Marijuana-Dispensary Hopefuls Sue State Over Governor Brewer's Attack on Voter-Approved Law

Categories: Medical Weed
marijuana plant 2 small.jpg

Would-be marijuana dispensary owners and their lawyers filed lawsuits today in an attempt to reverse Governor Jan Brewer's attack on a voter-approved law.

Last month, Brewer directed state Attorney General Tom Horne to file a federal lawsuit against the new law, which voters narrowly passed in the November election.

Horne admitted to New Times last week that our "inference" was correct that he directed Arizona Department of Health Services Director Will Humble to begin denying applications for dispensaries. The DHS had been set to begin accepting the applications on June 1.

 

Media reports state that one of today's lawsuits was filed in Maricopa County Superior Court by the Rose Law Group on behalf of prospective dispensary companies, including Medzona Group and Serenity Arizona. The state has no legal grounds to halt the dispensary applications, claims Ryan Hurley of the law firm.

The DHS, however, hasn't been served on that one, says DHS spokeswoman Laura Oxley. She pointed us to a blog post written by DHS director Will Humble about a different lawsuit filed in the Arizona Court of Appeals. The appeals court hasn't yet posted the case on its website; we'll provide the link when we get it. (For you pot policy wonks, Oxley says the case number is CA-SA11-0161.)

As our post last week mentioned, the federal lawsuit by Brewer and Horne seems geared to appease the high-powered group that campaigned against the measure. Carolyn Short, leader of Keep AZ Drug Free, met with Horne in January and discussed the possibility of filing a federal lawsuit on the premise that state workers might be held legally liable for administering the medical pot program.

In response to one of our questions, Horne told us last week that the federal suit is not a continuation of Short's campaign:

"I have a long record, going back at least to 1997, of opposing actions to thwart the will of the voters, even if I am on the other side of the substantive issue," Horne wrote in an e-mail.

Still, Brewer and Horne are now in the position of being defendants in a lawsuit intended to make the state abide by the terms of the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act, and they're also the plaintiffs in the lawsuit that thwarts the law.

While Horne and former U.S. Attorney Paul Charlton, one of Short's allies, tell us that "plaintiff" is simply a legal term required to launch their federal lawsuit, the word still captures their role correctly as adversaries of the wishes of voters.


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23 comments
steve
steve

Well at least you can grow your own 12 plants and the guys at green light hydro have all the equipment, supplies and knowledge to help you along the way. And if you tell them you saw this post here Adam will give you a free !/2 hour consultation.www.greenlighthydro.com480-922-4460

researchmonkey
researchmonkey

For those so inclined:(a)  The Serenity case (Rose Law Group attorney Ken Frakes representing plaintiffs) is case# LC2011-000410, follow along at http://www.superiorcourt.maric... on Maricopa County's superior court page; and (b) the other case is case# CA-SA11-0161, 'O.F.& C. v. Humble' (OF&C being one of a half-dozen or so plaintiffs represented by attorney David Dow), follow along at http://apps.supremecourt.az.go... on the Appeals Court page.

63mlya
63mlya

Brewer and Horne are fucking hypocrites. They will take a case to the supreme court regarding SB 1070, which wasn't even placed on a ballot or voted for by the people saying big government has no business teeling us how to run our state. However when the citizens of AZ vote on an issue which passes she runs and hides in fear of big government while at the same time kicking the voters of this state to the curb. If this is the way our government works then why vote since our vote really doesn't matter anyway. The Presidential election of 2000 was a prime example.

ExpertShot
ExpertShot

I'll be there on Monday, thanking Governor Brewer for trying to stop this onerous portion of  a great law.  The dispensary provisions present canamed patients with the WORST situation - expensive illegal pot or even MORE EXPENSIVE legal pot - AND it will be illegal for a patient to grow if there is a dispensary with 25 miles of their location (which, if this provision goes into effect, there will be). 

Only people who stand to make money off of canamed patients want this portion of the law enacted by the State of Arizona.  Right now, any canamed patient can go and purchase illegal pot from whomever they want and practically anywhere they want.  OR they can grow it themselves for free. It's as easy as growing any weed, just water it and wait.  There are seed companies on the internet aplenty.

When, and if, the dispensary portion of the law goes into effect, the above BEST situation for canamed patients will end and the dispensary owners will push Brewer to enforce the War on Drugs to the nth degree.   Brewer will gladly comply because her clients - the for-profit private prison industry - will profit from the extra inmates from the increased prosecution of small time pot dealers. 

Duncan20903
Duncan20903

Pit Boss, not only is there a lack of action by the Feds towards public officials involved in licensing, zoning, etc in other States, the SCOTUS has basically "sent the message" that State employees are not going to suffer that fantasy land prediction in the future. The fact of the matter is that when the SCOTUS passed on hearing San Diego County's appeal in County of San Diego v San Diego NORML it is that message coming through loud and clear. With precedents as far in the past as 1927's ruling in Gambino v United States of America 275 US 310 and as recently as San Diego v San Diego NORML it's just not reasonable to assert that Arizona doesn't have the right to implement Prop 203.

Ms. Brewer and Mr. Horn are almost certainly familiar with the case law precedents concerning this issue and are simply being disingenuous in their actions in regard to implementing Prop 203. If they're not aware of the precedents they're gibbering idiots and they sure have a good game face for their stupidity if that is the reality.

Pit Boss
Pit Boss

Who is this Carolyn Short skank and why does she have so much pull with the Attorney General of Arizona? It sure does cause one to pause and wonder. Something tells me she's got indirect political or financial power and is using it as leverage against our spineless state AG and Governor.

Thirteen states have had Medical Pot programs in place for years. Why would the feds only arrest Arizona state employees and ignore all of the other state employees who are "breaking federal law"?

The politicians in this state who aren't right-wing, paranoid psychos are right-wing, paranoid pussies. Thanks for telling us to go fuck ourselves, politicians, but most of us already knew we were getting fucked by you.

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Mcguire Miles
Mcguire Miles

What the state of  Az  is trying to flush our Constitution down the shitter , as voter's we have right's and we expressed our view's by voting and need of our medicine 

Arizona Dispense
Arizona Dispense

Ray,You are covering the lawsuit by the Rose Law Group that was filed in the Maricopa County Superior Court.  As you mentioned, Will Humble acknowledged on his blog that he was served with a lawsuit filed in the Arizona Court of Appeals at 8:30 AM today. That lawsuit was filed by attorney David Dow on behalf of Rose Law clients OF&C Inc., also known as The Virtue Center, Protect Arizona Patients, and several other parties (including us).

From looking at the headlines, Rose has taken the lawsuit limelight tonight. Is the media actually going to address who has the best litigation strategy tomorrow?

Keep in mind this isn't a contest to determine which law firms are the medical marijuana kings or queens in this state. It is a grave issue of undermining the rights of voters and setting the foundation for the largest marijuana grey market in this country. The dispensaries have to open now or the majority vote will be disenfranchised in an American state.

Thank you for bringing the Short-Humble email to light. I wonder what emails can be obtained from the Attorney General's Office with several coordinated public records requests.

http://www.protectarizonapatie...

Harry Wisencraker Jr.
Harry Wisencraker Jr.

Once again? Really!  Don't these dolts know that their lives are like a song "Every Step you take, I'll be watching you".  They can't even take a dump without somebody analyzing the paper output!  Just because they're paranoid doesn't mean we're not watching them!   Video clips and soundbites will haunt them like Bob Marley on Scrooge.

shadeaux14
shadeaux14

""I have a long record, going back at least to 1997, of opposing actions to thwart the will of the voters, even if I am on the other side of the substantive issue," Horne wrote in an e-mail." What's the old saying? Oh yeah, ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS.  Something Atty Gen LegHorne doesn't seem to understand.

teknik1200
teknik1200

hypocrites.

you simply cannot trust someone who wants it both ways.

Pit Boss
Pit Boss

"Brewer will gladly comply because her clients - the for-profit private prison industry - will profit from the extra inmates from the increased prosecution of small time pot dealers."

There's no doubt in my mind that this is a major driving force behind this lawsuit. If you're in the private prison industry, you want to keep the stuff illegal in all aspects to guarantee your financial interests won't be negatively affected. As it stands right now, the worst thing--financially--for Arizona's private prison industry is the legalization of medical marijuana. Profits, profits profits. Nothing else matters to this joke of a governor.

J Curwen
J Curwen

I've said they're disingenuous from the beginning. That's a polite way of putting it.

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