SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – The Latest on the California budget (all times local):
Republican lawmakers are objecting to a California budget provision that gives water to medical marijuana growers.
Republicans say a budget bill approved Thursday in the state Assembly gives pot farmers preferential treatment over the rest of the agriculture industry.
The bill allows licensed marijuana growers to use water from natural rivers, streams or lakes without state approval or environmental assessment. It cleared the Assembly in a 46-26 vote. It now goes to the Senate.
Republican Assemblyman James Gallagher of Plumas Lake says the law rewards pot growers who have illegally diverted water from streambeds and punishes ranchers who acted legally.
Democratic Assemblyman Rob Bonta of Alameda says Republican opponents are misinterpreting the provision. Bonta says medical marijuana regulations he authored last year already ban growers from improperly taking water.
EL CENTRO, Calif. –
We talked to our local Imperial County Farm Bureau and asked how it would affect the valley.
“I don’t know how this will impact specifically Imperial County however, I think our position would be geared towards what the crop is. As long as it’s a legal crop grown in California we would hope that the same restrictions, guidelines, limitations are put on all crops equally.”