Pot Town, USA? 
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Pot Town, USA? 
Posted by CN Staff on January 12, 2010 at 08:37:48 PT
By Heath Urie, Camera Staff Writer
Source: Daily Camera
Colorado -- A Boulder County mountain town known for its laid-back, hippie vibe and quirky events is putting itself on the map once again, this time with separate proposals from residents to legalize all marijuana and to host a two-day festival promoting the drug's medicinal uses.Nederland resident and former town Trustee Michael "Michigan Mike" Torpie said Monday that he has gathered enough signatures to put a measure on the ballot for the town's April 6 election asking voters to essentially legalize marijuana.
The question, which Torpie said was certified Thursday, will ask voters to legalize the possession, distribution, consumption, cultivation and transportation of marijuana or any of its derivatives -- such as the hashish concentrate -- along with possession and use of marijuana paraphernalia for anyone 21 or older.The town clerk was out of town Monday and unavailable to confirm that the measure is finalized.Torpie said he was inspired to work toward a ballot question after voters in Breckenridge overwhelmingly agreed in November to legalize the adult possession of up to 1 ounce of marijuana."I heard after the fact that Breckenridge had legalized marijuana," said Torpie, 41. "I said, 'Wow, you could just do that?' We should have done it first."Torpie, who needed to gather the support of at least 65 of Nederland's 1,283 registered voters to have the question appear on the ballot, said he's supporting the movement to promote civil liberties."I am about free choice of people," he said. "Adults should be able to do what they want. We shouldn't have the government saying what we can and can't do."Still, he said he knows local police can choose to enforce state and federal laws -- which still define marijuana as a controlled substance -- at their discretion."It's important for people to remember that this measure is largely symbolic," Torpie conceded. "Really, it won't change anything."Instead, Torpie hopes the town will approve the change and join other municipalities in sending a message to lawmakers that marijuana is becoming more acceptable. Police Chief: 'It's a Bad Idea' Ken Robinson, Nederland's chief of police, said he is unequivocally opposed to any such ballot question.If anything, Robinson warned that doing away with local ordinances -- some of which make the possession of pot or pot paraphernalia minor offenses -- would leave officers with no choice but to write tickets under state laws. That could mean stiffer penalties and criminal records for possession of even small amounts of marijuana."We're not going to ignore violations of the law," Robinson said. "If there is no legal consequences (of a ballot measure) except to hurt people that use small amounts, I think it's a bad idea."But Nederland Trustee Sumaya Abu-Haidar said she thinks it's important for the town to take a stand on marijuana, one way or the other."It's an important issue, and it's going to be a big one for Nederland," she said. "It's a discussion that's going to happen not only on the state level, but more broadly in the country." A Festival of Green Meanwhile, organizers of the annual Peak to Peak Music Festival are petitioning the town trustees next week to allow a two-day music and art festival that promotes and is centered around medicinal marijuana.The Peak to Peak Cannabis Festival would be held July 17-18 at the town's Guercio Ball Field and would draw an estimated 1,500 to 3,000 people a day. It would feature folk music, massage therapists, medical-marijuana dispensaries and an area specifically set aside for patients to use the plant.Cynthia Davis, one of the organizers of the proposed festival, said Colorado is undergoing a transformation in how marijuana is viewed legally and socially."We feel that there needs to be an increasing amount of education to the public regarding the actual uses of cannabis," Davis said, including its use as an "energy source."She said the festival would not allow the smoking of marijuana, or any form of recreational marijuana use. Instead, attendees with medical-marijuana prescription cards would be able to buy the drug from a variety of dispensaries on site and eat it, drink it as a tincture extract or inhale it through a vaporizer in tents set away from the general public."It's geared around art, it's geared around music and it's geared around this plant that has 25,000 uses," Davis said.The festival would not, she emphasized, become a "pot rally," as some in the community have feared. 'As It Is, We've Got a Frozen Dead Guy' Nederland Mayor Martin Cheshes is among those who oppose the festival."This is a very pretty town, and it's got a lot going for it," he said. "As it is, we've got a frozen dead guy, and that's what we're known for. I'd hate to add (marijuana) to that reputation."The town's annual "Frozen Dead Guy Days" celebrates the frozen remains of Bredo Morstoel.Cheshes said he doesn't think the town should be getting into the business of legislating, or promoting, things that are banned by state or federal laws."That's not our business," he said.But Trustee Betty Porter said plans for the festival are well thought out and geared toward education more than the glorification of drugs."A lot of people hear the word 'cannabis,' and they flare up," she said. "Personally, I can't see anything they're proposing that would justify denying the application."If You Go:What: Nederland hearing on proposed Peak to Peak Cannabis FestivalWhen: 7 p.m. Jan. 19Where: Nederland Community Center, 750 Colo. 72 northHow to comment:Nederland residents may comment about the plans for a two-day Peak to Peak Cannabis Festival by attending the Board of Trustees' meeting Jan. 19, or by sending comments via e-mail to:  Christi For more information, call 303-258-3266, ext. 23.Changing the law:Nederland voters in April will get the chance to vote on legalizing marijuana. Here's what the question asks:Shall the electors of the town of Nederland adopt an amendment to the Nederland town code, effective June 1, 2010, removing all criminal penalties under town law to buy, sell, possess, consume, transport, cultivate, manufacture and dispense marijuana and its concentrates and related paraphernalia by persons twenty one years of age or older?Source: Daily Camera (Boulder, CO)Author: Heath Urie, Camera Staff WriterPublished: January 11, 2010Copyright: 2010 The Daily CameraWebsite: openforum dailycamera.comURL: -- Cannabis Archives
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Comment #8 posted by Hope on January 12, 2010 at 21:15:16 PT
It's definitely
a threat.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #7 posted by dankhank on January 12, 2010 at 18:07:03 PT
default position?
Why would anyone admit that the cops can ignore the statute and use state law or fed law to oppress, further?rather, they should say that if the police cannot obey the law of their own town, maybe a court case or nine is warranted.
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on January 12, 2010 at 17:27:54 PT
My Kind Of Town
I like this article. I wish them the best of luck.
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Comment #5 posted by The GCW on January 12, 2010 at 16:43:46 PT
Know Nederland?
If You know Nederland, You know this is going to pass just as it did in Breck.&&& "Robinson warned"... If We try to stop this discrimination it could be worse for Us. THAT JUST DOESN'T FEEL RIGHT!
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Comment #4 posted by Sam Adams on January 12, 2010 at 12:23:11 PT
the feds
SO nice of the feds to help out this way!!!
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Comment #3 posted by Sam Adams on January 12, 2010 at 12:22:13 PT
these non-binding votes are extremely important, they serve as a constant reminder of public opinion to counter the BS coming from the state legislature.Now that things are really starting to heat up with MJ reform, I am struck by how similar it is to slavery in the mid-1800's. Some parts of the country have broken free, while the feds try as hard as they can to stop progress, just like the Dred Scott Supreme Court decision.Or the end of segregation. I think we'll see many politicians continue to fight as hard as possible on this issue as long as they can. In total disregard for public opinion and common sense.
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Comment #2 posted by runruff on January 12, 2010 at 10:22:27 PT
California assembly live feed.
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Comment #1 posted by HempWorld on January 12, 2010 at 09:45:14 PT
Does anyone know that "Nederland"
Is the name for the Netherlands in Dutch.Highly symbolic!
[ Post Comment ]

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