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While Kearney cops were writing tickets for possession of small amounts of marijuana (on Kearney, Nebraska's annual Cruise Night), a proposal for large-scale marijuana farms was running into opposition in Oakland, California -- from small-scale marijuana farms.
Late last night, the Oakland City Council adopted regulations permitting industrial-scale marijuana farms, a move that proponents think will bolster Oakland's position as center of the legal pot industry if California voters legalizes its recreational use by passing Proposition 19 this November.
Supposedly some concessions have been made to the small growers, but it is hard to see what those could be. The regulations require applicants to have $3 million worth of insurance, hire security and pay an annual permit fee of $211,000.
Some indoor farms have been proposed the size of four football fields.
Oakland has long been at the forefront of marijuana legalization, passing Measure Z in 2004 to make marijuana a low priority for law enforcement, and Measure Z in 2009 to tax medical cannabis at 1.8 percent.
California is a long way -- physically and sociologically -- from Nebraska, and Prop. 19 is running behind in the polls, 44 to 48 percent.
But with a petition drive under way to put legalized medical marijuana on the ballot, taking heed of California's experience could give Nebraska some needed guidance.