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Marijuana

US MD: OPED: Marijuana Legalization Best Md. Path

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 10/28/2014 - 07:00
Baltimore Sun, 28 Oct 2014 - Earlier this month, marijuana was partially decriminalized in Maryland, making possession under 10 grams (about a third of an ounce) subject to a citation, a fine and no jail time. Despite some problems with the language of the law, taking jail time off the table and ensuring no criminal records for owners of small quantities of marijuana are positive first steps in changing the state's drug policy. That said, the Maryland legislature has been far too timid in its approach and should instead adopt a Colorado-like model for legalization.
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US OR: OPED: Legalizing Marijuana Sends Wrong Message

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 10/28/2014 - 07:00
The Register-Guard, 28 Oct 2014 - Measure 91 is a bad idea for Oregon. It is a bad idea for our communities, and it's a very bad idea for our children and youth. On Nov. 4, voters in Oregon will make a crucial decision: whether to legalize marijuana for recreational use. Since we already have approved the legal use of marijuana for medical purposes, the message we'd be sending to our young people by approving Measure 91 may not seem like a big deal.
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US CA: Measure A Forum Offers Look at Pros, Cons of Proposed

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 10/28/2014 - 07:00
Record Searchlight, 28 Oct 2014 - REDDING, California - Nearly 100 people turned out for a forum in south Redding Monday night to hear arguments for and against Shasta County's Measure A, a ballot measure that -- if approved by voters next week -- would ban outdoor marijuana cultivation in unincorporated areas of the county and place additional restrictions on indoor grows. People on both sides of the debate agreed for-profit, illegal marijuana grows have led to environmental damage and crime in the North State, but the competing factions offered greatly different opinions on how best to regulate those gardens and hold scofflaw marijuana growers accountable.
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US CA: Column: Encinitas' Prop. F and the Dispensaries

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 10/28/2014 - 07:00
San Diego City Beat, 28 Oct 2014 - Let's Move This Time Machine to 2014, Shall We? I suffer from election fatigue, thanks to the constant barrage of campaigning, the devious tactics of politicians and signature-gatherers, the endless pamphleting, the calls asking for money. (Please, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee: Quit asking me to help Al Franken. The answer will always be no, unless the all-powerful electeds want to pay for my kid's college education, which means properly funding our public schools so they can properly educate kids in the first place.)
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US OR: Lebanon City Council Votes to Tax Marijuana

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 10/28/2014 - 07:00
Lebanon Express, 28 Oct 2014 - The Lebanon city council enacted a 10 percent sales tax on recreational and medical marijuana at its meeting on Oct. 23. Currently, both taxes change nothing in Lebanon because the city enacted a moratorium on medical marijuana dispensaries and recreational marijuana is illegal in Oregon.
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Chronicle AM: Latest AK & OR Polls, AZ & MI MedMJ Rulings; Ireland Naloxone, More (10/27/14)

Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 10/27/2014 - 20:48

It's nail-biting time for the Alaska and Oregon legalization initiatives, appeals courts in Arizona and Michigan rule on medical marijuana cases, Chuck Schumer (again) wants more money to fight drugs, the acting drug czar opens the harm reduction conference (!), naloxone is coming to Ireland, and more. Let's get to it:

[image:1 align:right caption:true]Marijuana Policy

Latest Poll Has Oregon Measure 91 Under 50%, But With Four Point Lead. The latest SurveyUSA Oregon poll has the Measure 91 legalization initiative leading 44% to 40%, with 16% undecided. All recent polls have shown the measure leading, but as election day draws near, the gap is tightening and support is hovering under 50%. That means it's going to come down to two things: turn-out and how the undecideds break.

Latest Poll Has Alaska Measure 2 Under 50%, But With Four Point Lead. A new Hellenthal and Associates poll has the Measure 2 legalization initiative leading 46.5% to 42.2%, with 11.3% undecided. Those supporting Measure 2 included 29.7% who "strongly favor" and 16.8% who "somewhat favor." Among foes, 35.0% "strongly oppose" and 7.2% "somewhat oppose." Like Oregon, it looks like this one is going down to the wire, and turnout and undecideds will make the difference. Click on the title link for full poll results.

Medical Marijuana

Arizona Appeals Court Holds Medical Marijuana Users Can Be Charged With DUI Even if Not Impaired. Arizona has a zero-tolerance drugged driving law, and the state Court of Appeals ruled last week that the state's medical marijuana law does not provide immunity from prosecution, even if they are not impaired and only test positive for the presence of marijuana metabolites. The case is Darrah v. City of Mesa.

Michigan Court of Appeals Holds Medical Marijuana Users Can Get Unemployment Compensation. State-approved medical marijuana patients are eligible for unemployment compensation if the only reason they were fired is that they tested positive for the drug, the state Court of Appeals ruled Friday. The decision was based on the courts' reading of the state's medical marijuana law, which prohibits penalties for those who legally use medical marijuana. The series of consolidated cases in which the court ruled begins with Braska v. Challenge Manufacturing Company.

Pennsylvania State Senator Urges DAs to Not Prosecute Medical Marijuana Cases. Sen. Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery), sponsor of a medical marijuana bill stalled in the House after passing the Senate, has called on prosecutors to not go after patients. Leach made the call in a letter to the Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association. "Given the likelihood that using lifesaving medical cannabis will not be a legal issue in Pennsylvania for much longer, I ask that you consider using your prosecutorial discretion," he wrote. "I ask that you perform an act of compassion."

Harm Reduction

Acting Drug Czar Opens National Harm Reduction Conference. It wasn't so long ago that top US government officials wouldn't even say the words "harm reduction," but things have changed. Acting director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP -- the drug czar's office) Michael Botticelli opened the 10th Annual National Harm Reduction Conference, which took place in Baltimore over the weekend. "It really is no coincidence that I'm here,"Botticelli said. "I hope that my presence here reflects the Obama administration's commitment to continuing drug policy reform." Botticelli announced no great initiatives, but he did say that he wanted to ensure that "federal policy reflects the needs of people on the ground," and also expressed the hope that his working relationship with the Harm Reduction Coalition will "continue to grow."

Heroin

Kentucky Republican Lawmakers Vow to Push Legislation Targeting Heroin Dealers. Two GOP legislators have pre-filed the Kentucky Heroin Impact Act (BR 164), which would increase criminal penalties for heroin trafficking. "Unless we take action now, our streets will be lined with dead bodies," said bill cosponsor Rep. Joe Fischer (R-Fort Thomas). The bill also calls for increased public education and more funding for drug treatment. Similar legislation died this year in the legislature.

Law Enforcement

Schumer Wants More Federal Dollars to Fight Online Drug Sales. New York US Sen. Charles Schumer (D) wants the Justice Department to turn up the heat on illicit online drug sales, he said today. He said in a statement he would fight to get more money for the department to fight "drug-related cybercrime." "These websites, by allowing users to rate the delivery services of sellers and by offering any drugs imaginable under the sun, are nothing less than an all-you-can order buffet of contraband that need to be investigated and targeted with more intensity,"he added.

Sentencing

Bail Reform Question is on New Jersey Ballot. New Jersey residents will be voting on a measure that could usher in comprehensive bail reform in the Garden State. Public Question No. 1 asks voters to change the state constitution to give judges the ability to deny bail to dangerous suspects, but it also would enact groundbreaking legislation to comprehensively reform the state's broken bail system. That legislation only goes into effect if the question passes. A recent found that on any given day, nearly 75% of the 15,000 individuals in New Jersey jails are awaiting trial rather than serving a sentence. The average length of pretrial incarceration for these individuals is more than ten months. Nearly 40 percent of the total jail population has the option to post bail but lacks the financial resources to do so and more than 10 percent of individuals could secure their release pending trial with $2,500 or less.

International

Irish Heroin Users to Get Overdose Reversal Drug Naloxone. Beginning early next year, some 600 Irish heroin and methadone users and their families will be supplied with naloxone (Narcan), the overdose reversal drug. It's a pilot program from the Health Service Executive, and follows the success of a similar project in Wales. Ireland has suffered around 200 opiate overdose deaths a year in recent years.

Categories: Marijuana

US WA: Column: Comparing Pot to Alcohol May Aid Legalization

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 10/27/2014 - 07:00
The Herald, 27 Oct 2014 - When Colorado voters in 2012 approved a ballot measure legalizing marijuana, the state did not merely break new ground in the ongoing battle over narcotics policy. It also bolstered an innovative new political message that compares cannabis to alcohol. Two years later, that comparison is being deployed in key marijuana related elections throughout the country, and drug reform advocates are so sure marijuana is safer than alcohol, they are now challenging police to a "drug duel" to prove their point.
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US NY: Woman Arrested On Drug Charges Dies In Custody

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 10/27/2014 - 07:00
Daily Freeman, 27 Oct 2014 - NEW YORK (AP) - A woman who was in custody on a drug-related arrest died after suffering an apparent seizure while she was being processed, according to the New York Police Department. Authorities say 22-yearold Jasmine Lawrence of the Bronx had been arrested around 8 p.m. Saturday on Bedford Avenue in Brooklyn on charges of criminal sale of marijuana and unlawful possession of marijuana.
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UK: Club Calls for the Legalisation of Cannabis

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 10/27/2014 - 07:00
The Argus, 27 Oct 2014 - CANNABIS is seen as a harmful and dangerous drug but many believe it should be declassified. This year Brighton became home to a new campaign group which openly uses the drug in public and is fighting to make it legal. FLORA THOMPSON reports... WALK through The Lanes on a Saturday afternoon and you may see someone casually lighting up a cannabis 'joint'.
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US PA: Editorial: Failure To Take Up Bill Hurts Children

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
Springfield Sun, 26 Oct 2014 - The medical marijuana bill awaiting a vote in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives never made it off the table. How sad for the many young children suffering from severe seizures and other medical problems that SB 1182 is designed to help.
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US MI: Voters In 3 Cities To Decide Pot Proposals

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
The Daily Tribune, 26 Oct 2014 - Marijuana decriminalization proposals are on the ballot in three south Oakland County communities on Nov. 4 and pro-pot organizers have yet to lose such an election. Election Day in Huntington Woods, Pleasant Ridge and Berkley will show whether the activists' winning streak will continue in Oakland County and elsewhere.
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US FL: Medical Marijuana: Florida Parents Fight to Help

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
Miami Herald, 26 Oct 2014 - Nicolas Peruyero was 8 years old, blind and unable to walk or talk when his mother saw a documentary about the benefits of medical marijuana and its promise to reduce seizures. For a few moments, Nancy Peruyero imagined what Nicolas' life might be like without the relentless myoclonic seizures every day. And for the first time, she allowed herself to hope, an emotion she had rarely felt since that August afternoon in 2009 when her youngest son was diagnosed with Batten disease, an unusual neurological disorder marked by seizures, loss of motor skills and mental impairment. His life expectancy with the disease is no more than 12 years. He turned 9 on Oct.2.
Categories: Marijuana

US FL: OPED: Let's Check the Facts on the Medical Marijuana

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
The Gainesville Sun, 26 Oct 2014 - One of the splits between North and South is over the medical use of marijuana. In New York, the House recently voted for legalizing medical marijuana 117-30, followed by 49-10 in the Senate. In Maryland, the House approved 125-11 and the Senate 44-2. Last year in New Hampshire, the votes in favor were 284-66 in the House and 18-6 in the Senate. Those three states joined 20 others where marijuana could already be used medically. Every southern state, however, remains among the 27 that still outlaw its medicinal use, even as evidence accumulates that cannabinoids alleviate severe pain, nausea, weight loss and muscle spasms with milder side effects than alternatives. Medicinal use of marijuana is humane and reduces deaths from opioids. What about Florida, a cultural blend of North and South? Until recently, Amendment 2 legalizing marijuana, drafted by former House speaker and UF law school dean Jon Mills, appeared sure to gain the required 60 percent voter approval. Recently, however, a flood of negative TV advertising has turned many voters against it.
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Uruguay: Uruguay's Superstar President Bows Out - but Will His

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
The Observer, 26 Oct 2014 - The Country Votes Today for a Successor to Jose Mujica, and Candidates Have Doubts About His Headline-Grabbing Reform Juan Palese, 25, stands outside the door of his Urugrow shop, sharing a red-tipped marijuana joint with a group of young friends. The sweet, pungent aroma of cannabis permeates the street as chattering students from Montevideo's nearby school of social sciences walk heedlessly by. Photograph by Uki Goni Juan Palese sells fertilisers and compost for growing cannabis at home from his shop in Montevideo.
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US FL: Is Medical Marijuana Amendment in Trouble?

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
The Gainesville Sun, 26 Oct 2014 - With Election Day less than two weeks away, Ben Pollara feverishly worked the phones on Thursday. Pollara, the campaign manager for the political committee behind the medical marijuana referendum, contacted donors large and small in an effort to bring in a late infusion of cash.
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US WA: Editorial: Where's The Weed?

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
Seattle Times, 26 Oct 2014 - FOUR months into Washington's era of legal marijuana stores, a strange reality has settled over Seattle: The city doesn't seem to care much about the availability of over-the-counter pot. Combined sales at Seattle's recreational marijuana stores trail those in Vancouver, Spokane and even Bellingham. On a per capita basis, Seattle's sales are about half of Yakima's and one-third of Tacoma's, according to data from the state Liquor Control Board.
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US DC: OPED: A Campaign for Justice - Through Legal Marijuana

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
Washington Post, 26 Oct 2014 - Racial Disparities Still Exist in Enforcement Not even the threat of legal penalty has kept marijuana users from making it the most commonly used recreational drug after alcohol and tobacco. But in black America, marijuana's harsh penalty is evergreen: It is a consistent gateway into jails that lock away mostly young black folk, including those who don't have prior arrest records.
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US DC: OPED: The Route To Reefer Sanity

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
Washington Post, 26 Oct 2014 - On a warm Seattle summer evening in 1978, my wife wanted to talk about my increasingly frequent pot smoking: "I feel you've abandoned me, that the person I married-even when you're sitting next to me on the couch - is not there." She had complained before about my use, and I'd tried to reassure her. "It's not as if I'm stoned every day," I'd counter. "Is it that different from having a drink or two?" I'd promise to cut back, but my resolve would give way, and I'd start to cut corners, making exceptions to the rules I'd set. Eventually I'd slide right back to where I started.
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US IL: OPED: Benefits of Medical Marijuana Site in Metamora

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
Peoria Journal Star, 26 Oct 2014 - When I was first approached about having a medical marijuana cultivation site in Metamora, I said we were most likely not interested. My reaction was based on years of thinking of marijuana as "pot," being sold by a drug dealer on a street corner. After doing research, I changed my mind for three reasons. The first was hearing about a 4-year-old boy who had epileptic seizures. Specially grown marijuana that produced the right strain would stop the seizures. I heard about cancer patients who after treatment experienced terrible side effects. With the right medical marijuana, they experienced no side effects. I learned there are 41 debilitating illnesses that can be treated with legally grown marijuana. Metamora is a caring community willing to help those who are in trouble medically. The medicine produced from genetically engineered marijuana could potentially help many sick people improve their lives.
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Australia: Psychiatric Units Struggle With Scourge of Smuggled Drugs

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 07:00
The Age, 26 Oct 2014 - Illicit drugs and alcohol are being smuggled into mental health wards run by the state's busiest public hospitals, undermining patient care and putting psychiatric staff at risk of violence. Parents have reported that their children have bought and used illegal drugs while in hospital being treated for drug-induced psychosis, and health authorities say patients are returning to wards affected by drugs after going on temporary approved leave.
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