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Old 11-14-2012, 07:20 AM   #21
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.............We have younger friends and family that are occasional users of pot, and when inviting them on our boat I tell them that they cannot bring illegal drugs aboard because it puts both them and our boat in jeopardy if we are boarded by the Coast Guard. With pot use legal in our state, I'm a little more concerned that someone may bring it on board, thinking it's no big deal. ............
Tell them in no uncertain terms "DO NOT BRING POT OR OTHER RECREATIONAL DRUGS ON MY BOAT". It's your boat, you are the captain, you get to make the rules.

Make it clear when you invite them and again when they arrive.

That way, you don't have to worry about which agency boards your boat.
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Old 11-14-2012, 07:43 AM   #22
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While it is unclear what "will" happen when the USCG boards...you might be better off taking the safe road...post one of these like commercial vessels and make it clear to your guests...if some of your "guests" are not well known to you...have them sign a written statement that they read your policy.

I think the USCG will make public a policy statement very soon...if not, it will be internal but will leak very soon...

In the mean time....I think the "informal policy" will be to look the other way as long as the boarding officer has no reason to think there is anything more than personal possession/use. Arresting people by the USCG that can't be prosecuted under state law is a hassle in many areas. Often they don't have holding facilities until the arrested go before the federal magistrate.... so it's a paperwork nightmare.
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Old 11-14-2012, 07:53 AM   #23
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The problem with that sign is that the people in a state where recreational drugs have been "legalized" will assume that it's OK to bring them onboard even though it's still illegal under Federal law.

You have to account for the dumbest person you might invite on board.
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:06 AM   #24
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Don't worry...THAT will NEVER happen.....
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:26 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by rwidman View Post
Tell them in no uncertain terms "DO NOT BRING POT OR OTHER RECREATIONAL DRUGS ON MY BOAT"

What? No more Gin & Tonics?
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:49 AM   #26
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Greetings,
Ya, you gotta hope you're never boarded by the WCTU!
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:09 PM   #27
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Thanks for all of the replies. You've hit on the major concerns. I don't want my boat confiscated because of some knucklehead misunderstanding the difference between state and federal law. All of us here in WA may have to require some kind of signed document from our guests. Could be awkward, especially if the guests are good customers or friends. It's not all young people who are smoking pot, you might be surprised what your older doctor or lawyer does for recreation.

It's good to hear from someone with a Coast Guard background. I can imagine that unofficial policy might be to look the other way. However, I'm not willing to risk my boat on an unofficial policy.
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Old 11-14-2012, 12:34 PM   #28
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Simplest thing is not to allow anyone on the boat you don't know very well. Our policy is dirt simple. There are seventeen people on the planet who we allow-- or would allow if they were visiting-- on the boat. I don't mean on a cruise, I mean ON the boat, period. That's it. And none of them are recreational drug users.

So the risk of us having someone on board the boat with us who might have marijuana with them is zero.

So it doesn't matter to us how the local and federal laws are interpreted or who it is that's interpreting them. For us it's a total non-issue.
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Old 11-14-2012, 02:19 PM   #29
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There you go Marin,

Know who you know.

Someone unknown or a friend of someone known.

How you gonna know if they have a joint in there pocket and not tell you.

Unless you are going to be doing strip searches.

What are you going to do?

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Old 11-14-2012, 03:34 PM   #30
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Federal law ALWAYS trumps State law. Interesting thread........
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Old 11-15-2012, 01:03 AM   #31
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I have no dog in this fight, so to speak, however I anticipate that the Federal law will be vacated by the Supremes at some point just as laws against alcohol were. The Constitution does not give the Fed's the right to prohibit pot either. That would be something left to the States to determine. But who knows how long that will take. Plus, they supported Kelo, so who knows what will happen ... .
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Old 11-15-2012, 01:47 AM   #32
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I have no dog in this fight, so to speak, however I anticipate that the Federal law will be vacated by the Supremes at some point just as laws against alcohol were. The Constitution does not give the Fed's the right to prohibit pot either. That would be something left to the States to determine. But who knows how long that will take. Plus, they supported Kelo, so who knows what will happen ... .

My understanding of prohibition is that it was enacted via the 18th amendment and repealed by the 21st amendment. Please correct me where I'm wrong, but the supreme court did not vacate the nationwide laws against alcohol.

The constitution gives the federal government the right to regulate interstate commerce, and since prior to the "home grown" advances in marijuana cultivation almost all marijuana was imported, it seems that they (the federal government) can show a interstate commerce aspect to marijuana.

BTW, to stay on topic, I'd like to be there when you tell a armed member of a USCG boarding party that they have no right to bust you for pot on your boat because the constitution says so. I'd venture to say that you'd get to see what the bore of a 870 remington looks like from the business end.
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Old 11-15-2012, 06:24 AM   #33
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I wonder if USCG enforcement will be predicated by state registration vs. US documention? Down here in the Caribbean, there are no recreational or medical pot legislations. It's all illegal and yet very common. And, as someone pointed out earlier; under the Reagan directive, gave the USCG the right to board your US flag vessel anywhere in the world for any reason! Boardings are common in the island chain and are the subject of a lot of discussion among cruisers. They, (the USCG) board boats from many nations for "routine law enforcement inspection." They bypass normal protocols by having a member or two from the local jurisdictions on board. Thus, the boardings become legal.

Controlling your own vessel is your best defense. I remember years ago when a little old lady, of some 72 years, was asked by the judge how she smoked for all those years without detection.... She replied, "if you don't smoke pot, you don't know anyone who does. But when you do smoke pot, you don't know anyone who doesn't!" Sometimes you just don't know.
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Old 11-15-2012, 03:17 PM   #34
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Hot off the internet...

So the Seattle Police Department's blog post headlined "Marijwhatnow? A Guide to Legal Marijuana Use In Seattle," definitely got our attention.
Written to help explain what happens now that Washington State voters have approved Initiative 502, which decriminalizes possession of small amounts of marijuana (effective on Dec. 6), the post has a bit of attitude. Some of the Q&As:
"Can I legally carry around an ounce of marijuana?
"According to the recently passed initiative, beginning December 6th, adults over the age of 21 will be able to carry up to an ounce of marijuana for personal use. Please note that the initiative says it "is unlawful to open a package containing marijuana...in view of the general public," so there's that. Also, you probably shouldn't bring pot with you to the federal courthouse (or any other federal property).
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