Politics

California Lawmaker Talks to Feds About Marijuana Crackdown

| by NORML

SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- California Assemblyman Tom Ammiano met last week with Melinda Haag, US Attorney for Northern California, to voice his concern over the Justice Department's recent crackdownon the state's medical cannabis providers.

Ammiano said that the meeting with Haag -- who describes cannabis dispensaries as "magnet(s) for crime" and alleges that they "send the wrong message to those in our society who are the most impressionable" -- did "not result in any (policy) changes."

According to a report in the San Francisco Bay Guardian, Haag offered no specifics at the meeting regarding what actions state lawmakers could take to regulate dispensaries in a manner that would not instigate federal intervention or prosecution.

In 2009, Ammiano sponsored legislation to legalize and regulate the commercial production and sale of cannabis for adults age 21 or over. State lawmakers are believed to be considering legislation in 2012 that would seek to more strictly regulate the state's medical cannabis industry.

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Last month, members of the NORML Legal Committee, led by Matt Kumin and David Michael from San Francisco and Alan Silber from Roseland, NJ, filed suit against the federal government in an effort to halt the Obama administration's ongoing crackdown on California's medical cannabis producers and providers.