California

Dispelling Myths about the Point Loma High Class of 1966

September 20, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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The following are remarks by Frank Gormlie from the podium at the 50th Anniversary celebration of the Point Loma High School Class of 1966, held recently at an undisclosed location off of Point Loma.

By Frank Gormlie

Tonight we’re here to dispel all those myths and rumors that have circulated and existed for half a century – myths about our favorite class – Class of 66 – our school, our teachers and classmates.

First, we want to dispel the rumor that our class created a fake student by the name of “Mike Hall” in a science homeroom run by those team teachers – Mr. Millstone and Mr. Shank – this did not happen.

And it’s also not true, that our classmates filled out all the paperwork for this fictitious Mike Hall – you remember all those multi-colored forms at the beginning of each semester – filled them all out – not true – for an entire year.

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From Mission to Microchip: An Interview with California Labor Historian Fred Glass – Part 1

September 19, 2016 by Jim Miller

mission-to-microchip-cover CaliforniaBy Jim Miller

In my Labor Day column , I gave a shout out to Fred Glass’s seminal new labor history of California, From Mission to Microchip: A History of the California Labor Movement. As Glass notes in his introduction, his history of working people in the Golden State is much broader than a narrow chronicle of unions.

To learn more about this story and what about it is most important, I am pleased to present the first installment of my three-part interview with Fred Glass, author, teacher, union member, and long-time Communications Director for the California Federation of Teachers.

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58% of California Voters Support Marijuana Legalization

September 13, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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Proposition 64 Enjoys Wide Support Among Most Voter Categories

A new USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll found that a good majority of California voters support marijuana legalization and back Proposition 64.

58% of voters in the state support Prop 64, which would allow Californians ages 21 or older to possess, transport and use up to an ounce of cannabis for recreational purposes, and would allow individuals to grow as many as six plants. The measure would also impose a 15% tax on retail sales of the drug.

And according to the poll, the favorable attitude toward grass cuts across most lines of age, race, income and gender.

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California Governor Signs Farmworker Overtime-Pay Bill

September 13, 2016 by Source

farmworker-handsBy Melody Gutierrez / SFGate / September 12, 2016

Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill Monday that will give farmworkers in California overtime after an eight-hour day, a move advocates say will right a decades-old injustice.

The bill, AB1066 by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, D-San Diego, will give the people who work in California’s farm fields the same overtime rights that other workers were granted under federal law during the Great Depression. Gonzalez called it a “historic day” that was long overdue. “These workers are doing backbreaking work so that we can eat,” Gonzalez said. “The fact is, they are not treated fairly under the law and that’s wrong. This is a 78-year-old wrong, and there is nothing better than fixing that.”

The agriculture industry, business groups and Republican lawmakers said the bill will hurt farmers …

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“On the Tracks of an Angry God: John P. Harrington in San Diego County” By Richard Carrico – Thurs., Sept. 15th

September 13, 2016 by Staff
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Ocean Beach Historical Society Presents:

On the Tracks of an Angry God: John P. Harrington in San Diego County
By Richard Carrico

Thursday, September 15, 7 pm
at P.L. United Methodist Church, 1984 Sunset Cliffs Blvd., O.B.

From the Pacific Coast to the Anza Borrego desert, from northern Baja California to Warner Springs, John P. Harrington in the mid-1920s chronicled the region and especially the Kumeyaay culture.

Famed and noted local author, historian Richard Carrico, will present a unique glimpse into Kumeyaay culture as recorded by Harrington nearly a century ago…

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Applegate Versus Issa Is the Congressional Race to Watch

September 13, 2016 by Doug Porter

An Overview of House of Representatives Contests in San Diego

SDFP 2016 Nov LogoBy Doug Porter

Of the five electoral contests for the House of Representatives including San Diego voters only the 49th, encompassing the cities of Oceanside, Vista, Carlsbad and Encinitas, looks to be competitive on November 8th. A small part of Orange County and the Marine Corps base at Camp Pendleton are also in the district.

Republican Darrell Issa is facing retired USMC Col. Douglas Applegate.

Issa, the wealthiest member of Congress (2015 estimate: up to $768 million), has all the advantages of incumbency, having served since 2001. Applegate has time and (dislike of) Trump on his side.

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A Look at San Diego’s Ballot Choices for State Legislature

September 12, 2016 by Doug Porter

By Doug Porter

SDFP 2016 Nov LogoThere’s bad news and good news about the partisan makeup of San Diego’s representation in Sacramento in 2017.

The bad news is that there is no real competition among the eight local contests for the State Legislature. A few seats are changing hands, but the resulting differences among the newbies will be of style rather than substance.

The good news is that the Democrats likely to be representing the area are all of above average or better quality. What happens in contests elsewhere in California will have a significant influence on just how effective San Diego’s delegation can be.

Democrats, who need two more seats in the State Assembly to recapture supermajority status, started out by targeting contests in Manhattan Beach, Fullerton, Rancho Cucamonga, Dublin and Corona. Christopher Cadelago at the Sacramento Bee reports they’ve recently added support for races in San Luis Obispo and Santa Clarita.

Here’s the rundown on the races for local legislative positions.

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Imperial Beach Mayor Pro Tem: Proposition 59 Supports Core Principle of Democracy

September 8, 2016 by Source

Ed Spriggs Appeals to Fellow IB City Council Candidates But His Words Resonate for All San Diegans

By Ed Spriggs / San Diego Free Press

Imperial Beach Mayor Pro Tem Ed SpriggsThere is one proposition on the State ballot this year that hasn’t yet drawn much attention, and probably won’t.

It doesn’t cost anything. It doesn’t require anyone to do or change anything. It doesn’t prohibit anything. It doesn’t even benefit one citizen or group of individuals over another.

It just supports the core principle of a democratic system of government – one that is of the people, by the people and for the people.

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On San Diego Homeless Awareness Day, the Peninsula Beacon Missed the Point

September 7, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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Local Newspaper Sends Out Mixed Message About Homeless

About 3 weeks ago, August 17th was the “San Diego Homeless Awareness Day” – a day set up by various media sources around San Diego to bring a new awareness of those less fortunate and who live on the streets and in the shelters.

And about 20 of San Diego’s media sources carried or ran or printed or published 40 or so articles and posts about the homeless and homelessness today.

The OB Rag – along with our sister publication, the San Diego Free Press – joined this effort to highlight the plight of our area’s citizens who have no home, other than the streets, and we both posted a series of articles from the writers of the SDFP and OB Rag. (For other articles from the publications on the homeless, visit the SD Homeless Aware website.)

Many of the articles and posts painted and reflected compassionate understandings of the homeless and their plight, with efforts to examine the underlying reasons for so many homeless in one of the richest nations on earth. This day of awareness followed – by a little over a month – a serial murderer who preyed on sleeping homeless men in San Diego.

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California’s US Senate Race: Kamala Harris v. Loretta Sanchez

September 7, 2016 by Doug Porter

SDFP 2016 Nov Logo

Sanchez Has Only Long Shot Chance for Victory Over Harris

By Doug Porter / San Diego Free Press

The optics of Democratic Senatorial candidate Loretta Sanchez touring with Republican Congressman Darrell Issa recently can be difficult to understand until you realize they actually need each other at this point.

The well is dry for Sanchez when it comes to pumping up support from her party. And Issa needs to convince voters in his district that he’s less of an ogre than his choice for president, Donald Trump.

Such is the state of politics on the Left Coast these days. The woman who unseated Rep. Bob Dornan–who spent 18 years being the enfant terible of the Congress–is now tying her fate to the man who many accuse of leading witchhunts for the past eight years.

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Happy Labor Day, California Style

September 5, 2016 by Jim Miller

Labor Day Cardiff Kook

By Jim Miller

Last year my Labor Day column, “Happy Labor Day?: The Jury is Out,” began by starkly pondering the potentially devastating effects a bad Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association ruling at the Supreme Court might have had not just on public sector unions but on the labor movement as a whole.

Later, in the same column, I looked more hopefully at the potential for organizing contingent workers, like those involved in the Fight for $15 movement.

The twelve months that followed that column brought good news for labor on multiple fronts. First, with the long, strange journey of the Friedrichs case that came to the Supreme Court with a good chance of passing before everything was turned upside down by Justice Scalia’s death, a 4-4 split decision that was a victory for unions, and finally the Court’s refusal to rehear the case.

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Kumeyaay Tribes Protest Navy’s Plans to Build SEAL Center in Burial Grounds along Silver Strand

September 2, 2016 by Source

Kumeyaay protest Coronado 83116

Debi Baker at San Diego U-T wrote:

Dozens of Native American Indians staged a protest Wednesday [Aug.31] morning over the building of Naval Base Coronado’s new SEAL training center on what they say is a native burial ground.

The 12 tribes that make up the Kumeyaay Nation want the $1 billion project south of Silver Strand State Beach to be moved a short distance so as not to desecrate what members call a sacred site, said Cynthia Parada, a councilwoman with the La Posta Band of Mission Indians.

The 60-acre campus will add 1.5 million square feet of buildings to the base that includes spaces for SEAL Teams, logistical support buildings, training facilities, classrooms and more.

IIn 2002, human remains of a young boy said to be 7,000 years old were found in the area south of Silver Strand State Beach, Parada said.

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Will Governor Brown Do the Right Thing for Farmworkers?

September 2, 2016 by Doug Porter

Via WineWaterWatch.org

By Doug Porter

After two years and more than five thousand proposed laws, resolutions, and constitutional amendments, the current version of the California Legislature wrapped up its session in frenzied fashion.

Wednesday, August 31st saw more than one hundred bills up for consideration. Now it’s up to the Governor to say yea or nay on legislation affecting all aspects of life in California.

Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-80), who successfully shepherded 19 of 20 bills through the legislature this year, is leaving nothing up to chance with her hard-fought victory on AB 1066, gradually phasing in standards for farmerworker overtime.

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SB 32: California’s Big Bet on the Environment

August 31, 2016 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter

Senate Bill 32 was approved by the California legislature last week along with a companion bill (AB 197), putting the Golden State on a path to further reducing greenhouse gas emissions past the end of the decade.

Gov. Jerry Brown fought long and hard for the legislation mandating an additional 40 percent cut in emissions by 2030. The state is already on track to meeting the goal, set by AB 32 in 2006, to reduce its greenhouse-gas emissions back down to 1990 levels by the year 2020.

Not included in the new legislation was extending the state’s cap-and-trade program, arguably a more flexible, lower-cost policy tool to cut emissions. As things stand now, the future of the program is uncertain, as the California’s Chamber of Commerce is in court seeking to overturn the program on the basis that it needed two-thirds approval.

The Governor maintains that SB 32 and AB 197 will provide the leverage he needs to reach a deal with businesses that would prefer a market-based program like cap-and-trade over tougher mandates to cut pollution. Brown says he will put the matter of the program’s future on the 2017 ballot if he has to.

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Why We Need to Pass Proposition 55 in November 2016

August 22, 2016 by Jim Miller

brown prop 30

By Jim Miller

As many of us in education circles remember, before the passage of Proposition 30 in 2012, the funding situation for schools and colleges in California was dire.

The question was not IF there were going to be cuts, but rather, how large they would be and how much damage they would do to our students, our profession, and to the communities we serve.

But fortunately, in the wake of the Great Recession and the Occupy movement, the questions of economic inequality and social justice were in the air and we in the California Federation of Teachers, along with our community allies, were able to muster a successful campaign first for the Millionaire’s Tax and then for the passage of Proposition 30, the compromise measure that was forged with Governor Brown.

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Man Who Wants to Overturn 6 Gun Laws Has Business in Ocean Beach

August 16, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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It turns out that the guy leading 6 petition drives against new California gun restrictions recently signed into law has a business “headquartered” right here in Ocean Beach.

Barry Bahrami has launched campaigns to qualify his six referendum to go up against the gun control laws signed by Gov. Jerry Brown.

Barry Bahrami is also the CEO of Commercial Network Services, an online business that touts itself “a global online service provider specializing in hosting low latency algorithmic trading systems, virtual private networks …” and other virtual trading services.

And Commercial Network Services are indeed headquartered in OB, right at the OB Business Center, at “4876 Santa Monica Ave # 111, San Diego, CA 92107” according to his site. Now, true, we’re talking a PO Box here as “headquarters” – but it is an Ocean Beach connection.

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OB Historical Society: One of Point Loma’s Founding Families – Thurs., Aug. 18

August 16, 2016 by Source

OBHS Aug 2016 JimBakerOBHS Aug 2016 graphic

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Is Anybody Judging the Judges? The California Legislature Wants Answers

August 16, 2016 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter

A joint committee of the California Legislature has authorized an audit of the Commission on Judicial Performance, the only entity that can discipline or remove a state judge.

A coalition of two dozen groups reflecting a wide range of interests, led by the Center for Judicial Excellence wrote letters, made calls and sent emails to urge the Joint Legislative Audit Committee (JLAC) to call for the audit.

“The Center for Public Integrity gave California an ‘F grade’ on its 2015 report card for judicial accountability, said Kathleen Russell, the executive director of the Center for Judicial Excellence in a press release.

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The Plight of Adjunct Teachers

August 16, 2016 by Source

adjunct facultyBy Mimi Pollack / San Diego Free Press

Here in California, adjunct teachers are like the comedian, Rodney Dangerfield, in the community college world. They get some respect, but not a lot, despite being the backbone of the system.

More classes are taught by part-time teachers than full-time teachers. The ratio has been as high as 70% part-time teachers to 30% full-time teachers.

Part-time teachers are paid by the hour; whereas, full-time teachers receive a salary and if one calculates the hourly rate, it is higher. The various districts do this because it saves them money.

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Nuclear Shutdown News for July 2016 – San Onofre Whistleblower: Utility Ruined its Own Nuke Plant.

August 2, 2016 by Michael Steinberg
Thumbnail image for Nuclear Shutdown News for July 2016 – San Onofre Whistleblower: Utility Ruined its Own Nuke Plant.

By Michael Steinberg / Black Rain Press

Nuclear Shutdown News chronicles the decline of the nuclear power industry in the US and beyond, and highlights the efforts of those who are working to create a nuclear free future. Here is out July 2016 report.

San Onofre whistleblower: Utility put profits above safety, ruined its own nuke plant.

A radiation leak at San Onofre nuclear plant in southern California caused its two reactors to shut down in in 2012, and resulted in its permanent closure the following year.

On July 19 the Times of San Diego reported on a press release by Public Watchdog, a nonprofit policy group, detailing allegations of a former employee at San Onofre. Southern California Edison is the controlling owner of the nuke plat, with San Diego Gas & Electric being a minority owner of the wrecked nuclear plant.

The whistleblower, Vinod Arora, is a former Edison fire protection engineer who worked at San Onofre.

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San Diego Web Thin Case Leads to Another 10 Minute Acquittal in Medical Cannabis Trial

July 22, 2016 by Source
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By Terrie BestSan Diego Americans for Safe Access

The thin-as-air manufacturing case against medical cannabis patient and collective operator, Shaun Smith swept so quickly through trial that before we knew it, Attorney Michael Cindrich had queued up his third cannabis-related not guilty verdict in four months.

The Cindrich winning streak started with defendant John Mazula in El Cajon, moved north to LA and then touched down in San Diego County’s Vista yesterday – surely making waves in District Attorney’s office and changing the landscape for medical cannabis patients.

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Immigration Tips And Terms From A To Z

July 19, 2016 by Source
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Editor: With all the talk about immigration by politicians these days, it’s difficult to tell whether they know what they’re talking about. Here, immigration lawyer Carlos Batara lays it all out, A to Z with tips and terms.

By Carlos Batara

1. Immigration Tips And Terms A To Z is the knowledge gained after decades of practice here in San Diego and Riverside Counties.

2. Asylum is the protection granted by a nation to an immigrant who has left their native country as a refugee. To qualify for asylum, individuals must prove they have a legitimate fear of persecution in their home country based on race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group.

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Will California Legalize Marijuana in 2016?

June 30, 2016 by Doug Porter

If there’s any group capable of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory in California, it’s marijuana activists.

AUMA 2016By Doug Porter

The polling has never been better. This year 60% of likely California voters are inclined to legalize the consumption of marijuana for recreational use, up from 54% last year.

The political prognosis has never been better. Four states and the District of Columbia have already legalized pot and another eight states are considering giving voter approval to the idea.

So California’s Adult Use of Marijuana Act qualifying for the November ballot should be good news, right? Not so fast. We’ve been here before. In 2010 Proposition 19 started out with strong polling and had decent financial backing, as I recollect.

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OB Rag Editordude Quoted in “Ballotpedia” on Calif. Marijuana Initiative

June 29, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for OB Rag Editordude Quoted in “Ballotpedia” on Calif. Marijuana Initiative

Hey, this is crazy! I – editordude of the OB Rag – am quoted in “Ballotpedia” – the “online encyclopedia of American politics and elections,” in their complete run-down and neutral analysis of California’s marijuana initiative.

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Angry Point Loma Citizens Fill Town Hall Meeting About Emerson Project

June 28, 2016 by Source

PL Emerson proj meet 6-27-16

By Geoff Page

Last night there was a town hall meeting at the Portuguese Hall in Point Loma that was filled to capacity with a whole bunch of angry citizens.

The meeting was to discuss a project on Evergreen and Emerson in Roseville that is a 40-foot tall thumb in the eye of San Diegans.

But, the issue is much bigger than one project, it concerns all of the area affected by the 30-foot height limit.

Representatives from the mayor’s office, District 2, the City Attorney, and the Development Services Department (DSD) were supposed to be on hand. Not one single City official showed up. Let’s call that thumb in the eye number two.

The issue is the City’s new interpretation as to how the sacred 30-foot height limit is measured.

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Overpassing the Value of Public Space

June 24, 2016 by Source

FreewayOverpass Public Space

By Howard M. Blackson III / SanDiego.UrbDeZine.com

“Caltrans does not restrict the right of free speech with handheld banners, but attaching flags or banners is not allowed,” a Caltrans-Spokesman told the San Jose Mercury News.

He added, “We are concerned that people waving handheld banners could cause driver distraction — putting their safety or that of the motoring public at risk.” Today, we have prioritized the ‘motoring public’ over all other aspects of public life.

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Nuclear Shutdown News June 2016 – Diablo Canyon to Close in Decade

June 22, 2016 by Michael Steinberg
Thumbnail image for Nuclear Shutdown News June 2016 – Diablo Canyon to Close in Decade

By Michael Steinberg / Black Rain Press

Nuclear Shutdown News chronicles the decline and fall of the nuclear power industry at home and abroad, and highlights the efforts of those who are fighting to create a nuclear free future,

California Announces Last Nuclear Plant in State – Diablo Canyon – to Close by 2025

The really big news is that on June 21, PG&E, the utility that owns Diablo Canyon, announced that it had agreed to a proposal endorsed by environmental groups and labor unions to shutter California’s last operating nuclear power plant, Diablo Canyon, by 2025.

This is a major victory for environmentalists – California is going nuclear-free, ending atomic energy’s more than half-century history in the state. For years, anti-nuclear activists had called for the plant’s closure because of safety concerns over its precarious location near several major earthquake fault lines. Friends of the Earth, for example, has been fighting for the plant’s closure since the 1960s.

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ACLU Endorses ‘Adult Use of Marijuana Act’ Expected on November Ballot

June 20, 2016 by Source

In 2014, 73 percent of misdemeanor marijuana arrests are people under 20. Nearly 70 percent of arrests were people of color.

By ACLU San Diego / Imperial

imarijuana.com

Citing the continued widespread criminalization of young people of color through marijuana enforcement, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of California announced it has endorsed the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (“AUMA”) to control, regulate, and tax adult use, sale and cultivation of marijuana in California.

The measure is expected to qualify for the November state ballot.

Low-level marijuana possession was reduced from a misdemeanor to an infraction in California in 2011, but marijuana law enforcement still results in thousands of arrests each year.

In 2011 to 2014, according to the California Department of Justice, law enforcement agencies made 60,000 marijuana arrests statewide. In 2014, young people under the age of 20 accounted for 73 percent of all misdemeanor marijuana arrests in the state. Nearly 70 percent of all marijuana arrests were of people of color.

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How Did Ocean Beach and Point Loma Vote in 2016 Primary?

June 13, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

OB Vote Mayor Primary 2016

How did OB and the Peninsula vote in the Primary held last week? What was the breakdown in the mayoral race in Ocean Beach?

Check out these maps that show the winners in each precinct in OB and Point Loma for the various races.

Go to the original map site, and you can click on individual precincts to see the vote tallies and percentages for each candidates.

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New State Bureau that Regulates Medical Cannabis Sounds Like an Advocate

June 10, 2016 by Source
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State Medical Marijuana Officials Hold Hearing in San Diego

By Terrie Best /San Diego Americans for Safe Access / June 9, 2016

San Diego, CA – The Bureau of Medical Marijuana Regulations held a hearing June 9th as is required when crafting commercial regulations in the State of California. The trio of women who currently make up the bureau had already held events in Oakland, Humboldt and Riverside among other places. They were wrapping it up with San Diego.

The event was called a pre-regulation hearing. There were about 100 people in attendance and newly appointed Chief of the Bureau, Lori Ajax began the meeting at 11:19 in the Garcia Room at the Caltrans building on Taylor St. in Old Town.

The head of Narcotics at the District Attorney’s Office, Steve Walter sat in the front row.

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