Skip to Content

Ballot Initiatives

US: Drug Worries Medical Pot Activists

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Wed, 04/20/2016 - 07:00
Sun-Sentinel, 20 Apr 2016 - Cannabidiol Extract Without THC Could Undercut Movement COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - An experimental epilepsy drug made from cannabis plants grown in England is complicating the medical marijuana debate in hospitals and statehouses.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US CA: The Pot Piper

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Wed, 04/20/2016 - 07:00
Los Angeles Times, 20 Apr 2016 - Race Champ Aims to Blunt the Stigma of Marijuana Users As Lazy "The World's Fastest Stoner" slowed under the Santa Monica Pier, pondering where to run. Photographs by Irfan Khan Los Angeles Times CHRIS BARNICLE, aka "The World's Fastest Stoner," smokes a joint in his van after winning the 420 Games in Santa Monica last month. "There are tons of athletes ... that are using cannabis. But because of their contracts they can't say anything," he says.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US VT: Northeast Opiate Crisis Stalls Marijuana Legalization

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Wed, 04/20/2016 - 07:00
New York Times, 20 Apr 2016 - MONTPELIER, Vt. - First came Colorado and Washington. Then Alaska, Oregon and Washington, D.C. Now advocates for legal marijuana are looking to New England, hoping this part of the country will open a new front in their efforts to expand legalization nationwide. But this largely liberal region is struggling with the devastating effect of opiate abuse, which is disrupting families, taxing law enforcement agencies and taking lives. And many lawmakers and public officials are balking at the idea of legalizing a banned substance, citing potential social costs.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US CA: Investors Pour Millions into Northern California

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Wed, 04/20/2016 - 07:00
The Press Democrat, 20 Apr 2016 - As millions of marijuana aficionados light up Wednesday at 4:20 p.m. in celebration of "Weed Day," many are blissfully unaware of the increasing interest that investors with deep pockets are showing in their favorite psychoactive herb. A green rush is on in the marijuana industry, with legal sales of cannabis rising by a billion dollars or more each year nationwide, according to one report, and venture capitalists pouring millions into marijuana enterprises ranging from computer software and social networks to storage bags, vaporizers and insurance.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US FL: Medical Marijuana Will Be Back On The Ballot

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Wed, 04/20/2016 - 07:00
Orlando Weekly, 20 Apr 2016 - Love Is In The Air Remember that time in 2014 when medical marijuana got a half-million more votes than Gov. Rick Scott but was still defeated? No? Let's recap. Two years ago, Florida's biggest political issue, aside from Scott beating Charlie Crist and his loyal Vornado Air Circulator fan for a second term, was Amendment 2, a measure that would have legalized medical marijuana for people with debilitating medical conditions. United for Care and its chairman, Orlando attorney John Morgan, pulled in millions of dollars to fight for the initiative. Drug Free Florida, which counted on supporters like the Florida Sheriffs Association, the Florida Medical Association and the Florida Chamber of Commerce, hauled in its own share of cash, including a $5 million contribution from casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson, to oppose medical marijuana.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US OH: Column: Medical Marijuana Apparently On The Move In Ohio

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Wed, 04/20/2016 - 07:00
Hudson Hub-Times, 20 Apr 2016 - Columbus -- Republican House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger said he wasn't stalling on consideration of medical marijuana when his chamber launched a task force and a series of public hearings on legalization earlier this year. I guess he wasn't kidding.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US OR: Editorial: Medical Marijuana Debate Takes a New Form

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Tue, 04/19/2016 - 07:00
Albany Democrat-Herald, 19 Apr 2016 - The recent news about a looming controversy regarding medical marijuana and an experimental epilepsy drug raises intriguing questions - but, in the long run, likely will be seen as a footnote on the road to more widespread legalization. At issue in the recent case is an experimental drug, Epidiolex, which is made from cannabis plants grown in England. The drug is a nearly pure extract of cannabidiol, or CBD. It has little of the substance in marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), that produces the traditional pot high. A researcher in Columbus, Ohio, says that Epidiolex has shown great promise in treating seizures, especially among children. And, the researcher notes, studies have suggested that children can be hurt by using the whole marijuana plant.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US NY: Global Debate On Drugs Heads To United Nations

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Tue, 04/19/2016 - 07:00
New York Times, 19 Apr 2016 - UNITED NATIONS - Canada has promised to legalize marijuana. Mexico's highest court has allowed some citizens to grow cannabis for personal use. Colombia has reversed its decades-long policy of aerial spraying against coca, the raw ingredient in cocaine. Even in the United States, once the chief architect of the global war on drugs, four states permit recreational marijuana sales. Other states have pro-legalization ballot measures pending. And a heroin epidemic has prompted the mayor of at least one city to propose establishing a supervised injection clinic.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US: Medical Pot Backers Leery Of Epilepsy Drug

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Mon, 04/18/2016 - 07:00
Manteca Bulletin, 18 Apr 2016 - COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - An experimental epilepsy drug made from cannabis plants grown in England is complicating the medical marijuana debate in hospitals and statehouses. Epidiolex is a nearly pure extract of cannabidiol, or CBD, with little of the tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, that gets traditional pot users high. CBD products are the current rage in medicinal pot products, and activists fear that if the maker of Epidiolex manages to get FDA approval it could undercut the political momentum of the medical marijuana movement.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US: Medical Pot Activists Fear Epilepsy Drug Could Undercut

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Mon, 04/18/2016 - 07:00
The Day, 18 Apr 2016 - Columbus, Ohio (AP) - An experimental epilepsy drug made from cannabis plants grown in England is complicating the medical marijuana debate in hospitals and statehouses. Epidiolex is a nearly pure extract of cannabidiol, or CBD, with little of the tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, that gets traditional pot users high. CBD products are the current rage in medicinal pot products, and activists fear that if the maker of Epidiolex manages to get FDA approval it could undercut the political momentum of the medical marijuana movement.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US OK: Editorial: Medical Pot

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Mon, 04/18/2016 - 07:00
Tulsa World, 18 Apr 2016 - Oklahomans Aren't Ready for It If at first (and second) you can't succeed ... Supporters of legalizing the medical use of marijuana have filed a third attempt at a statewide ballot petition. Similar petitions were filed the past two years and both fell short of gathering enough support to make the ballot. But there's reason for some supporter optimism this time.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US MA: Mass. Businesses Laissez-Faire on Marijuana Legalization

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Sun, 04/17/2016 - 07:00
Boston Globe, 17 Apr 2016 - So far, just one major statewide business group, the Associated Industries of Massachusetts, has decided to oppose the measure. Jon Hurst isn't afraid to take a stand. As president of the Retailers Association of Massachusetts, it's his job to fight for the interests of the 4,000 businesses he represents.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US MA: Group: Baker, Walsh Hypocritical in Opposing Marijuana

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Sat, 04/16/2016 - 07:00
Pawtucket Times, 16 Apr 2016 - BOSTON (AP) - A group supporting legalized use of recreational marijuana in Massachusetts said Friday that Gov. Charlie Baker and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh are being hypocritical by supporting more liquor licenses while opposing the pot initiative. The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol leveled the charge one day after Baker, Walsh and other top officials announced formation of a committee to fight a likely November ballot question that would allow Massachusetts residents 21 and older to possess up to 1 ounce of marijuana.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US MA: Walsh Doobie-Ous Of Legal Pot

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Sat, 04/16/2016 - 07:00
Boston Herald, 16 Apr 2016 - Mayor: Pro-Marijuana People Must Explain Its Importance Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh responded to criticism from a pro-marijuana legalization group that called him a "hypocrite" for opposing pot legalization while supporting measures they say promote easier access to alcohol - such as keeping bars open later and granting more liquor licenses - by challenging the group to make its case for legalization.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US MA: Editorial: Weed War Gets Wacky

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Sat, 04/16/2016 - 07:00
Boston Herald, 16 Apr 2016 - Pot advocates have apparently decided that they can insult their way to victory in November. And so they choose One Boston Day - a day aimed at encouraging random acts of kindness, a day when Gov. Charlie Baker and Mayor Marty Walsh would be laying wreaths in memory of the Boston Marathon bombing victims - to insult and disparage both men.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US OH: Details Emerge On Ohio's Medical Marijuana Plan

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Fri, 04/15/2016 - 07:00
Dayton Daily News, 15 Apr 2016 - Second Group Gets Go-Ahead to Gather Signatures for Ballot. COLUMBUS - A second grassroots group got the go-ahead on Thursday to circulate petitions to put a medical marijuana question before voters in November while lawmakers released more details of their plan.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US MA: Pro-Marijuana Group Calls Out Baker, Walsh

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Fri, 04/15/2016 - 07:00
Boston Globe, 15 Apr 2016 - Advocates of marijuana legalization are accusing Governor Charlie Baker and Mayor Martin J. Walsh of hypocrisy for supporting the expansion of alcohol sales while backing an effort to stop the legalization of marijuana. A day after the two announced they are launching a political effort to kill a likely legalization ballot question, the campaign backing the pro-cannabis referendum will hold a Friday news conference. There, the group will assert it's contradictory to support the expansion of one and not the other - because, it argues, alcohol is far more dangerous than marijuana.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives

Medical Marijuana Update

Ballot Measures (STDW) - Thu, 04/14/2016 - 19:21

Medical marijuana for veterans advances in the Senate, Pennsylvania is set to become the 24th medical marijuana state, things are busy in Ohio, and more. 

[image:1 align:right]National

On Thursday, a Senate committee approved veterans' access to medical marijuanaThe Senate Appropriations Committee passed a bipartisan amendment Thursday, 20 to 10, allowing Veterans Administration (VA) doctors to recommend medical marijuana to their patients in states where medical marijuana is legal. The vote is the second time the U.S. Senate has advanced this issue. The amendment did not make the final appropriations bill last year after narrowly losing in the House.

Colorado

On Monday, a bill to allow medical marijuana at schools advanced. A bill that would require schools to allow students to use medical marijuana on campus has passed its legislative hurdle. House Bill 1373 was approved 10-3 by the House Agriculture, Livestock and Natural Resources Committee and now heads for a House floor vote. State law already gives school districts the power to allow the use of medical marijuana under certain circumstances, but no district has done so.

Louisiana

Last Friday, a medical marijuana bill was introduced. State Rep. Ted James (D-Baton Rouge) has filed House Bill 1112, which would expand the scope of medical marijuana in the state. The state passed a restrictive medical marijuana bill last, but there has been little progress made on producing medical marijuana in the state. James' s bill would allow for the commercial production of medical marijuana and allow patients to petition state agencies to expand qualifying conditions for use of the medicine. The bill also seeks to ease the regulatory burden on marijuana by cutting state agencies out of some of the regulatory process.

New York

On Monday, a pair of bills aimed at fixing the state's medical marijuana law advanced. The Assembly Health Committee approved two bills aimed at improving the state's medical marijuana system. The bills, authored by Assemblyman Dick Gottfried (D-Manhattan), chair of the committee and one of the architects of the state's medical marijuana law, would double the number of companies allowed to grow and distribute medical marijuana from four to eight and would end the requirement that they be vertically integrated. The bills now head for an Assembly floor vote.

On Tuesday, patients and families rallied in Albany to demand a fix for the state's medical marijuana law. Dozens of advocates to urge legislators to support a slate of bills that would amend the Compassionate Care Act, New York’s medical marijuana law. The law, which was passed in June of 2014, took eighteen months to implement and has been criticized for being one of the most restrictive and burdensome programs in the country. Launched in January of this year, to date, only 494 of the state’s 79,000 physicians have agreed to participate and only 2,390 patients have been certified by their doctors to enroll in the program. This lackluster start is likely due to a number of barriers and restrictions in the program that make it both difficult and unappealing for physicians and patients to participate.

Ohio

Last Friday,the attorney general okayed a 2nd medical marijuana initiative. Attorney General Mike DeWine has certified the petition summary for a medical marijuana and industrial hemp initiative from Legalize Ohio 2016. Now, the initiative goes to the Ohio Ballot Board to determine whether it is one issue or two. Another initiative, backed by the Marijuana Policy Project, has already been approved for signature gathering. Initiatives will need 305,000 valid voter signatures by early July to qualify for the November ballot.

On Tuesday, the legislature was crafting its own medical marijuana plan. Faced with two separate medical marijuana initiative campaigns, legislators are working to craft their own medical marijuana proposal.  The bill, which is set to be announced this week, would create a medical marijuana commission to create rules within a year to regulate medical marijuana in the state. Patients with a doctor's recommendation could access raw marijuana, edibles, patches, and oils, but would not be allowed to grow their own.

Pennsylvania

On Tuesday,the Senate passed the medical marijuana bill. For the second time in less than a year, the Senate has approved Senate Bill 3, which would create a medical marijuana system in the state. The House sat on the bill for months after original Senate passage, then approved an amended version of the bill. The Senate then passed that bill, but only after amending the amendments to bring it make closer to the version originally passed by the Senate. Now, it's up to the House to agree to those changes and send the bill to Gov. Tom Wolf (D).

On Wednesday, the bill passed out of the legislature. After months of delay in the House, Senate Bill 3 has finally been approved by the legislature and is headed for the desk of Gov. Tom Wolf (D), who supports it. The Keystone State is now set to become the 24th medical marijuana state.

Utah

On Wednesday, patient advocates said they were giving up on an initiative this year. A group calling itself Truce that had called for a medical marijuana initiative this year after the legislature killed medical marijuana bills earlier this year has given up on 2016. The group says it would have had an extremely difficult time of gathering the 102,000 valid voter signatures required to get on the ballot. The group says it is now concentrating on getting a good bill through the legislature next year.

Categories: Ballot Initiatives

Chronicle AM: Open Letter to UN Head Urges Global Drug Policy Changes, PA to Become 24th MedMJ State, More... (4/15/16)

Ballot Measures (STDW) - Thu, 04/14/2016 - 18:35

Global celebrities and political figures call for change at the UN, Maine's pot legalization initiative remains alive, Pennsylvania is now set to become the 24th medical marijuana state, and more.

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

Maine Won't Appeal Judge's Ruling to Recount Invalidated Signatures. Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap said Wednesday he won't appeal a judge's ruling that overturned his decision to invalidate a marijuana legalization initiative. This doesn't mean that the initiative from the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol is now qualified for the ballot, but it does mean that state officials will have to review thousands of signatures in threw out last month, including some 17,000 invalidated because they came from a notary whose signature on petition sheets supposedly didn't match his signature on file. If those signatures are found to be valid, the initiative qualifies. It handed in 99,000 and only needs 61,000 valid signatures to get on the ballot.

Top Massachusetts Politicians Form Anti-Legalization Committee. Governor Charlie Baker (R), Boston Mayor Marty Walsh (D), Speaker Robert DeLeo (D), and a number of other political figures and health care professionals have formed a bipartisan committee, A Campaign For A Safe and Healthy Massachusetts, to oppose the marijuana legalization initiative there. "I’ve met far too many families in Boston and elsewhere where kids have lost their way in school and been shut out of success in the workplace due to addiction and abuse of marijuana," Mayor Walsh said in a release. "Where marijuana is legal, young people are more likely to use it and a vote against legalizing the commercial marijuana industry is a vote to protect our kids and communities."

NORML Endorses Michigan Legalization Initiative. "The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) is pleased to announce our endorsement of the MI Legalize initiative to regulate the adult use, production and retail sale of marijuana in Michigan. MI Legalize, also known as the Michigan Comprehensive Cannabis Law Reform Committee, has collected more than 270,000 signatures in its effort to legalize marijuana via the petitioning process. The grass-roots effort has been collecting signatures from registered voters since June, 2015, and represents the best opportunity to enact a regulatory system in Michigan, a state where it is highly unlikely the state legislature will take any similar action."

Champaign/Urbana to Vote on Legalization Advisory Referendum. The Illinois cities will vote on the advisory measure in the November election. The advisory question will ask voters "Should the state of Illinois legalize and regulate the sale and use of marijuana in a similar fashion to the state of Colorado?"

Medical Marijuana

Senate Committee Approves Veterans Access to Medical Marijuana. The Senate Appropriations Committee passed a bipartisan amendment Thursday, 20 to 10, allowing Veterans Administration (VA) doctors to recommend medical marijuana to their patients in states where medical marijuana is legal. The vote is the second time the U.S. Senate has advanced this issue. The amendment did not make the final appropriations bill last year after narrowly losing in the House.

Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Bill Heads to Governor's Desk. After months of delay in the House, Senate Bill 3 has finally been approved by the legislature and is headed for the desk of Gov. Tom Wolf (D), who supports it. The Keystone State is now set to become the 24th medical marijuana state.

Harm Reduction

Hawaii House Approves Opioid Overdose Reversal Drug Bill. The House has approved a bill to increase access to overdose reversal drugs such as naloxone (Narcan) and provide immunity to those who administer them. The measure is Senate Bill 2392, which has already passed the Senate and now heads for the governor's desk.

International

Open Letter to UN Head Calls for Shift in Global Drug Policy. Over a thousand people, including financier Warren Buffett, US Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), rock star Sting, and the former presidents of Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, and Switzerland, among others, have signed an open letter to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon saying the drug war has failed and calling for a shift in global drug policy away from criminalization and force and toward health  and human rights. The letter comes ahead of next week's UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on Drugs.  

Categories: Ballot Initiatives

US PA: Pa. Set To Ok Medical Marijuana

Ballot Initiatives (MAP) - Thu, 04/14/2016 - 07:00
The Reporter, 14 Apr 2016 - The House Voted 149-46 in Favor; Gov. Wolf Will Sign Bill HARRISBURG (AP) - Pennsylvania is set to become the latest state to legalize medical marijuana as the Legislature sent a bill to the governor on Wednesday, after parents of children suffering from debilitating seizures circulated the Capitol urging lawmakers to act.
Categories: Ballot Initiatives
Syndicate content