politics - Page 3

Canadian Mental Health Association Releases Report on Legalization

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MARIJUANA POLITICS – The News Source For an Informed Citizenry Post by Amber Iris Langston

Under Justin Trudeau’s leadership, Canada is preparing for a fully regulated, adult-legal cannabis market, beginning in July 2018. On Monday, August 14, the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) Ontario issued a report entitled “Cannabis Legalization and Regulation” meant to give guidance to Canadian legislators regarding next year’s roll out. As one might expect, the mental health community is rallying around an approach to policy that views cannabis through a public health lens.

As a result, the report advises a couple of somewhat controversial recommendations, which may please some supporters of prohibition on one hand, and upset them on the other.

First, the CMHA Ontario identifies driving-under-the-influence of cannabis as the issue of greatest concern for public safety in a legalization scenario. However, the organization recognizes the scientific truth that testing of impairment for cannabis remains inaccurate, and therefore cannot be used as a truthful measure for gauging driver safety. As a result, the CMHA Ontario recommends a zero-tolerance policy for driving and cannabis use:

“Because the technology to detect an individual’s level of impairment due to cannabis is still in development at this time, CMHA Ontario recommends a zero-tolerance policy for cannabis consumption in any motorized vehicle in order to ensure road safety during this time of transition. A zero-tolerance policy would include both the driver of the motorized vehicle, as well as any passengers in the car. It is important that a clear message be sent to the public as soon as possible regarding zero tolerance for impaired driving due to cannabis use.”

Interestingly, the CMHA Ontario has taken an alternative approach to youth access of cannabis. In a move that runs counter to what most US citizens would think wise, the Cannabis Legalization and Regulation report actually recommends a minimum legal age of purchase to be 19 years:

“Frequent cannabis use can harm a developing brain and there is no evidence that supports a specific age when cannabis use is safe for young people. However, there are concerns that a higher minimum age may contribute to young people accessing cannabis from illegal sources. Establishing a higher minimum age standard will be less effective in undermining the black market, and may leave youth both criminalized and reliant on it.”

The report also recommends a mandatory public health training similar to workers in the food service industry and development of a regulatory “cannabis control board”.

The politics of cannabis legalization are playing out on the international field, and governmental agencies are coming up with new and interesting approaches to regulation. Canada has certainly shown itself a leader in its experimentation with cannabis laws, and will likely continue as a trend-setter in the future.

Keep informed of all that is happening across the globe when it comes to cannabis! Join experts and business leaders from around the world converging for the International Cannabis Business Conference, December 1-3, 2017 on the tropical paradise of Kauai, Hawaii. Get tickets now!

The post Canadian Mental Health Association Releases Report on Legalization appeared first on MARIJUANA POLITICS.

German Cannabis Supporters Join 2017 Hanfparade

MARIJUANA POLITICS – The News Source For an Informed Citizenry Post by Amber Iris Langston

Despite a little cold and rainy weather, a great crowd turned out this year for the 21st annual Berlin Hanfparade (or “Hemp Parade”) last Saturday, August 12th.

According to Michael Knodt, writer for Marijuana.com and speaker at the April 2017 International Cannabis Business Conference in Berlin, the turnout for this year’s event was brimming with enthusiasm for the future of cannabis in Germany:

“An estimated 2,000 participants joined the 2017 Hanfparade, proudly marching through the streets of Berlin under the motto “Breiter kommt weiter” (“The wider our range, the bigger our progress”). Even with attendance slightly down from last year’s event — the largest German legalization demonstration to date — the mood was electric and the event set a colorful, loud, and hopeful sign for the legalization of cannabis in an influential European nation.

“…Accompanied by booming basses of music, loud slogans, and many creative posters, the participants walked passed the Chancellery and the German Bundestag on their course toward the Federal Ministry of Health, where a small stopover took place. Directly in front of the seat of the outgoing German Drug Czar Marlene Mortler, the well-known youth judge Andreas Müller explained the dangerous context between cannabis prohibition, false prevention strategies and the steadily increasing number of cannabis offenders among the younger generation.

“…Onlookers had trouble escaping the contagiously positive mood radiating from the demonstration, many smiling faces could be seen in the surrounding trucks and cars. The legalization movement is becoming mainstream — the common goal of the end of prohibition and the release of cannabis has slowly become visible on the German capital’s horizon.”

There is certainly great momentum for sensible cannabis law reform in Germany as the economic powerhouse has seen its medical law liberalized as several cities have well-established political movements examining how they may be able to follow in the footsteps of Amsterdam and allow cannabis commerce among all adults. Not only is it great for Germany that cannabis legalization is on the horizon, but also for the rest of Europe as Germany’s influence reverberates well beyond its borders. It is certainly an exciting time for the cannabis community across the globe and we will undoubtedly see many  positive laws and policies enacted in the coming months and years.

So what will be the state of cannabis in Europe’s largest country over the next year? Leading cannabis experts agree, the best (and most rockin’) way to learn, is to join them at the International Cannabis Business Conference in Berlin, Germany, April 12 & 13, 2018. Get your tickets for Berlin and Kauai now to lock in early bird prices!

The post German Cannabis Supporters Join 2017 Hanfparade appeared first on MARIJUANA POLITICS.

THE CURIOUS CASE OF JACOB DANIELS

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There aren’t many people who can say they work at the upper echelons of politics. That they participate in local politics. That they own their own law firm. That they represent notable clients throughout the State. That they are an equity partner in a recently launched research firm (that has already nabbed big clients). That they work remotely at a Washington, D.C. consulting firm from their office across the country in Creswell, Oregon, or as Jacob Daniels would prefer, from his couch in Creswell, Oregon.

jacobdaniels1

Not many people do these things. But if they do, they certainly don’t do them at the same time, and if they are doing them at the same time, they don’t do it all by the age of 30…, unless you are Jacob Daniels.

Daniels is a friend of mine, and although I have always enjoyed watching him energetically operate, I never thought that it was newsworthy.

But last week I saw Daniels’ name appear in the news on three different fronts: On the cover of The Oregonian regarding a large political operation; both the Register-Guard and The Eugene Daily News reported that Daniels has been recently retained in a high-profile manslaughter case; and oddly enough, a ballot measure that Daniels had written in his hometown of Creswell had failed, receiving 44 percent of the vote.

Sure, sometimes I see Daniels on the news giving a legal opinion or talking about politics, but that’s just Daniels, he is always out there trying to get something done.

But it seems like this guy is in a real hurry to get things done.

Depending on what side you are on, you either think that Daniels is doing the Lord’s work, or you think he is the Devil. But regardless, he gets things done. I know, because I have been watching my friend for a long time.

Daniels is very proud that he attended Tulane Law School. You don’t have to spend much time with him before you hear from him that he went to Tulane. To some people, it comes across as arrogant. But if you know Daniels, you know that he is just a guy born in Cottage Grove, Oregon who can’t believe he has a seat at the table.

Following his graduation from Tulane Law School, Daniels returned home to work as the Deputy Research Director to former NBA star Chris Dudley’s 2010 campaign for Oregon Governor. On election night it looked like Dudley was going to become Oregon’s next Governor, but by morning John Kitzhaber had taken a narrow lead over Dudley and won a third term as Oregon’s Governor.

kitzhaber

But then Kitzhaber turned around and appointed Daniels to the Governor’s Small Business Advisory Council at the age of twenty-five, and Daniels began to explore running for public office himself.

In 2012, at twenty-six years old, Daniels decided he wanted to join the Oregon House of Representatives. He entered the 2012 GOP primary for Oregon House District 11 against the popular Kelly Lovelace, who had spent his life running businesses in the district and working in the grass fields that serve as the backbone of Linn County’s economy. Daniels didn’t win that race, but he knocked on just about every single door in the legislative district, raised tens of thousands of dollars, and lost the race by 256 votes.

Following that race, Daniels was appointed to the City Council of Creswell, ran for election and earned a full term on the City Council. Daniels was subsequently elected twice as the City Council President. But Daniels didn’t feel he was a good fit on the Council.

In written answers to questions sent to Daniels, he wrote: “I left the Council because I was ticked-off about the passage of a budget. I got up and left during a meeting. While exiting I proclaimed that I was resigning. Looking back, I am really disappointed with the way I handled my exit. In hindsight I should have sat through the meeting and tendered my resignation the following day in writing. It had been a culmination of things. I believe that government should be inconsequential in our lives. I’m not anti-government. I just have a different outlook on government. In essence, I realized that a guy who wants to shrink government has no business running a government. There are a couple places for people with my outlook on government, such as lobbying tired Congressmen in the Rayburn Building [Editor’s note: The Rayburn Building is one of the major office buildings for members of Congress] and fighting it out in the courtrooms.”

creswell-345x260

During Daniels’ brief flirtation with public office he started his own law practice, began handling family law and criminal cases, and continued his work in politics. Daniels earned a niche as a hardline researcher who found tiny pieces of evidence necessary to push numerous state legislators across the finish line to election or re-election. According to public campaign finance reports, Daniels now serves as general legal counsel to the political arm of the Oregon House Republicans.

Daniels and some of his research colleagues recently launched a firm called Oregon Research Consultants, LLC. In response to written questions, Daniels wrote: “I am very excited about Oregon Research Consultants. We have already finished our first project and we have a great team in place. Due to time constraints I am a minority owner of the firm, so I don’t speak on behalf of the firm, but we have nabbed a couple great clients and I expect good things.”

Those research skills became very important in former Representative Dennis Richardson’s 2014 campaign for Governor. Daniels came on as the campaign attorney and chairman of the debate preparation team and worked diligently to help Richardson connect the dots in the John Kitzhaber/Cylvia Hayes scandal – which included the campaign sending a letter to the FBI and United States Attorney urging a criminal investigation.

As the Kitzhaber/Hayes scandal began to grow, Daniels filed a petition to recall Governor Kitzhaber, at the age of twenty-nine.

For the few weeks following his effort to recall Governor Kitzhaber, both Daniels and national political operative Charlie Pearce eagerly poured flames on the fire with both the local press and national media outlets including NPR, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, etc.

It is safe to say that Jacob Daniels has earned his spot at the table. The big question to ask is pretty simple. “What’s next?”

According to Daniels, “I just want my driver Patrick Dills to win the Championship on Saturday night at Cottage Grove Speedway.”

Who is Jacob Daniels

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Who is Jacob Daniels? Well, there aren’t many people who can say they work at the upper echelons of politics. That they participate in local politics. That they own their own law firm. That they represent notable clients throughout the State. That they are an equity partner in a recently launched research firm (that has already nabbed big clients). That they work remotely at a Washington, D.C. consulting firm from their office across the country in Creswell, Oregon, or as Jacob Daniels would prefer, from his couch in Creswell, Oregon.

Not many people do these things. But if they do, they certainly don’t do them at the same time, and if they are doing them at the same time, they don’t do it all by the age of 30…, unless you are Jacob Daniels.

Jacob Daniels is a friend of mine, and although I have always enjoyed watching him energetically operate, I never thought that it was newsworthy.

Jacob Daniels lawyer
Jacob Daniels

But last week I saw Jacob Daniels’ name appear in the news on three different fronts: On the cover of The Oregonian regarding a large political operation; both the Register-Guard and The Eugene Daily News reported that Jacob Daniels has been recently retained in a high-profile manslaughter case; and oddly enough, a ballot measure that Daniels had written in his hometown of Creswell had failed, receiving 44 percent of the vote.

Sure, sometimes I see Daniels on the news giving a legal opinion or talking about politics, but that’s just Daniels, he is always out there trying to get something done.

But it seems like this guy is in a real hurry to get things done.

Depending on what side you are on, you either think that Daniels is doing the Lord’s work, or you think he is the Devil. But regardless, he gets things done. I know, because I have been watching my friend for a long time.

Daniels is very proud that he attended Tulane Law School. You don’t have to spend much time with him before you hear from him that he went to Tulane. To some people, it comes across as arrogant. But if you know Daniels, you know that he is just a guy born in Cottage Grove, Oregon who can’t believe he has a seat at the table.

Following his graduation from Tulane Law School, Daniels returned home to work as the Deputy Research Director to former NBA star Chris Dudley’s 2010 campaign for Oregon Governor. On election night it looked like Dudley was going to become Oregon’s next Governor, but by morning John Kitzhaber had taken a narrow lead over Dudley and won a third term as Oregon’s Governor.

But then Kitzhaber turned around and appointed Daniels to the Governor’s Small Business Advisory Council at the age of twenty-five, and Daniels began to explore running for public office himself.

In 2012, at twenty-six years old, Daniels decided he wanted to join the Oregon House of Representatives. He entered the 2012 GOP primary for Oregon House District 11 against the popular Kelly Lovelace, who had spent his life running businesses in the district and working in the grass fields that serve as the backbone of Linn County’s economy. Daniels didn’t win that race, but he knocked on just about every single door in the legislative district, raised tens of thousands of dollars, and lost the race by 256 votes.

Following that race, Daniels was appointed to the City Council of Creswell, ran for election and earned a full term on the City Council. Daniels was subsequently elected twice as the City Council President. But Daniels didn’t feel he was a good fit on the Council.

In written answers to questions sent to Daniels, he wrote: “I left the Council because I was ticked-off about the passage of a budget. I got up and left during a meeting. While exiting I proclaimed that I was resigning. Looking back, I am really disappointed with the way I handled my exit. In hindsight I should have sat through the meeting and tendered my resignation the following day in writing. It had been a culmination of things. I believe that government should be inconsequential in our lives. I’m not anti-government. I just have a different outlook on government. In essence, I realized that a guy who wants to shrink government has no business running a government. There are a couple places for people with my outlook on government, such as lobbying tired Congressmen in the Rayburn Building  and fighting it out in the courtrooms.” [Editor’s note: The Rayburn Building is one of the major office buildings for members of Congress]

During Daniels’ brief flirtation with public office he started his own law practice, began handling family law and criminal cases, and continued his work in politics. Daniels earned a niche as a hardline researcher who found tiny pieces of evidence necessary to push numerous state legislators across the finish line to election or re-election. According to public campaign finance reports, Daniels now serves as general legal counsel to the political arm of the Oregon House Republicans.

Daniels and some of his research colleagues recently launched a firm called Oregon Research Consultants, LLC. In response to written questions, Daniels wrote: “I am very excited about Oregon Research Consultants. We have already finished our first project and we have a great team in place. Due to time constraints I am a minority owner of the firm, so I don’t speak on behalf of the firm, but we have nabbed a couple great clients and I expect good things.”

Those research skills became very important in former Representative Dennis Richardson’s 2014 campaign for Governor. Daniels came on as the campaign attorney and chairman of the debate preparation team and worked diligently to help Richardson connect the dots in the John Kitzhaber/Cylvia Hayes scandal – which included the campaign sending a letter to the FBI and United States Attorney urging a criminal investigation.

As the Kitzhaber/Hayes scandal began to grow, Daniels filed a petition to recall Governor Kitzhaber, at the age of twenty-nine.

For the few weeks following his effort to recall Governor Kitzhaber, both Daniels and national political operative Charlie Pearce eagerly poured flames on the fire with both the local press and national media outlets including NPR, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, etc.

It is safe to say that Jacob Daniels has earned his spot at the table. The big question to ask is pretty simple. “What’s next?”

According to Daniels, “I just want my driver Patrick Dills to win the Championship on Saturday night at Cottage Grove Speedway.”

Patrick Dills and Jacob Daniels
Patrick Dills and Jacob Daniels

 

Lesley challenges Bozievich for West Lane commissioner

The candidates for West Lane County Commissioners squared off before the Eugene City Club on Friday over contrasting views of government, how best to grow the economy – and what went wrong with former county administrator Liane Richardson.

Lebanon city manager resigns after five months

LEBANON — Following a half-hour executive session to discuss management issues, City Manager Dana Hlavac tendered his resignation during the Lebanon City Council meeting Wednesday evening.

The surprise move comes just five months after Hlavac moved to Lebanon from Gila County, Ariz., where he was the county’s interim finance director.

“As my six month evaluation approaches I have had an opportunity to speak with council members and to my department heads,” Hlavac read from a prepared statement. “It is clear that there is an extreme diversity of views in relation to what I have been able to bring to the City of Lebanon during my brief tenure. Rather than exacerbate this situation and in an attempt to aid the City of Lebanon, I feel it is appropriate to move beyond these continuing issues. I feel it is appropriate for me to return to Arizona and focus on my family.”

He added that it is “with the heaviest of hearts” that the decision was reached.

All council members voted to accept Hlavac’s resignation and to make adjustments to a previously agreed upon severance package, except councilor Barry Scott who is working out of state and participated via Internet. He abstained.

Hlavac’s first day on the job was August 26. He succeeded interim city manager Jon Nelson, who filled the position for several months after the retirement of long-term city manager John Hitt.

Hlavac was to be paid $125,000 per year plus benefits.

He was among four finalists for the job from across the country.

At the time of his selection, Mayor Paul Aziz said Hlavac impressed him because, “He really researched the community.” Aziz also liked the fact that Hlavac believes in a long-term visioning process.

Council president Bob Elliott called Hlavac a “take charge kind of person who will meet problems head-on.”

Hlavac has a bachelor’s degree in social geography from Syracuse University and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Denver.


SNAP cuts may affect students and families

As of Nov. 1, the temporal boost agent for Supplementary Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) will no longer provide the same amount of assistance to families as it has been. Why the sudden change? Since 2009, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) provided an economic boost for SNAP benefits. Without the Recovery Act boost the SNAP benefits will average less than $1.40 per person per meal in 2014. For a family of four, food stamp benefits will be decreased by $36 a month. This means all families on the food stamp service will be decreased depending on their household size.

While many students at the UO hold jobs to pay for tuition or simply to make some extra cash, working students can’t imagine how families who are struggling will face this sudden change.

For freshman Carly Gough, working at Dairy Queen has helped her pay tuition, but she still faces problems with making ends meet and relying on student loans. Although Gough can still rely on her parents for economic support, she can’t imagine what it is like for those on SNAP who now have to deal with the cuts. Gough can relate to the SNAP benefits situation because she has a sister who is currently going to school and is on food stamps. Although her sister has a job as well, she still has difficulties paying for school.

With the new cut in place, many students agree that this cut is creating a gap in society. For freshman Reyanna Blank, this issue hits home.

“I grew up with food stamps my mom was a single mother trying to raise her kids, and food stamps provided a lot for my family. SNAP is crucial for families who are struggling. It is a necessity because they give so much, and now with this cut it is going to make life a lot harder for those that are barely making it through. If it isn’t for food stamps many families wouldn’t have a meal, and it just shows how people rely heavily on it,” Blank said.

The ARRA stimulated the SNAP benefits by 13.6 percent at the beginning of April 2009, according to Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. The ARRA benefits increased for all the participating households, and SNAP benefits were able to remain stable and provide the necessary amount of money for each household size. With the new cuts, families will no longer receive the same amount. The total size of the cut will be approximately $5 billion in 2014 and $6 billion in the fiscal years of 2015 and 2016.

For a household of one the ARRA maximum benefits of Oct. 2013 was $200. Now the maximum benefits beginning Nov. 2013 is $189. The monthly cut is -$11. A total cut of the fiscal year for 2014 is -$121. The amount of SNAP benefits decreases as the household size is bigger except benefits of households of two and three both decrease by $9.

While Congress is still working on how to deal with this sudden change, many families will deal with hardships. Struggling families between the poverty line will have to face a bigger challenge to provide for their families. The cut will affect 22 million children in 2014 whose family incomes is below the half line poverty line, and nine million who are elderly or have a serious disability. This significant cut is equivalent to taking away 21 meals per month from a family of four, according to an article on AlJazeera America.

For the state of Oregon, the total SNAP benefit cut from Nov. 2013 through Sept. 2014 is -$84 million dollars, causing 819,000 recipients to be affected by the cut. Those recipients make up 21 percent of the shared total state population.

As for freshman Ryan Reeder, he believes that something should be done to help this issue. He believes that politicians need to stop looking the other way and look at ways to solve this problem.

“When people are barely making enough money and food stamps are their only option, and suddenly that option is cut, how are people going to provide for themselves, let alone their families. Food stamps isn’t just a benefit it is a necessity in some cases,” Reeder said.

 

 

Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley is visiting the Knight Law Center

U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley will be making an appearance at the UO to talk about how the American dream can be saved.

On Friday, in room 175 in the Knight Law Center, Merkley will speak during an an event hosted by the City Club of Eugene, the Wayne Morse Center for Law and Politics and the League of Women Voters. The event is titled, “Reversing the Decline of the Middle Class: Saving the American Dream.”

“We reached out to Sen. Merkley so that the citizens of Eugene community could hear what prominent figures have to say about the current state of the middle class,” said Cher Aker, City Club of Eugene administrator. “We’re looking forward to the turnout of the event, and how the community responds to Merkley’s thoughts.”

The City Club is a small non-profit organization that’s focused on informing the Eugene community about government and political issues from all angles.

According to the description of the event from the Wayne Morse Center website, Merkley will speak about how to focus on growing the middle class economy by fixing the housing market and creating a new vision for budget and tax codes.

The event is free and open to the public. Those interested can find more information on the City Club of Eugene website.

Former Oregon chief education officer Rudy Crew allegedly violated state travel rules

Even though he left to be a president of a college in Brooklyn, NY, Rudy Crew is being pulled back into the limelight in Oregon for having allegedly violated the state’s travel rules, and for allegedly manipulating his time sheets.

According to documents obtained by Portland’s Willamette Week, the state’s former chief education officer traveled for at least 63 days for 17 out-of-state trips during his one year in Oregon. On top of that, he also took 32 vacations days and 17 personal days.

“He missed at least 50 percent of our scheduled meetings,” Rep. Betty Komp (D-Woodburn) told Willamette Week. Komp was one of the co-chairs for the Oregon Education Investment Board. “The governor’s staff was doing its best to keep the OEIB’s goals moving forward, but their leader (Crew) was missing.”

According to his calendar, Crew tried to charge the state with a $336 for a town car to shuttle him from the Portland International Airport to his home in Salem. During that same trip, he also charged the state $350 for an upgrade to first class, which according to the state ethics law, travelling first class is prohibited on business trips.

His town car was also flagged as an improper expense by state accountants.

In regard to his timesheets, Crew reported to work on Thursday, May 9 when he flew first class to San Francisco to give a speech to the Partners in School Innovation. The next day, he flew to the Bahamas and spent that evening at a kickoff for the Parent Academy at Lyford Clay International School. He claimed those two trips as work days, but the state disagrees.

“I am unable to confirm the accuracy of Rudy’s time and do not feel like I am able to sign authorizing these hours,” said Lisa Van Laanen. Laanen was sent into Crew’s office by Kitzhaber to help implement discipline in the office.

Crew left Oregon having served just one of the three years indicated in his contract for a gig as the president of Medgar Evans College. On June 28, Springfield’s School District Superintendent Nancy Golden was appointed to replace crew with a strong recommendation from Kitzhaber.

Oregon state Senate approves nearly $240 million in bonding authority to UO

The Oregon state Senate approved a series of bills today that authorize approximately $1 billion in bonding authority for projects statewide, with the University of Oregon receiving about $240 million. The Senate approved two items with a price tag of more than $80 million: $84.3 million for the Erb Memorial Union renovation project and another $84.75 million for housing expansion. The Student Recreation Center received a $50.25 million bond approval with Straub and Earl halls sharing an $11 million bond approval and the Science Commons and research library a further $8.38 million.

All told, bonds approvals for OUS projects took the lion’s share of the measures, totaling nearly $620 million. The Oregonian has the full list of bond authority approvals from Senate bills 5506, 5507 and 5533.