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Griffin Perea and Ashley Worth, from the Central Valley Water Quality Control Board speak before the public in Quincy on Nov. 14. Perea and Worth answered questions from the audience on how medical marijuana permitting has gone in test areas of California so far. Photos by Steve Wathen

Marijuana landscape after Proposition 64

Griffin Perea and Ashley Worth, from the Central Valley Water Quality Control Board speak before the public in Quincy on Nov. 14. Perea and Worth answered questions from the audience on how medical marijuana permitting has gone in test areas of California so far. Photos by Steve Wathen
Griffin Perea and Ashley Worth, from the Central Valley Water Quality Control Board speak before the public in Quincy on Nov. 14. Perea and Worth answered questions from the audience on how medical marijuana permitting has gone in test areas of California so far. Photos by Steve Wathen

California voters approved Proposition 64, the legalization of recreational marijuana use. But its passage has left more questions than answers. The Plumas County Board of Supervisors has held numerous meetings on the topic and formed a cannabis working group to address many of the issues being raised.

Following are some of the questions that have surfaced:

Q: What did Proposition 64 accomplish?

A: Proposition 64 made it legal for people over 21 to consume cannabis (marijuana).

Q: So can I go out now and buy marijuana?

A: Only if you are a registered medical marijuana user.

Q: So when can I buy marijuana for recreational use?

A: The legal buying and selling of marijuana for recreational use will not begin until January 2018 and perhaps even longer.

Q: So if Proposition 64 says I can consume marijuana for recreational purposes, how am I supposed to get it?

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Lieutenant Dewayne Little from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife interacts with the public in Quincy on Nov. 14. Little noted that nearly all of the most egregious environmental damage is being caused by out-of-state gangs or entrepreneurs here to make a lot of money quickly. Local cannabis growers are usually eager to comply with environmental laws because they live here.

A: Proposition 64 allows each residence with adults to grow up to six cannabis plants. If there is more than one person over 21 living in the residence, together they still only grow six plants.

That person or persons can give away some of the cannabis from those plants to their friends. However they are not allowed to sell it.

No one is legally allowed to possess more than one ounce of recreational cannabis at any one time.

Q: Where can we smoke or ingest marijuana?

A: Only in private, you are not allowed to consume marijuana in public, especially around minors.

Eventually there will be public places where you can consume marijuana, similar to what we have now for alcohol.

Q. So what is the State of California doing to make the sale of recreational marijuana legal?

A. The State of California, counties, towns, and the medical marijuana industry are actually still trying to catch up with the legalization of medical marijuana in 1996.

The submission of applications for permits to produce and distribute medical marijuana is expected to begin statewide in Jan. 2017.

It is likely the regulations for growing and selling recreational marijuana will be similar to those regulations that are currently being finalized for medical marijuana.

Q. What is Plumas County doing to prepare for the legalization of marijuana?

A: Before individuals or organizations can apply for a state permit to produce or distribute medical marijuana, and eventually recreational marijuana, they will need a county permit.

The Plumas County Board of Supervisors set up the Cannabis Working Group to hopefully reach some kind of consensus between cannabis growers and the public on how the marijuana industry should operate in Plumas County.

The audience listens Nov. 14 as representatives from state agencies discuss their experience with permitting of medical marijuana activities in test areas of California and how the state locates marijuana fields and then seeks legal compliance with growers.
The audience listens Nov. 14 as representatives from state agencies discuss their experience with permitting of medical marijuana activities in test areas of California and how the state locates marijuana fields and then seeks legal compliance with growers.

All development activities, including cannabis-related activities, have to comply with the Plumas County General Plan — a countywide land use plan.

The Cannabis Working Group is currently looking at the General Plan to assess what land use zones currently allow various aspects of the medical marijuana industry to take place within them.

This includes growing, processing, testing, transporting and distributing marijuana.

The General Plan will probably have to be changed somewhat to address the environmental, economic and quality of life issues presented by the growing and distributing of marijuana in Plumas County.


Plumas County marijuana planning efforts

Anyone is allowed to attend and give testimony at both the Board of Supervisors and Cannabis Working Group meetings.

Meeting agendas, past testimony before the Board of Supervisors or the Cannabis Working Group, and other information on the regulation of marijuana in Plumas County, can be found at plumascoca.suiteonemedia.com/web/site.aspx.

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