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San Jose Marijuana Dispensaries Giving Away 45,000 1-Gram Stashes Of Pot In Ballot Referendum Effort

SAN JOSE (CBS SF) -- Medical marijuana advocates are hoping to get voters fired up about saving the industry in San Jose by offering free pot for signing a petition.

A group of lawyers, dispensary owners, and medical marijuana users named The Silicon Valley Cannabis Coalition organized the giveaway of 45,000 individual grams of pot - about 100 pounds total - in an effort to qualify a referendum for an upcoming ballot, and they need a lot of signatures.

Chastity Baker took advantage of the offer, picking up a voucher good for one gram of marijuana from a participating dispensary.

"I'm going to go get my free evaluation and then I'm going to go get a free gram of weed.  The reason I do it because I have seizures," she said.

The group had tried to stop San Jose politicians from passing zoning laws restricting marijuana dispensaries to industrial-zones of the city, leaving many of the businesses out of compliance.

The rules can be circumvented if a ballot referendum qualifies with enough signatures, leading the dispensaries to pledge the 45,000 free grams of marijuana to obtain the signatures.

But, the free marijuana isn't a guarantee voters will sign the petition.

"We are giving vouchers to San Jose residents.  Whether or not they will sign the petition or register to vote is up to them,"  Dave Hodges of the Silicon Valley Cannabis Coalition said.

Doctors also pledged to give away 30,000 medical marijuana recommendations.


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