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Supervisors agree to tweak medical pot rules

Modified: Tuesday, Jun 18th, 2013

SANTA CRUZ The Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors Tuesday agreed unanimously to consider crafting a list of proposed regulations for medical marijuana dispensaries, which would largely deal with land-use issues.

The proposed regulations would consider cultivation in residential and agricultural areas, look at environmental degradation caused by unrestricted grows, make sure any new dispensaries and grows meet all applicable laws and control the location and placement of dispensaries.

They would be an addition to a set of regulations established by the board in 2011.

California in 1996 became one of 14 states that allowed patients to use and cultivate marijuana for personal medical use.

In 2003, Senate Bill 420 clarified those rules gave control to local governments. After President Barack Obama was elected, federal law enforcement officials were directed not to pursue new cases against medical marijuana dispensaries.

In the wake of the eased restrictions, five medical marijuana dispensaries sprung up in the county in 2011, with few regulations to govern them.

At their September 2011 meeting, the supervisors agreed to place a moratorium on allowing more dispensaries to be built, which expires Nov. 10.

The city of Santa Cruz has two regulated dispensaries within its boundaries.

Supervisor Zach Friend said that the lack of regulation creates hazardous conditions in urban areas.

For the complete article see the 06-18-2013 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 06-18-2013 paper.

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