Redding Council Says Pot Clubs Are Not Welcome

No pot collectives for the city of Redding… That was the unanimous decision the Redding city council made just after 9:30 Tuesday night. That means the 15 collectives that currently exist within the Redding city limits, Have until December 1st to shut down. Before this decision was even official, it was stirring up a lot of controversy. Marijuana advocates say this is a huge step in the wrong direction, opponents says, it’s about time. Crowds gathered early in front of Redding city hall on Tuesday afternoon with one issue in mind, pot.

Many showed support for what they call safe access; others say medical use has gotten out of hand.  “We are seeing a rise in marijuana use on our dui program,” said Cathy Grindstaff, a member of a Shasta County program called A Sobering Choice. She worries that medical pot is spreading to kids. “Our youth are being exposed to this and they still have developing brains so the decisions our youth are making in regards to marijuana are not good and we as a society…its just becoming normal and its like it should just be normal and its not…its not ok,” said Grindstaff.

Her opinions were not the majority though, most people at the meeting supported keeping collectives open, like Jeanette Ernst who is a medical pot user. “The big issue for me is our patients, I am not the board of natures nexus and I can’t tell you how many patients have come in that are afraid of what is going to happen when they do not have access to medicine,” said Ernst. On Monday, city attorney Rick Duvernay told Action News the city did not have much of an option in the ban, its current ordinance was against the law and officials were at risk. “Then I think the city manager and the police chief are at risk and possibly the council too if in a sense if their actions are interpreted by federal law enforcement as encouraging a violation of federal law,” said Duvernay.

Attorney Keith Cope disagrees.

“What we have heard at this meeting is an opinion by the city attorney, who I respect but he has got it wrong,” said Cope. Cope says there are three medical marijuana cases currently in the courts, he says all of which contradict each other. After the decision, collective owners yelled that they would sue the City of Redding for what they say is an unjust decision. But for now, it appears collectives will be gone from Redding, by the end of the month.

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