Source: Sacramento Bee (CA)
Author: Jennifer K. Morita -- Bee Staff Writer
Published: Sunday, July 11, 2004
Copyright: 2004 The Sacramento Bee
Contact: [email protected]
Concerned over the potential for drug dealers on the streets and pot being smoked in public, the Rocklin Planning Commission has recommended making permanent a temporary ban on medical marijuana dispensaries.
Commission members voted Tuesday to recommend that the City Council prohibit commercial medical marijuana shops from all land-use zones in Rocklin.
"I do not see the need for this type of land use in Rocklin," commission member Jeff Shirhall said.
The City Council will consider prohibiting medical marijuana dispensaries permanently at its meeting at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.
During an emergency meeting last month, the City Council passed a 45-day urgency ordinance preventing cannabis clubs from opening medical marijuana shops in Rocklin.
Police Chief Mark Siemens told commission members Tuesday that cities with marijuana shops have experienced a variety of impacts, despite stringent regulations.
"I checked with Roseville today, and there are street-level dealers trying to sell to people going to the dispensary there," Siemens said.
"People have been smoking around the facility, and I don't think that's something we want in Rocklin."
He added that the Roseville shop has attracted customers from throughout the region who buy marijuana, use it and then drive home.
Roseville Police Capt. Dave Braafladt said the store has prompted some calls but "nothing of major significance."
In the Marin County town of Fairfax, patients were smoking marijuana at a nearby baseball field, he said.
"This is not about the compassionate use of marijuana," Siemens said. "It is about the distribution of marijuana and the use of Rocklin land to do so."
But volunteer advocates for patients who use medical marijuana to ease pain and nausea told the commission that the city should regulate and monitor these types of businesses rather than ban them altogether.
"You need to be aware that some things have been exaggerated to scare you," said Ryan Landers, state director of American Alliance for Medical Cannabis. "This has worked in other communities.
"We should be supporting citizens during the worst times of their lives. That's what community is about. That is what family is about."
Resident and retired physician Wayne Bigelow told the commission that he felt the council did the right thing and urged them to make the ban permanent.
"It's not a sound practice," Bigelow said. "There's no Federal Drug Administration regulation in process, no proven benefits and lots of side effects. ... Marijuana addiction has risen dramatically."
The commission voted 4-0, with member Ralph Coleman absent.
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Medical Pot for Sale in Colfax