Jun 01 2010

Prospects good for Santa Cruz chapter of Americans for Safe Access (ASA)

Posted by J. Craig Canada in Examiner.com, greenway, organizations, roger mentch

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Prospects appear good that Santa Cruz will soon have a Local Chapter of Americans for Safe Access (ASA).

Fifteen attended the 2nd meeting Thursday night sponsored by Roger Mentch and Matt Roth of the Hemporium in Felton, five more than at the 1st meeting a month ago.

This was the first meeting for at least seven, including three who identified as members of the Wo/Men’s Alliance for Medical Marijuana (WAMM) and two from Greenway.

Greenway is one of the two medical marijuana dispensaries permitted in the City of Santa Cruz, the other being Santa Cruz Patients Collective.

San Jose Cannabis Clubs shows 14 dispensaries and collectives within Santa Cruz County, not including The Hemporium, and not including WAMM which is a collective of international reputation.

ASA chapters are required to hold meetings at least monthly and to have 10 members who have made an annual membership contribution to the national organization.  They are also required to not be linked to any individual medical cannabis provider.

In addition to those from Greenway and WAMM, 3 attending were associated with The Hemporium.

Lisa Molyneux, who is on the Board of Directors of the Americans for Safe Access Foundation, was guest speaker.  She spoke about the national campaign and her difficulties negotiating with the City of Santa Cruz in the operation of Greenway Compassionate Relief medical marijuana dispensary.

Greenway was recently licensed by the city to cultivate 3,000 square feet of marijuana.

When asked how things were going at Greenway, Molyneux mentioned that they have had a commercial kitchen completed for a year now and been unable to use it because nobody wants to be the first to license a commercial kitchen with “medical marijuana” in the name.  So they took the words “medical marijuana” off the permit application and expect to be approved soon.

Molyneux also spoke about difficulties with the city over the use of the 3,000 square foot grow space recently approved for Greenway.

It appears the planning commission, in determining how much grow space to allow the two dispensaries, attempted to arrive at a figure that would provide marijuana for the number of patients the dispensaries reported resided within the City of Santa Cruz.

Molyneux stated that she intended to use the majority of the space to grow clones, and that in attempting to get this approved by the city was told she could grow clones but she could only have one mother plant.

A mother plant is a plant that is kept in perpetual vegetative state in order to take clippings to root new plants or clones.  These clones will be genetically identical to the mother plant.  Mother plants can live for many years.  Many believe the potency of the clones increases with the age of the mother.

When asked if they were making millions, Molyneux replied it was the state taking all their money.  Her partner chimed in that they were in hock up to their necks.

By law, medical marijuana dispensaries in California are required to pay sales tax to the state.  Santa Cruz has a sales tax of 9.5%, of which 7.25% goes to the state and 2.25% to the city and county.

The organizers of the meeting listed ten positions that needed to be filled for the chapter to function, from tabling and tabling coordinator to media liaison and website design and maintenance.  Molyneux was overheard to volunteer two of her employees for the latter positions; suggesting Scott Wade for the media spokesperson/liaison.

Wade is the head of security at Greenway and was described by the Santa Cruz Sentinel as a “passionate republican and ex-military policeman”.  An article published 30 Mar 10 by SantaCruz.com is accompanied by a photo of a Greenway staffer, presumably Wade, attempting to disrupt photographing the shop.

It was also announced that the next court date for Roger Mentch will be 28 Jun 2010, and court support was requested.

For more info:
Are Santa Cruz Pot Dispensaries Making a Profit – SantaCruz.com | Mar 30 2010
Santa Cruz City Council Votes to Ban Additional Marijuana Dispensaries – IndyBay | 9 Mar 2010
Santa Cruz pot shop grows on former military man – Santa Cruz Sentinel | 10 Nov 09
Medical Marijuana Club Seeks a Kitchen for Pastry Chiefs – High Times | 18 Dec 08
Reviews:  Patients Collective of Santa Cruz – San Jose Cannabis Clubs
Reviews:  Greenway Compassionate Relief – San Jose Cannabis Clubs
Santa Cruz County Cannabis Clubs – San Jose Cannabis Clubs
ASA Chapter Manuel – Americans for Safe Access | 22 Apr 2010
Board of Directors – Americans for  Safe Access Foundation

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