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Marijuana may already be California’s biggest cash crop, and the likely legalization of recreational use — as soon as next year -- will mean even more billions of dollars. Generations of local pot farmers are worried about outside competition, especially from Big Tobacco. They’re joining the battle over regulation of growing conditions, quality, prices and distribution.

Also, the CHP is rounding up transients to give officers real-life experience in identifying substance abusers. Civil rights advocates ask, could they try that on a college campus?

Photo: Mark

Producers:
Mike Kessler
Benjamin Gottlieb

Marijuana: Big Business that's about to Get Bigger 15 MIN, 36 SEC

Five years ago, only 45% of California voters approved the recreational use of marijuana, but recent polls have produced a consensus that it's inevitable -- perhaps as soon as next year. It's already a multi-billion dollar industry in this state, and multiple interests are waiting to get in on the action. That now includes growers in what's called the Emerald Triangle — Mendocino, Humboldt and Trinity Counties. In the past, they've feared that legalization would hurt their business but, as we hear, that's changed.

Guests:
Tamar Todd, Drug Policy Alliance (@drugpolicynews)
Hezekiah Allen, Emerald Growers' Association (@EmeraldGrowers)
Max Cherney, Vice News (@chernandburn)

More:
Drug Policy Alliance on marijuana legalization and regulation
Emerald Growers' Association on legalization, regulation and cultivation of marijuana
Cherney on Emerald Triangle growers changing their minds about legal marijuana

Rounding Up Transients to Train Police 8 MIN, 28 SEC

California Highway Patrol officers are called upon to determine if drivers are under the influence of illegal substances. The newspaper U-T SanDiego is reporting that transients are rounded up to provide real-life training. Now questions are being raised about the rights of the transients. Karen Kucher writes for U-T San Diego.

Guests:
Karen Kucher, U-T San Diego (@KarenKucher)

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