California Drought Prompts Legislation to Increase Fines for Water Pollution for Illegal Grows

California Drought Prompts Legislation to Increase Fines for Water Pollution for Illegal Grows
High Times

Two bills were recently introduced to prevent illegal cannabis cultivation efforts, which are using more water than ever in the wake of a historic California drought. “Illegal cannabis farming is devastating the desert communities of San Bernardino County,” said San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman in a press release. “The County is determined to stop this terrible damage to the environment and to protect the lives and property of our residents from lawless criminals.” The county is sponsoring Assembly Bill 2728, introduced by Assemblymember Thurston Smith, and Senate Bill 1426, introduced by Senator Anna Caballero, to tackle these concerns. AB-2728 would increase the fines for illegal cultivation to $1,000 for each day of violation, and $2,500 for each acre-foot of water diverted (and if that measurement isn’t specified, $500 per plant). These stipulations would only take place in a “critically dry year immediately preceded by two or more consecutive below normal, dry, or critical dry years” in the event that the California state governor has issued a state of emergency. “Our state is dealing with an unprecedented number of illegal cannabis grows, particularly in the rural desert communities that I represent in the legislature. Because of this, our laws need to require compliance and ensure that illegal activity is punished,” said Smith about the bill. Most recently, AB-2728 was referred to a committee on June 1. SB-1426 would punish “unauthorized tapping into a water conveyance or storage infrastructure or digging or extracting groundwater from an unpermitted well.” “Illegal cannabis farming is killing wildlife and wreaking environmental damage across the state,” Caballero said in a San Bernardino press release in March. “This bill will help stop the pollution of our groundwater supply and the theft of water, which are all the more important during an ongoing multi-year drought.” Currently, as…

Excerpt only …
READ MORE BELOW
Source : California Drought Prompts Legislation to Increase Fines for Water Pollution for Illegal Grows

reposted by Cannabis News World

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.