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URGENT Los Angeles Cannabis Task Force Call to Action before City Council Friday, August 19, 8am

| Aug 17, 2016 | Events, News

Dear Task Force Supporters:

On May 18, 2016, the Los Angeles City Council made a motion for legislative staff to study, make recommendations, and report back in 60 days on options for a March 2017 ballot measure that could seriously impact our cannabis industry. Thank you to everyone that came out on June 17 for the first committee hearing.

This Friday, August 19, at 8:00am, the results of the staff report will be heard by the City Council Rules, Elections, Intergovernmental Relations, And Neighborhoods Committee. This is an open meeting so it is our opportunity to go down to City Hall and again have our voices heard. Specifically, we urge you to attend this meeting, and emphasize the need to bring Prop D and Los Angeles into compliance with MCRSA, authorize delivery licenses, authorize cultivation and manufacturing licenses, and create a merit-based path for licensure of additional dispensaries to provide for the patients in what amounts to the largest marijuana consumption market in the state and the Nation. The City Council needs to hear from you, the stakeholders and patients, and we need to be heard at every single meeting having anything to do with marijuana, and let them know the Task Force is not going away.
The meeting will be held in Room 340, which is on the 3rd floor of City Hall (the City Council Chambers). There will be an opportunity for public comment for members of the public. Each person will get/should receive 1 minute to speak. To speak, people have to complete a card like this that morning:

People interested in speaking must be there at 7:50 AM to assure that their card is amongst the first called to comment, but we recommend coming a little earlier just in case.

Speakers are strongly encouraged to have prepared remarks to ensure they best leverage their 60 seconds. Below are some suggested messages and thoughts you can make, but feel free to weave in your own thoughts. However, try to make points consistent with the overarching objective of the Task Force, which is these 9 ASKS:

The Los Angeles Cannabis Task Force Asks City Council for these reforms:

1.    Develop a merit-based licensing system in all categories compliant with MCRSA.

2.    Create market diversity by allowing people of color as well as small and medium-sized businesses to obtain permits.

3.    Create an LA Office of Medical Cannabis Regulation, with an Executive Director, to develop and oversee local licensing and permits.

4.    Transfer to this new agency, the principal responsibility and enforcement duties regarding regulatory compliance, away from the City Attorney’s Office and the LAPD.

5.    Establish a City Commission composed of law enforcement, public health, and stakeholders to resolve disputes and appeals of license revocations/denials.

6.    Require public transparency of sales and production by licensed facilities and operators to provide an audit trail for regulators.

7.    Examine licensing of storefront dispensaries based on the needs of the marketplace and zoning considerations, without limiting to Pre-ICO dispensaries.

8.    License delivery services that are not associated with storefront dispensaries.

9.    Establish a process for the public to participate in the development of the staff report to the Council, with public hearing(s) where key stakeholders may be heard.

(1)   “I am (STATE YOUR NAME), a resident of Los Angeles, and I support reforming Proposition D to make delivery of medical marijuana legal.”

  • Many medical marijuana patients, like me, do not have access to reliable transportation so they must rely on delivery of medical marijuana to help them manage their medical conditions.
  • State law makes delivery legal and close to 200 cities in CA, including San Diego, San Francisco and Oakland, allow delivery. Los Angeles should join these cities and establish laws to ensure the safe delivery of medical marijuana.
  • If there’s one thing our history has taught us, it’s that prohibition is a hopeless failure. It’s clear this ban is ineffective in stopping deliveries, the City is ignoring its responsibility to regulate, and foregoing significant tax revenue.

(2) “I am (STATE YOUR NAME), a resident of Los Angeles, and I support reforming Proposition D to make cultivation and manufacturing of edibles and concentrates legal.”

  • There is no reason why all of the material consumed by medical marijuana patients in Los Angeles must be imported from out of the City, which is the net effect of Prop D’s ban on all businesses other than Pre-ICO dispensaries.
  • These products and activities are authorized by the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act.
  • Manufacturing can be done safely when done properly by trained professionals, and the processes are no different than those used in other industries like the food industry.
  • We urge you to pass common-sense regulations, help this business to develop, and not be scared about being portrayed as soft on marijuana.

(3) “I am (STATE YOUR NAME), a resident of Los Angeles, and I support reforming Proposition D to authorize dispensaries beyond the so-called Pre-ICO dispensaries.”

  • The licensing of dispensaries should be done in a merit-based way, and not merely rubber stamp those dispensaries that came into existence in 2007.
  • When those dispensaries opened, they were not authorized by the Municipal Code, so there is no fair reason for denying later dispensaries an opportunity for licensing.
  • If the City’s demand for medical marijuana can support more than the Pre-ICO dispensaries, and those dispensaries can find compliant locations, to arbitrarily deny them licensure is anti-competitive and unfair to the consumer and the business owner.
  • These businesses should be treated like any other, and there is no other industry that the City arbitrarily controls in such a matter, particularly where the tax revenue from the new dispensaries can be significant.

Please feel free to reply to this email to coordinate participation with the Task Force. Come out and have your voices heard for an equitable and inclusive cannabis industry!


Los Angeles Cannabis Task Force


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