Sacramento County Ban on Outdoor Medical Marijuana Growing Draws Outrage

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SACRAMENTO-

The Sacramento County Board of Supervisors decided Tuesday afternoon to place a ban on outdoor growing of medical marijuana, which was a decision met with much criticism.

Michele Marie says her severely disabled son is proof that medical marijuana works. She’s never used pot in her life, but begged county supervisors to let her grow it for her son.

Sacramento Pot Shops Had Monday Deadline for Submitting Permits“My son is legally blind, but he can see now,” Marie said. “I’m fighting for my son’s life every day and cannabis is saving his life. I can’t believe my son is learning for the first time. My son is learning for the first time. He’s reaching for things that he never did before.”

Others say marijuana, regardless of how it is used, is a cash crop. And cash brings crime.

“The beginning of cultivation season is also the beginning of home invasion season, because you will hear of many home invasions and virtually all of them have to do with cultivation, transportation, or sales of marijuana,” Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones said.

At Tuesday’s meeting, supervisors were shown maps that displayed large amounts of marijuana being grown in residential neighborhoods, and photos of toxic trash left behind.

Advocates say large-scale, pot-related problems are already illegal, and outlawing small-time medicinal grow operations makes those problems worse, especially when dispensaries are illegal in the county.

“How are they supposed to obtain and use cannabis if they can’t have dispensaries, and they can’t grow it? They’re being put in unsafe situations, and you are putting them in unsafe situations,” dispensary worker Kimberly Cargile said.

Though the Board of Supervisors voted to ban outdoor growing, indoor growing regulations are being considered.

Indoor growing regulations will be discussed at a meeting on May 28.

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