Lafayette Pulls Hike in Marijuana Fine

Lafayette Pulls Hike in Marijuana Fine
Posted by CN Staff on February 18, 2007 at 18:54:50 PT
By Eric Schmidt, Camera Staff Writer
Source: Daily Camera
Colorado -- After the resignation of a backup judge and opposition from the American Civil Liberties Union, Lafayette has withdrawn an ordinance strengthening its marijuana laws.The new law — which the City Council approved on first reading Feb. 6 — would repeal Lafayette's $100 fine for cannabis possession, increasing the possible penalty to the city's default maximum of a $1,000 fine and a year in jail.
On Friday, the city pulled final approval from the council's Tuesday agenda, instead scheduling a public workshop April 3 to discuss the issue further. If the council proceeds with the ordinance following that discussion, the approval process will start over and require votes at two more meetings.Mayor Chris Berry said postponing consideration of the ordinance will give city leaders "more time to look at the issue and see how a lot of other communities are addressing it.""I think it will give us some time to get some questions answered that may not have been asked," he said.Backup municipal court Judge Leonard Frieling resigned last week in protest of the ordinance. City officials, however, said Frieling's departure will have little effect because he had not been called in more than a year, and a new associate municipal court judge was appointed in April.Frieling said he has no regrets about severing ties with Lafayette, and he thinks he accomplished what he set out to do."I'm thrilled that they're not taking such a significant step without serious consideration," he said. "It drew a huge amount of positive attention to an important issue and resulted — at least for now — in the right thing happening."The controversy drew attention from the national and state offices of the ACLU, said Judd Golden, chairman of the organization's Boulder County chapter. Golden said Lafayette has no justification for stiffer marijuana penalties, which would go against national sentiment toward decriminalizing the drug and invite infringement on suspects' civil liberties."The fact they said they need more information and analysis means apparently they think it's an open question," he said. "I'm sure all those who feel differently will be present to let their thoughts be known on April 3."Marijuana-reform group Safer Alternative For Enjoyable Recreation joined with several other Colorado organizations to oppose the ordinance. SAFER executive director Mason Tvert said 53 percent of Lafayette voters last November supported Amendment 44 — which would have legalized adult possession of less than one ounce of marijuana — and he praised city officials for reconsidering a "drastic and unnecessary ordinance in light of strong public opposition."Roger Buchholz, Lafayette's presiding municipal court judge, said the ordinance has been taken out of context to suggest a crackdown on marijuana. The overall process was really about comparing Lafayette's fines and fees with those imposed in other court systems and making changes such as increased warrant fees and a surcharge for community-justice programs, he said.Buchholz said his intention was for the ordinance to specify that marijuana possession would not carry jail time, and he will support that provision as discussions continue. The irony, he said, is that Lafayette has been targeted as draconian when many other Front Range cities have municipal pot penalties as high as those being considered there."I don't think anybody realizes that what they're screaming about exists already in Thornton, Northglenn and all these other communities," he said.Note: Council to discuss stiffer penalties at April workshop.Source: Daily Camera (Boulder, CO)Author: Eric Schmidt, Camera Staff WriterPublished: February 17, 2007 Copyright: 2007 The Daily CameraWebsite: openforum dailycamera.comRelated Article & Web Sites:ACLU Choice Won't Enforce New Marijuana Law -- Cannabis Archives
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on February 19, 2007 at 18:49:30 PT
I had time to go thru the article and it was so comforting to not feel so alone. I thought I was different when I was younger and never seemed to get what I was suppose to get. I didn't like waste. I didn't like having to go to the Country Club. I didn't like going to fancy restaurants. I didn't like alcohol. I didn't like to fight. I didn't understand why we need so much stuff to make us happy. I believed values were more important then climbing a ladder of financial success. I was most definitely odd by many people's standards. LOL!
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Comment #7 posted by FoM on February 19, 2007 at 18:42:50 PT
I wanted to say that I am sorry this happened. Hang in there. I didn't know him even though I recognized his name. It's just so sad that violence like this happens.
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Comment #6 posted by Toker00 on February 19, 2007 at 17:39:47 PT
nuevo mexican
For the last year I have had this very thought that would not go away and would pop up out of no where. "The Hippies were right!" It's true and we all know it. That is why they HATE us, FoM. You always ask and there it is in black and white. THEY HATE US BECAUSE WE WERE/ARE RIGHT! Thanks for that article, even though it took forever to load. My old 'puter ain't what it used to be.Toke. 
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on February 19, 2007 at 10:15:59 PT
nuevo mexican 
Thank you. I have never thought differently then I did back then. Something happened between the dream and what we have now. I didn't lose hope until the generation right behind my generation jumped on board with cocaine and Disco and John Travolta. I saw the commercialization of our music and being a money making couple became the norm. I didn't change but I stayed put right where I felt comfortable. I stayed put because I always believed it was the right and good thing to do.
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Comment #4 posted by nuevo mexican on February 19, 2007 at 09:24:06 PT
Here's to all the Sixties Heroes, We were right!
This shooting is terrible news, and it sounds like the Denver media could be guilty somehow, (as to frame him for a soundbite looks like a set-up for character assassination, and it will be interesting to see who the guilty party turns out to be)!Wonder if the shooter saw the footage on CBS4?This is a blog from the (the longest comments section ever, over 1200 so far) and is about the fact that we have been proven right on everything, the 'hippies', your friends that, you know, embarrass the Democratic Party so much, for being right, all along!To FOM, and C-Newsers, this blog, and the information presented, will fill in any blanks C-Newsers may or may not have about how, what, where, when and why the Sixties came about, how we got here, and you may notice that Cannabis is right at the top of it all! Central to the development of the consciousness that seemed to be attributed to LSD, is Cannabis, the low-key, mellow, cruising below the radar Herb of Choice! Enjoy, for those who like to read, with some great photos too!'Remember Where You Heard It First'Have you ever had an embarrassing friend? You know, that guy who is deeply cool but a little uncouth or unkempt. For all his brilliance, insight, and understanding maybe his shoes are sometimes untied, his clothes a bit rumpled, or his shirttails hanging out.Maybe he goes about with three-days growth of beard, has tattoos, or smells a little funny.Maybe he’s somewhat indiscreet, has dirty fingernails, or says things like fuck, warpigs, or evil rightwing bastards in polite conversation. You’ve come to love and respect him but may wince a little should he appear at an inopportune moment because he’s just not easily explained to your more conventional friends.
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Comment #3 posted by ChristenMitchell on February 19, 2007 at 08:31:06 PT:
Marijuana Advocate Ken Gorman Dies In Shooting
(CBS4) DENVER A Denver man well-known in Colorado's medical marijuana community was shot and killed Saturday night after his house was broken into.Ken Gorman, an outspoken advocate for legalizing marijuana, grew pot in his home on the 1,000 block of South Decatur Street.Denver police said they are investigating the shooting, but were releasing few details Sunday afternoon. Family members told CBS4 Gorman was the victim in the crime.Last weekend, CBS4's Rick Sallinger did an investigation on Colorado's medical marijuana law that centered on Gorman. Gorman had recently been giving seminars on how to use the law to obtain the drug even if you aren't sick.Gorman was on Colorado's medical marijuana registry. He said he had been suffering chronic pain from bursitis.A CBS4 employee recently approached Gorman with a hidden camera and told him he only wanted marijuana to get high. Gorman then filled a form designating CBS4's employee as one of his caregivers."When we passed the law we passed a great, great law," Gorman said to the CBS4 employee. "There are so many holes in it that for us, the patient, police can't do anything."Gorman was also the host of an annual large marijuana smoke-out at the state capitol. He once ran for the state's highest office, and earned the nickname, "the governor."Colorado is one of 11 states that has legalized the use of marijuana for medical reasons.Ken was a friend. I had spoken to him last week when CBS4 tried to frame him as a MedMJ cheat and failed, and to invite him to the monthly MedMJ gathering "One Love".His death was not a marijuana related one, but the result of prohibition. Ken lived his life open and free. He will be missed.
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Comment #2 posted by Sam Adams on February 18, 2007 at 19:13:23 PT
Look at this - a selfless action, done only to help others. Bless you! There is a someone else out there who has integrity beyond looking for his cut of the action.
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on February 18, 2007 at 18:56:11 PT
Good News
More small steps.
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