a part of the umbrella “distribution of a controlled substance” charges filed against club owner Kathleen Cambron, who was sentenced to probation.Some Oregon law enforcement officers argue that charging membership fees to belong to a medical marijuana club is the equivalent of selling the drug, and say more busts like this one are likely to come.“It’s just the tip of the iceberg,” said Clatsop County Sheriff Thomas Bergin, president of the Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association.Bergin said time and resources are the only obstacles to shutting down more cannabis clubs and he doesn’t mind using the membership fees as a springboard.“I’d like to see them all shut down today. We’ll get there,” Bergin said.Under Oregon law, growers are allowed to charge their patients for the costs of cultivating pot but not for anything else. Those who operate cannabis clubs, such as Don Morse of Portland’s Human Collective, charge membership fees to help them pay for overhead and expenses unrelated to marijuana.“The only way for us to pay the rent, pay the phone bill, is to charge a membership fee,” Morse said. “That’s how we can survive. We’re all volunteers. How do they expect us to be able to provide safe access (to marijuana) if we’re not able to pay our bills?”Now, Oregon cannabis club owners are worried the Wake ’n Bake case could prompt further crackdowns on operations that charge membership fees.“It is a concern,” said Curtis Shimmin of the cannabis club Kannabosm in Eugene, who maintained that his operation was within the law. “Our program has been picked apart by several attorneys, and they have all assured me that what I am doing is 100 percent legal within state guidelines.”Morse, of Human Collective, is critical of operations that are out to make money from Oregon’s medical marijuana law rather than help holders of medical marijuana cards.“You’re not helping us, you’re hurting us,” he said.Last year, Oregon voters rejected a ballot measure that would have legalized California-style dispensaries in Oregon. Bergin and others in law enforcement argue that cannabis clubs are in fact dispensaries.“They’re acting like it did pass,” said Bergin. “(The ballot measure) was to start up these dispensaries, it failed, and they started them anyway.”Cannabis club owners say their properties aren’t dispensaries but safe havens for cannabis users to obtain and use the medicine they would otherwise have to grow themselves, have grown for them or buy on the black market. Marijuana available at cannabis clubs often comes from authorized growers who donate it.Source: Associated Press (Wire)Author: Nigel Duara, The Associated PressPublished: August 30, 2011 Copyright: 2011 The Associated PressCannabisNews Medical Marijuana Archives
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Comment #13 posted by afterburner on September 01, 2011 at 08:36:27 PT
Don't Worry - Canada Has Paved the Way for Organic
Hope #11BC Grown Certified Organic Medical Marijuana from Island Harvest.
B.C. Grower's Medical Marijuana Certified Canada's First Totally Organic Pot.
by Dirk Meissner.
Canadian Press.
April 27th, 2003.
DUNCAN, B.C. (CP)!We don't have to answer to the USDA unless we export to the USA, which at this time is internationally illegal.
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Comment #12 posted by Hope on August 31, 2011 at 09:55:40 PT
This article...
I hate what prohibitionists, like Sheriff Thomas Bergin, Sheriff of Sheriffs, are doing, and planning on doing. I'm also appalled at the foolishness of naming a medical dispensary something like "Wake and Bake". That seems so very, very ill advised under the circumstances that prevail. 
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Comment #11 posted by Hope on August 31, 2011 at 09:34:36 PT
No organic cannabis?
Organic marijuana can't exist, which troubles growers,0,3778075.story?obref=obinsite
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #10 posted by runruff on August 31, 2011 at 08:33:59 PT
Granny Stormcrow's List.
This book is more valuable than any thing any politician could produce in a life time. Tell me; a book that save lives, the environment and relieves suffering [or] a book making excuses and blaming others for the crash of America and the murder and torcher of thousands?Granny should be enshrined while Ick Chainy should face justice!
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Comment #9 posted by runruff on August 31, 2011 at 08:26:10 PT
Ick Chainy has a new book out!
Mine and Paul A's books are better!
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #8 posted by HempWorld on August 30, 2011 at 17:02:28 PT
OT Anyone going to Oakland, Cali this coming we
ekend? Below is the link, see you there!
Int'l Hemp and Cannabis Expo in Oakland, CA
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #7 posted by ekim on August 30, 2011 at 11:58:26 PT
Dir tv ch 375 Gashole on now at 3pm
great show on gas and how we all use and rely on it.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #6 posted by paul armentano on August 30, 2011 at 11:33:27 PT
and check out this GREAT PBS video as well
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #5 posted by paul armentano on August 30, 2011 at 11:32:03 PT
Storm Crow
Yes, I received the latest version of your list. Great work, as always.I assume you've seen the latest science indicating cannabinoids delay disease progression in SIV and in Huntington's disease? Very important findings:
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Comment #4 posted by Storm Crow on August 30, 2011 at 11:02:43 PT
Oregon MMJ situation is eroding+ about DARE
“It’s just the tip of the iceberg,” said Clatsop County Sheriff Thomas Bergin,I wonder if he was chortling with glee as he said that? This will hurt the patients more than anyone! An Oregonian friend of mine is seriously thinking of moving to California for the SANER medical cannabis laws! And that is something that bugs me, too! The constant describing of California's MMJ laws as "wild west" and too liberal! We are talking about an herbal medicine with a better safety record than aspirin! A non-addictive medication that prevents many of the complications of diabetes, may slow Alzheimer's and MS, and kills some types of cancer cells! If anything, California's law on medical use are too restrictive! And most of the country has cannabis laws that, in my opinion, are just plain insane!"Wild West" does NOT describe the friendly, laid back, atmosphere of most dispensaries. Paul, I work in education, and the failure of DARE is painfully obvious by middle school! By 7th grade, 3/4 of the students look absolutely bored during the lectures. Only a few of the more sheltered children seem to "buy" the lecture. The rest have already seen first-hand what cannabis does, and does not, do to their peers, siblings and parents. but no homework on DARE DAYS, so they love it in a way.Several studies have shown that these programs do little or no good. I think the money we waste on DARE would be better spent improving the quality and flavor of school lunches! Or perhaps a program providing "loaner" computers to low income kids would do more to prevent juvenile drug abuse! A desktop computer with a big screen will keep many kids at home playing video games, providing an alternative to being on the streets where there are many temptations! Call it CARE- Computers Are Really Educational! lol And Paul, did you receive your copy of my new "July 2011 Granny's MMJ List"? I sent you one, but folks do change or abandon email addys sometimes. Just in case anyone needs a MMJ study or two, my List is also up at 
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Comment #3 posted by paul armentano on August 30, 2011 at 09:30:28 PT
My latest op/ed in today's LA Times L.A.
« Previous Post | Opinion L.A. Home | Next Post »
Student drug testing doesn't work [Blowback]
August 29, 2011 | 5:13 pm
 Paul Armentano, deputy director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws and coauthor of the book "Marijuana Is Safer: So Why Are We Driving People to Drink?" responds to Shari Roan’s Aug. 17 Health article, "Student drug testing may have only small effect in reducing use." If you also have a bone to pick regarding a recent Times article, editorial or Op-Ed and would like to participate in Blowback, here are our FAQs and submission policy.Between the years 2003 and 2008, the U.S. Department of Education awarded more than $36 million in taxpayer dollars to fund student drug-testing programs in public high schools, including several in Southern California. A study published this month in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence reveals that this was not money well spent.
An international team of researchers from universities in the United States, Israel and Australia assessed the impact of school drug-testing programs on a nationally representative sample of 943 high school students.
Investigators reported that the imposition of random drug-screening programs failed to reduce males' self-reported use of alcohol, tobacco or illicit drugs. Student drug-testing programs were associated with minor reductions in females' self-reported drug history, but only among women who attended schools with "positive" environments. By contrast, investigators found that the enactment of drug-testing programs in "negative" school environments was most likely to be associated with "harmful effects on female youth."
The study's authors concluded: "The current research expands on previous findings indicating that school drug testing does not in and of itself deter substance use. … [D]rug testing should not be undertaken as a stand-alone substance prevention effort and that improvements in school climate should be considered before implementing drug testing.”
The study's conclusions were hardly surprising. Despite claims that student drug-testing programs represent a potential "silver bullet" in society's effort to reduce adolescent drug abuse, studies evaluating the effectiveness of such programs have consistently demonstrated the opposite.
In fact, a 2010 Department of Education study found that federally funded mandatory random student drug-screening programs fail to reduce rates of drug use among either the students tested or among the student body at large. Drug testing "had no statistically significant impacts" upon participants' substance use, the study found. "For nonparticipants, there was no significant difference in self-reported substance use between the treatment and control schools," the authors added.
Similarly, a 2007 study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health concluded that student drug-testing programs do not reduce self-reported drug use and may even encourage greater risk-taking behaviors among those tested. Investigators from Oregon's Health & Science University performed the two-year trial, which to date remains the only prospective randomized clinical trial to assess the deterrent effect of drug and alcohol testing among high school athletes.Researchers found that students who underwent random drug testing did not differ in their self-reported drug use compared to students at neighboring schools who were not enrolled in drug-testing programs. Perhaps most disturbingly, researchers determined that students subjected to random drug testing were more likely to report an "increase in some risk factors for future substance use" compared to students who attended schools without drug and alcohol testing.
Yet despite these programs' consistently poor performance, an estimated one-quarter of public schools now engage in some form of student drug testing. They shouldn't. 
Random drug testing of students is an ineffective, humiliating, invasive practice that undermines the relationships between pupils and staff and runs contrary to the principles of due process. It compels teens to potentially submit evidence against themselves and forfeit their privacy rights as necessary requirements for attending school.Rather than presuming our schoolchildren innocent of illicit activity, drug testing without suspicion presumes them guilty until they prove themselves innocent. Why are we continuing to send this message to our children?
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Comment #2 posted by dongenero on August 30, 2011 at 07:53:16 PT
donated medicine as policy?
How about if all the pharmaceutical companies donate their medicines rather than sell them? Free prescriptions, free ibuprofin, free allergy meds, all of it for free. How well do you think that would work for the producers?
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Comment #1 posted by runruff on August 30, 2011 at 06:48:20 PT
This is sick!
I don't use this phrase ...well,ever! But,somethings have only one explanation.
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