Cal NORML Release – Jun 3, 2011
SACRAMENTO – The California Assembly rejected Assemblyman Tom Ammiano’s bill AB 1017 to reduce marijuana cultivation from a mandatory felony to a wobbler. The vote was 24-36.
The bill had been sponsored by the DA of Mendocino County, but was opposed by the state DAs association.
“The state legislature has once again demonstrated its incompetence when it comes to dealing with prison overcrowding,” commented California NORML Director Dale Gieringer, “With California under court order to reduce its prison population, it is irresponsible to maintain present penalties for non-violent drug offenses. It makes no sense to keep marijuana growing a felony, when assault, battery, and petty theft are all misdemeanors.
Legislators have once again caved in to to the state’s law enforcement establishment, which has a vested professional interest in maximizing drug crime.”
Numerous liberal Democrats failed to vote, while some actually opposed AB 1017, among them Sandre Swanson of Oakland, Jerry Hill of San Mateo, and Mike Feuer of Los Angeles.