Recent Articles

Recent Comments

« | Main | »

Licensed medical marijuana caregivers legally deliver pot to patients

By Hempology | February 7, 2008

Marin Independent Journal, CA
04 Feb 2008
Richard Halstead


Whether the elixir is known as “train wreck” or “Sonoma coma” or “purple kush,” the advent of a new home delivery service will make it easier for Marin’s more than 880 medical marijuana patients to get their medicine.

“The idea is it’s compassionate care.  When you’re sick you don’t feel like getting in your car and driving out to Fairfax to get your medicine,” said J.  Allen Rifkind of Sonoma County, a spokesman for We Deliver.

The delivery service is already operational, Rifkind said.

The Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana in Fairfax is the only sanctioned medical marijuana dispensary in Marin.  When clubs tried to open in other Marin cities, local officials moved swiftly to ban them.

Lynette Shaw, the Marin Alliance’s executive director, questioned whether the new delivery service has all the necessary approvals.

“I would certainly like people to go through the process that I had to endure to be certified and licensed with auditing and oversight.  I have 84 conditions to be able to dispense medical marijuana safely to my patients,” Shaw said, referring to her use permit.

While about 4,800 people belong to her club, Shaw said she dispenses to only about 800 a month.

Rifkind said that he and most of the other people involved with the delivery service are licensed by the state of California as medical marijuana care givers and therefore can legally deliver pot to legitimate medical marijuana patients.  Marin County District Attorney Ed Berberian said he didn’t know enough about the delivery service to comment on its legality.  As to whether medical marijuana is being delivered legally elsewhere, Berberian said, “I’m not aware that is an option that is being used out there, but nothing would surprise me.”

To obtain medical marijuana, Marin residents must first get a written recommendation from a doctor.  They then take that recommendation to the county’s Department of Health and Human Services, which verifies the recommendation with the doctor.  The county sends the patient’s picture to the state, which attaches it a medical marijuana card used for buying pot.  There were 886 patients registered in Marin at the end of fiscal 2007.

Neither the county nor the state retain the patients’ names or any other personal information.  That is because while California voters legalized medical marijuana with Proposition 215 in 1996, federal law enforcement has never recognized the law’s legitimacy.

The Marin Alliance does not make deliveries.  Shaw said several years ago people posing as Marin Alliance delivery people used the ruse to case homes for burglaries.

Rifkind, who said he once delivered for the Marin club, said that is a fabrication.  Rifkind said he is merely serving as an adviser to a Marin couple who are managing the delivery business.  The couple, however, don’t want their identities revealed, Rifkind said.

“He is federally licensed as a real estate agent, and she’s an attorney,” Rifkind said.  “Both of them are fearful the federal government is going to try to take their licenses if it gets their names.”

Rifkind said We Deliver gets its marijuana from the Hayward Patients Resource Center, a licensed medical marijuana club in Hayward.  The pot is being stored at an undisclosed location in San Rafael, he said.

“It comes to us in eight-ounce, pre-sealed packages.  There are about four different brands,” Rifkind said.

Rifkind said he isn’t sure where the colorful names for the different brands originated.  “Train wreck,” “Sonoma coma,” “purple kush,” “Chernobyl” and “tuna helper” are just a sampling.

“The names sort of spring up.  It becomes a popular thing.  Then you must carry that brand or everybody is unhappy,” Rifkind said.

All of them feature “triple A” potency,” Rifkind said.  “They get the job done.  They’re designed as pain relief, more than anything else,” he said.

They range in price from $40 to $55 for an eighth of an ounce.  There is a $5 delivery charge on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday – but the rest of the week deliveries are free.

Medical marijuana patients can reach We Deliver at 250-7653.

Topics: Articles | Comments Off

Comments are closed.