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Marijuana

US OR: Jackson County Company Among First to Win Recreational

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 05/04/2016 - 07:00
The Mail Tribune, 04 May 2016 - Jackson County Company Among First Eight Licensees A Jackson County company is among the first eight businesses statewide to receive a coveted recreational marijuana growing license from the Oregon Liquor Control Commission.
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Chronicle AM: VT Legalization Bill Killed, Feds End Harborside Action, More... (5/3/16)

Marijuana (STDW) - Tue, 05/03/2016 - 20:29

Marijuana legalization is dead in Vermont this year, Tennessee cuts repeat pot possession penalties, the German health minister says medical marijuana is coming early next year, and more.

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

Tennessee Reduces Repeat Marijuana Possession Penalties. Gov. Bill Haslam (R) has signed into law House Bill 1478, which eliminates a provision in state law that makes a third conviction for pot possession a felony. Instead of facing one to six years in state prison, third offenders will now face up to a year in jail.

Vermont House Votes Down Pot Legalization Bill. The House voted 121-28 today to kill the marijuana legalization bill passed by the Senate in February. While Senate Bill 241 is dead, the House continues to work on a proposal to expand decriminalization from one ounce to two and to allow individuals to grow up to two plants. Stay tuned.

Medical Marijuana

Feds End Attempt to Shut Down, Seize California's Harborside Dispensaries. Federal prosecutors have reached a "historic agreement" with Harborside to end their efforts to seize the Oakland and San Jose dispensaries for violating federal drug laws. In return, Harborside agrees not to pursue further legal action against the federal government. "We are gratified that the government has finally seen fit to lay down its arms against Harborside in this case," said Harborside attorney Henry Wykowski. "The will of the people is for medical cannabis dispensaries to operate free from federal threats of closure. We hope we are on the cusp of a policy change and that the Department of Justice will no longer target state-legal dispensaries for forfeiture."

Illinois Medical Marijuana Board Okays New Health Conditions. The board voted Monday to add ten qualifying conditions for medical marijuana use. Among them were PTSD and chronic pain, which were rejected earlier this year by Gov. Bruce Rauner (R). The board members also said they doubted the conditions would be approved and complained that Rauner's standards for approving new conditions are too strict.

Harm Reduction

North Carolina Needle Exchange Bill Filed. State Sen. Stan Bingham (R-Guilford County) has introduced Senate Bill 794, which would allow needle exchanges to operate legally in the state. The bill is set for committee assignment sometime this week.

International

German Health Minister Says Medical Marijuana Coming Early Next Year. Health Minister Hermann Groehe said Tuesday that the country will legalize medical marijuana early next year. "Our goal is that seriously ill patients are treated in the best possible way," Groehe said, adding that he will present draft legislation to the cabinet Wednesday.

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US: Walgreens Cannabis Post Creates Buzz

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 05/03/2016 - 07:00
Chicago Tribune, 03 May 2016 - Pharmacy Chain Says Info on Blog Not Endorsement A recent post on Walgreens' blog raised eyebrows in the medical marijuana community. Titled "Clarifying Clinical Cannabis," the post, written by a resident pharmacist at Walgreens and the University of Illinois at Chicago, isn't an endorsement.
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Chronicle AM: ME to Vote on Legalization, AK "Pot Cafes," AL Passes CBD MedMJ, More... (5/2/16)

Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 05/02/2016 - 20:55

Lots of Maine news today, Alaska could see "pot cafes," a New Hampshire asset forfeiture bill gets gutted under police pressure, and more.

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

Alaska Marijuana Draft Regulations Include Pot Cafes. Alaska could become the first legalization state to actually allow social marijuana smoking in designated businesses. The state's Marijuana Control Board has crafted draft regs that would allow users to toke up inside retail stores. The draft regs are now awaiting public comment. While "public" marijuana use is banned, the regs create an exemption for retail stores to seek an "onsite consumption endorsement" to their licenses. Stores with that endorsement could then set aside an area for people to consume marijuana.

California GOP Opposes AUMA Legalization Initiative. The state Republican Party voted at its convention over the weekend to oppose the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA) marijuana legalization initiative. "We must not turn this plague loose on our children and the people of California," said Sen. Jim Nielsen (R-Gerber, who also called marijuana an "entry-level" drug that leads to addiction. California Democrats have endorsed the initiative.

It's Official: Maine Will Vote on Legalization in November The final obstacle to a popular vote was removed last Friday, when state legislators punted on their chance to act on the citizen legalization initiative, opting instead to send the question to the voters instead. Earlier, the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, which organized the state's legalization initiative had to go to the courts to force recalcitrant state officials to properly count all the signatures, and they did so.

Vermont House Takes Up Marijuana Legalization Today. The House is considering legalization today, albeit in a roundabout fashion. One House committee rejected the legalization measure, Senate Bill 241, while another amended it to legalize possession and personal cultivation, but not regulated, legal marijuana commerce. The Senate responded by pasting SB 241 into another bill, House Bill 858, which the House is considering today. Stay tuned!

Medical Marijuana

Alabama Passes CBD Medical Marijuana Bill. Both houses of the legislature have now approved "Leni's Law," which would allow people with seizure disorders or other debilitating medical conditions to use CBD cannabis oil to treat their ailments. Gov. Robert Bentley (R) is expected to sign the bill into law.

Connecticut Medical Marijuana Expansion Bill Passes Legislature. A bill that would allow children with certain debilitating medical conditions to use medical marijuana has passed out of the legislature after a final Senate vote last Friday. Gov. Dannel Malloy (D) is expected to sign House Bill 5450 into law.

New Hampshire's First Dispensary Opens. The Sanctuary Alternative Treatment Center opened in Plymouth last Saturday. It's the first dispensary in the state to open for business. It only took nearly three years after the state's medical marijuana law was approved for this to happen.

Asset Forfeiture

New Hampshire Asset Forfeiture Bill Scaled Back Under Police Pressure. The state Senate last Thursday stripped a provision from an asset forfeiture reform bill that would have directed funds seized by police to the state's general fund rather than to the agency that seized them. The move came after police chiefs said not letting them keep the goodies would "handcuff" them.

Oklahoma Governor Signs Asset Forfeiture Reform Bill. Gov. Mary Fallin (R) last Thursday signed into law a bill that will allow people whose property is subject to asset forfeiture to recover attorney fees when they challenge the seizures. The new law goes into effect November 1.

Drug Policy

Maine Decriminalizes Drug Possession, Moves to Adopt Pre-Arrest Diversion Program. Last Thursday, a bill that would make simple drug possession a misdemeanor instead of a felony passed into law without the signature of Tea Party Gov. Paul LePage. The bill, LD 1554, decriminalizes the possession of up to 200 milligrams of heroin. Earlier this month, the legislature also approved a bill that would fund Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) programs, which have proven successful in Seattle and other cities.

Harm Reduction

Maine Legislature Overrides Governor's Veto of Overdose Reversal Drug Bill. The legislature voted last Friday to override gubernatorial vetoes of LD 1457 and LD 1552, which would allow access to naloxone without a prescription and provide public funding for needle exchange, respectively. Gov. Paul Le Page had claimed "naloxone does not save lives, it merely extends them until the next overdose" and complained that the $70 cost would not be repaid.

International

Canada Supreme Court Throws Out Mandatory Minimums for Drug Traffickers. In a decision last Friday, the high court ruled mandatory minimums for repeat drug offenders are unconstitutional. The case is R. v. Lloyd.

Categories: Marijuana

It's Official: Maine Will Vote on Marijuana Legalization in November

Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 05/02/2016 - 18:59

This article was produced in collaboration with AlterNet and first appeared here.

Marijuana legalization will be on the Maine ballot in November. The final obstacle to a popular vote was removed last Friday, when state legislators punted on their chance to act on the citizen legalization initiative, opting instead to send the question to the voters instead.

[image:1 align:left]Earlier, the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, which organized the state's legalization initiative had to go to the courts to force recalcitrant state officials to recognize the validity of thousands of challenged voter petition signatures. The campaign had handed in roughly 100,000 signatures and only needed 61,000 valid voter signatures.

But Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap threw out nearly half of the signatures for various reasons, including some 17,000 that he rejected because he said the notary's signature on the petition forms did not match his signature on file. The campaign appealed to the courts, and three weeks ago, a state court ordered Dunlap to review the signatures again.

Last Wednesday, Dunlap certified an additional 11,305 signatures, which was enough to put the initiative over the top. That was followed by the legislative votes last Friday, which cleared the way for voters to make the call themselves in November.

The legalization initiative is likely to win. The most recent poll has support for legalization at 54%, and voters in Portland, the state's largest city, and South Portland have already approved local initiatives to legalize the possession of small amounts of pot.

Maine now joins Nevada as states where marijuana legalization is on the ballot this fall. At least two other states, Arizona and California, should also see legalization initiatives qualify for the fall ballot, but those campaigns are still in the signature gathering phase. There is an outside chance that Michigan could qualify an initiative this year, too.

Meanwhile, the Vermont House is today grappling with a legalization bill. That bill has already passed the Senate, but the House has been divided, and it is not at all clear that the bill will survive the session. The Vermont bill is the best chance this year for marijuana to be legalized by a state legislature.

No state has yet legalized marijuana through the legislature. All four legalization states -- Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington -- and Washington, DC, legalized it through the initiative process. By year's end, there should be a couple more legalization states and possibly as many as five, but again, it will be the voters, not the politicians, leading the way.

Categories: Marijuana

Canada: The Drug Dealers Next Door

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 05/02/2016 - 07:00
Maclean's Magazine, 02 May 2016 - THE DRUG DEALERS NEXT DOOR The Liberal's promise to legalize weed has unleashed a flood of illegal storefront dispensaries. Buying pot has never been easier. At the very least, nobody can accuse Canada Bliss Herbals of trying to conceal what it's selling. The sign outside the company's newest store (its third location, in the heart of Toronto's Junction neighbourhood) features a red Maple Leaf-with a green marijuana plant smack in the middle. "Living life in wellness," the slogan reads.
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US AK: Burnout: The Rise And Fall Of A Pot Club

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 05/02/2016 - 07:00
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, 02 May 2016 - FAIRBANKS - When Megan and Marcus Mooers started thinking about opening a private marijuana club, they knew they wanted the name to have the initials THC. THC is short for tetrahydrocannabinol, the active ingredient in marijuana.
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US CT: Senate Oks Medical Pot For Minors

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 05/02/2016 - 07:00
Register Citizen, 02 May 2016 - Bill Awaits Governor's Signature HARTFORD - The Senate gave final passage to a bill Friday that would give children under the age of 18 access to non-smokeable medical marijuana. The bill passed the Senate 2311 after more than three hours of debate.
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New Zealand: Column: Legalising Pot Could Do Us All a World of

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 05/02/2016 - 07:00
New Zealand Herald, 02 May 2016 - Tax the Stuff, Build More Schools and Watch Crime Go Down For many in New Zealand it's easier to get hold of marijuana than alcohol. And yet it's still super illegal. It seems strange a conservative country like the United States has states legalising cannabis when here in New Zealand - one of the biggest consumers of weed per capita - we're not even close.
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US OH: OPED: Ohio Tries To Figure Out What To Do About Pot

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 05/01/2016 - 07:00
Dayton Daily News, 01 May 2016 - More than a token, but something short of tokin': That's the Ohio General Assembly's task in trying to craft a bill legalizing Ohioans' use of medical marijuana. The science may or may not be there, at least not entirely. But what looks like a public consensus seems to be. And that consensus is that marijuana's chemical components can help Ohioans fighting certain illnesses or enduring, say, chemotherapy.
Categories: Marijuana

US CA: State GOP Says No To Pot

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 05/01/2016 - 07:00
Los Angeles Times, 01 May 2016 - A proposal to legalize the recreational use of marijuana in California isn't getting much love from state Republicans. An influential California Republican Party committee on Saturday voted to oppose a proposed statewide ballot measure, known as the Adult Use Act, which would allow those 21 and older to possess and use up to an ounce of pot.
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US FL: Familiar Aroma Pervades Sunfest

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 05/01/2016 - 07:00
The Palm Beach Post, 01 May 2016 - Concertgoers Indulge in Marijuana in Violation of City Law. WEST PALM BEACH - After 7:30 p.m. Friday night, you could smell it. There was no escaping the odor, which permeated the night sky like smoke bellowing from a chimney. The stench of marijuana was as prevalent and as synonymous with SunFest as the downtown traffic jams.
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US NJ: Column: Time for the Njweedman to Roll (a Joint) Off

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 05/01/2016 - 07:00
The Trentonian, 01 May 2016 - Henry Gunther was an unhappy man, according to stories told years later by the BBC and The Baltimore Sun. He was unhappy for good reason, as well: It was World War I, he was fighting on the Western Front, and he had recently been demoted back to the rank of private. But the worst was yet to come for Gunther.
Categories: Marijuana

US PA: Anticipating A Marijuana Industry

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 05/01/2016 - 07:00
The Philadelphia Inquirer, 01 May 2016 - When the 1849 Gold Rush hit, it wasn't the miners who got rich. The businessmen who sold blue jeans and pickaxes amassed the real fortunes. When Gov. Wolf signed a medical marijuana bill into law on April 17, Pennsylvania became the 24th state to legalize medical cannabis.
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US CT: Examining Opioid Addiction Treatment

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 05/01/2016 - 07:00
New Haven Register, 01 May 2016 - Dr. Leana Wen, a practicing emergency care physician and Baltimore's health commissioner, has seen what addiction does to patients. Speaking to reporters this month in Baltimore, Wen recalled a patient, who developed an addiction and would lie about illnesses to ensure she had access to treatment, but then died of a heroin overdose after multiple attempts to get appropriate treatment.
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US HI: Ending The War On Drugs

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 05/01/2016 - 07:00
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 01 May 2016 - With Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Coming Soon, the Debate Shifts to Decriminalizing Some Drugs Thirteen years after Hawaii legalized medical marijuana, the state is finally forging ahead with licensing marijuana dispensaries, issuing licenses to eight applicants on Friday. As it has in other states, that policy shift could usher in a new era of social norms. Back in 1973, Oregon was the first state to decriminalize small amounts of cannibas for recreational use. Four decades later, Oregon voters said yes to legalizing marijuana, as Colorado and Washington had already done in 2012. Twenty states and Washington, D.C., have decriminalized marijuana possession.
Categories: Marijuana

UK: Column: Clegg's Drugs Confession

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 05/01/2016 - 07:00
The Mail on Sunday, 01 May 2016 - SOME things are unsayable in British politics. One such is the truth that cannabis has been, for many years, a decriminalised drug. The police, the CPS and the courts have given up any serious effort to arrest and prosecute users, just as evidence starts to pour in that it is extremely dangerous. Instead our elite moan about 'prohibition', which does not exist, and the cruel 'criminalisation' of dope-smokers, which would be their own fault if it happened, but actually doesn't. Arrests for this offence are rarer every week, and some police forces openly say they don't do it any more.
Categories: Marijuana
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