Pot backers mull court ruling | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Pot backers mull court ruling

William Ferchland, Tahoe Daily Tribune

There were humus, seafood dip and relish trays for the 50 people who gathered to talk about pot.

Specifically, the 50 El Dorado County medical marijuana users and caregivers came to South Lake Tahoe for a three-hour discussion on the latest California Supreme Court decision that provides relaxation to Proposition 215 followers.

The unanimous decision, “People vs. Mower,” arrived last month to the delight of medicinal marijuana users. It will decrease the burden of proof for defendants, causing fewer cases to go to trial.

Dr. Jay Cavanaugh, president of the national organization of American Alliance for Medical Cannabis, drove from Los Angeles to South Lake Tahoe for the meeting.

“We’ve been very active in trying to establish reasonable guidelines for cultivation and use of medical cannabis,” Cavanaugh said. “Up until now it’s been very, very difficult. We wanted to get together to process the Mower decision in order to guide us in our discussions with both Eric Schlueter and Gary Lacy.”

Lacy, district attorney of El Dorado County, will face Deputy District Attorney Eric Schlueter in a November runoff election.

Numerous round-table discussions with the two attorneys, plus sheriff-elect Jeff Neves, doctors and medical cannabis advocates have been held in Placerville to establish medical marijuana guidelines.

The monthly meeting of the El Dorado County chapter of the AAMC, usually held in Garden Valley, took place at Shelly Arnold’s South Lake Tahoe home for convenience to Tahoe patients who aren’t able to drive to the valley.

Cavanaugh said the meeting went “extraordinarily well.” Arnold was also pleased with the outcome.

“What we’re doing is wanting to bring that part of the county up to this part of the county.” she said “I tried to bring in as many medical patients as possible. The plan was to get together and if they had any questions we let them know.”

Besides Mower, the topics included how to change the perception of being a medical marijuana patient, assigning a medical marijuana caregiver and square footage allotment.

But the chatter mostly surrounded Mower and the step forward it represents for marijuana patients and caregivers.

“There are some people who are saying that with the Mower decision we don’t need any guidelines at all, they can’t convict us at all,” Cavanaugh said. “We don’t believe that. We need controls but they need to be reasonable ones.”

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