Thursday, August 13, 2009

Business License Issued in Montana for Medical Marijuana Patient

Local marijuana grower gets business license
St. Helena medical marijuana user won’t sell the weed

By Jesse Duarte
The Weekly Calistogan
Thursday, August 13, 2009

Crane Carter is using his Hunt Avenue home as a base of operations for his mission to bring marijuana into the mainstream.

Carter, who has a license to smoke medicinal marijuana and openly grows it at his house, obtained a business license last week from the city of St. Helena. But he’s not selling what you might think — just T-shirts and hats emblazoned with his logo and the name of his business: “St. Helena Marijuana Growers.”

Carter said he’s “trying to start a little enterprise, get some growers together, and bring public awareness that this is a great plant to grow, it’s relatively easy and it’s safe.” Carter supports the legalization of marijuana.

His application for a home business license raised some eyebrows at city hall, but officials approved it after they made sure he wouldn’t use it to sell samples of his notorious crop.

St. Helena Police Chief Monty Castillo said that since Carter isn’t selling any drugs or drug paraphernalia, he’s legally in the clear.

“He was asking only permission to sell T-shirts and hats with his logo, and he met all the requirements to do that,” said Castillo.

Carter plans to sell the merchandise through a Web site that will be online in a few weeks.

Carter says he’d like to open a marijuana dispensary in downtown St. Helena someday — albeit “a little more of an upscale one” that would conform to the city’s classy image.

Right now there’s nothing on the city books that would prevent him from applying to open a dispensary, but Planning Director Carol Poole said staff will bring the issue to the city council’s attention.

Two Napa County cities have already outlawed dispensaries. Calistoga has a temporary moratorium banning them through April 2010, and the American Canyon City Council approved an ordinance prohibiting any use that’s illegal under state or federal law.

Carter has six mature marijuana plants at his house, the maximum allowed under state law. He said he’s even had a St. Helena police officer visit his mini-farm to make sure he’s not breaking any laws.

“They’re watching me,” said Carter. “I’m not stepping over the boundary, but I’m tip-toeing right on it. That’s for sure.”

No comments: