On September 8, 2015, the North Coast counties of Del Norte, Lake, Humboldt, Mendocino, Sonoma and Trinity received the California Counties Collaboration Award from the California Association of Counties (CSAC).
CSAC highlights County best-practices annually as a part of their Challenge Awards. These awards are presented to celebrate the innovative work being developed and implemented by California Counties. This year, 250-plus entries were submitted, with the judges selecting two special awards, 10 Challenge Awards and 30 Merit Awards.
The panel of judges were impressed by the strong collaboration among the North Coast Counties for their work on the North Coast Marijuana Policy Statement, a unified regional position focused on addressing the impacts of marijuana, and created a special award: The California Counties Collaboration Award.
“The people of Mendocino, Del Norte, Lake, Sonoma, Trinity and Humboldt counties ought to be very proud of this regional effort to deal with a common issue,” said CSAC Executive Director Matt Cate. “Counties perform so many critical functions, and most of it happens well below the public radar screen. This award recognizes the great achievement of a six-county collaboration on a particularly complex public policy issue.”
Over the past year, the North Coast Counties have been informally discussing the possible impacts of potential state and federal cannabis policies on our economies, environment and public safety. With a desire to coordinate a larger discussion and possible action, a small group of supervisors and CAOs decided to move forward with a regional summit to share information and ideas, which resulted in the regional adoption of a North Coast Counties Marijuana Policy Statement focused on key issues around local control, revenue and taxation, environment and economics. Many issues addressed in the statement were incorporated in the Legislature’s medical marijuana regulatory package, that is currently on the Governor’s desk awaiting his signature.
The policy statement created a unified platform that enables our region to more effectively advocate at a state and federal level to protect, support, and enhance our economies and improve the quality of life across all six counties. The North Coast Counties are honored to receive the California Counties Collaboration Award and look forward to working together on other regional issues.
PDF of press release