A First Look at California’s Permanent Cannabis Rules

First printed in California County News

Mon, 07/16/2018

State regulators released the first draft of permanent rules governing California’s marijuana industry on Friday. Among the 315 pages of documents from the Bureau of Cannabis Control, the Department of Food and Agriculture, and the Department of Public Health are some significant changes that could greatly impact California’s medical and recreational marijuana sectors.

Perhaps the most striking provision would allow marijuana deliveries anywhere in California, regardless of whether or not the local jurisdiction approves.

Currently, cities and counties can ban marijuana deliveries. Under the new regs, they would have no such power. A delivery free-for-all would greatly expand the marketplace for legal marijuana, but will undoubtedly roil local governments and their advocates.

In addition to the delivery provision, the new rules would allow for potency increases on some edible marijuana products. They would also introduce new child-resistant packaging requirements.

Another important facet of the new regulations isn’t a change at all, but rather the preservation of a controversial loophole under current law. Despite the outcry from marijuana industry professionals, the Department of Food and Agriculture’s new rules do not contain any caps on the size of cannabis cultivation farms. The California Growers Association and others have argued such caps are necessary to prevent large corporate dominance of the state’s marijuana market. They also believe a 1-acre cap on grows is mandated by law.

Read the draft rules here, here, and here.

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Adult Mosquito Fogging Notification for Discovery Bay

Due to the detection of West Nile virus in the area, the Contra Costa Mosquito & Vector Control District will be fogging by truck-mounted, ultra-low volume sprayers to control adult mosquitoes.

DATE: Friday, July 20, 2018

TIME: Between dusk (approximately 8:30 p.m.) and 11:00 p.m., weather permitting.

LOCATION: Discovery Bay

The area to be treated is bordered on the north by Willow Lake Road and Marina Road; on the south by Highway 4; on the east by Cherry Hills Drive; and on the west by Discovery Bay Boulevard.

MATERIALS USED: The insecticide to be used is Zenivex E4 RTU applied at a rate of 1.5 ounces per acre by truck-mounted, ultra-low volume sprayers.

MAP: (For an interactive map, please click here – available shortly after this notification is published)

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July 27–28, 2018 — Total Lunar Eclipse

A total lunar eclipse will rise over the night sky this summer, and it will be the longest eclipse of this century, according to NASA. On July 27, a lunar eclipse will be fully visible for 1 hour and 43 minutes. But you may have to travel to see it since the eclipse will only be visible in parts of South America, much of Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia.

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West Nile Virus Confirmed in Mosquitoes in Contra Costa County

The Contra Costa Mosquito & Vector Control District reports mosquitoes from two locations in Contra Costa County have tested positive for West Nile virus.

The infected mosquitoes were caught in traps in Discovery Bay and an agricultural area east of Brentwood. The District uses this information to direct prevention and control efforts within the vicinity.

The confirmation of infected mosquitoes comes less than one week after the District confirmed chickens tested positive for antibodies against West Nile virus near Knightsen.

“We are seeing a typical summer pattern where West Nile virus activity starts in the warmer areas of the Central Valley and gradually moves west into Contra Costa County as our weather warms up.” said Steve Schutz, Ph.D., scientific programs manager.

Hot weather speeds both virus growth and mosquito development, and serves as an important reminder to residents to defend themselves against West Nile virus and other mosquito-borne illnesses.

“Detection of virus in mosquitoes and sentinel chickens is an indication that the risk of human cases is increasing, so people spending time outdoors should take precautions to prevent mosquito bites,” said Schutz.

The District encourages residents to reduce their risk of contracting West Nile virus and other mosquito-borne diseases by:

  • Defending yourself – use repellents containing DEET, Picaridin, or Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus.
  • Avoiding the outdoors when mosquitoes are present, typically dawn and dusk.
  • Dumping or draining standing water to prevent mosquitoes. Most mosquitoes can’t start their lives without water.

The District also urges the public to report dead birds.

“Usually we detect West Nile virus in dead birds first, but this year we’ve been getting very few dead bird reports from the public, so we haven’t had many to test,” said Schutz.

Ravens, jays and crows can be susceptible to the virus, and may die if infected. The District asks residents who find a dead bird to report it to the statewide West Nile Virus Hotline online or by calling (877) WNV-BIRD (968-2473). Dead birds can be important evidence of West Nile virus in the county.

 

For a list of Contra Costa County’s 2018 West Nile virus activity and locations, visit the District’s website

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Richmond-San Rafael Bridge Access Improvements – July 2018

The Bay Area Toll Authority (BATA) is spearheading a pair of projects to improve mobility along the Interstate 580 corridor between Richmond and San Rafael.

To reduce congestion on eastbound I-580, BATA and its partners converted the right shoulder to a third freeway lane from the Sir Francis Drake Blvd. on-ramp in Marin County to the Marine Street (Richmond Parkway/Point Richmond) exit in Contra Costa County.

To provide a bike/pedestrian link between the two counties, BATA plans to establish a path on the north side of I-580, including the upper deck of the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge, with concrete barriers to separate bicyclists and pedestrians from westbound freeway traffic.

Both initiatives are designed to be four-year pilot projects. Construction began in early 2017, with and the third eastbound traffic lane opened in April 2018.
MTC and the Association of Bay Area Governments in September 2015 approved amendments to the long-range Plan Bay Area and the short-range Transportation Improvement Program that cleared the way for the next phases of design and environmental review.

Third Lane for Peak-Period Use

The third lane on eastbound I-580 typically is open to motorists daily from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. and during other periods of heavy congestion. Project elements include:
Reconfiguring the Main Street on-ramp from the San Quentin Village area of Marin County with a retaining wall to improve the traffic merge with the new lane
Replacing pavement on the bridge approaches to accommodate heavier traffic loads (completed)

Relocating a retaining wall in Richmond to achieve safe sight distances for vehicles traveling in the new right lane (completed)

Constructing a barrier-separated bike/ped path from Castro Street in Richmond to Point Molate

Movable Barrier on Bridge

To separate bicyclists and pedestrians from westbound traffic on the upper deck of the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge, plans for the new bike/ped path call for installation of a moveable concrete barrier that will allow BATA and Caltrans to conduct bridge maintenance work during short closures of the path. Most of these closures will occur at night. A “zipper truck” similar to that used for the moveable median barrier on the Golden Gate Bridge will used to shift the barrier on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge.

The bicycle/pedestrian path will be 10-feet wide and comply with Americans with Disabilities Act standards. Completion of the moveable barrier project is slated for early 2019.

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Thursday July 26 – SLOW DOWN School Starts

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go…” Dr. Seuss

 

Just a reminder that the first day of school for the Oakley Union Elementary School District is this Thurs., 7/26. Children’s lives are important, and everyone should just SLOW DOWN. The start of school can be a frustrating time for parents trying to get back in the swing of things. Safety around schools, however, should be on everyone’s mind.

The Liberty Union High School District will start school Wednesday, August 1

A good lesson to remember: “The safety of our children starts with me.”

Leave early, Drive Slowly and Safely around schools.

Oakley Union Elementary School District

Liberty Union High School District

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Saturday, July 28th, 10am—2pm – Oakley’s 4th Annual Main Street Car Show

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