Citizens for Patient Rights, in association with the Patient Care Association, is pleased to announce that they are expanding their direct democracy campaign for safe access to sympathetic communities around San Diego County.
In the last week, initiative proposals to allow compassionate use dispensaries have been filed in Encinitas, Solana Beach, Lemon Grove and La Mesa. Another ballot initiative is in the process of being filed in Del Mar.
“The voters in these communities have been very supportive of medical marijuana and ending our nonsensical drug policies, as shown by their high support for Proposition 19 in 2010,” explained Cynara Velazquez, campaign coordinator for the initiative campaigns.
“We felt that this was an excellent opportunity to give patients in all regions of the county safe, reasonable access to the medicinal cannabis they need,” stated James Schmachtenberger, Chair of the Patient Care Association, which will be supporting these initiatives.
The initiatives being filed in the smaller communities are all very similar in content. The proposals limit compassionate use dispensaries to commercial and industrial zones, establish operating standards for dispensaries, allow the cities to levy cost recovery fees for any costs incurred with the regulation of dispensaries, and impose a 2.5% tax on medical marijuana sold from dispensaries for the cities’ general funds.
The goal will be to qualify all initiatives for the November ballot.
The initiative efforts in these smaller cities will need significantly less signatures in order to qualify for the ballots than the initiative for compassionate use dispensary regulation, also being run by Citizens for Patient Rights, in San Diego City. While it takes 62,057 signatures to qualify a ballot measure in San Diego City, the combined total of valid signatures needed to qualify ballot measures in all communities will be less than 10,000. In Del Mar, an initiative can qualify for the ballot with just 303 valid signatures.
The San Diego Chapter of Americans for Safe Access is also gathering signatures for a separate initiative proposal for medical marijuana access in Imperial Beach. If all initiatives were to qualify, medical marijuana access may be on the ballot in seven municipalities in San Diego County this fall.
The text of the proposed ballot initiatives can be found here: