Thank you all for being here, to either witness and record today’s words or to stand behind what is being said.
I’m Melanie Johnson, co-founder/co-owner of Alpenglow Farms and a Humboldt County resident.
The last six years, members of the cannabis community have opened their gates and their homes to have every facet of their lives examined.
For those of us that have survived such scrutiny, we yet again face a severe challenge in the form of Measure S.
To clarify, Measure S has metaphorically metamorphosed beyond a financial issue, and into a values issue.
Deferred payments and next round of taxes have promising potential to place liens on our homes and on our properties; collectible by the county at point of sale.
What does this mean to me personally? To other family farms?
25+ years of patiently planting fruit trees, tending to gardens, burying beloved pets and watching our children grow are now bound to the decisions of five elected individuals who work within the walls behind me.
Individuals whose jobs ride on the premise they speak and represent those who elect them.
Yes, there will be consequences to Humboldt County’s budget. The county has grown quite accustomed to our tax revenue. But if the county does not bend to meet our needs there will be no further tax revenue in the future.
That means me. Those standing behind me. And those unable to attend whose behalf I speak on.
I need not continue to describe and define Measure S and its impact of. I need not continue to defend the morality of us cannabis farmers and the myriad ways in which we support our communities.
It all has been stated and said.
Instead, I call on Supervisor Bass, Supervisor Bushnell, Supervisor Wilson, Bone and Madrone to hear the words of their constituents with open hearts and open minds.
To fully accept and acknowledge that those of us left standing have managed every hoop and hurdle set before us and ask not only for a life line, but the right for our way of life.
To understand their constituents are speaking their truths to the media and fellow community members today in hopes of finding support we have time and time again asked from them.
To those listening and watching
I am Melanie Johnson. I am a Humboldt County cannabis farmer.
I am your community.
And the Board of Supervisors are bound by law to protect their community.
Suspend Measure S. Save the family farms.