The phony challenge verses the Supervisors doing their job


Two remarkably different editorials in the last week. One seems to be “ghost written” by snake oil salesman extraordinaire and CCV spokespreacher Luke Bruner. It appeared in the Times-Standard last Sunday. This editorial utterly fails because it lets our County Supervisors completely off the hook. Hey Times-Standard editorial writer, since when is it the public that’s responsible for writing regulations. Wake up fool! It’s not the public that’s responsible, it’s our eighty thousand plus a year supervisors that have that responsibility.

Virginia, Rex, Ryan, Estelle and Mark have utterly failed to regulate Cannabis grows throughout our county. With mega grows proliferating across our forested lands. Now they want to let the organized mega growers write the rules and give a pass to themselves.

The Mad River Union on the other hand seems to get it and wrote a good editorial on the subject see both below:

Times-Standard: Don’t like the ordinance? Give us another

Now that the proverbial smoke has cleared, and we’ve all had a glimpse of California Cannabis Voice Humboldt’s large scale marijuana ordinance, what’s next?

As we reported earlier this week, the ordinance would regulate medical marijuana grows on parcels more than five acres in size in unincorporated areas and impose a number of requirements on growers: obtain certification from the county Agricultural Commissioner; show proof of lawful sources of water adequate to cultivate the proposed crop size; submit an operation and cultivation plan; agree to annual on-site inspection; pay a $25 licensing fee; obtain a county-issued business license or provisional license unless growing for personal use; and obtain all required state licenses.

Say what you will about CCVH’s efforts, at least they’re getting the ball rolling. And critics of the ordinance have said plenty:

  • Some, such as Robert Sutherland, longtime member of the Humboldt/Mendocino Marijuana Advocacy Project, have questioned both the scale and intent of the ordinance (“Outsiders’ greed no guide for our county’s future,” Times-Standard, July 1, Page A4). As Sutherland argues, “Present consensus appears to be that grows should be no larger than 2,500 square feet of canopy area, for all marijuana grown, irrespective of destination or purpose. Ten gallons of water storage per square foot of cultivation should be required. We recognize that some standards rightfully will not fit all situations, and we respect that best practices need to prevail in those situations. No cultivation should occur on any parcel on which the owner is not in full-time residence. Every person should have the right to grow at least a small number of plants for any purpose.”
  • As self-described “strange bedfellows” Natalynne DeLapp of the Environmental Protection Information Center and Mike Jani of the Humboldt Redwood Company point out (“Pot on TPZ land an invitation to disaster,” Times-Standard, July 7, Page A4), opening Humboldt County’s Timber Production Zones to legal marijuana cultivation is a dubious proposition. Offering tax breaks to the producers of the most profitable crop in the state to grow on TPZ land would indeed only serve to pump up development, further impact responsible forestry and harm wildlife, some of which is already imperiled.
  • Finally, others have taken issue with what the ordinance doesn’t include. “No pesticides, herbicides, fungicides and certain chemical fertilizers should be allowed if we are going to consider our Humboldt brand marijuana any better than tobacco,” writes Uri Driscoll (“Dope growers or cannabis cultivators?”, Times-Standard, July 8, Page A4).

Fair points to consider, one and all.


CCVH may have an ordinance that’s attracting criticism like flies to a feast, but at least they have an ordinance. Critics would do well to note that November 2016 draws closer every day. If they can’t lock themselves in a room with their opponents’ proposal and throw whatever revised ordinance they can cook up at the Board of Supervisors, then the future of Humboldt County’s marijuana industry is going to be shaped by their worst fears — or worse, crafted altogether in Sacramento.

Step up and give Humboldt County voters an alternative — soon.

Mad River Union: Don’t let the cannabis industry write its own rules

California Cannabis Voice Humboldt (CCVH) has written a draft ordinance that would regulate the marijuana industry and has submitted it to the Board of Supervisors. The next step in this process should be for the supervisors to take the draft ordinance and shove it in a “public input” folder along with all the other letters and emails it has received on the topic of marijuana regulation.

Then the board should direct county staff to draft an ordinance, starting from scratch. It’s important that this process gets underway immediately. The conventional wisdom is that marijuana will be legalized in the state by the end of 2016. When this happens, Humboldt should have a clear ordinance in place dictating where and how farmers can grow cannabis.

This ordinance needs to be developed through the people’s democratic process, with full transparency, not by the industry itself.

But you can’t blame California Cannabis Voice Humboldt for trying. After all, what industry wouldn’t want to write its own rules? That’s smart business,

But from a public perspective, it’s ludicrous.

Starting the process with a draft ordinance written by CCVH would be like developing a community plan for McKinleyville starting with a draft written by developers. It’s a stinky way to start.

Instead, start the process fresh. Hold public hearings. Solicit input from everyone. Have county staff mull it over. Draft an ordinance. Let it grind its way through Planning Commission reviews, then come before the Board of Supervisors.

Input is needed from all facets of the community, including environmentalists, farmers, ranchers, educators and, yes, even pot growers. California Cannabis Voice Humboldt’s ordinance can be used as reference. There are lots of good ideas in the draft. It could be a useful tool right up there with other letters and submissions from members of the public and various public agencies.

Another reason to develop an ordinance now, and through the county process, is to guarantee that the new land use rules are subject to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). As is evident from the thousands of water-sucking, stream-killing, illegally graded grows dotting Humboldt’s landscape, this industry can be an environmental nightmare.

One way to combat an environmentally destructive industry is to make sure that when it becomes legit, it has to go through the CEQA process. This allows for agencies and the public to get involved and to require the industry to be more eco-friendly and mitigate its environmental damage.

But without the county pursuing its own ordinance, there’s a very real possibility that marijuana-growing laws could completely bypass CEQA.

California Cannabis Voice Humboldt could gather enough signatures to get its ordinance placed on the ballot in 2016. If this happens, the Board of Supervisors could either skip the election and pass the ordinance itself, or leave the issue up to the voters. Whether the supervisors or the voters pass the ordinance, there would be no CEQA review. That’s an awful way to start a new post-prohibition era.


18 thoughts on “The phony challenge verses the Supervisors doing their job

  1. Why do you personally attack me?


    • Personal attack? Seems like commentary about a public figure. Just my humble opinion though.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Calling someone a snakeoil salesman and a fool is a personal attack and, btw, a violation of the blogs own comment rules regarding name calling. Anyone except for a TE lapdog would see that.


      • Agreed, JP. We all take our lumps here and whining about it won’t help Mr. Bruner one bit.

        I recommend for Mr. Bruner to get clever or get silent.

        It’s his choice, of course (I wouldn’t want to be accused of trying to stifle Mr. Bruner’s right to Free Speech; it’s just friendly advice from one who knows all too well).

        Liked by 1 person

    • Was it being referred to as a salesman or as a preacher?
      or both?
      Like any politician or spokeperson you are a public figure, you decided to do that, your personal life is not the issue here, but what you do and did as a public figure is the issue..

      Liked by 2 people

  2. What did you think of Dan Mar’s proposal to base whatever we come up with on water use rather than canopy?


  3. There is absolutely no reason to grow weed… sorry… Cannabis… in the woods, except one: To hide.

    With Legalization, even hiding will no longer be a valid excuse for forest grows.

    Yet, we are still talking about post-Legalization as if nothing will change. Why?

    Perhaps it has to do with the Timber Protection Zone (TPZ) proposals. Perhaps if this end-around to allow development of TPZ’s was not in the CCVH proposal the whole thing would not be worth flogging.

    Of course I don’t know for a fact if this is true… but there is a simple and easy way to test my hypothesis: Remove all mention of TPZ-zone shenanigans from the CCVH proposal and see what happens.

    Anybody up for a little Scientific Experimentation?

    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree. Growing on TPZ land should not even be considered.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Indeed Mola, the developer interests have found a cause to piggy back onto.
      When weed is legalized the weed will not be mass grown up a crummy dirt road away from workers and supplies, that is and was crazy, the lower time investment alone will bring the massive grows down to the flats.

      But, oh gee, now whatever can we do with these disturbed and trashed properties, I know: rich people!


      Winery tours, only for specialty Humboldt Brand weed..with music, events, festivals like with the wineries to the south..including giant mansions, worker housing, etc…just like Sonoma, Napa…when weed growing is legal.
      The mass consumption growing will be down in the flats the development of ranchettes and specialty weed growing will be enabled with the precedent set by the CCVH language.

      The mitigation for weed growing damages will be…more development, after all the bulldozing has already been done, the trees already cut down, the rich people will ride to the rescue.

      The TPZ designation will then have no meaning.

      Liked by 1 person

    • So thats why the stupidvisiors have never acted. It plays right into the agenda of their HumCPR handlers.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I agree that the main reason pot has been cultivated in the woods is to hide. But now there are people(voters) who purchased TPZ land with the intent of growing pot as their livelihood and perhaps paid a price for the land that reflected pot growing, not timber.

      There are also people who purchased TPZ land because it was cheap and with the intention of ‘homesteading’. They had little knowledge of the practicalities of their endeavor and discovered that the land couldn’t support their having a comfortable lifestyle without income from a lucrative cash crop. Though they chose to be in a remote and hidden place for other reasons, pot ‘saved’ them from having to move away to a less hidden place with more economic opportunities.

      All those people want legal permission to continue doing what they have been doing

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Thank you, Jack, for your thoughtful editorial. I shared it on Twitter.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I would be extremely surprised if this ordinance got the required 7500 signatures as it has been written. Although I disagree with a large part of it I must hand it to Luke and Co for putting something on the table. Attacking him anonymously is cowardly and unproductive.
    It would be unwise (and I think CCVH realizes it,) to try to jam this ordinance down our throat without addressing the multitude of concerns that have been put out.
    One of the main problems is while we as a county have plenty of water the heavy use of it on ridge tops is simply wrong. For real regulating, security, for smart use of water and for the health of our forests and timber industry, these commercial grows need to come off the mountain.
    As far as the Humboldt “brand” goes it used to be quaint. Deservedly so. Now it is poison. Humboldt can easily become irrelevant as Blue dream, OG, Sour Diesel, Etc are what people want.
    In my opinion unless Humboldt gets itself recreated as the better than organic, hyper-eco, high tech cannabis cultivator/innovator, all any ordinance will do is keep some false hope barely alive that anyone will give a crap where their weed comes from. Its not to late.


    • Uri says-

      “Attacking him anonymously is cowardly and unproductive”.

      Since when is being critical of a public figure “attacking”? Was there foul language used against him? Was his personal life commented on?

      Maybe Uri and Luke shouldn’t put themselves out there if they are so thin skinned.

      Liked by 2 people

      • and like with Chiv, the whining about anonymous commentor’s names seems a weak and laughable attempt to distract from the comment to the commentor.
        I see this from experience, a correlation with people most identified with the local powers that be, aka good old boys and /or the police being the ones most likely to whine about anonymity.
        I also remember the fake citizen troll threatening to out people with his police powers.

        Liked by 2 people

  6. At least Luke is trying, unlike past and present elected officials who flip flop based upon which special interest election campaign donators are involved.

    Of course, HOJ is a hands off policy for regulation until full legalization because existing laws can already do the enforcement.

    Currently, TPZ is for timber and should remain as such, but if zero conversions are needed, then what is the big deal for spot agriculture of a cash crop if enough space exists in between trees or on existing open areas that formerly served as log decks, transfer areas, etc. If trees are left alone, but other useable areas exist, again, what is the big deal?

    When fully legal, then get dept. of ag involved, but do not create a fricken pile of paperwork, otherwise regulation will be skirted. Keep it simple, but impose the heaviest sanctions while using existing laws to enforce environmental impacts.

    Lastly, require water storage to be filled only with “rain water”, period! No water from diverted creeks, streams, rivers, etc….zilch.

    Now, how hard is that?

    Of course, less than 1/2 acre should be exempt from rain water standards provided it is personal use only. Personal use may include selling only enough to cover costs to grow. Typically, a heavy smoker of pot won’t smoke more than a couple pounds per year, or something in the ballpark of ten or less full size outdoor plants.

    Indoor pot growing shall be completely off limits inside residential facilities everywhere, period. Get a greenhouse in coastal areas for petes sake!

    For those who desire not to grow, but buy weed, use a collective dispensary, farmers markets, or direct buy from grower without a middle source liason.



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