Stay In Touch
© 2011 Montana Cannabis Industry Association PO Box 9085 Missoula, MT 59807
It’s been nearly 2 weeks since we returned from the DPA Conference in Denver. Much has changed since our return. The events drew our organization to a philosophical crossroad. Some board members favored a ballot initiative for legalization, while some members favored trying to affect a fix to our existing law through the upcoming legislature. The issue became very contentious and ultimately led to the resignations of four of our board members who all favored pursuing a ballot initiative for legalization. The board members who left MTCIA are Chris Lindsey, Nicole French, Pat Pardis and Elizabeth Pincolini. I wish them all the best of luck in their future endeavors toward changing the cannabis law in Montana. As an organization, MTCIA was originally formed to protect the medical cannabis providers who would have been eliminated under our existing law (SB 423). MTCIA filed a lawsuit against the state which prevented certain aspects of SB 423 from taking effect. This injunction continues to allow providers to remain in the business of providing medical cannabis to registered cardholders. We will continue to protect the medical cannabis industry by engaging the legislature on basic, common-sense changes to the existing law. We will also continue to raise funds toward legal expenses in order to keep our lawsuit and subsequent injunction in effect. There is much work to do in preparation for the upcoming legislature. We need to focus on outreach programs in order to allow for more community involvement in our legislative efforts. We need to hire a professional public-relations firm and professional fund-raisers in order to mount an all-out effort in the next legislature. In short, if we are expecting to succeed at changing the existing cannabis law, we will need to scale up our efforts to a level not previously seen by our industry. We certainly have the know-how and the capability. If our supporters have the will to continue funding our efforts, I am confident we will succeed in getting SB 423 amended to make it more workable for providers and cardholders. Never give up and never give in.
Yours in solidarity,
A lot has happened since my last blog. I went to Butte and Kalispell in September for updates, discussions and fundraising events. I garnered $8400.00 for our legal fund. We still need another $7000.00 to fulfill our legal obligation to the Goetz Law Firm.
We are getting very close to having that obligation behind us. We are planning our strategy for the next legislative session and will be meeting with potential lobbyists sometime next week.
We had a board meeting Wednesday and voted to include Ed Docter as the newest addition to our Board of Directors. Ed is a former President of the MTCIA and brings new energy and perspective to the Board. Please join us in welcoming Ed aboard.
The board decided to raise money to partially fund some of the costs (admission fees, rooms and possibly per diem money) for the board members who will attend the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) conference in Denver Oct. 23-26.
The DPA conference will feature speakers from all parts of our nation and abroad who are involved in the marijuana industry. There will be representatives from Colorado and Washington who helped craft the legalization initiatives in both states. There will be multiple informational clinics occurring simultaneously. We need delegates from our board to attend as many clinics and meet with as many of the industry leaders as we possibly can. Our goal is to build relationships with the industry leaders who have successfully fought their hostile legislatures and crafted workable marijuana laws within their own states. We must do the same in Montana.
The board members will be tasked with reporting, individually, on our website after we return. Please help us out with the costs associated with this very important conference. Remember, we are working for you.
Yours in Solidarity,
MTCIA President Mort Reid will be holding meetings in Butte Sept 15 and Kalispell Sept. 16. Sunday Sept. 15th, from 4-6pm Mort will be in Butte at the Holiday Inn 2609 Harrison Ave, Butte, MT For more information Call Tawnya 406-490-4273 Monday Sept. 16th at 6pm Mort will be at the Red Lion hotel in Kalispell, in the Kalispell Center Mall 209 N. Main St. For more information Call Tara 249-1
MTCIA PRESENTS: AMERICAN DRUG WAR 2 – CANNABIS DESTINY
POWERFUL DOCUMENTARY FEATURES MONTANA RESIDENTS MIKE AND KALLI HYDE
AMERICAN DRUG WAR 2 – Cannabis Destiny, a documentary by filmmaker Kevin Booth, closely examines the current state of the government’s war on marijuana in the United States. This powerful film features the story of Mike and Kalli Hyde and their struggle to keep Montana’s youngest medical marijuana patient, Cash Hyde, alive through the use of medical marijuana.
Cash Hyde’s battle with brain cancer captured national attention and was featured in several news stories, including ABC and FOX News. After being told Cash had little hope of surviving, his parents turned to medical marijuana, and his cancer went into remission – called a miracle by the medical community providing him care. That is, until Montana state law changed and licensed caregivers could no longer provide the much-needed medicine to Cash and his cancer returned.
The film will be shown in Billings at the NOVA Center for The Performing Arts, 2317 Montana Ave. - Thursday August 8, 7pm. Ticket prices are $7.00. The movie is presented by the Montana Cannabis Information Association (MTCIA), and proceeds from the movie will benefit both the MTCIA and the Cash Hyde Foundation. Tickets are on sale at Heightened Harvest 1415 S 32nd. St. West, in Billings, 656-115, and at the venue before the show.
A raffle, courtesy of Headies Smoke Shop of Billings, will be held the night of the event. Must be present to win. Proceeds will benefit the MTCIA
Just a reminder, American Drug War 2: Cannabis Destiny screens at the Wilma Theatre Thursday, July 25, at 7:30 PM, followed by a panel discussion. $7 at Rockin Rudy’s and the Wilma box office. Proceeds go to the Cash Hyde Foundation.
A Missoula Independent review of the movie by Molly Laich can be found here
The attached is a letter from the office Jim Goetz. It seems there is much confusion over whether or not our attorney can accept payments from other organizations outside of the MTCIA. This letter should help clear up that misconception.
Donations for the lawsuit against SB423 and the state of Montana can only be submitted by the MTCIA or another named individual plaintiffs in the case. Please keep this in mind when donating.
The MTCIA wishes to extend a sincere thank you for the continued support. We could not have come this far without dedicated members and activists, committed to preserving access to medical cannabis in Montana.
Last month I had the opportunity to meet several providers and cardholders from Butte and Kalispell. It
was a very productive trip in terms of interacting with our colleagues in the medical cannabis
community. We did collect donations for the Goetz legal fund from generous donors in both Butte and
Kalispell. We still need approximately $30,000 to satisfy the escrow fund for our upcoming hearing
scheduled for May of next year.
We are actively shopping for professional lobbyists for the next legislative session. Our lobbyists will
require additional funding above the legal expenses that we are paying to the Goetz Law Finn.
I have been made aware of other entities who are actively soliciting donations from medical cannabis
providers, allegedly, to pay for our legal fees. MTCIA is the ONLY organization that is paying for the
lawsuit which keeps us all in business. Please do not be scammed into giving donations to
organizations that make fraudulent claims of paying our legal fees.
In addition to our fundraising effort, we will be developing our strategy for the next legislature.
Please join us in Missoula,, July 25th, when The Cash Hyde Foundation Presents – American Drug War 2 at the Wilma Theater in Missoula; 131 S. Higgins Ave Missoula Mt. 59802 7pm Admission. A member of LEAP from Oregon, Shelly Fox-Loken will be attending. Please see the link to the event flyer, below.
MTCIA’s Board Members wish you all a safe and fun summer.
Yours in Solidarity,
Finally some good news to report! Our attorney Jim Goetz had a pretrial scheduling conference last Friday in Helena. Our upcoming hearing is scheduled for May 20, 2014. We have nearly a full year the status quo before we need to start sweating over more GOP – led assaults on the cannabis community in Montana. We certainly should use that time to find candidates that are more progressive minded than the ideologues we have dealt with in the past two legislative sessions. We need legislative representatives that care about the needs of their constituents rather that the right wing throw backs from the dark ages that have done everything possible to sabotage patients’ access to cannabis in Montana.
I had the privilege to attend the Billings Chapter meeting last Thursday. State Senator Dave Wazenreid also attended the meeting. Senator Wazenreid is, himself, a cancer survivor and is very sympathetic to the plight of sick and elderly pain sufferers in Montana, Senator Wazenreid indicated his willingness to our organization toward developing outreach programs that would benefit many needy Montanans, especially our military veterans. His experience in the legislative process would be invaluable to our organization toward that end.
I will be in Butte this Wednesday June 12 @ 7pm – 709 Utah Ave
On Thursday evening @ &7:30pm I will be in Kalispell at 330 1st Ave. West.
I look forward to meeting patients and providers in the Butte and Kalispell areas and discussing the lawsuit and other issues that may arise during the Q & A session of our meetings.
Yours in Solidarity
As most of you know in May the MTCIA elected a new president, Mort Reid. There are several things that are going on at this point. Mort Reid will be in Butte on Wednesday June 12th @ 7:00 p.m. at 709 Utah and in Kalispell Thursday June 13 @ 730pm at the VFW 330 1st Ave West
All patients and providers are welcome to attend. Mort will be discussing:
- The state of the lawsuit
- Funds raised.
- Funds needed.
- What happened in Friday’s conference With the Goetz law firm.
- The date of the scheduled hearing in Judge Reynolds’s court.
- What ways we can benefit our communities.
- An area coordinator to work with the providers and The MTCIA.
The meeting will end with a question and answer session, as well as a comments and suggestions session. Everyone is encouraged to attend this meeting to meet the new president, follow what is going on with the case, and give your input on it. We hope everyone is able to attend.
As of Wednesday May 22, we have raised $40,272.00 toward the legal fund that keeps our lawsuit alive and active. We gave the Goetz Law Firm that full amount the same day. We now have all of the balance paid in full and have $17,000.00 in Goetz trust account for his retainer in the upcoming hearing. We still need to raise another $33,000 toward the attorney`s retainer.
I would like to extend special thanks and heartfelt appreciation from all the MTCIA Board Members to Chuck Campbell for his efforts in making this happen. Also, thanks to all the generous donors in the Bozeman area for stepping up to the plate when the call went out for donations.
I am in the process of scheduling meetings in Butte, Missoula and Kalispell for the month of June. I will keep you informed when we confirm the dates. Not much else to add for now.
We wish you all a safe holiday.
Yours in Solidarity,