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Tacoma: Mayor names appointees to medical marijuana task force

Post by Lewis Kamb / The News Tribune on Aug. 29, 2011 at 2:48 pm with 9 Comments »
August 29, 2011 3:36 pm

As we wrote about last week, the city council has established a “medical cannabis task force” to help form regulations for pot dispensaries in the city.

Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland has since named 11 members to the panel. The appointees include:

Laurie Jinkins, Washington state representative and Tacoma Pierce County Health Department deputy director

Stan Rumbaugh, Private practice attorney

Duane Wilkerson, Pierce County AIDS Foundation executive director

Patricia Lecy-Davis, Neighborhood business owner

Dr. Gregory Carter, Physician, Clinical Professor UW School of Medicine

Debbie Regala, Washington State Senator

McKenzie Allen, former police officer and former Citizen Review Panel member

Carol Owens, Safe Streets

Fred Scruggs
, Tacoma Police Department

Dr. Bob Thiessen, oncologist

Don Meridan Medical cannabis patient, operator of Rainier Wellness Center dispensary

In all, the mayor heard from 20 to 25 people who expressed interest in serving on the volunteer committee, city spokesman Rob McNair-Huff said in an email today.

“Members of the task force were chosen based on their expertise, so that the group could have a rounded and informed discussion about the issues surrounding medical cannabis,” McNair-Huff wrote. “So most members are Tacoma residents, but some who bring special expertise to the group are not Tacoma residents.”

The committee’s chairperson has yet to be designated, he added.

Among other things, the new committee is expected by Oct. 15 to provide “balanced feedback and recommendations to the city manager to assist city staff in developing recommendations to the City Council regarding business licensing, health and safety and tax requirements,” according to the council’s resolution authorizing the task force last week.

The panel will also have authority to conduct public outreach upon request of the public safety committee, and will provide “advice and feedback” to the city’s planning commission in development of a “Medical Cannabis Policy Development” land use plan to be forwarded to the council Dec. 29.

Leave a comment Comments → 9
  1. s_tacoma_grouch says:

    I hope they read the News Tribune editorial on this from over the weekend. Untill this drug is legal enforcement should be treated like any other crime.

  2. dster420 says:

    Hey grouch- How is it supposed to “get legal” if no one does anything?

  3. tomwa007 says:

    All the recomendations in the world will do nothing till the state set some rules and they never will.

    Living in Tacama now is like being in Chicago during prohibition.

  4. BigSwingingRichard says:

    Mac Allen has written letters to the editor promoting legalization of drugs. He is as biased as they come. All other members appear are liberals who will recommend continued legalization.

    Our Mayor does not have the stones to tell everyone she supports legalization of marijuana and she wants this panel to do it for her.

  5. Not a SINGLE patient on this panel that is not attached to a dispensary. That’s seems fair. I am a patient. I am an MS patient. I have my own trial attorney that I come with. I challenge the validicy of this committee. You don’t have a single patient that isn’t attached to a dispencary. Brilliant move.

  6. A task force is a joke. Call it as it is…a group of people put together to think of ways to run illegal drugs thats against both federal and state law. Anyone associated with this should be brought up on charges as well as the Queen and her Court!!!

  7. Say, bigswinging, if you don’t like the make up of the committee, then why wasn’t your name submitted? You’ve obviously got time on your hands.
    MASO: brought up on charges for what, excessive community awareness?
    laika72, if that is indeed the case, then I agree wholeheartedly. They should not be there if they have a financial interest. I’m sick of the side effects of narcotics and if cannabis works, I wouldn’t mind giving it a try.

  8. I think at least one cancer patient should be on this task force.

  9. BigSwingingRichard says: “Mac Allen has written letters to the editor promoting legalization of drugs. He is as biased as they come. All other members appear are liberals who will recommend continued legalization.”

    Mac Allen has written what I and others have long realized–that prohibitionist fears are preventing safe access and will continue to do so: “Because it [cannabis used medicinally] has been stymied by pressure exerted on the federal government by groups prejudiced against the use of marijuana for any reason. This taboo is a throwback to the days of the film “Reefer Madness” (cue the scary music).”

    Mac Allen also wrote that, “Reasonable people can engage in cogent debate regarding the legalization, regulation and control topic.”

    Sounds like Mac Allen is a reasonable choice for a committee charged with solving a problem.

    The BigSwingingRichard also wrote: “Our Mayor does not have the stones to tell everyone she supports legalization of marijuana and she wants this panel to do it for her.”

    If the mayor does support legalization, she is in good company with the sponsors of I-502 which includes Seattle City Attorney, Pete Holmes, John McKay, a law professor at Seattle University and former federal prosecutor; retired public health physician, Kim Marie Thorburn, MD, MPH; Roger A. Roffman, professor emeritus of the UW School of Social Work and world expert on substance abuse, and Salvador A. Mungia and Mark Johnson, past presidents of the Washington State Bar Association.

    What is it that their years of professional experience taught them that has led them to form New Approach Washington and call for the reform of our current marijuana laws? Inquiring minds will want to know. Those with closed minds will react differently…

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