By Steve Elliott of Toke of the Town
Despite hundreds of letters urging California lawmakers to support legislation to improve California's marijuana policies, two bills that would have done just that failed to advance out of their respective chambers by Tuesday's deadline.
Although both proposals enjoy strong public support, both were pulled prior to a vote by their sponsors due to a lack of majority support in their respective chambers.
The first bill was AB 1017, introduced by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano. This bill proposed changing the penalty for marijuana cultivation from an automatic felony to a "wobbler" that could be charged as a misdemeanor. AB 1017 received a vote last spring, when it lost 24-36, but it did not garner enough support to pass if it was voted on again.
Although it did not advance, Assemblymember Ammiano should be praised for his consistent support and championing of sensible marijuana policy reform in the Golden State.
The second bill was SB 129, introduced by Sen. Mark Leno and sponsored by Americans for Safe Access (ASA). This bill sought to protect the employment rights of medical marijuana patients.
"Sen. Mark Leno has been a consistent champion for medical marijuana patients' rights, and his efforts on this push are greatly appreciated," said Robert J. Capecchi, legislative analyst with the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). "In addition, a big thank you goes out to ASA for sponsoring this bill."
"With your help, we can and will move the ball forward," Capecchi said. "Please continue to educate your elected officials on the need for sensible marijuana policy reform."
Article From Toke of the Town and republished with special permission.