Board of Education sends letter to Taft City Council supporting ban

The Taft City School Board took a strong stand against commercial marijuana sales or production

in Taft with a letter of support for a continued ban on cannabis cultivation and sales that will be sent to

the Taft City Council.

The Board of Education voted unanimously to approve the letter at a special meeting Thursday morning.

"Simply put, marijuana and education, the latter of which involves nurturing of young minds, are not compatible," states the letter, written by Supt. Julie Graves.

Trustees Greg Mudge, Mike McCormick, Les Clark and Keith McElmurry all approved the letter.

Board President Dee Goodwin was not present.
The Taft City Council currently has a ban in place on all commercial cannabis activity since Proposition 64 went into effect on Jan. 1.

That ballot measure legalized recreational use of marijuana in the state and the sales and growth, but

allowed cities and counties to have final say over permitting businesses.

The Taft City Council currently has a ban on all growth, production and sales in the city, as does Kern County.

Graves' letter backed up the District's opposition with statistics from the Kern County Network for Children and the California Department of Public Health on the combined effects of poverty and drug use on families and children.
The state released a study in September of last year, Graves wrote, showing the effects marijuana and other cannabis products have.

The findings cited include:

• Regular cannabis use has been linked to anxiety, depression and suicide, especially in families with a history of mental illness.

• Cannabis use by teens leads to cannabis dependence and increases the risk for using and abusing other drugs.

•Cannabis use affects memory, learning and attention, with some research indicating a permanent negative impact.

•Cannabis use by teens might lead to permanent changes in the brain
"Based on the above alarming statics and the fact that schools must be a safe, nurturing environment

free of drugs, the Taft City School District is communicating their opposition to the cultivation and

sale of cannabis and byproducts in Taft," Graves concluded.