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Proposed Tracking Program Has SF Medical Marijuana Growers In Fear Feds Or Criminals Could Obtain Addresses

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Its a trap!San Francisco officials want to keep a record of all suppliers of medical marijuana dispensaries, an idea that has some members of the pot community fuming.

“If there is a list, it’s available to the public, and it’s available to the feds,” said Kevin Reed, a member of The City’s Medical Cannabis Task Force and owner of the Green Cross, a medical cannabis delivery service.

Reed said most members of cannabis collectives and cooperatives grow small amounts of pot in their homes, warning that a city record of their names and addresses could be accessible by anyone – including federal law enforcement officials or criminals who rob grow operations.

Despite statements by the Obama administration that it would not go after medical marijuana dispensaries that comply with state laws, cannabis supporters say such raids have continued, and Reed remained wary about a public record of growers.

“It just goes against everything that we’re doing,” Reed said. “What we do is federally illegal. As long as The City is offering patients no protection, it’s just absurd.”

According to a written statement from the San Francisco Department of Public Health, officials announced at a May 20 task force meeting that they “anticipated maintaining a record of all sources/cultivators for each [dispensary].”

Public health officials would only answer questions about this proposal in writing, and a spokeswoman did not respond to a question about whether the list would be publicly available.

The statement noted that the department, which issues permits for medical cannabis dispensaries, is tasked with ensuring that the cannabis such dispensaries cultivate and distribute is in compliance with state and local laws.

medical signThere currently are 26 permitted dispensaries in The City, and nine more have applied for permits.

Dr. Rajiv Bhatia, the director of environmental health, said such dispensaries get their products from “diverse sources” and that the department needs to ensure those sources are legal. California law requires that marijuana distributed by medical cannabis collectives or co-operatives be cultivated only by their members, and not for profit.

“Over the past few years, there has been a proliferation of cultivation in many San Francisco neighborhoods,” Bhatia said. Some of these sites violate city planning and building codes, and create fire or hazardous materials dangers, according to his statement.

Marijuana Patient Cop“The department’s overarching aim is to steer [medical cannabis dispensary]practices towards conformity with California and San Francisco law,” Bhatia said. “In this way, we reduced the likelihood for MCDs of community concerns and criminal prosecution.”

The idea is apparently just in its formative stages, however, and no decision has been made.
“We are open to alternative ways to ensure the safety and legality of cultivation,” Bhatia said. “We will be discussing this with the dispensary community.”

Community activist and task force member Stephanie Tucker called a public list “a deal-breaker.”

“DPH historically has always been very good at protecting safe access, and balancing that with public safety,” Tucker said. “Obviously, as a community, we have concerns about that information becoming public.

“We need to find a solution, a happy medium.”

From the sfexaminer.com

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4 Comments

  1. Dear Medical Cannabis Patients, & TRUE ADVOCATES,
    the article below was CENSORED BY BAYTIMES, a local San Francisco newspaper that is read largely, by the LGBTQ community, as it reports on many important local issues as well as international LGBTQ newsbits. So why would it CENSOR such an important article that would update & inform the Medical Cannabis Patients of their community, that largely in…
    cludes the homeless & low income, of the current state of their own “Sanctuary City”‘s rights on Medical Cannabis, and be deterred from reading about the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board to San Francisco’s equivelent of other city counsels, The Board of Supervisors need for local community support? Unfortunately folks, BAYTIMES has also disappointingly SOLD OUT the San Francisco locals by REPORTING WITH PREJUDICE TO THE LOCAL DISABLED, VETERAN, POOR, DISADVANTAGED, & INDIGENOUS RESIDENTS OF SAN FRANCISCO.
    Read for yourself, what THEY did not want YOU to READ…….

    SF Medical Cannabis Task Force Seeks Reinstating

    The SF Medical Cannabis Task Force is an advisory body created by the Board of Supervisors on May 6, 2010 to help them revise our medical marijuana laws with combined input from local low income patients, growers, city-permitted cooperatives, doctors and neighbors. It will sunset at the end of the year. The body is empowered to hold public meetings, to review medical cannabis laws – and make recommendations for changes – and to resolve conflicts and disputes within the medical cannabis community, or with neighborhood groups. At its last meeting, the 15 member Task Force was one shy of quorum, but Task Force members and the public attending agreed that the reinstating of the organization was a shared goal.

    “We were unable to move our amends to law due to federal crackdown,” stated Shona Gochenaur, patient advocate with a seat on the Task Force board, presently serving as MCTF chair. “Currently our legal committee is finalizing an impact report regarding our federally displaced compassion-based collectives, with an emphasis of working with the City to restore these collectives and valued patient services.” She said their “work for patients in our sanctuary city is far from done.”

    MCTF member Stewart Rhoads added, “If MCTF is not reinstated, we will only have the business lobby influence in City Hall; so the patients, growers, doctors and neighbors will be a muted influence.” The next meeting is Dec. 3, 1pm, room 421.

    Story by Dennis McMillan

  2. Kathleen Chippi on

    same seed to sale to jail tracking going down in CO… SF speak up and don’t let this happen….NO DATABASES, NO RFID CHIPS ON PLANTS SEED TO SALE TO JAIL.

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