cannabisnews.com: Wash. Looks To Build Strict Controls for Marijuana
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Wash. Looks To Build Strict Controls for Marijuana
Posted by CN Staff on January 21, 2013 at 17:51:18 PT
By Mike Baker, Associated Press
Source: Associated Press
Olympia, Wash. -- Washington state officials are looking to build a strictly regulated marijuana system that could forestall federal concerns about how the drug will be handled once it's available for public purchase. Rick Garza of the Washington Liquor Control Board said Monday he expects the federal government will try to take action if Washington's system has loose controls. He said it's important for Washington to have a strong regulatory structure, such as how participants in the system are licensed and how the product is handled from growth to the point of sale.
"The feds are going to tighten the rope if they feel like it's not strictly regulated," Garza said. "The more tightly regulated it is, they are likely to give us a little more room." One of the biggest issues the state is looking to manage is how much marijuana will be grown under the new system. Garza said it's important for officials to properly project consumption rates so the state is growing the right amount of product for in-state users and not having any extra supply that could spill into other states that haven't legalized marijuana. Garza's comments came a day before Gov. Jay Inslee was set to meet with the U.S. Department of Justice to discuss the marijuana law. Washington voters approved the marijuana law in November, but Justice Department officials have not indicated whether they will allow Washington and Colorado to create legal marijuana markets, since the drug is illegal under federal law. Alison Holcomb, who helped lead Washington's marijuana initiative, said the measure was written with the expectation that the system would be intensely scrutinized. She said it makes sense for the federal government to wait and see what the rules look like and what checks and balances are in place. She thinks federal officials will be more willing to allow legal pot to exist if they know it complements federal law enforcement efforts. "From a public safety standpoint, they are going to look hard at what the outcomes are: Is it compromising public safety, or is it actually improving public safety?" Holcomb said the initiative was drafted with a conservative approach that would be a small step into the legal pot world. "We want to be held accountable," Holcomb said. "We want this to be watched to see if it's a workable alternative to marijuana prohibition." Washington's Liquor Control Board, which has been regulating alcohol for 78 years, is in the process of soliciting advice from experts to help it determine how the state should grow, process, sell and regulate marijuana.Source: Associated Press (Wire)Author: Mike Baker, Associated PressPublished:  January 21, 2013Copyright: 2013 The Associated PressCannabisNews -- Cannabis Archiveshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/list/cannabis.shtml 
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on January 22, 2013 at 15:34:33 PT
Update On Washington State
Jay Inslee Says Meeting with Eric Holder about Marijuana Law was Collegial
 By The Associated Press January 22, 2013 Jay Inslee, Washington governor  
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and Attorney General Bob Ferguson say they met with U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, but he didn't give them any clues about whether the Justice Department will sue to try to prevent Washington and Colorado from creating legal marijuana markets.The two states voted last fall to legalize recreational marijuana use by adults over 21 and to create state-licensed systems of growers, processors and retail stores that sell pot. The creation of those regulatory schemes poses a possible conflict with federal law, and the DOJ hasn't said whether it will seek to block the laws in court.Inslee told reporters after the meeting Tuesday that Washington will move forward to establish rules for the market. He said it was a collegial meeting and that Holder asked a lot of questions.Copyright 2013 The Associated Press
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on January 22, 2013 at 13:28:03 PT
Marijuana Penalty Reduction Bills Filed in Texas
January 22, 2013AUSTIN, TX  Two separate Texan lawmakers have filed separate bills in the state legislature to relax marijuana laws in the Lone Star State, although the proposals stop short of decriminalization or the legalization of medical marijuana. 
Representative Harold Dutton (D-Houston) has filed a penalty reduction bill that would reclassify possession of up to one ounce of marijuana from a Class B misdemeanor, which carries a maximum $2,000 fine and 180 days in jail, to a Class C misdemeanor, which carries a possible $500 fine and no jail time. While stopping short of decriminalization, the penalty reduction proposal would be significant for a state known to have some of the toughest drug laws in the country. 
Meanwhile, Rep. Elliot Naishtat (D-Austin) has filed a bill that would not legalize medical marijuana in Texas, but would provide some protection for medical marijuana patients to avoid punishment.
 Under his bill, a person arrested for marijuana could enter evidence that their doctor gave instructions that use of the drug could provide benefits for their illness, leading to a dismissal of the charges. The bill also provides protections for physicians who recommend marijuana use to their patients.Complete Article: http://www.thedailychronic.net/2013/14918/marijuana-penalty-reduction-bills-filed-in-texas/
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Comment #4 posted by Sam Adams on January 22, 2013 at 10:30:04 PT
*ahem*
a few of us did warn that this initiative resembled Castro-style Communist Cannabis. Unfortunately, we'll now get to watch that play out in painfully slow motion.This is why many activists continually harped on the fact that legalization without growing is not legalization at all.
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Comment #3 posted by tom rector on January 22, 2013 at 05:30:30 PT:
AP hypocrisy
This article shows exactly how backward thinking the press really is and how old stereotypes are difficult to change. "The feds are going to tighten the rope if they feel like it's not strictly regulated," Garza said. "The more tightly regulated it is, they are likely to give us a little more room."The Feds aren't going to do anything. They can't unless they want to risk putting the country into civil war. What are they going to do, bring the troops home from Afghanistan and send them to Oakland, Seattle and Denver. They can't circumvent the will of the people. The one poignant fact about the Presidential election is that the people run this country, not the Feds, and the advent of social media and personal cameras allow rapid organization of the people to oppose illegal government action. The internet has allowed widespread disemination of the truth and exponentially increased the power of all U.S. citizens to redress the government. I almost feel sorry for them in a way, the volume of mail from everyone with a gripe must be overwhelming, but until they realize they've lost their immoral war and declare unconditional surrender, we are REQUIRED as good citizens to continue and escalate our redress."Washington voters approved the marijuana law in November, but Justice Department officials have not indicated whether they will ALLOW Washington and Colorado to create legal marijuana markets, since the drug is illegal under federal law."ALLOW? How silly. Everyone in the world is allowed to consume cannabis if they choose too, it's not a crime in any way. Now is the time for everyone to push, because they KNOW it's over. Push at every level of government, blog every chance you get, challenge everyone who presents a prohibitionist argument and continue the Marc Emery strategy. The bottom line is no one has to ask permission to exercise inalienable rights granted by the creator and guaranteed in the Declaration of Independence. Cannabis consumption will be recognized as an inalienable right very soon and the world will be a better and safer place. 
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Comment #2 posted by sinsibility on January 22, 2013 at 03:18:07 PT
Time is of the essence
People have been told the reefer madness lies for so long that they believe them without question. We are trying to get them to back a bus up that they don't even know how to drive. As we remain persistant, stand together, and demonstrate responsibility, they will become more comfortable with the modern understanding of this substance.The biggest step is to disassociate MJ from the other substances that it has been incorrectly grouped with. This is what the Governor of PA Tom Corbett always uses as his excuse for threatening to veto any legislation that alters how cannabis is treated by the state. "It's a gateway".Ending prohibition will be a gateway alright, a gateway to restoring sanity in our budget. When PA spends more on education than incarceration we will be on our way being sane and getting over our fear of the boogeyman.
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Comment #1 posted by HempWorld on January 21, 2013 at 20:11:20 PT
"federal officials will be more willing to allow
legal pot to exist if they know it complements federal law enforcement efforts."Complements?We are trying to legalize pot while placating the feds. How can you do that?#1 and #2"We want this to be watched to see if it's a workable alternative to marijuana prohibition."Yes, I know, the mere thought of legal marijuana/pot/cannabis is very frightening, all by its lonely self!If you read the sentence and let it resonate, you can feel the failure is already baked in. If you are really that apprehensive about implementing a system that not really amounts to much, besides applying common sense, are you up to the task? Or are you quivering in your shoes afraid to pick up a pencil?Or is it this..."Washington's Liquor Control Board, which has been regulating alcohol for 78 years"
Where is the Hemp?
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