Sacramento County Votes to Ban Outdoor Grows, Will Work With Advocates Towards Indoor Regulations

The Sacramento Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to ban outdoor medical marijuana cultivation in unincorporated areas of the county, but chose not to ban indoor cultivation and rather work with advocates to develop an indoor ordinance.

The move came after Supervisor Roberta MacGlashan introduced two ordinances to ban both outdoor and indoor cultivation of medical marijuana, in a county that has also banned dispensaries. MacGlashan said her office had received “a huge number of complaints” about the strong odor of outdoor grows, citing public safety concerns and also worries about water usage, especially in this drought year.

The county as a unique ordinance on the books banning anything that is federally illegal, but the proposed ordinances sought to label marijuana plants a “nuisance” and allow them to be abated through civil code enforcement procedures via a complaint-driven process. MacGlashan stressed that penalties for violating the ordinances would be civil, although a deputy DA who testified said in some cases misdemeanors would be possible for violators.

Right away, Supervisor/Board Chair Jimmie Yee sought a definition of “outdoor” versus “indoor” grows, asking what the ordinance proposal meant by a “secure structure”: a shed, a detatched garage? At one point a sheriff’s lieutenant defined indoor as anything grown under artificial light, and county council weighed in with his interpretation that a secure, locked structure was not an indoor grow because it was not a habitable structure.

The supervisors sought to distinguish between commercial-sized grows or cartel grows on public lands or in multiple homes, and personal-use gardens, with law enforcement representatives acknowledging there was a “huge distinction” between the two, and that the complaints they receive are never about small gardens. Similarly, Brian Rice of the Sacramento Area Firefighters, who testified about the danger of fighting fires in commercial grow houses, said those dangers were negligible for small grows. The DA’s representative said his office would support an indoor ordinance that allowed for less than 10 plants. He said that his office was currently prosecuting 10 marijuana-related homicides in the county.

Supervisor Don Nottoli asked about the 25-square-foot allowance for indoor grows in Rancho Cordova. Corey Koehler of the Rental Housing Association said that his organization would be asking for an amendment to that ordinance because of complaints from his members about fires and other hazards of grows in rental properties.

Several members of the public gave testimony about medical marijuana’s importance to themselves and their family members, and the need to have an affordable supply. Ron Mullins and Bob Bowerman of Sacramento/Stockton/Modesto NORML, Marcia Blount of the Brownie Mary Democratic Club, and Ellen Komp and Dale Gieringer of California NORML also testified. Only one person testified in favor of the ban, despite the fact that her daughter uses medical marijuana for Crohn’s disease.

Lanette Davies of Crusaders for Patients Rights pointed out that in 2012, Sacramento county had 8,988 violent crimes and 31,000 property-related crimes, and so far in 2014 the county has had 77 homicides. In this context, the few violent incidents around marijuana gardens don’t seem so meaningful, she said. She also noted that Sacramento county has a large population of veterans, and that 22 veterans a day are committing suicide, while the VA has stated that veterans have a right to use medical marijuana for PTSD and pain. Davies called for line-of-sight regulations, greenhouse and lighting standards with a proactive approach to ensure safe and affordable access for all. Kimberly Cargile of A Therapeutic Alternative, a dispensary in the city of Sacramento, implored the board not to drive county residents to the black market or burden them financially by making them travel long distances to legal dispensaries in the city.

After the board voted in favor of the outdoor ban (ironically, on Earth Day), Supervisor Phil Serna moved to develop indoor regulations with the aid of county counsel, staff, and patient advocates towards “a reasonable number of plants or square footage.” The Board plans to take a second vote on the outdoor ban on May 13 and consider an amended indoor ordinance on May 28.

Also see: Sacramento County supervisors vote to ban outdoor marijuana gardens Sacramento Bee April 22, 2014


Outdoor grows

If they admit that a patient with 1-2 plants in their vegetable garden isn't t the problem, why force them to use hot, heavy, expensive grow lights...why...because this isn't really about the needs of medical patients. They also can't afor 60 dollars an eighth ounce.

outdoors growing

My personal opinion is that it's better grow outdoor if you have the space and your neighbors are not very close like in new houses are very close each other without any privacy. And indoor growing can cause a fire for negligence

sac county outside grow ban

It shows the voters are not being represented by their elected representatives go sac county we know who to vote out of office

These people have no life

These people have no life they would rather patients get strung out on opiods and narcotics, then see us getting real treatment and doing better things with our lives, and doing better things then these people will ever be capable of doing where I come from we call these people haters and they need to be voted out of office, there violating our constitutional rights and trying to take away something we already voted on and passed we need to come together and legalize this medicine like Colorado, the smarter states that are making billions of dollars off taxes for schools and to make the state a better place.

You agree huh?

If you read the sacbee article it states near the end that bob bowerman(sp?) stated " we agree with pretty much everything your saying" towards the supervisors. Was it in restricting the ease of access? I have a hard time believing that someone from a group supposedly in support of reform would be ok with ban on outdoor growing. Why not similar $100 zip tie program like mendo county? Those 99 plant gardens would be extra 9900 in county's pocket. I know for a fact that could very easily generate 1 million (very low end) to upwards 5 million a year for outdoor season. Small $50 fee for indoor gardens? Allow upto 99 plants local limit so patients can realistically be able to have decent crop rotation if there doing greenhouse/light dep/indoor. Pushing everyone indoors only burdens the patients financially, from equipment to electricity. If you look towards CO for profit system and and influx at indoor grows, there was massive influx in fires. I know a lot of people out there can't correctly, by county permit able standards, wire 2000kw plus room. So you also increase negative risk factors against the patients. Is anyone looking at the fact that some of the violence committed against these growers is either because of the company they keep and/or they willingly trust people who take opportunity to do harm for financial gain, and or random targets by malicious felons who would be committing other senseless acts of felonious behavior for profit. I know people who need only 1 or 2 plants a year, I also know people who need 40 plants for yearly consumption. Plant limits should be more based on lot size and location in county then anything

for clarity

Bob Bowerman doesn't represent California NORML but rather Sacramento/Stockton/Modesto NORML. That chapter meets 2nd Thursdays at Perko’s (3rd & J street), Sacramento 7 pm and can be reached at (916) 233-3415.

Mendo's 99 plant program was shut down by the feds, who demanded names of everyone enrolled in the program. With the new federal attitude, it's possible the program could be tried somewhere else, but since Sac County doesn't even want personal-sized outdoor gardens, it's not exactly moving in that direction. Cal NORML also testified at the Sac County hearing and suggested different limits for different sized parcels, along the lines of what El Dorado county has, or allowing greenhouses like the city of Sac does. More on other county/city ordinances at: http://www.canorml.org/medical-marijuana/local-growing-limits-in-Califor...

Wow this Cultivation ban is

Wow this Cultivation ban is ridiculous. They want to ban outdoor because of security risk, but they won't allow patients to grow in a greenhouse or other type of detach unit that is not easily breached. I understand the ban in the city because of odor and neighborhoods, but seriously this is in unincorporated area where it is pitch black at night with a lot of open field.

Tax

So we pay a tax to have a license only to be told we can not grow outside in the county we live and support with what - "Taxes"
Why charge ( tax us) us for a license that allows us to grow.
Residents in neighborhoods should be reasonably restricted , but I have a right to grow my own meds!

taxes not in ordinance

There are no taxes in the ordinance, only fines if violated.

OUTDOOR BAN..................

I WOULD RECOMMEND THAT OUTDOOR WILL BE BETTER THAN INDOOR BAN.
INDOOR IS GOOD FOR A PERSON DON'T HAVE ANY KIDS OR GRANDSON/DAUGHTER. ANY ONES HAVE KIDS AND FAMILY MEMBERS;ONCE THEY COME TO VISIT THEIR FAMILY MEMBERS ARE NOT GOOD TO HAVE INDOORS BAN.
SMELL/ODORS EVERY WHERE INSIDE THE ROOM OR GREEN HOUSE.CAN CAUSE FAMILY MEMBERS GET SICK OR MAKES KIDS FELLING NO GOOD WHEN THEY SEE
GREEN HOUSE.

OUTDOOR BAN IS GOOD FOR EVERY ONE.... SMELL/STRONG ODORS GOES UP TO THE AIR AND WINDS WILL KILL THE SMELL.ONCE PEOPLE HAVE LICENSE TO GROWTH/SMOKE A MARIJUANA IN ASSIGNED AREAS;WHEN THESE PEOPLE DON'T HAVE THIS..OUTDOOR BAN AND THEY WILL BE CRAZY.MORE CRIMES ARE INCREASE AND THEY WILL GO FIND ANY PLACE TO GROWTH AND STEAL...

PS:IT'S NOT A PATIENTS FAULT. WHOM GIVE THEM A LICENSE TO GROWTH/SMOKE ? ONCE PEOPLE CAN SMOKE AND GROWTH;IT IS HARD TO STOP AND GROWTH/SMOKING, RIGHT ?

TROY DRAGON KING INTHAVONG

Outdoor Garden

Those who grow form seed and who responsibly manage both the size and production of their gardens are to be criminalized right alongside the folks who rent a house for a year, grow clones in cut open bags of topsoil all over the floor (under halogen lights) and then who abandon the house, forfeiting the cleaning deposit.

Oh, wait -- technically, those guys are still legal.

Seed breeding programs, however, end. Unique cultivars, die out and are lost.

Most people cannot afford to grow under lights. Most do not have the room. Most cannot afford to buy form a dispensary.

Personally, I'd rather invest $600 each month into my retirement account than spend it on cannabis. I have one because I'm not some low-life trying to break the law.

I'm a taxpayer who owns his home, pays his bills, supports his local community, and who enjoys living in a safe and clean place.

I'm not interested in whether Supervisors MacGlashan and Peters think that's too much money to spend on cannabis any more than I'm interested in whether they think that's too much to invest in my retirement -- I don't need their opinion or input at all, but because I don't engage in commerce (illegal or otherwise), they need to create a scenario in which I'm a criminal because they're just trying to cut out the freebies before they legalize it.

They need to figure out the market and corner it, first. Then they can get all the money -- like Leland Yee did with guns in San Francisco.

If they could make growing tomatoes illegal, and force us to buy from farmer's markets and grocery stores, they would do that, too.

Signature drive

I have a feeling that Sacramento County is about to face a signature drive similar to what temporarily stopped the Shasta County Board of Supervisors from implementing their vote there.

Just seems like to me the

Just seems like to me the government is trying to make more money off of electricity, and eliminating private caregivers. We dont need corporate buisnesses in the marijuana industry people. Fight Federal legaliztion when it comes. We need Private care givers to make our economy thrive. Small buisnesses all the way.

Sac. County Med. Mar. Referendum??

Do you know if anyone has started or will start a Sac County Med. Mar. Referendum, gathering signatures the way they did in Shasta County, which blocked the ordinance after the signatures were obtained??

Let Me Know

Hey let me know how or where I can get a signature campaign started in Sac County. We need to UNITE!

outdoor ban

How does this balance out with prop . 215 when no stores can operate within the unincorporated area of sacramento and now no outdoor growing. So only if i can afford the extra living space and increase in utility costs can I somewhat affordably have access to my medication. Although now this 'attraction' to criminals is going to be inside my home, making the risk to my loved ones higher. And depending on style i may have an increase of water usage in comparison to a previous year outdoors. I hope enough reasonable appeals are presented before this gets voted on again may 13.

Does anybody know what the

Does anybody know what the unincorporated areas in sacramento county is??

Generally...

any place without its own city council and police force is an unincorporated area. If you call the police and the sheriffs show up, most likely you're in an unincorporated area. The cities of Clovis, Sacramento and West Sac have their own MMJ cultivation ordinances, see: http://www.canorml.org/medical-marijuana/local-growing-limits-in-Califor...

outdoor ban

Some of these arguments were made at yesterday's hearing, but the supes seem to have walked in with an idea to ban outdoor but not indoor, because of too many complaints from constituents about large gardens with guns and dogs. The ordinance, if it passes a second vote, will be enforced on a complaint-driven basis and it was acknowledged that complaints are seldom made against small gardens. But yes, now is the time to contact your supervisor before the final vote on the 13th.

Outdoor ban

This is so confusing to me. Quoting the Sac Bee, "Sacramento County Supervisor Roberta MacGlashan introduced separate indoor and outdoor ordinances Tuesday to ban marijuana crops, saying she has received many complaints from residents. In addition to safety and quality of life issues, marijuana grows create undue demands on the environment, including high water use in a drought, she said."
Seriously? Then just about anyone who is cultivating a vegetable garden should be targeted as well. Medical Marijuana is so expensive at dispensaries. Those who use it to relieve nerve pain, joint pain, PTSD, will now be forced to return to their dangerous pain medication that are covered by Obamacare! People really need to be educated on the use and benefits of marijuana. There are strains out there that are low in THC and high in CBD. " Cannabidiol (CBD) is a compound in cannabis that has medical effects but does not make people feel “stoned” and can actually counter the psychoactive effects of THC. After decades in which only high-THC Cannabis was available, CBD-rich strains are now being grown by and for medical users." I would much rather have my neighbor growing and using marijuana than strung out on Vicoden, Norco, or Oxycodine. Time to really get the facts out there to the public People!

Couldn't have said it

Couldn't have said it better.

thanks

reasons

the main topic is the fact that your government is saying you are not able to make choices for yourself. that the american people can not make decisions for themselves. that you a mom, dad, lawyer, doctor, plumber, carpenter, military, priest, every teacher, every human in america; is unable to make choices for themselves. but you can and will be accountable for every choice you make saying you are smart enough to know better, while not being smart enough to make you own choices. so the question to ask is " to all elected officials, are the people of america able to rule themselves??? do we need you to tell me a 45 yr. old man who has had uncountable moments of responsibility to decide good bad right wrong life theatening or safe. so, your telling me i cant decided for myself because??????????