California is moving ahead with regulation of medical marijuana even in the face of mounting federal opposition. Some are suggesting that Cali shift to a more intense regulatory environment like Colorado. They point out that Colorado is not taking the federal heat the way California is. “The worst public policy choice for California is to sit idly by, doing nothing, and let this failed war on medical cannabis continue unchecked,” said San Francisco Democrat Tom Ammiano as his Public Safety Committee voted 4-2 along party lines to create a state bureau to police the California medical cannabis industry.
California narcotics officers and police chiefs blasted the bill as failing to come close to stricter rules passed in Colorado. Ammiano’s bill would charge fees to dispensaries and other medical cannabis businesses to create a policing agency – the Bureau of Medical Marijuana Enforcement. The board would approve licenses for businesses selling, growing or transporting marijuana for use by people with physicians’ recommendations. The bill doesn’t include many of the rules in place in Colorado, such as requiring every pot industry worker to be state licensed, mandating video surveillance of marijuana stores and requiring state pre-approval of transportation of medical cannabis. The Devil is always in the details.
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