The current state of Cannabis on the northcoast as viewed by a prominent local citizen

Denver Harold Nelson is a neurosurgeon from Eureka California who has severed on many boards and commissions; he is a very active community member. Denver is a well-respected member of the community. It’s his standing and respect in the community that makes this editorial so interesting and we have to say, “pretty spot on.”

I moved to this area from Alaska over 40 years ago to practice neurosurgery. The natural beauty of this area, the exceptional opportunity for outdoor recreation and the people here made this an ideal place to raise a family. The excellent medical community needed a neurosurgeon.

I decided to invest in timberland for my retirement. My family and I enjoyed working and recreating on our timber lands. We planted thousands of trees, did pre-commercial and commercial thinning. We did not grow marijuana but I had neighbors and patients who did and educated me about marijuana. They were “back to the land” people who bought rural properties. Many of them grew marijuana for extra income; the price was $3,000 per pound, so they didn’t need to grow a lot of plants.

Some growers went to Afghanistan and other exotic areas around the world to get better strains of marijuana which they brought back to breed. The potency got much higher and Humboldt County became known for the marijuana that was grown here. The lawless off-the-grid rural areas allowed easier marijuana growth. Greed prompted many to come to this area to become part of the marijuana culture. The original mom-and-pop way of life was transformed to a lawless illegal generator of huge amounts of crime and cash. The cash trickled down to legitimate businesses and infiltrated the morals and income of most of the citizens of Humboldt County. Many students came to HSU to get the good dope.

When I was on the planning commission about 10 years ago, we received a presentation about the economic sectors of Humboldt County. Marijuana was not mentioned. By this time there were many people growing marijuana on a large scale. I pointed out that growing dope was $1 billion-a-year industry in Humboldt County but was told that since it was illegal, it was not part of Humboldt’s economic plan. The Planning Department and most Humboldt County citizens were not aware of the magnitude of marijuana production.

Marijuana has evolved from a recreational drug to a medicine. From a physician’s point of view, I was always concerned about the dose and the purity of marijuana that was produced. I suggested that HSU would be an ideal place to study these questions in a scientific manner. Unfortunately, HSU set up sociological studies of interrelationships of neighboring marijuana growers instead of studying the scientific aspects of marijuana.

Now mom-and-pop growers in the hills are second or third-generation families who wanted legalization. They got it and now are subject to the permits, bureaucracy and fees imposed by government regulators. The Water Board and Fish and Wildlife bureaucrats are busy imposing fines and chopping down marijuana plants because of the grower’s lack of permits. The County Planning Department and County Planning Commission along with the Board of Supervisors spend the majority of their time dealing with the intricacies of marijuana regulations. And, not to be outdone, four state marijuana bureaucracies have recently taken over half of the Times-Standard building.

And how are we doing? It appears to me that the marijuana- generated fees are needed to pay for the bureaucracy to collect it. Drive to Petrolia or Alderpoint and see how the roads are being improved with the marijuana proceeds. Some of my old marijuana growing friends have reverted to outlaw grows and sales because they can’t afford to grow legally.

The final straw for me was the recent publication in the Redheaded Blackbelt of the alleged scheme of Emanoel Borisov, age 28, Paul Brooks, age 34, and Evgeni Kopankovv to come to Humboldt County to steal $ 3 million in cash from Ivan Iliev at his alleged grow site. The FBI became aware of this plot when a private jet landed in Arcata with $2 million in cash which was seized by the FBI. The confusing plot is related to large marijuana grows and the foreign “agents” imported here because of the ease of growing at marijuana “farms “ that produce millions in cash. The marijuana industry has ruined our way of life. Let them be gone.

I did not come here 40 years ago to grow marijuana or amass huge volumes of cash. I came here because of the magnificent citizens and the natural beauty of the area; mountains, redwood trees, beautiful rivers filled with anadromous fish, splendid ocean and beaches and the world’s best grasslands for raising beef and dairy cattle. These attractions are still here and hopefully will remain after the departure of the criminal marijuana culture.

Denver Nelson resides in Eureka.

From the Times-Standard


Sick and tired of the State of California’s failure to regulate cannabis effectively

Here’s your chance to vent!

The Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC) today announced the upcoming opening of its North Coast Regional Office in Eureka. The office is officially scheduled to open on Monday, July 2 at 8 a.m. Humboldt County Courthouse, 825 Fifth Street, Room 130, Eureka, CA

The office will serve as a temporary location until the Bureau’s permanent office opens later this year.

“The opening of this office allows us to provide greater service to our applicants and licensees in the North Coast Region,” BCC Chief Lori Ajax said. “And while work remains to be done on our permanent location in Eureka, this is a significant first step.”

We encourage you to pay them a visit and let them know how you REALLY feel about this freakin’ corrupt environmental debacle.

Jeff Sessions has a new “after harvest” vacation spot picked out for you


Hey wait! I thought you said this was a discount flight to Cabo

On Thursday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions gave the green light to the continued use of privately run prisons, even though the Obama administration had moved to phase them out as no longer necessary given the declining prison population. Sessions said in a memo that the last administration went against long-standing Justice Department policy and practice and “impaired the Bureau’s ability to meet the future needs of the federal correctional system.”

On the same day, the White House suggested he’d more aggressively go after marijuana.

“It’s pretty safe to say that most people assume that the Sessions Justice Department is likely to scale back some of the reforms that were implemented under the Obama administration,” said Nancy La Vigne, director of the justice policy center at the Urban Institute. Sessions, who said last year that “good people don’t smoke marijuana,” warned at his January confirmation hearing that illegal drugs were bringing “violence, addiction and misery” to America, and he pledged to dismantle drug trafficking gangs.

He did sponsor legislation to reduce sentencing disparities between powder and crack cocaine — a gap seen as disadvantaging black defendants. But last year, Sessions opposed bipartisan criminal justice overhaul efforts and has said that eliminating or reducing mandatory minimum sentences weakens the ability of law enforcement to protect the public.

That focus on drug crimes surfaced in the 1980s when Sessions served as United States attorney for the Southern District of Alabama. Drug cases accounted for 40 percent of his office’s convictions, according to a Brennan Center analysis, with Sessions overseeing the prosecution of defendants, including Key West, Florida, residents who smuggled marijuana into Alabama aboard a shrimp boat.

Tougher enforcement of drug laws could be welcomed by some law enforcement officials, including Justice Department prosecutors who felt hamstrung in recent years in their ability to seek long sentences.

from Washington Post and AP

Uncle Jefferson Beauregard Sessions jr wants you 



The real losers in Trump’s new war on weed……………cops


Thursday, White House press secretary Sean Spicer indicated the federal government would start cracking down on recreational marijuana. Spicer’s statement reflects Department of Justice head Jeff Sessions’ stated views on pot—in several Congressional hearings, the former Senator denounced legalization and (wrongly) linked the drug to heroin addiction. Still, yesterday’s press conference may have come as an unnerving surprise to legal pot advocates, who’d hoped the industry’s profitability would shield it from the federal government in states where it’s legal.

“Trump seems insistent on throwing the marijuana market underground, wiping out tax-paying jobs and eliminating billions of dollars in taxes,” Ethan Nadelmann, the Director of the Drug Policy Alliance, said in a statement. “As for connecting marijuana to the legal opioid crisis, Spicer has it exactly backwards. Greater access to marijuana has actually led to declines in opioid use, overdoses and other problems.”


But there’s another group, which the administration claims to have great respect for that loses out any time the drug war is ramped up: cops.

Lori Chassee, a retired criminal investigator who worked outside of Chicago, tells Raw Story that based on her experience, not only is policing marijuana a colossal waste of time and energy, it actually decreases public safety and puts police in danger.

“If you’ve got someone fearful of arrest and of prosecution, they might get desperate and that does put officers in a higher risk position,” Chassee says. “Beyond that, leaving the distribution of drugs in the criminal element is going to present a danger to public and police officers.”

She points out that legalization leads to a drop in violence associated with illegal drugs, since profitable black markets give people the incentive to “kill and die,” Chassee says. “Anything  we can do to minimize that makes us all safer.”

But the drug war has collateral damage far beyond the physical violence manifesting in places in places like Chicago, which the President has pledged to make safer.

Chassee, who now speaks on behalf of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, decided she was finished with the drug war after participating in an undercover operation targeting a marijuana dealer. He was their main target, she says—problem was, he was savvy enough to send his young girlfriend to make the sales, so in the end the large scale bust brought down a young mother. The state took her child away and she went to prison.

“To this day I don’t know if she was ever reconnected with her child,” Chassee says.  “So who’s paying the biggest penalty here? She is, for love of a dirtbag. This just isn’t right.”


NCRWQCB finally moves on widespread violations in Trinity Pines

More than 750 of these letters have been sent to the property owners of the Trinity Pines subdivision in southern Trinity County


January 27, 2017


xxxxxxxxx ca, 955xx


Dear XX:


 This Letter Contains Legal Directives That Must Be Followed

Please Read This Letter Carefully

 Failure To Respond May Result In Fines

 You are receiving this letter because, based on information currently available to the California Regional Water Quality Control Board, North Coast Region (“North Coast Regional Water Board or Regional Water Board”), you own a parcel in Trinity County that is identified below and subject to Order No. 2015-0023 Waiver of Waste Discharge Requirements for Discharges of Waste Resulting from Cannabis Cultivation and Associated Activities or Operations with Similar Environmental Effects in the North Coast Region (“Order”).  Please read this letter carefully and respond within 35 calendar days from the date of this letter.   Failure to respond could subject you to Administrative Civil Liability for up to $1,000 per day for each day the response is late.

The Order, adopted on August 13, 2015, regulates the discharge of waste associated with the cultivation of cannabis and/or other operations with similar environmental effects on private lands in the North Coast Region.  The Order applies to all private properties in the North Coast Region upon which cannabis is being cultivated and requires that, as of February 15, 2016, any parcel with a cumulative area of cannabis cultivation that comprises an area of 2,000 square feet or more must enroll for coverage under and comply with the requirements of the Order to avoid the need to file a report of waste discharge and obtain individual waste discharge requirements.  Non-cannabis operations with similar environmental effects[1] and sites with less than 2,000 square feet of cannabis where there is a threat to water quality are also subject to the requirements of the Order.  Operations with less than 2,000 square feet of cannabis where there is no threat to water quality are not subject to the requirements of the Order.

Based on review of available information, including available aerial imagery, it appears that that cannabis cultivation (or operations with similar environmental effects) may have been or may be occurring on your parcel(s) listed below and may be subject to the Order:




If you and/or a tenant(s), lessee(s), or other occupant(s) of the parcel cumulatively cultivate 2,000 square feet or more of cannabis, then the parcel must be enrolled for coverage under and comply with the Order.  The Order addresses the discharge of waste from parcels developed and/or used for the cultivation of cannabis and associated activities, or operations with similar environmental effects, and is intended to protect both groundwater and surface water.  Wastes discharged from lands where cultivation and associated activities occur or have occurred may include sediment, fertilizers, pesticides, petroleum products and other chemicals, cultivation-related waste, refuse, and human waste.  Parcels developed and/or used for cannabis cultivation or operations with similar environmental effects may include graded areas, exposed and erodible soils, unpaved roads and driveways, stream crossings, and legacy sources of sediment discharges to surface waters.  Sediment entering or deliverable to watercourses from human-caused sources is considered a discharge of waste and is among the primary pollutants impacting the health of north coast streams.  The Order requires, in part, that owners/operators of parcels subject to the Order take steps to control sources of sediment discharge on their properties.
Legal Authority and Grounds for Issuing the Directive Order


Increased cultivation throughout the North Coast Region has resulted in significant waste discharges and a loss of instream flows as a result of the improper development of rural landscapes and the diversion of springs and streams.  These activities have the potential to result in impacts to water resources, including discharges of waste to receiving waters and the cumulative detriment of beneficial uses of water that depend on surface water, water quality and ground water resources.  Landowners are responsible for discharges of waste and water resource impacts both from recent as well as from past or legacy development/features on the properties that they own.

Water Code section 13260 states, in relevant part:

(a) All of the following persons shall file with the appropriate regional board a report of the discharge, containing the information which may be required by the regional board:

(1) Any person discharging waste, or proposing to discharge waste, within any region that could affect the quality of the waters of the state, other than into a community sewer system.

Regional Water Board staff recently reviewed aerial imagery of the parcel(s) identified above and observed what appears to be cannabis cultivation and/or areas prepared for cannabis cultivation, or operations with similar environmental effects.  Accordingly, you must respond to this Directive Letter within 35 calendar days from the date of this letter.

Under California Water Code section 13261, failing to submit a report of waste discharge when required by the Regional Water Board may result in the Regional Water Board assessing an administrative civil liability against you.  Administrative civil liability can run as high as $1,000 per day for every day the report is late.

Required Action

In order to comply with this legal directive, within 35 calendar days from the date of this letter, the North Coast Regional Water Board requires that you do one of the following:

  • Demonstrate that the Order does not apply to the subject parcel(s), either because there is no cultivation or other similar operation occurring, or because the operations that are occurring are not subject to the Order. The Order does not apply to any parcel with a cumulative area of cannabis cultivation of less than 2,000 square feet and where there is no potential for discharge of waste.  Provide a written response explaining your non-applicability (with all supporting documentation including photos if necessary) to the address provided below.  Regional Water Board staff may contact you to verify your response.


  • Provide proof of enrollment under the Order. If you have received a confirmation letter from the Regional Water Board it will contain a California Integrated Water Quality System Waste Discharger Identification number (CIWQS WDID Number).  Please provide the CIWQS WDID Number assigned to you as proof of enrollment.  Otherwise, please submit a copy of your Notice of Intent or have the third party you are enrolled through contact the Regional Water Board.


  • Enroll the property under the Order. If choosing this option, you must submit a completed Notice of Intent[2] (NOI) and the applicable reporting information2 with the first year’s annual fee[3] to the Regional Water Board or enroll through a third party and provide proof of enrollment to the Regional Water Board.


  • File a Report of Waste Discharge in order to obtain individual Waste Discharge Requirements (WDRs) specific to your property.


Please submit the appropriate documents2 and payments3 to:


North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board

Attn: Connor McIntee

Cannabis Waste Discharge Regulatory Program

5550 Skylane Boulevard, Suite A

Santa Rosa, CA 95403


5)   If you no longer own or operate the parcel(s) identified above, you still need to respond to this Directive Letter with a written explanation of the circumstance.  If you have sold the property, please provide a written response explaining when and to whom you sold the property (with any supporting documents) and his/her name and contact information to the aforementioned address.  If the property is operated by a lessee, please provide the name and contact information of the lessee.  Please be aware that Regional Water Board staff may contact you to verify supporting information you have provided.


Additional Water Rights Obligations 


Water diversion and use matters are the responsibility of the State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board), Division of Water Rights (Division).  Cannabis Cultivators will be required to be in compliance with applicable water rights laws prior to being issued a license to cultivate from the Department of Food and Agriculture as required by the Medical Marijuana Regulations and Safety Act (Assembly Bill 243, Assembly Bill 266 and Senate Bill 643).


The procedures for obtaining a water right or documenting that a water right already exists are available at:


In addition, all diverters claiming riparian or other basis of right (other than existing water right permit, license or registration) are required to record their water use with the Division.  The forms to file a Statement are available at:


You may also want to review the list of Frequently Asked Questions and additional information found at: .


If you have any water rights questions that have not been addressed using the websites listed above, you may contact the Division at (916) 341-5300.


For general information about the North Coast Regional Water Board’s Cannabis Cultivation Regulatory Program, including Order R1-2015-0023 enrollment and program information and resources, please visit:


Finally, staff from the North Coast Regional Water Board will be holding a meeting at the Trinity County Fairgrounds, located at 6000 CA-3, Hayfork, CA 96041 on Tuesday, February 21st, from 2-5 pm to provide information about the cannabis Order and to address any questions. Additionally, on Wednesday, February 22nd from 8:30-4pm, staff will be available at the Fairgrounds to provide One on One help in filling out the Notice of Intent and applicable reporting information. Staff will hold a second informational meeting and provide enrollment assistance in Eureka, on Thursday, February 23rd from 8:30 to 4 pm, at the Wharfinger Building, located at 1 Marina Way, Eureka, CA 95501.


If you have any questions or require any information regarding this matter, please contact Connor McIntee at (707) 576-2499 or via email at or Kason Grady at (707)576-2682 or via email at If you speak Hmong as your native language, and would feel more comfortable speaking in your native tongue, you may call 707-576-2676 and leave a message with your name, phone number, and email address if you have one. The Regional Water Board has engaged an interpreter to respond to calls of this nature at regular intervals, as interpretation resources allow.


We appreciate your cooperation in this matter, and we look forward to working with you to help protect natural resources and improve water quality throughout the North Coast Region.








Shin-Roei Lee

Assistant Executive Officer




Certified-Return Receipt Request



[1] Operations with similar environmental effects include agricultural operations that are not otherwise subject to existing agricultural permits or those in development.

[2] The Enrollment Notice of Intent Form can be found in Appendix A of the Order (Order 2015-0023). The reporting information required for the Monitoring and Reporting Program can be found in Appendix C of the Order. Appendix A and Appendix C are available online at

[3] Please make checks payable to the State Water Resources Control Board. The fee schedule for enrollment under the Order is available online at

The Coming War on Legal Cannibis


Trump and his rabid pick for US Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions


There’s little to stop the attorney general nominee Jeff Sessions from ignoring the will of millions of pro-pot voters.

By James Higdon, Politico

On Election Day, eight states voted to legalize recreational or medical marijuana, bringing the nationwide total of medical states to 29. In Florida, medical marijuana won nearly 2 million more votes than Donald Trump. Added up, 65 million people now live in states that authorize adult recreational use; more than half of all Americans have access to medical marijuana; and almost everyone else lives in a state that permits CBD, a non-psychoactive component of cannabis that helps treatment of juvenile epilepsy. It’s easier now to identify the six states that have done nothing to end the prohibition on marijuana than the ones that are breaking away from the federal law that treats marijuana the same as heroin.


There was another winner on November 8, however, and he has thrown up a serious challenge to the seemingly inexorable march of legal marijuana. By nominating Senator Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III for attorney general, President-elect Donald J. Trump is about to put into the nation’s top law enforcement job a man with a long and antagonistic attitude toward marijuana. As a U.S. Attorney in Alabama in the 1980s, Sessions said he thought the KKK “were OK until I found out they smoked pot.” In April, he said, “Good people don’t smoke marijuana,” and that it was a “very real danger” that is “not the kind of thing that ought to be legalized.” Sessions, who turns 70 on Christmas Eve, has called marijuana reform a “tragic mistake” and criticized FBI Director James Comey and Attorneys General Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch for not vigorously enforcing a the federal prohibition that President Obama has called “untenable over the long term.” In a floor speech earlier this year, Senator Sessions said: “You can’t have the President of the United States of America talking about marijuana like it is no different than taking a drink… It is different….It is already causing a disturbance in the states that have made it legal.”

Sessions has not shared his plans on marijuana enforcement, but if he chooses, he will be able to act decisively and quickly—more so perhaps than with any other of his top agenda items such as re-doubling efforts to combat illegal immigration and relaxing oversight of local police forces and federal civil rights laws. With little more than the stroke of his own pen, the new attorney general will be able to arrest growers, retailers and users, defying the will of more than half the nation’s voters, including those in his own state who approved the use of CBD. Aggressive enforcement could cause chaos in a $6.7 billion industry that is already attracting major investment from Wall Street hedge funds and expected to hit $21.8 billion by 2020.


And so far, Congress has shown no interest in trying to stop the Sessions nomination, at least on this issue. Even members who are in favor of protecting states from federal interference on the marijuana issue have said they support Sessions’ confirmation as attorney general: “I strongly support Jeff Sessions as Attorney General,” said Representative Tom McClintock, Republican from California. “He is a strict constitutionalist who believes in the rule of law. I would expect that he will respect the prerogative of individual states to determine their own laws involving strictly intra-state commerce.”


Meanwhile, proponents of legalization across the country are panicking as they reckon with how quickly a Reagan-era throwback in the attorney general’s office will be able to dismantle more than a decade of progress.


“If we don’t take action and hold President-elect Trump accountable,” said Representative Jared Polis, Democrat from Colorado, “in one fell swoop, the federal government could damage state economies, and discourage entrepreneurship—placing some of our innovators behind bars, all while eroding states’ rights.”


Green rush imperils Pacific Fisher


We’re glad to see EPIC, who’s been taking a very permissive stance on Commercial Cannabis production, try to balance the scales at least a little bit here:

Center for Biological Diversity, Environmental Protection Information Center, Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center and Sierra Forest Legacy; represented by Earthjustice filed suit in U.S. District Court challenging the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s unexpected decision in April to deny Endangered Species Act protection to Pacific fishers. Closely related to minks, martens and wolverines, Pacific fishers are severely threatened by logging, use of toxic rodenticides by illegal marijuana growers and incidental capture in fur traps. Although the Service proposed federal protection for the fisher in 2014, the agency reversed course and withdrew the proposal in 2016 even though the fisher’s poor status remained largely the same.

The decision to deny protections to the Pacific fisher is the latest in a string of politically motivated decisions from the Fish and Wildlife Service, in which regional staff overruled decisions by Service biologists to protect species. In December 2015 conservation groups filed a lawsuit against the Service for inexplicably denying protection to Humboldt martens, another rare West Coast carnivore on the brink of extinction. In April 2016 a federal judge in Montana criticized the Service for bowing to political pressure in illegally reversing a proposal to protect the estimated 300 wolverines remaining in the lower 48 states. And in June the groups filed notice of their intent to bring today’s suit against the Service over its failure to protect the Pacific fisher.

“We first petitioned for protection of fishers more than 20 years ago,” said Noah Greenwald, endangered species director at the Center for Biological Diversity. “It’s a travesty that after finally acknowledging the precarious status of the fisher in 2014, the Fish and Wildlife Service bowed to the timber industry and declined to protect these beautiful carnivores.”

Fishers once roamed from British Columbia to Southern California, but due to intense logging and trapping, only two native populations survive today: a population of as few as 100 fishers in the southern Sierra Nevada and another small population in the coastal mountains of southwestern Oregon and northwestern California. Fishers have also been recently reintroduced in the northern Sierra, southern Cascades and Washington state, but it is unknown whether these new populations are sustainable.

“Science, not politics, should determine whether a species deserves protection,” said Tom Wheeler, program director at the Environmental Protection Information Center. “We are excited for our day in court to show that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service bent over backwards to appease industry interests that would prefer the fisher go extinct.”

The Center for Biological Diversity first petitioned to protect the fisher in 1994, and again in 2000, along with the three other groups on the lawsuit filed today. Rather than provide protection, the Service added the fisher to a candidate list in 2004. In 2011 the Center reached a settlement agreement with the Service requiring a protection decision for the fisher in 2014, when it was proposed for protection as a “threatened” species. But the Service abruptly withdrew its proposed rule in April of this year.

“It’s gotten to the point where no amount of scientific evidence is ever enough for the Fish and Wildlife Service,” said Earthjustice attorney Greg Loarie, who filed the lawsuit on behalf of the conservation groups. “At the rate we’re going now, Pacific fishers will be extinct and the Service will still be debating the extent to which the species can survive in a clearcut.”

“The Klamath-Siskiyou Mountains have the potential to be a key refuge for this imperiled species, yet the BLM recently committed itself to a land-management plan that dramatically increases logging and road building throughout Pacific fisher habitat. Without protections from the Endangered Species Act federal timber planners may drive this rare species into extinction,” said George Sexton, conservation director for the Klamath Siskiyou Wildlands Center.