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Dec-23-2011 13:49printcomments

Medical Marijuana Advocates Start Redding City Council Recall Effort

Medical Marijuana Advocate Slams Dispensary Ban...

City Hall Redding CA
City Hall Redding CA Photo:

(REDDING, Calif.) - An outspoken Redding medical marijuana patient and advocate presented three City Council members with recall notices Tuesday night.

Rob McDonald, 50, presented council members Francie Sullivan, Rick Bosetti and Patrick Jones with the notices during the meeting's public comment period.

"Tonight I do something that isn't easy for me," McDonald said before announcing and presenting the notices. "Four weeks ago you basically listened to a group of people who basically wanted to violate another group of people's rights and you closed down the dispensaries."

The notice presented to Bosetti presents a more detailed explanation of the recall.

"You have continually ignored the rights and freedoms as guaranteed the people by the Constitution of the United States of America and the Constitution of the state of California," the notice says. "You have discriminated against people based on their choice of medicine and told them that they don't need safe access after harvest season had ended, leaving thousands without their medicine if you are successful in closing down the collectives."

The council voted unanimously Nov. 15 to ban dispensaries. That decision followed a 2nd District Court of Appeal ruling in October that says efforts by officials in Long Beach to dictate which collectives can operate and which cannot go far beyond Prop. 215 and conflict with federal law.

That decision also invalidated Redding's permitting system for dispensaries, city officials have said.

McDonald also commented on the city's decision in October to lease the Civic Auditorium to Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry.

"Previously you did not listen to the whole city and you gave our convention center away," he said. "So that's why, it's kind of with heavy heart tonight, that those of you who are not up for election in 2012, I'm going to try to put you up for election in 2012."

The council members did not react and McDonald left the meeting after his comments. He was accompanied by James Benno, another outspoken medical marijuana patient who's claimed the city tried to force his landlord to evict him over a violation of the city's marijuana growing laws.

McDonald, who owns, has spoken frequently on behalf of medical marijuana issues.  He's been a strong opponent of the city's decision last month to ban dispensaries.

All three council members' terms expire 2014. Bosetti has said he is running for state Assembly next year while Jones recently announced a bid for a Shasta County supervisor seat.

Jones said after the meeting he stands behind the council's decision to ban collectives. The decision didn't eliminate access to medical marijuana as many have claimed, he said.

He believes Redding residents will ultimately support the council members though he doesn't have a problem with a recall effort.

"Everybody has the right to recall," he said.

Bosetti said the Bethel lease wasn't mentioned in the recall notice and the city didn't give away the auditorium with that deal.

Sullivan said she wasn't surprised about the announcement and she, too, supports her initial vote for the ban.

"I'm just really sorry that this is being misunderstood. This has nothing to do with the merits of medical marijuana," she said, noting the ban was prompted by the court's ruling in the Long Beach case.

"They said we did not have the authority to permit medical marijuana collectives," Sullivan said. "It was, in my mind, the only choice we had."

The notices are a prelude to a signature-gathering campaign to qualify the recall vote for a ballot.

City Clerk Pamela Mize said she will review the documents to see if they meet the legal requirements for an official recall effort.

Pubdate: Tue, 20 Dec 2011
Source: Record Searchlight (Redding, CA)

Copyright: 2011 Record Searchlight

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Comments Leave a comment on this story.

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Daniel December 25, 2011 11:46 am (Pacific time)

I am in full agreement Douglas B change must start local and work its way up .

Douglas Benson December 24, 2011 7:45 am (Pacific time)

The single best way to gain legitimacy for MM is to install officials in office that support it starting with city,then state and then federal government. Peace

malcolm kyle December 24, 2011 2:37 am (Pacific time)

Alcohol is a factor in the following:

* 73% of all felonies * 73% of child beating cases * 41% of rape cases * 80% of wife battering cases * 72% of stabbings * 83% of homicides.

According to the Australian National Drug Research Institute (2003): "Tobacco, alcohol and illicit drugs are prematurely killing around seven million people worldwide each year, and robbing tens of millions more of a healthy life. The research into the global burden of disease attributable to alcohol, tobacco and illicit drugs found that in 2000, tobacco use was responsible for 4.9 million deaths worldwide, equating to 71 percent of all drug-related deaths. Around 1.8 million deaths were attributable to the use of alcohol (26 percent of all drug-related deaths), and illicit drugs (heroin, cocaine and amphetamines) caused approximately 223,000 deaths (3 percent of all drug-related deaths)."

According to DrugRehabs.Org, national mortality figures for 2009 were: tobacco 435,000; poor diet and physical inactivity 365,000; alcohol 85,000; microbial agents 75,000; toxic agents 55,000; motor vehicle crashes 26,347; adverse reactions to prescription drugs 32,000; suicide 30,622; incidents involving firearms 29,000; homicide 20,308; sexual behaviors 20,000; all illicit drug use, direct and indirect 17,000; and marijuana 0.

Researchers led by Professor David Nutt, a former chief drugs adviser to the British government, asked drug-harm experts to rank 20 drugs (legal and illegal) on 16 measures of harm to the user and to wider society, such as damage to health, drug dependency, economic costs and crime. Alcohol scored 72 out of a possible 100, far more damaging than heroin (55) or crack cocaine (54). It is the most harmful to others by a wide margin, and is ranked fourth behind heroin, crack, and methamphetamine (crystal meth) for harm to the individual.

The American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that in the U.S. alone, an estimated 79,000 lives are lost annually due to "excessive" drinking. The study estimates that the overall cost of excessive drinking by Americans is $223.5 billion each year.

Health-related costs per user are eight times higher for those who drink alcohol when compared to those who use marijuana, and are more than 40 times higher for tobacco smokers, according to a 2009 review published in the British Columbia Mental Health and Addictions Journal.
It states, "In terms of [health-related] costs per user: tobacco-related health costs are over $800 per user, alcohol-related health costs are much lower at $165 per user, and cannabis-related health costs are the lowest at $20 per user."

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