Opinion: Recreational marijuana in Nevada hot topic next week in Incline | SierraSun.com

Opinion: Recreational marijuana in Nevada hot topic next week in Incline

Pam Rasmussen
Opinion

The end of summer is quickly approaching, and since it's an even year, that means autumn will be overshadowed by Election Season!

Harvests and Halloween take on a whole new meaning amongst sound bites, advertising, electioneering, campaigning, editorializing and pontificating. No matter the issues or candidates, they are sure to ignite our passions and may even feed our fears.

If you long for a discussion, not a debate. If you wish there was a safe place to share your experiences and concerns on a given topic or issue. If you think we, as in you and your fellow citizens, neighbors, family and friends can't possibly have a sincere and fruitful conversation on election issues, please join us at the Incline Village Library for our fall series of Tahoe Talks.

On Tuesday, Sept. 13, at 6:30 p.m., we will discuss the topic of recreational marijuana and Nevada Ballot Measure Question 2, which states "Shall the Nevada Revised Statutes be amended to allow a person, 21 years old or older, to purchase, cultivate, possess, or consume a certain amount of marijuana or concentrated marijuana, as well as manufacture, posses, use, transport, purchase, distribute, or sell marijuana paraphernalia; impose a 15 percent excise tax on wholesale sales of marijuana; require the regulation and licensing of marijuana cultivators, testing facilities, distributors, suppliers, and retailers; and provide for certain criminal penalties?"

You can find a list of the ballot questions with explanations, arguments for and against passage, fiscal notes, and initiatives from the Nevada Secretary of State's Office at this link: bit.ly/2c3OGyf.

Our topic's guest experts will be Lt. Eric Spratley, Washoe County Sheriff's Office Legislative Liaison; and Jennifer Rains, Washoe County Chief Deputy Public Defender.

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Lt. Spratley Represented the Washoe County Sheriff's Office and NvSCA at Nevada Legislative and Special Sessions (2013-2015). During the 77th legislative session, a great amount of effort was put into Senate Bill 276 (SB276) to ensure that medical marijuana establishments (MMEs) were safe, professional and legitimate businesses.

During the 78th legislative session, further efforts were made in SB447 to ensure additional safety for the residents of the state and the MMEs operating as well.

Public Defender Rains has worked at the Washoe County Public Defender's Office since 2007. She primarily handles involuntary hospitalization and juvenile dependency matters.

She has represented the participants assigned to various specialty court programs including Mental Health Court, Veterans Court, Drug Diversion Court and Reentry Court.

She also serves as chair for the Northern Nevada Behavioral Health Coalition and as a volunteer mediator for the U.S. District Court Section 1983 Inmate Early Mediation Program. The experts will speak for 15 minutes each, sharing their knowledge and expertise on the subject, after which, the conversation will be open to all.

Martin Luther King Jr. said, "Men often hate each other because they fear each other; they fear each other because they don't know each other; they don't know each other because they cannot communicate; they cannot communicate because they are separated."

Come to the library. Meet your neighbors. Get to know them in conversation. Join them in community.

Pam Rasmussen is Managing Librarian for the Incline Village Library, a branch of the Washoe County Library System. Email her at PRasmussen@washoecounty.us.