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Limburg mayors back cannabis pass plan

Tuesday 12 May 2009

Cannabis-selling cafes in Limburg will only be open to customers with special passes from January 1, eight of the region's mayors agreed on Tuesday.

The plan, which aims to stop tens of thousands of German, Belgian and French nationals buying cannabis over the border, has the backing of justice minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin and home affairs minister Guusje ter Horst, news agency ANP reports.

Under the plan, the 30 cafes in the region, known in the Netherlands as coffee shops, will only sell a maximum of three grammes a day to members. The mayors are also considering banning cash payments.

Under current government policy, coffee shops may sell up to five grammes to users.

Drugs tourism

Maastricht mayor Gert Leers, who devised the scheme, says it will make Limburg less attractive to drugs tourists because they will be able to buy less marijuana.

But Hirsch Ballin rejected Leers' call for the legalised production of cannabis for sale. 'We cannot create a licensed production sector because of Europe,' ANP quoted him as saying.

Annemarie Jorritsma, chairman of the Dutch local authorities association VNG, said she expected the project would be extended to Enschede and Eindhoven, ANP reported.

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

Another small step to closing all coffeeshops. I hope the public don't let these EU lickspittles destroy what little freedoms the Dutch and their neighbours have left. Makes no sense as those cross borders buyers obviously come in cars and they need only drive an extra hour to meet their requirements.

By paul | 12 May 2009 2:11 PM

Yes! Now the "dark Times" of ilegal trade will arrive soon to Limburg and around cities.
Congratulations for the "irresponsable" plan - only because what these Mayors want is TO GET RID OF CANNABIS instead of THINK and ACT WITHOUT PREJUDICE to achieve a CONSCIENT SOLUTION, not a "CANNAPHOBE" WAY of dealing with the issue.
Again, the EASYEST SOLUTION, normaly based on "MORAL PRINCIPALS" - the ones that never need racional thinking support - won the battle of

By s.lopes | 12 May 2009 5:56 PM

U name it ur self, keep in tutelage tens of thousands adult inhabitants. Kicking decades of work into the dirt. Starting on to criminalise the whole seen again.!?,
It is really tragic, if only a real war makes all people come down, to be glad to enjoy the little they have. And as we see, it´s the big money earner, who get it stuffed in their anywhere, earning in one year what others will not get in a lifetime, who wants to rule the world, with his and his court gang, strange ego ideas. They are just yeallous, and can´t live with it, seeing other people can make it on their own!

By LittleWing | 12 May 2009 11:30 PM

what are they doing the Netherlands has the best drugs policy in the world its right for society and its right for government
i wish they would reconsider this esp since its not the dutch people that want this but the border country's and America that is pushing the government to pass these crappy laws. please any 1 in the Netherlands that thinks there policy on drugs is wrong come to Scotland and look around the uk as a hole has failed when it comes to the policy on drugs we have such a huge problem with smack heads

By freefa11 | 12 May 2009 11:32 PM

It's like cutting off your nose to spite your face. The world's economics are hard and getting harder and here we have local government doing everything it can to make sure it gets even harder. This will only serve to deprive the participating communities of needed income which some other community a bit further up the road will gain. Dumb. Dumb. Dumb.

By Ronen Ben-Hai | 13 May 2009 5:04 AM

Maastricht is a snobby little place anyway and that's what's really behind this the same thing with not accepting cash, solid burgers of Limburg only.

By bernard weir | 13 May 2009 9:07 AM

I have been coming to the Netherlands from the US for over 15 years because of the cannabis laws, and the freedom I felt in Holland, the conservatives are slowly eroding freedom wherever they have power. Imposing moral standards by force on society is the coservative agenda,limiting the freedom of the individual.

By George P. | 14 May 2009 12:26 PM

Have any of you actually even lived in a border town? I did for almost 3 years and became sick to death of the drug tourists. They don't appreciate NL for anything other than its drug policy. The country has so much to offer but all anyone ever thinks about is the weed. Why don't you fight for these freedoms in your own country instead of hopping over the border to fill a nice city with intoxicated people who have no respect for the community they have invaded.

They're not trying to close the coffee shops. NL's policy is not intended to make the citizens of neighboring countries happy, but to ensure the freedoms of its own people. If the flood of drug tourists is allowed to continue then more citizens and politicians will call for a ban altogether.

People need to stop jumping to the worst conclusion they can think of. Not everything is a conspiracy to ruin your right to get high and act like an idiot.

By JD | 14 May 2009 3:44 PM

Excuse me Mr JD, to me it seems nobody acts like an idiot except u. One truth view is, and I am shure it is not the only one: it is true u are sick, because than u should hate all the people which go to the Albert Hein, because so many people want to shop there, and dont forget the main shopping streets in Maastricht centrum, ther are so many people go shopping, i think they must drive u mad. Shure we live here, it is called the Drie Landen Punt, the connexion Aachen, Maastricht, Leuk, where famous emperor Charls the great decidet to live. U want to put the Berlin wall back inbetween of us again?, shure we fight for it!, the time we cross the boader, it feels like comming home. This is our home place. Being on Netherland territory, it`s like we can rise our head, we are not treated like a criminal no more, and the Netherland has a lot of great things to offer, we can go to the Maas river, or walk trough the city and meet great Dutch people, go to pups, and also meet people in their private homes, and do anything life can offer, we´ve got a University, and not to forget, Dutch woman, are one of the most beautifull girls in the world! And take a look around, the streets are so cleand up, for usual, there are no crazy people on the street! What are u talking about, u mean them cute young girls or boys from Belgium or France, or Germany. Be carefully, shure, drugs is not "the" only solution, but we have to make a difference, even we cannot compare one drug with another drug, ther are drugs with a history of thousand of jears, alcohol, tobacco, haschisch or mescalin, they are completely different things. An american would say: u full of shit, but on the other hand, thank u for being a fool, so someone got the inspiration, to tell the real truth.

By LittleWing | 21 May 2009 3:37 PM

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