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Medical Marijuana Update

Marijuana (STDW) - Wed, 06/10/2015 - 23:15

It's getting a bit quieter on the medical marijuana front as state legislative sessions wind down, but there is still some action.

[image:1 align:right]National

Last weekend, the AMA called for protections for medical marijuana doctors. Meeting at its annual convention in Chicago, the American Medical Association has passed a resolution called "Immunity from Federal Prosecution for Cannabis Prescribing." The resolution is "consistent with AMA policy to protect patient-physician communications about treatment options, supporting a public health approach rather than a law-enforcement focus, for individuals possessing cannabis for personal use and opposing government interference with the practice of medicine," the nation's largest doctors' group said.

Alabama

Last Thursday, medical marijuana legislation died. The legislative session ended last Thursday, and medical marijuana legislation died without action. Again.

California

Last Thursday, the Santa Barbara planning commission approved a dispensary. The commission approved a location at Ontare Plaza by a 6-1 vote. It still must be approved by the city council.

Louisiana

Last Thursday, the House approved a medical marijuana bill. The House approved Senate Bill 143, which would allow for the use of non-smoked marijuana for medical reasons and which would set up a system of 10 dispensaries statewide. The bill has already passed the Senate, but now returns there for a final vote after the house amended the bill. Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) has said he will sign the bill.

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

Categories: Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Two OH Legalization Inits Falter, One Going Strong; NC Harm Reduction Bill Passes, More (6/10/15)

Marijuana (STDW) - Wed, 06/10/2015 - 22:28

Only one Ohio marijuana legalization initiative is still trying to make the ballot this year -- and looks like it will -- South Dakota could try for the third time to approve medical marijuana, a harm reduction measure passes in North Carolina, and more.

[image:1 align:left]Marijuana Policy

Ohio Legalization Initiative Backers Say They Have Enough Signatures to Qualify. Proponents of the ResponsibleOhio legalization initiative, which would divvy up commercial grows to only 10 investors, say they have collected enough signatures to qualify for the November 2015 ballot. The group's executive director, Ian James, said the group has collected more than 550,000 voter signatures. It needs 305,000 valid voter signatures to qualify, and it still has three more weeks of petitioning to go. The group said it also conducted a robust voter registration campaign along with its signature drive.

Two Ohio Legalization Initiatives Give Up on 2015. The Better for Ohio and Ohio Rights Group legalization initiatives are dead for this year after organizers for both groups conceded they will not have the required number of valid voter signatures by July 1 to qualify for the November 2015 ballot. Both groups will continue to gather signatures for 2016.

Medical Marijuana

South Dakota Medical Marijuana Initiative Filed. A state activist has filed the explanation for a medical marijuana initiative with the state attorney general's office. Once it is reviewed and approved, proponents will then have 180 days to come up with 13,871 valid voter signatures to qualify for the November 2016 ballot. Medical marijuana initiatives have twice been defeated in the state. Maybe the third time will be the charm.

Drug Treatment

New York Legislature Approves Bill to Encourage Medication-Assisted Treatment for Drug Court Participants. The state Senate Tuesday approved Senate Bill 4239-B, which bars drug courts from removing drug court participants for using drugs like methadone and buprenorphine as part of a drug treatment program. The measure has already passed the Assembly. Advocates are now pressing Gov. Cuomo (D) to sign the bill into law.

Harm Reduction

North Carolina Legislature Passes Bill Strengthening 911 Good Samaritan Law. The state legislature has approved Senate Bill 154, which strengthens the state's 911 Good Samaritan law by extending protections from arrest to include not revoking someone's probation or parole, not charging underage victims of alcohol overdoses with a crime, and by clarifying that pharmacists are permitted to dispense naloxone with a physician's standing order.

Categories: Marijuana

CN ON: Column: Tough on Drugs Doesn't Work UK Study Shows

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/10/2015 - 07:00
The Simcoe Reformer, 10 Jun 2015 - TOUGH ON DRUGS DOESN'T WORK UK STUDY SHOWS At the end of last year the British government Home Office released an in-depth study "Drugs: International Comparators "comparing the drug laws in 11 different countries ranging from Portugal where small amounts of any drugs are legal, to Japan which has a zero tolerance position on possession of even the smallest amount of drugs. The purpose of this study was to not only take a realistic look at their own drug laws but to determine whether there was a direct link to being "tough on drugs" and actually tackling the drug problem.
Categories: Marijuana

CN BC: An Explanation of Vancouver's Pot Dispensaries

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/10/2015 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 10 Jun 2015 - What is a dispensary? Dispensaries are storefront operations that sell marijuana to customers who say they have a medical need. Some operations require customers to provide medical documentation, such as a note from a doctor or other health-care professional, but others are less strict. The owner of Vancouver's largest chain has said he will provide up to a gram of marijuana products to any adult who asks, without any medical documents. Several have on-site naturopaths and at least one allows prospective patients to consult a naturopath via video chat. Unlike the legal medical marijuana system, which provides only dried pot, many dispensaries sell oils, creams, cookies and other products made with marijuana.
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CN BC: Public Hearings On Marijuana Dispensaries Set To Begin

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/10/2015 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 10 Jun 2015 - Public hearings begin Wednesday to help fine-tune Vancouver's plans to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries - and shape a policy that one advocate says will be copied by cities across Canada. Dana Larsen, director of the Vancouver Dispensary Society and operator of two dispensaries, noted the City of Victoria has already cited Vancouver as a model for policies it is developing as it grapples with the issue.
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CN BC: Shambhala Leads World In Harm Reduction

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/10/2015 - 07:00
Nelson Star, 10 Jun 2015 - When ANKORS team leader Chloe Sage first started delivering harm reduction services at Shambhala Music Festival in 2001, there were a lot of misconceptions about what exactly she was trying to accomplish. "It was a real 'keep your head down' situation. We had a few hundred people come to our booth and say 'wow, I'm glad you're here', but there wasn't a whole lot of understanding about why it was necessary," she said.
Categories: Marijuana

US MI: Column: A Mother's Instincts

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/10/2015 - 07:00
Metro Times, 10 Jun 2015 - Lisa Smith is outspoken about the good effect that medical marijuana has on the symptoms of her son Noah's autism. She's so passionate about it that she spoke at a public hearing before the state committee charged with making recommendations on adding qualifying conditions under the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act. Actually, there may not have been hearings had it not been for Smith. A couple of years ago the committee voted against autism as a qualifying condition, and once they do that the issue is usually not revisited. But after seeing the effect that marijuana had on her son's autism after she used it to treat his epilepsy, Smith sued the state Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA), which oversees medical marijuana certifications, to force the office to take another look at it.
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US CO: Column: Dab Queenz Seek Models, Pot Radio Debuts in

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/10/2015 - 07:00
Colorado Springs Independent, 10 Jun 2015 - Rips and royalty If you've got a knack for dishing dabs of hash, and can identify with a call for "Hot Dab tending models for 420 events," then Dab Queenz is looking for you. The company lists its home base as 2508 E. Bijou St., which is also home to Speak Easy Vape Lounge, but a man who wished to be identified only as Tony Dabz, because of the risk to his day job, says Dab Queenz can be found at marijuana events, on Facebook and in local advertising campaigns.
Categories: Marijuana

US MT: Marijuana Legalization Push Is About Money, Former Drug

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/10/2015 - 07:00
Helena Independent Record, 10 Jun 2015 - BILLINGS -- A leading opponent of marijuana legalization delivered a three-hour talk on what he says are myths surrounding the drug in Billings on Tuesday. Kevin Sabet, who directs the Drug Policy Institute at the University of Florida and is co-founder of Smart Approaches to Marijuana, addressed about a dozen educators, prosecutors and law enforcement professionals, mostly from small towns in Eastern Montana. SAM seeks a middle road between incarceration and legalization, according to the group's website.
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Mexico: Mexico 'Gardens' Feed Drug Demand

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/10/2015 - 07:00
Los Angeles Times, 10 Jun 2015 - Opium Poppies Offer Small Growers a Living and Cartels a Lucrative Business CHILPANCINGO, Mexico - Mario moves quickly and easily down the steep forested hill. After a 30-minute descent the tree cover clears, and the sun shines down onto the hidden red and purple f lowers dotting the hillsides in the Filo Mayor mountains.
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Chronicle AM: AMA Wants Protection for Pot Docs, LA Marijuana Sentencing Reformed, More (6/9/15)

Marijuana (STDW) - Tue, 06/09/2015 - 21:39

Another GOP presidential contender weighs in on marijuana policy, the nation's harshest pot laws are about to get a little better, the AMA sticks up for medical marijuana, er, cannabis, doctors, and more.

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

Carly Fiorina Says Marijuana Legalization a States' Right Issue. Republican presidential contender Carly Fiorina said Tuesday that while she personally opposed marijuana legalization, it should be up to the states. "I don't support legalized marijuana for a whole host of reasons, including the fact that this is a very complex chemical substance, and when we tell young people it is just like drinking a beer, we are not telling them the truth," she said. "But I think Colorado voters made a choice, I don't support their choice, but I do support their right to make that choice."

Louisiana Marijuana Sentencing Reforms Pass; Governor Expected to Sign. The state legislature Monday gave final approval to House Bill 149, which will make the state's draconian possession penalties somewhat less so. Gov. Bobby Jindal has signaled that he will sign the bill. For first offenders, the maximum penalty shrinks from six months to 15 days in jail; for second offenders, the penalty shrinks from a five-year felony to a six-month misdemeanor; for third-strikers, the penalty shrinks from a 20-year felony to a two-year felony. The bill also allows people charged with first-time possession to have their records expunged if they don't get busted again for pot within two years.

Oregon Legislators Have Tentative Pot Deal. Legislative negotiators have reached initial agreement on a way to move forward with implementing legalization. The deal foresees a possible 20% retail sales tax, with municipalities collecting up to 3%. The key question of whether municipalities can prohibit pot shops is being deferred to the courts or a work group charged with making recommendations for 2016. See this series of amendments for more details.

Medical Marijuana

AMA Calls for Protections for Medical Marijuana Doctors. Meeting at its annual convention in Chicago, the American Medical Association has passed a resolution called "Immunity from Federal Prosecution for Cannabis Prescribing." The resolution is "consistent with AMA policy to protect patient-physician communications about treatment options, supporting a public health approach rather than a law-enforcement focus, for individuals possessing cannabis for personal use and opposing government interference with the practice of medicine," the nation's largest doctors' group said.

Industrial Hemp

Nevada Governor Signs Hemp Research Bill. Gov. Bryan Sandoval last Friday signed into law Senate Bill 305, which will allow colleges, universities, and the state Agriculture Department to grow hemp for research purposes in a pilot program. But it doesn't allow commercial hemp production.

Law Enforcement

California School District Pays Out for Using Student as Drug Sting Bait. The Temecula Valley Unified School District will pay $200,000 to a family whose 14-year-old learning disabled son was recruited by an assistant principal to serve as bait in a drug sting. The sting took place even after the boy's mother objected. The boy's mother said the school's actions endangered her son, leading to him being labeled a snitch and to threats of physical violence against him. The sting was an effort to catch another student with marijuana.

(This article was prepared by StoptheDrugWar.org's lobbying arm, Drug Reform Coordination Network, which also pays 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 BC: Pot Shop Location Rules Questioned

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 06/09/2015 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 09 Jun 2015 - City Has Struggled to Enforce a Policy Mandating Space Between Pharmacies, Similar to the One Proposed for Marijuana Businesses Vancouver's proposed new regulations for marijuana-related businesses, which go before a public hearing Wednesday, include distancing requirements designed to help control the proliferation of pot shops on city streets.
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US IL: 4 Cops Hit With Perjury Charges

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 06/09/2015 - 07:00
Chicago Tribune, 09 Jun 2015 - 'Testilying' A Threat to Justice System, State's Attorney Says Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez announced perjury charges Monday against four veteran police officers - three of them narcotics cops from Chicago - for allegedly lying under oath at a routine drug hearing last year.
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Chronicle AM: Christie Would Roll Back Legalization, Colombia Ex-Prez Says Give Drugs to Addicts, More (6/8/15)

Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 06/08/2015 - 21:11

Chris Christie speaks out against marijuana legalization, Ohio officials try to block a legalization initiative, employee hair drug testing becomes the law in Louisiana, a former Colombian president calls for drug legalization and supplying some addicts with drugs, and more.

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

Chris Christie Would Roll Back Marijuana Legalization. In an interview on CBS's "Face the Nation" Sunday, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), who is seeking the GOP presidential nomination, said he would move against states where marijuana is legal. Host John Dickerson asked if he would "return the federal prosecutions in these states like Colorado, Washington state" and Christie replied "Yes." Dickerson asked him again, and Christie said "Yes" again. Christie also called the drug war a failure and said he favored increased drug treatment.

Ohio Official Moves to Block Legalization Monopoly. State Auditor David Yost is floating a proposal designed to invalidate the legalization initiative most likely to make the ballot, or at least a provision of it. The controversial ResponsibleOhio measure would divvy up 10 commercial marijuana-growing facilities to people or groups who have already invested in the campaign. Yost has proposed a constitutional amendment that would require future initiatives that have provisions for "special interests" to undergo a two-stage process. If Yost's amendment passed with more votes than ResponsibleOhio's, it would prevent the monopoly provision of the ResponsibleOhio initiative from taking effect (and very possibly the entire initiative). Click on the link for more intricacies.

Medical Marijuana

No Medical Marijuana for Alabama. The legislative session ended last Thursday, and medical marijuana legislation died without action. Again.

Drug Testing

Louisiana Governor Signs Employee Hair Drug Testing Bill. Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) last Friday signed into law a bill that lets employers drug test employees' hair. Hair drug tests can detect use as far back as 90 days, as opposed to two or three days for urine tests (or two or three weeks for marijuana). While employee drug testing is allowed under state law, there were no regulations for hair drug testing in place until the passage of House Bill 379.

SAMHSA Seeks Comments on Hair Testing For Drugs. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA) has published a request for information about hair testing for drugs as it seeks to update and revise standards for laboratory drug testing procedures for federal workers. Click on the link for more details.

International

UAE Moves to Ban Five New Synthetic Drugs, Three Drug Plants. The United Arab Emirates is moving to ban synthetic cannabinoids, synthetic cathinones, phenethylamine, piperazine and tryptamine, as well as the kava, kratom, and salvia divinorum plants. The Health Ministry has proposed the move, but the Council of State must approve it.

Indonesian Experts Call for Evidence-Based Public Health Response to Drugs. A selection of Indonesian experts and academics has called on the government to commit itself to using scientifically proven public health approaches to drug use and to reject hard line but ineffective strategies, such as forced drug treatment and the use of the death penalty. Click on the link for more.

Colombia Ex-President Calls for Drug Legalization, State to Provide Drugs to Addicts. Former Colombian President Cesar Gaviria, long a critic of drug prohibition, told the Global Commission on Drug Policy last Thursday that some drugs should be legalized and others provided to addicts by the state. Such moves would allow governments to better control their use, he said. Click on the link for more.

(This article was prepared by StoptheDrugWar.org's lobbying arm, Drug Reform Coordination Network, which also pays 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 BC: Shut Off Dispensaries' Lights: Group

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 06/08/2015 - 07:00
Vancouver 24hours, 08 Jun 2015 - An anti-marijuana group is calling on BC Hydro to turn off the service to any businesses operating storefronts- as dispensaries are considered illegal by federal law. Pamela McColl, a member of Smart Approaches to Marijuana Canada, said on Sunday she's written B.C. government and the electricity provider to stop supplying the shops with power, arguing that doing so supports criminal activities. "We're asking them to come into compliance with the laws of this country, which is that a company can't aid or abet or profit from crime," she said. "They're selling drugs illegally and any revenues BC Hydro is taking in is profiting from crime ... we're going to pull the plug." Her group takes issue with Vancouver's approach to regulate the number of dispensaries in the city by prohibiting those too close to schools, community centres or parks.
Categories: Marijuana

Australia: Online Drug Sales Boom

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 06/08/2015 - 07:00
The Age, 08 Jun 2015 - More people are buying recreational drugs such as ecstasy and cocaine online, partly because it is much cheaper than buying them on the street, where the price of drugs in Australia is more than double the global average. An international survey on drug habits has detected a rapid increase over the past six years in the number of people who buy their drugs online using sites such as Silk Road, whose founder was jailed for life last month.
Categories: Marijuana

CN BC: $1-Million Grant to Help Research Link Between Pot

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 06/08/2015 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 08 Jun 2015 - UBC doctor to have 'all the freedom in the world' to look into possible therapeutic benefits of cannabis A University of British Columbia researcher who recently found that daily pot use might help fight HIV/AIDS is getting a $1-million grant from a commercial cannabis grower, which could lead to more clinical evidence for doctors skeptical of a drug still outlawed in Canada.
Categories: Marijuana

US CA: Hash Oil Burns A Growing Problem For Hospitals

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 06/08/2015 - 07:00
Appeal-Democrat, 08 Jun 2015 - SACRAMENTO - Tracey Clark's two teenage sons landed in intensive care, enveloped in gauze and their faces raw and red from burns over 40 to 60 percent of their bodies suffered in a fire, which prosecutors say was caused by an illegal hash-oil lab at their uncle's duplex. "I was scared they were going to die," said Clark.
Categories: Marijuana

US NM: Column: Haze Of Uncertainty Surrounds Pot Firms

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 06/08/2015 - 07:00
Albuquerque Journal, 08 Jun 2015 - Banking, Federal Taxation Issues Restrict Marijuana Enterprises From Usual Business Practices This is a marijuana update. Legal marijuana sales continue to draw national attention. BloombergBusiness recently estimated that the industry's revenues are nearly $3 billion annually - almost all in cash.
Categories: Marijuana

US NM: Column: Tax Law Out Of Synch With State Pot Trends

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 06/08/2015 - 07:00
Albuquerque Journal, 08 Jun 2015 - With marijuana still illegal under federal statutes, a business based on reefer can't take usual deductions Oliver Wendall Holmes said "taxes are the price we pay for civilization." No one likes paying taxes, but Americans actually do agree that taxes are necessary and we have a wonderful system of government that allows us to choose those who represent us in our social compact of how to spend tax dollars.
Categories: Marijuana
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