Grass Valley, CA – The Coalition for Cannabis Policy Reform held its seventh “listening session” as initiative organizers continued their state-wide tour of meetings intended to gather input from California’s marijuana industry stakeholders in advance of a 2016 ballot initiative to legalize the cultivation, retail sale, and adult use of cannabis in the nation’s most populous state.  To make the 2016 ballot, the initiative language is due in the California Secretary of State’s office this summer, and so would begin the protracted and costly process of gathering the required number of signatures and subsequent state-wide political campaign.  Organizers estimate the price-tag to get the measure on the ballot and win on election day to be upward of 20 million dollars.  Dale Sky JonesDale Gieringer and Kristin Nevedal facilitated the meeting held in the Nevada County Horsemen Clubhouse in scenic Grass Valley, CA on March 10, 2015.  Roughly 100 people attended.  Below are recordings of four interviews conducted by MJPM’s Brian Bahouth and other comments made during the proceedings …

 

Interviews:

 

Dale Sky Jones is the Executive Chancellor of Oaksterdam University and Chairwoman of the Coalition for Cannabis Policy Reform … (9:03) …

 

Dale Gieringer has been the state coordinator of California NORML since 1987.  He is also Vice-Chairman of the national NORML board of directors and Treasurer of the Coalition for Cannabis Policy Reform … (4:20) …

 

Basil McMahon – Nevada County chapter of the Emerald Growers Association … (3:44) …

 

Johnathan – Nevada County resident talks about the challenges of bringing growers together under a legal structure … (2:31) …

 

Introductory Comments

Dale Sky Jones describes the goals of the listening sessions and the challenges of writing a winning initiative and building the coalition necessary to successfully support the measure at the polls …  (5:38) …

 

Dale Gieringer speaks about the political context of a 2016 legalization initiative and the aims of the listening sessions and initiative drafting process … (9:28) …

 

Kristin Nevedal tells the story of how growers in Humboldt County organized over time and how the failed Prop 19 initiative sowed the seeds of the coalition now forming in support of a 2016 legalization effort … interesting and important oral history … (14:30) …

 

Basil McMahon is a member of the newly formed Nevada County chapter of the Emerald Growers Association.  In this audio clip he describes the plan to work with regional governments and cannabis farmers in support of legalization and legitimacy as an above-board industry … (5:27) …

 

Darren Ferguson used to work for the United Food and Commercial Workers Union and represented cannabis industry workers.  In this audio clip, Mr Ferguson speaks about the battle over the medical cannabis ban in Yuba County and encouraged all California cannabis activists to work together in opposition to bans … (5:01) …