Unzipping the Medical Marijuana Controversy: Mendocino Sheriff and Supes talk Zip Ties

Kym Kemp / Friday, April 17, 2009 @ 1:06 p.m. / Daily Photo , marijuana , News , Our Culture ,  photo

seedlingMarijuana Starts

Daily Photo

With the beginning of the outdoor grow season, Mendocino Sheriff Tom Allman has pushed his zip-tie plan for medical marijuana to the front of the agenda.  Monday, in a special meeting, Mendocino County Supervisors will discuss selling plastic ties imprinted with serial numbers and ”Mendocino County MMP” (Medical Marijuana Program.)   According to Allman, “People this year are only going to be able to get six zip ties unless their doctor recommends more. …A zip tie acts like a prescription bottle. Whereas before deputies would spend three hours investigating a marijuana garden, now they’ll be able to do that in five minutes. Before legal patients were concerned that, What if I’m gone? Will the cops take my marijuana?’ With this they don’t have to worry about that. This serial number will speak for them. ”

More to the story at the excellent Ukiah Daily Journal

19 comments

  • good idea.
  • Interesting idea…I foresee a black market for zip ties with MMP on them.
  • In response to dave
    According to the UDJ, “If we do encounter counterfeit zip ties we may confiscate that marijuana,” says Allman. Apparently, they are somewhat prepared for that option but I’m not sure. how they will tell if the ties are counterfeit.
  • If this system is so foolproof, maybe the sheriff’s department should offer to do the wristbands for the Reggae events. They would soon find any flaws in their plan.
  • Caution. Small brain at work.

    If they have serial numbers registered to medical marijuana users, then a counterfeit number would either not match the grower with the 215 or not match the serial number registered to the grower. So wouldn’t counterfeits be easy to spot.

    I know I’m missing something big here… Be kind guys. My brain is not on high function.
  • I think this is a great idea. I may obtain one of this zip ties and try one plant in my backyard. Kym, are there gophers in Eureka?
  • Joe, The zip ties are only for Mendocino County. Get a 215 permit and I think you already have one to be buying at the dispensaries. Then post it by where you grow the one plant. Make sure you get a good start ask the dispensary if they have starts. I hear Harborside in Oakland can make sure people are set up.

    Gophers are nasty, evil and adorable but Ruby should make quite a bit of a dent in their enthusiasm for your yard. If not try Pierson’s on the South end of Town and ask for non poisonous traps. The darn things can mess with your garden but they are charming in their evil ways.
  • Thanks,Kym. I somehow missed the three mentions of Mendocino in your post! Yes, I have a permit and a photo ID card. Ruby loves digging at gopher holes, but I have a feeling the critters just eat popcorn and watch her from another hole. I may try to dig a deep hole and line it with chicken wire. I read somewhere that this is effective.
  • I’d use the smaller hole chicken wire. I’d look for 1/2 inch hole on the wire. Those guys are great at wiggling through small openings.
  • Excellent shot of your subject matter. You mentioned on my post today about getting a glimpse into a different world. That is how I feel every time I come here. It is hard for me to comprehend, really, since I have no point of reference. Thanks for the education. :)
  • Forgive me if I tease you a bit here, Toni. I noticed that, along with many other people, you didn’t name the “subject matter.” Maybe it was just a coincidence here but I’ve noticed people tend to avoid saying marijuana as if the word itself were illegal. I always get a chuckle out of people doing that. I imagine the word having an electric charge!
  • go pher it Joe!
  • Tease away, Kym, I don’t mind. I think it is a matter of comfort, if that is the right word. For me, I’m completely out of my comfort zone on these posts, which is why I don’t often comment on them, and as I said, I have no point of reference. I just can’t imagine living in the culture you do. Here we talk about raising wheat, potatoes, beans, alfalfa, etc., not marijuana (medical or otherwise) and zip ties with serial numbers. Heck, I don’t even know if medical marijuana is legal in my state. Anyway, I do appreciate the education. :)
  • I live here and the first time I mentioned marijuana on my blog, my heart beat so hard that I could hear it over the clack of the keyboard. I expected either the law or my neighbors to come banging on my door. But as I said in that first post, it is like living with an elephant in the livingroom and not mentioning it ever.

    I’m a believer in talking and discussing issues. If we don’t our society is going to keep repeating the same mistakes.
  • The gophers invaded in 2008. Their breeding success may be due to low rainfall.

    Toxic and semi-toxic gopher bait are inhumane and a waste of money. The Rodenator creates an underground blast that blows up gophers’ heads. The blast also collapses tunnels and burrows which turns the colony into fertilizer.

    Public Health is very similar to the DMV. Patients have to make an appointment during specific work hours on a specific work day, fill out seven or eight pages of forms, pay over $100, and wait a month or two for the ID card. This is why a low percentage of patients carry one of these ID cards. We can expect the same level of participation from the zip tie program.

    Proposition 215 guarantees marijuana to be a medicinal option in California with no stipulations concerning local law enforcement policies. The ID card program, Senate Bill 420, local dispensary bans, Attorney General guidelines, and the zip tie program are all injustices.
  • Guerrilla, Marijuana should be legal in my opinion and any step away from that, zip ties included, make me uncomfortable but, I recognize that some people are willing to go along with marijuana as medicine but they don’t want to encourage growing for intoxication only. That is why there are zip tie programs etc. I feel that the zip tie program is an honest attempt to allow patients medicine without allowing profit. I think it may be an unfortunately necessary step on the way to legalization.

  • I feel that the zip tie program is an honest attempt to allow patients medicine without allowing profit.


    People grow medicinal herbs for profit. Programs like this send a message that this herb is now legal for medicinal use but nobody is allowed to obtain it legally. Allowing medicine to be used while not sanctioning its sale is an unworkable plan.

    Questions pop into my mind such as who will supply the slips if nobody can grow for profit? I have not heard of this free clone bank.

    This program assumes everyone involved with medical marijuana is either an altruist or a criminal-minded profiteer. If the Sheriff wants to set an altruistic example, he should refuse his next paycheck. The patients who want to obtain high-quality marijuana will buy it from people who produce high-quality marijuana. No unrealistic program will change this fact.
  • Guerilla, I read this yesterday and have been pondering what you said. You’re right. I don’t understand why it is okay for Big Medical Companies to charge outrageous prices for pills but not allow a grower to sell their product. The more I deal with the subject the more adamant I get that it is time we legalized marijuana and stop many of the problems associated with prohibition.
  • […] other interesting usages… I am intrigued by this story from Mendocino County California where police are considering a zip tie plan for identifying […]
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