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US WA: Editorial: Rein In Pot Dispensaries

Marijuana (MAP) - Fri, 04/10/2015 - 07:00
Seattle Times, 10 Apr 2015 - CUSTOMERS are getting smoked out of the Ding How Center in Seattle's Little Saigon neighborhood. While the city is looking into the matter, landlords must do more to protect their properties from bad disreputable medical-marijuana stores. Businesses, employees and patrons should not be constantly overwhelmed by the smell of marijuana. Two dispensaries are now located at 1207 South Jackson Street. Store owners say The Green Door is a good neighbor. But the other, Seattle Caregivers, has become a nuisance.
Categories: Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Third MI Init, TX MJ Bill Hearings, Drug Czar Touts Needle Exchanges, More (4/9/15)

Marijuana (STDW) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 23:02

An Alaska marijuana regulation bill continues its slow advance, another Michigan legalization initiative effort emerges, Texas pot bills get a hearing, the DEA recommends tripling the federal research marijuana crop, and more.

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

Alaska Marijuana Regulation Bill Advances. The House Judiciary Committee Wednesday approved a bill to create a marijuana control board to govern the state's soon-to-be legal pot industry. The committee advanced the bill, House Bill 123, without adopting amendments that would have barred people with felony convictions within the past five years or misdemeanor drug convictions within the past three years from getting licenses. The bill now goes to the House Finance Committee.

Michigan Legalization Initiative Group Files Proposed Language. The Michigan Cannabis Coalition today submitted proposed language to state officials for review. The coalition is one of three groups considering a 2016 legalization initiative. If approved for signature-gathering, initiatives would have to come up with some 250,000 valid voter signatures within 180 days to qualify for the 2016 ballot.

Texas Marijuana Reform Bills Get Hearing. The House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee ran late into the night last night hearing impassioned testimony on a set of bills aimed at decriminalizing marijuana. The main bill is House Bill 507, by Rep. Joe Moody (D-El Paso), which would make possession of less than an ounce a civil infraction. Another bill, House Bill 325, from Rep. Gene Wu (D-Houston) would make possession of less than a third of an ounce a Class C misdemeanor, the least serious criminal offense. Yet another bill, House Bill 414, from Rep. Harold Dutton (D-Houston) would make possession of less than an ounce a Class C misdemeanor, while House Bill 1115, from Rep. Senfronia Thompson (D-Houston) would keep pot possession a misdemeanor, but would require police to cite and release anyone caught with less than four ounces. Finally, House Bill 2165, from Rep. David Simpson (R-Longview) would remove all marijuana prohibition laws from the books. No votes were taken.

Wichita Seeks Court Ruling on Legality of Local Decriminalization. The city has filed a petition for declaratory judgment in local district court asking the court to rule on the legality of enacting a decriminalization ordinance approved Tuesday by voters. State Attorney General Derek Schmidt said last month that the ordinance would have no effect, and he's also warned the city that he would be required to sue to enforce state law.

Medical Marijuana

DEA Recommends Government Triple Amount of Marijuana Grown for Research. The DEA recommended Wednesday that the government produce nearly 900 pounds of marijuana for research this year, more than three times the amount the agency had estimated it would need. The increase is because of "unanticipated medical, scientific, research, and industrial needs of the United States," the agency said in a notice published in the Federal Register.

Tennessee Medical Marijuana Bill Dead for This Year. Both the Senate Health and Welfare Committee and the House Health Committee voted to kill pending medical marijuana bills this week. Both committees, however, agreed to create summer study committees to look at the legislation.

Asset Forfeiture

Florida Senate Panel Takes Up Asset Forfeiture Bill. The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Criminal and Civil Justice today took up Senate Bill 1534, from Sen. Jeff Brandes (R-Tampa). The bill would limit law enforcement to using seized funds only to reimburse themselves for the cost of holding seized property, with the rest going into the Crimes Compensation Trust Fund.

Harm Reduction

Drug Czar Touts Needle Exchange Programs in Kentucky Visit. Director of the Office of National Drug Control (ONDCP -- the drug czar's office) Michael Botticelli touted needle exchange programs as a means of reducing the spread of infectious diseases and to steer drug users toward treatment in a visit to Kentucky Wednesday. He said the program also reduce the danger of law enforcement getting stuck with dirty needles. Kentucky lawmakers just passed an anti-heroin bill that will allow for needle exchanges, and a nearby Ohio county just started an emergency needle exchange to combat an HIV outbreak.


Chile Harvests First Medical Marijuana Crop. TV cameras were on hand in Santiago Wednesday as the country's first permitted medical marijuana crop was harvested. Chilean health officials last fall gave the okay. The therapeutic Daya Foundation will produce cannabis oils from the plants and provide them to 200 selected cancer patients.

Categories: Marijuana

CN BC: Study Shows Pot Producer's Impact

Marijuana (MAP) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 07:00
Nanaimo News Bulletin, 09 Apr 2015 - Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation has released an analysis of Tilray's impact on the local economy in the medical marijuana grower's first year of operation. The 14-page report, presented Wednesday at SquareOne co-working space, examined Tilray's impact on the region since the start of construction and operation of its 5,600-square-metre research and production facility.
Categories: Marijuana

CN BC: Dispensary On The Front Line Of Legal Battles

Marijuana (MAP) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 07:00
Parksville Qualicum Beach News, 09 Apr 2015 - Education session planned for Friday at 7p.m. in downtown Parksville Local and high-profile supporters of a medical marijuana dispensary in Parksville call the police raid Thursday harassment and invite supporters to an event tomorrow.
Categories: Marijuana

US CA: Pot Growers' Appeal Rejected

Marijuana (MAP) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 07:00
Appeal-Democrat, 09 Apr 2015 - An appellate court has denied an appeal by Yuba County marijuana growers to overturn a judge's ruling that blocks a voter referendum on the county's new pot cultivation ordinance. The 3rd District Court of Appeal on Wednesday "summarily denied" the appeal filed by Yuba Patients Coalition and six growers. The emergency writ was filed Tuesday morning in response to Yuba County Superior Court Judge Benjamin Wirtschafter's denial of a temporary restraining order for the new ordinance.
Categories: Marijuana

CN ON: Second Annual 420 Rally Planned

Marijuana (MAP) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 07:00
Brant News, 09 Apr 2015 - Let's get together and feel all right ... again. The Brantford Cannabis Club is holding its second annual 420 rally. The group, which is promoting the legalization of marijuana, invites people to come out on Monday, April 20, to Victoria Park for some entertainment and information.
Categories: Marijuana

US CA: Cultivating Rumors

Marijuana (MAP) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 07:00
The Chico News & Review, 09 Apr 2015 - County Officials Set Record Straight on Measure a Lawsuit A couple of false rumors regarding Butte County's laws and officials have been spreading via social media. Take, for instance, an obituary for District Attorney Mike Ramsey posted on Facebook.
Categories: Marijuana

US: New Federal Law Could Halt Medical Pot Cases

Marijuana (MAP) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 07:00
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 09 Apr 2015 - BLOOMFIELD, N.M. - Charles C. Lynch seemed to be doing everything right when he opened a medical marijuana dispensary in the tidy coastal town of Morro Bay, Calif. The mayor, the city attorney and leaders of the local Chamber of Commerce all came for the ribbon-cutting in 2006. The conditions for his business license, including a ban on customers younger than 18 and compliance with California's medical marijuana laws, were posted on the wall.
Categories: Marijuana

US AZ: Column: Two's A Crowd

Marijuana (MAP) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 07:00
Tucson Weekly, 09 Apr 2015 - Only One Group Can Survive the Legalization Initiative Process If Arizona Really Wants Legal Weed A group made up of medical marijuana dispensary stakeholders surprised the Marijuana Policy Project when they came out of the closet with a different ballot measure proposal to legalize recreational pot next year.
Categories: Marijuana

US CO: Column: Can I Toke Up at My Condo?

Marijuana (MAP) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 07:00
Westword, 09 Apr 2015 - Dear Stoner: Can I freely smoke marijuana in my condo? I own the condo, and the condo association has no rules about smoking. Also, can I smoke freely on my balcony? El Jefe Dear Jefe: If you're the homeowner and you say it's okay, you can smoke two joints before you smoke two joints, then smoke two more. Colorado law says you're the king of that castle, and if the king wants to puff tuff, the king can puff tuff. Your balcony is also fair game for toking, thanks to a Denver City Council decision last year. Your garage and even your front porch are pro-pot zones (we've taken a shine to puffing a doobie while working on the car, ourselves).
Categories: Marijuana

US NJ: Column: Njweedman Vs. The Christie

Marijuana (MAP) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 07:00
The Trentonian, 09 Apr 2015 - The Christie has had a bad spell-last week he made headlines by calling marijuana legalization and herb taxes "Blood Money." It's set in stone that Gov. Chris Christie does not like marijuana and is one of those fools who really believes the Reefer Madness lies of the 1930s - no surprise there. He was confronted by a teacher and that encounter went viral, a state judge is questioning his pension plans, and his cronyism with the Wall Street bankers has been exposed as a nearly 1 billion dollar Cash Cow featured on the nationally televised show The Young Turks. While I personally don't like most of Republican Christie's policies, and he personally bullied me years ago-I do like his Jersey style and his take-no-shit attitude, and though his presidency would have been scary on a global scale, imaging an "old friend of mine" as president was certainly interesting to me. I think it may have created a unique national profile opportunity for me.
Categories: Marijuana

US CA: Column: Oily Tears

Marijuana (MAP) - Thu, 04/09/2015 - 07:00
Sacramento News & Review, 09 Apr 2015 - Hi, Ngaio, I enjoy your articles. I've never smoked it but once, finding it wasn't my thing, but I have no issues with those that do. Which brings me to my question: I'm a 73-year-old male diagnosed with low-stage prostate cancer that will eventually kill me. Luckily for me, a friend with stage 4 metastatic lung cancer, not wishing to spend her final days in misery, elected to use the Rick Simpson procedure. In two months, the tumor had shrunk a third and there were no signs of other progression. Her last checkup showed no change in her status.
Categories: Marijuana

Medical Marijuana Update

Marijuana (STDW) - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 22:30

Key congressmen stick up for California's dispensaries, an Idaho CBD bill passes, an Indiana CBD bill fails, the Arizona Supreme Court allows parolees to use medical marijuana, and more.

[image:1 align:right]National

Last Thursday, two key congressmen rejected DOJ claims that it can still prosecute California dispensaries. Reps. Sam Farr (D-CA) and Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), authors of the successful congressional budget amendment protecting medical marijuana in states where it is legal, have rejected Justice Department claims that it can still go after dispensaries in California. "The Justice Department's interpretation of the amendment defies logic," Farr said. "No reasonable person thinks prosecuting patients doesn't interfere with a state's medical marijuana laws. Lawyers can try to mince words but Congress was clear: Stop going after patients and dispensaries." A Rohrabacher spokesman added that "the congressman believes the amendment's language is perfectly clear and that the DOJ's self-referential interpretation is emphatically wrong."


Last Wednesday, a full-blown medical marijuana bill was filed. Sen. Bobby Singleton (D-Greensboro) filed Senate Bill 326, which would allow doctors to recommend medical marijuana to patients and which has a unique scheme setting three levels of allowable amounts possessed. The bill would allow one dispensary in cities with a population of 10,000 or more and two dispensaries in cities with a population of 150,000 or more. Companion legislation is expected to be filed in the House by Rep. John Rogers (D-Birmingham).


On Tuesday, the state Supreme Court ruled that probationers and parolees can use medical marijuana. In two rulings, the state high court barred courts and prosecutors from denying registered patients the right to use medical marijuana while on probation. The cases are Arizona v. Farrell and Reed-Kaliher v. Arizona.


Last Tuesday, the Fresno city council approved the indoor cultivation of up to four plants. That's a change from the total ban on cultivation it passed last year. Still, patients expressed reservations about whether four plants would be sufficient. The council must approve the measure one more time before it becomes law.

Last Friday, a Yuba County judge denied a temporary restraining order against the county sought by medical marijuana growers. The Yuba Patients Coalition and six growers had sought to undo an "urgency" designation with the county's cultivation ordinance that eliminated a period for signature-gathering for a referendum challenging the ordinance. The growers said they will appeal.

On Tuesday, the State Water Board issued best practice guidelines for marijuana cultivation. The effort includes a "Know Before You Grow" brochures and a "Pesticide Use on Marijuana" research paper. Click on the link for much more.


On Monday, a legislative committee approved expanding the medical marijuana program.The committee endorsed Senate Bill 1064 after lengthy debate. The bill would be a significant expansion of the state's medical marijuana system and would allow children with specified diseases to participate, but they wold be limited to using low-THC, high-CBD cannabis oils. The bill now goes to the full Senate for consideration.


Last Friday, the state's CBD implementation bill faced more problems. A bill trying to get the state's CBD cannabis oil law, passed last year, actually implemented is now facing a new challenge: how to give black farmers a fair shot at growing the new crop. The existing law only allows farms that have been in existence for at least 30 years and that grow 400,000 plants or more to apply for one of five licenses to cultivate and distribute the crop. But hundreds of black farmers say they are being cut out of the deal because 30 years ago, they were still fighting with the US Department of Agriculture over discriminatory lending practices and weren't yet in business. The sponsor of both last year's successful bill and this year's implementation bill, Sen. Rob Bradley (R-Fleming Island), said he would attempt to address the issue. The bill is Senate Bill 7066.


Last Monday, the CBD cannabis oil bill came back from the dead. The bill, Senate Bill 1146, was killed on a tie vote in the House State Affairs Committee Monday, but the committee has agreed to reconsider it and was set to meet today for further discussion on it. If it passes the committee, it could go to a House floor vote tomorrow.

Last Thursday, it passed the Senate. The bill was killed in committee on Monday, but brought back to life Thursday and passed the Senate today. Senate Bill 1146would allow for the use of CBD for "intractable seizure disorder." It won the support of all seven Democratic state senators and 15 of 27 Republican state senators.

Last Friday, it passed the House. A bill that appeared dead only a week ago has now passed both houses of the legislature and heads for the desk of Gov. Butch Otter (R). The bill is Senate Bill 1146.


On Monday, officials began pondering whether to add 14 new qualifying conditions. The state Medical Cannabis Advisory Board is now reviewing 22 petitions requesting the addition of some 14 diseases or medical conditions to the list of those that qualify for medical marijuana. The board will hold a hearing in May and then make recommendations to the director of the Department of Publich Health, who will make the ultimate decision. Click on the link to see the whole list.


On Tuesday, a CBD cannabis oil bill was killed. A bill to allow for the use of CBD cannabis oil to treat children with epilepsy sailed through the House earlier this session, but was killed by a Senate committee vote Tuesday after prosecutors opposed it, saying it was similar to legalizing medical marijuana.


On Wednesday, the state announced it was revamping the application process for dispensaries. The state Department of Public Health (DPH) today announced significant changes to the Commonwealth's Medical Marijuana Dispensary program first authorized in 2012. The revised process will license Registered Marijuana Dispensaries (RMD) in a format similar to other healthcare facilities, such as pharmacies, which DPH also administers. This process will phase out the current use of state procurement policies to register a dispensary. Click on the link for more details.

[For extensive information about the medical marijuana debate, presented in a neutral format, visit]

Categories: Marijuana

Chronicle AM: France Okays Safe Injection Sites, Wichita Decriminalizes, Egypt Hash Debate, More (4/8/15)

Marijuana (STDW) - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 20:53

A Louisiana poll shows rising support for marijuana legalization; if Massachusetts want to legalize, it will be up to the voters; Wichita votes to decriminalize it, a CBD cannabis bill dies in Indiana, France okays safe injection sites, and more.

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

Louisiana Poll Sees Rising Support for Legalization, But Still No Majority. The 2015 Louisiana Survey, released Tuesday, shows support for marijuana legalization at 45%, up from 42% two years ago. Opposition was at 52%, down from 56% two years ago. Support was twice as high in southwest Louisiana (57%) than northeast Louisiana (28%). The state has some of the harshest pot laws in the country, but the legislature appears little inclined to do anything about them.

Massachusetts Lawmakers to Punt on Legalization. There is "no appetite" among lawmakers to address marijuana legalization, leaving the field open for ballot initiatives next year, said Senate President Stanley Rosenberg. "There's been conversations and there seems to be no appetite in the Legislature to take up... recreational marijuana, so you should expect to see it on the ballot in 2016," Rosenberg (D-Amherst) told the Boston Herald's internet radio station on Tuesday.

Wichita Votes to Decriminalize. Voters in Wichita voted 54% to 45% to approve a local initiative to decriminalize small-time marijuana possession. The measure would make first-time possession an infraction with a $50 fine. But state law says it is a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail, and state Attorney General Derek Schmidt (R) has vowed to sue the city if it passes. Stay tuned.

Medical Marijuana

Indiana CBD Cannabis Oil Bill Killed. A bill to allow for the use of CBD cannabis oil to treat children with epilepsy sailed through the House earlier this session, but was killed by a Senate committee vote Tuesday after prosecutors opposed it, saying it was similar to legalizing medical marijuana.

Massachusetts Revamps Application Process for Registered Dispensaries. The state Department of Public Health (DPH) today announced significant changes to the Commonwealth's Medical Marijuana Dispensary program first authorized in 2012. The revised process will license Registered Marijuana Dispensaries (RMD) in a format similar to other healthcare facilities, such as pharmacies, which DPH also administers. This process will phase out the current use of state procurement policies to register a dispensary. Click on the link for more details.

Drug Testing

Kentucky GOP Gubernatorial Hopeful Proposes Drug Testing Welfare Recipients. Would-be Republican gubernatorial nominee Hal Heiner is seeking to win support from the base by pushing a scheme to drug test welfare recipients. He made the call in a series of TV ads that began appearing yesterday. "I am simply asking welfare recipients to do what many employees in Kentucky are already required to do," Heiner said in a statement. "If working Kentuckians can be required to take drug tests, it is certainly reasonable to expect those who are benefiting from their tax dollars to do so as well."


France Approves Safe Injection Sites. The National Assembly Tuesday adopted a draft health law that will allow for safe injection sites for injection drug users. Opposition deputies denounced the move as "a first step toward legalizing drugs," for creating "no-go zones," and for sending "incomprehensible messages to our youth," but they did not prevail. Pilot sites will open in Paris, Bordeaux, and Strasbourg, and the law will prevent users from being arrested for drug possession within safe injection sites. Safe injection sites already operate in around 10 countries, including Australia, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, and Spain.

Call for Hash Legalization in Egypt Sparks Lively Debate. Just a few days ago, Cairo tobacco traders called for hash legalization as a revenue measure and submitted a proposal to that effect to the cabinet, and that has sparked strong reactions. The Ministry of Social Solidarity's Drug Control and Addiction Treatment Fund warned that hash is a serious threat to Egypt, which is "safe by nature." The fund claimed hash is a major factor in road accidents because it causes "lack of awareness of one's surroundings." The fund also claimed that a survey it conducted found that 86% of rapists and 23% of murderers were hash users. But hash users cited in the story disagreed. Click on the link for more.

Mexican Cartel Attack Kills 15 Cops in Jalisco. An ambush of a police convoy by presumed drug cartel gunmen on the highway between Puerto Vallarta and Guadalajara left 15 policemen dead and five wounded. It was the deadliest attack on Mexican police since 12 federal police were killed in neighboring Michoacan state in 2010. Fingers are being pointed at the Jalisco New Generation Cartel, which has grown to be one of the country's most powerful. The state has seen a spate of violence in recent weeks, including a March 19 ambush of federal police that killed five, a March 23 shootout in which police killed a gang boss, an unsuccessful March 30 attempt to assassinate the state security commissioner, and the killing Monday of the police chief in the town of Zacoalco de Torres. The security commissioner said the recent attacks were revenge for the killing of the gang leader.

(This article was published by's lobbying arm, the Drug Reform Coordination Network, which also shares the cost of maintaining this web site. DRCNet Foundation takes no positions on candidates for public office, in compliance with section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and does not pay for reporting that could be interpreted or misinterpreted as doing so.)

Categories: Marijuana

CN ON: 'We've Done The Best We Can'

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 07:00
Sentinel Review, 08 Apr 2015 - Bender awaits sentencing, closes Godiva's It was an experience to remember. While awaiting sentencing on charges of selling marijuana to his customers, Jim Bender, owner of the controversial Woodstock landmark known as Lady Godiva's Adult Emporium on Dundas Street, closed the doors of his shop and moved his family to St. Williams to run Cyclone Gas and Variety.
Categories: Marijuana

US PA: Editorial: Growing Hemp Helps Farmers, Not Pot Smokers

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 07:00
Pottstown Mercury, 08 Apr 2015 - The history of hemp's black-sheep cousin marijuana leads to hysteria when the plant is mentioned in the same breath with legalization. That is based on ignorance. It's time to give farmers the option of growing this valuable cash crop. You could say that the roots of this nation's agricultural heritage were those of hemp plants.
Categories: Marijuana

US NH: Law Enforcement Against Prohibition Weighs in on New

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 07:00
Concord Monitor, 08 Apr 2015 - As the Senate takes up the latest attempt to decriminalize marijuana in New Hampshire, proponents brought in a new ally to lend a voice to their cause: the head of a national coalition of law enforcement officials advocating for drug policy reform. "Decriminalizing marijuana possession by passing HB 618 is a necessary step in the right direction," Neill Franklin, executive director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, wrote in a recent letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee. "The less time that we as law enforcement spend arresting and prosecuting marijuana users, the more time we can spend keeping our streets safe from violent crime. LEAP strongly supports decriminalizing marijuana to free up limited police resources to deal with more serious crimes."
Categories: Marijuana

US WA: Column: Runner's High

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 07:00
Seattle Weekly, 08 Apr 2015 - Spring has sprung, and it's finally time to strap on the running shoes and get stoned out of your mind! There's no doubt that marijuana is good for all kinds of things: stimulating the appetite, creative brainstorming, giggle-fests . . . but exercise?
Categories: Marijuana

US MI: Column: Notes From The Hash Bash

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 07:00
Metro Times, 08 Apr 2015 - Tommy Chong, half of the vintage comedy duo Cheech and Chong, made a series of appearances over the weekend for a big weekend anchored by the 44th Ann Arbor Hash Bash. On Friday there was a breakfast at an Ann Arbor-area hotel, along with about 50 invited guests. I managed to get in with someone who had a plus-one invite - her husband was out of town, so I got in. I figured it would be interesting to hear what Chong had to say and maybe I'd get a few laughs.
Categories: Marijuana

US CO: Column: Colorado To Consider PTSD, Kara'Smokey'

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 07:00
Colorado Springs Independent, 08 Apr 2015 - Another chance for PTSD On Friday, the Colorado Medical Marijuana Scientific Advisory Council will consider a petition from Colorado group Vets 4 Freedoms to add post-traumatic stress disorder to the list of ailments the state considers treatable with medical cannabis. Previous groups have brought the petition multiple times, only to be denied every time by the Colorado Board of Health. This consideration is a prelude to one by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
Categories: Marijuana
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