Capitol Alert

AM Alert: If California legalizes pot, how will cops adapt?

A pot farm in Calaveras County.
A pot farm in Calaveras County. aseng@sacbee.com

What do cannabis businesses and cops have in common? They’re both preparing for a legalized future.

In San Francisco, pot entrepreneurs will gather today to network and learn about weed laws under the auspices of the California Cannabis Industry Association and the National Cannabis Industry Association. A similar event convened in Long Beach on Tuesday.

In West Sacramento, an entity that works on training peace officers will contemplate enforcing the law if recreational weed becomes legal. On the agenda for a Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training meeting is an item about preparing for the passage of Proposition 64, which would have broad repercussions for cops. “The majority of our training and guidelines will need to be updated and many new training courses will need to be developed and presented,” an agenda item notes. Some of the issues the Commission could work through today include whether weed users can own firearms (a federal court ruling has raised questions) and how to deal with illegal grows under the new law, both sprawling outdoor ones and indoor ones that could feature booby traps.

For the Proposition 64 campaign, a leading law-and-order dynamic has involved cracking down on stoned drivers. Rather than set a specific “per se” standard akin to a blood alcohol level, a benchmark that has been criticized as ineffective given how weed lingers in bodies and affects people differently, the initiative directs the California Highway Patrol to set guidelines. That has drawn criticism from the head of the CHP’s union.

BY THE NUMBERS: $15.4 million is the approximate amount of money the Proposition 64 campaign had raised through Tuesday, outpacing the $1.1 million or so opponents pulled in.

Click here to go to The Money Trail.


LIFE AND DEATH: As the Nov. 8 election approaches, criminal justice policy campaigns are bringing out crime victims to make their case. On Tuesday, kidnapping victim Jaycee Dugard publicly came out against Gov. Jerry Brown’s Proposition 57 proposal to make more inmates eligible for parole. Today the mother and friend of murder victim Laci Peterson will join a press conference in Modesto urging voters to expedite the death penalty via Proposition 66. Stanislaus County District Attorney Birgit Fladager and Stanislaus County Sheriff Adam Christianson will join them outside the Modesto Police Officers’ Association building at noon.

TAKING CREDIT: When Brown and L.A. lawmakers struck a deal to more than triple California’s film and television tax credit, they argued the policy would sustain employment and reverse an exodus of production out of California. This morning the California Film Commission will release an official report on how it has played out, and the findings include industry labor groups reporting an uptick an employment and multiple television series relocating to California. You can read the study here starting at 7 a.m.

CIVICS: What’s the ideal form of local government? Every county but San Francisco functions under a five-member board with no elected chief executive, but would they be better served with more representation? It’s the question behind today’s joint hearing of the Senate committees on Elections and Constitutional Amendments and Governance and Finance. Witnesses will include experts on civic engagement and current and former elected officials like Board of Equalization member George Runner, former Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky and former state Sen. Richard Polanco. Starting at 10 a.m. at 700 North Alameda Street, Los Angeles.

CELEBRATIONS: Happy birthday to Assemblyman Kansen Chu, D-San Jose, who turns 64 today but will still need to change his clocks soon.

Jeremy B. White: 916-326-5543, @CapitolAlert

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