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Medical Marijuana

CN BC: Column: The Pot-Holed Path To Marijuana Legalization

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Tue, 12/20/2016 - 08:00
Nanaimo News Bulletin, 20 Dec 2016 - DRIVING to work the other morning, I passed the grow-op up the street from my house. It's about 100 metres from an elementary school and when it vents, it stinks. In fact, the interior of my car still reeked when I arrived at the office 15 minutes after driving through that cloud and it really annoyed me to think the guy who stunk up my car likely has a more lucrative income than I do and probably most of people reading this.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN BC: Motion Aims To Limit Proximity Of Marijuana Dispensaries To

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Tue, 12/20/2016 - 08:00
Nanaimo News Bulletin, 20 Dec 2016 - Nanaimo Mayor Bill McKay was hoping to introduce a motion to city council Monday that limits proximity of marijuana dispensaries to minors. McKay planned to direct staff to draft a bylaw prohibiting marijuana dispensaries from being situated within 500 metres of any facility where people under 19 years old gather, such as parks, childcare centres, schools and recreation centres.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Obama Commutes More Sentences, ME Pot Opponents Give Up on Recount, More... (12/19/16)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 12/19/2016 - 21:12

President Obama has just commuted the sentences of another 153 drug offenders, Maine legalization foes concede their recount isn't going anywhere, Marc Emery's Montreal pot shops get raided in a hurry, and more.

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

Guam Governor Calls for Marijuana Legalization. Guamanian Gov. Eddie Calvo (R) says it's time to legalize it. "I want us to look at how states navigated into recreational marijuana," Calvo, a Republican, said in a Facebook post on Monday. "Let's figure it out and then tax the heck out of it and use those taxes to help fund our hospital, public safety and education." The comments come just days after Calvo vetoed a bill that would have allowed medical marijuana patients to grow their own, saying it would "impose new and different duties upon our health and law enforcement agencies that will deplete their already strained resources."

Maine Legalization Opponents Give Up on Recount. The anti-legalization group that challenged the narrow victory of Question 1 in last month's elections has given up the ghost. No on 1 said Saturday it was apparent that the recount would not change the outcome. "We promised folks that if we came to a point where we could not see any chance of reversing the result, we would not drag the process out,"said Newell Augur, legal counsel for the No on 1 campaign. "We are satisfied that the count and the result are accurate." Now, the election result can be certified by the secretary of state, and legalization should go into effect sometime next month.

Medical Marijuana

Imprisoned California Dispensary Operators Seek Presidential Commutation. Luke Scarmazzo and Ricardo Montes operated a medical marijuana dispensary in Modesto, California, until their arrest by federal drug agents 10 years ago. They were prosecuted and convicted of federal drug crimes for their efforts and sentenced to 21 years 10 months and 20 years, respectively. Now, they are formally seeking sentence commutations from President Obama, who has cut the sentences of more than a thousand other federal drug prisoners so far this year. The pair point out that they would not have been prosecuted under current federal policies largely turning a blind eye to marijuana in states where it is legal, whether recreationally or merely for medical purposes.

Pardons and Commutations

Obama Issues Another Round of Sentence Commutations. The White House announced Monday that President Obama has commuted the sentences of another 153 federal prisoners, bringing the total this year to more than 1,100. A list of the prisoners and their offenses is not yet available, but Obama's earlier commutations had been directed almost entirely at people serving draconian drug sentences.

International

Marc Emery's Montreal Pot Shops Raided One Day After Opening. Long-time Canadian pot gadfly Emery and nine others were arrested after a series of raids Friday on his chain of Cannabis Culture pot shops. While Canada is moving to legalize marijuana, it hasn't done so yet, and authorities are working to keep the lid on the bubbling industry. Emery slammed Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre for the raids. "The mayor's behavior is despicable," he said. "If the mayor of Montreal wants to keep his city backward, behind and full of oppression, then that is the statement he just made to the world." As conditions of his bond, Emery cannot consume marijuana, communicate with anyone involved in the Cannabis Culture shops, or be in the province of Quebec except to show up for court dates.

China Denies Being Source of New Synthetic Drugs. Chinese officials have called assertions that China is the source of synthetic opioids linked to the deaths of thousands of drug users "unsubstantiated." Such statements "lack the support of sufficient numbers of actual, confirmed cases," China's National Narcotics Control Commission told DEA's Beijing office in a fax dated Friday. The DEA has said that China is the predominant source of fentanyl, the synthetic opioid many times more powerful than heroin, which has been implicated in thousands of drug overdose deaths.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

Canada: What Rules Are On The Way?

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Mon, 12/19/2016 - 08:00
The Sun Times, 19 Dec 2016 - The task force that studied questions raised about regulated legal access to marijuana has a chapter on how medical marijuana use should be treated. It recommends maintaining the current, separate licensing system for possessing marijuana for medical purposes and for growing it, with some changes.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Sharing Cannabis Knowledge

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Mon, 12/19/2016 - 08:00
The Sun Times, 19 Dec 2016 - Big difference between healers and dealers, people at weekend event near Meaford hear This was not your ordinary cooking class. Barb Mahy was making her basic "canna chocolates," a simple mix of semi-sweet chocolate, coconut butter and a cannabis tincture mix with glycerine and water which she melted and poured into moulds.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Canada: Independent Dealers Get A Buzz Off Pot Producers

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sat, 12/17/2016 - 08:00
Globe and Mail, 17 Dec 2016 - When marijuana is being passed around and someone holds the spliff a little too long, that's called bogarting the joint. Right now, a handful of Canada's independent investment banks are bogarting the legal and lucrative medical marijuana market, raising more than $230-million to fund fledgling companies in the past two years. These dealers in dope stocks have created firms expected to be valued at $5-billion or more by the time lighting a joint is totally legal.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Chronicle AM: US Cuts Philippines Aid Over Killings, Montreal Pot Shops Open, More... (12/16/16)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Fri, 12/16/2016 - 21:45

The US moves -- again -- to signal its displeasure with Philippines drug war killings, a marijuana descheduling petition could use your help, easy-access naloxone comes to Georgia, and more.

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

Petition to Deschedule Marijuana Needs Your Signature. The medical marijuana group Patients Out of Time has organized a Change.org petition urging President Obama to direct Attorney General Loretta Lynch to immediately deschedule marijuana. If the petition garners 100,000 signatures by January 9, the White House will respond. The petition currently has slightly more than 6,000 signatures.

Medical Marijuana

Ohio Pharmacy Board Issues Draft Rules for Dispensaries. The board has issued proposed rules governing medical marijuana distribution in the state. The rules envision up to 40 dispensaries operating, with applicants having to show they have at least $250,000 in liquid assets. Applicants would have to pay a $5,000 non-refundable application fee, and if approved, would have to pay an $80,000 annual fee. Dispensaries would also have to pay a $100 fee for each advertisement, which would have to be approved by the board. The rules are open for comment until January 13. The Board of Pharmacy is one of three state agencies tasked with regulating the nascent industry. The State Medical Board has already released rules for doctors, and the Commerce Department is charged with regulating growers and processors.

Heroin and Prescription Opioids

Georgia Governor Clears Path for Over-the-Counter Naloxone. Gov. Nathan Deal (R) Wednesday asked the state Department of Public Health to deregulate the opioid overdose reversal drug naloxone (Narcan), which would allow pharmacies to distribute the life-saving medication without a prescription. The state Board of Pharmacy has already removed naloxone from its dangerous drugs list. "Naloxone is a powerful weapon in the fight against the increasing epidemic of opioid abuse that poses a threat to public health in Georgia," DPH Commissioner Brenda Fitzgerald, M.D., said in a statement. "The governor's decisive action to make this drug accessible to anyone in a position to assist persons at risk of overdose will save countless lives."

International

US Defers Economic Aid to Philippines Over Drug War Killings. The US Embassy in Manila announced Thursday that it is holding up foreign economic assistance to the country because of "significant concerns around the rule of law and civil liberties in the Philippines" related to President Duterte's ongoing murderous campaign against alleged drug users and sellers. So far, some 6,000 have reportedly been killed in the purge since Duterte took office six months ago. The US had previously halted anti-drug training assistance and blocked the planned sale of some 26,000 assault rifles to the country.

Saudis Order Foreigners Wanting to Marry Saudi Women to Undergo Drug Tests. Under a newly announced law, foreigners wanting to marry Saudi women will have to pass a drug test before being married. "A drug test has been added to the compulsory marital medical test for foreigners seeking marriage with Saudi women," Mishaal Al-Rabian, head of communications and PR at the Ministry of Health explained. "The drug test is only for foreigners and, the test has been applied since the issuance of the circular a few months back." The move is being taken to discourage marriage with foreigners, to repress drug use, and to reduce divorce rates, officials said.

Marc and Jodie Emery Aren't Waiting to Open Montreal Pot Shops. Even though marijuana is still illegal in Canada, activists Marc "Prince of Pot" Emery and wife Jodie opened six retail marijuana outlets in Montreal Thursday. The stores carry the Emerys' Cannabis Culture brand. Local officials are vowing to shut them down, but in the meantime, business is brisk.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

Canada: Pot-Purchasing Age Should Match Drinking Age, PM Says

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Fri, 12/16/2016 - 08:00
Globe and Mail, 16 Dec 2016 - I think the proposal for the age of 18, or 19 in some provinces, to align with the [legal drinking age] across the country, is a reasonable compromise. Justin Trudeau Prime Minister of Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau agrees the minimum age to smoke marijuana should be 18 or 19, in line with each province's drinking laws, endorsing one of the most controversial recommendations from a federal task force on legalization this week.
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CN NF: Judge Orders Review Of Muskrat Falls Employee's Firing

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Fri, 12/16/2016 - 08:00
The Telegram, 16 Dec 2016 - Man secretly smoked medical marijuana All may not be lost for a Muskrat Falls worker fighting his dismissal last year for secretly smoking medicinal marijuana on the job. Brendon Uprichard - a structural assembler of the transmission line for Valard Construction on the Lower Churchill project - had a prescription for medical marijuana to control chronic back pain and anxiety since December 2014. The 37-year-old hid this from his employer, and discontinued its usage to pass the mandatory physical examination and testing for drug and alcohol use upon being hired.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Canada: Column: Many Potholes In Marijuana Legalization

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Fri, 12/16/2016 - 08:00
Globe and Mail, 16 Dec 2016 - There are lessons for Canada in Washington State, which got a quick reality check about the market for recreational weed About a year ago, I visited Seattle to see how pot legalization was going. Not well, as it turned out.
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Medical Marijuana Update

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Thu, 12/15/2016 - 22:13

Montana's dispensaries are coming back to life, Michigan's medical marijuana fees have been funding aggressive anti-marijuana law enforcement, and more.

[image:1 align:left]Arkansas

On Monday, members of the state's new medical marijuana commission were sworn in. In the first meeting of a commission established to create a state medical marijuana system after voters approved a constitutional amendment last month, five commissioners were sworn in. The members of the state Medical Marijuana Commission are Dr. Ronda Henry-Tillman of Little Rock, lobbyist James Miller of Bryant, Dr. Carlos Roman of Little Rock, pharmacy executive Stephen Carroll of Benton and attorney Travis Story of Fayetteville. Henry-Tillman was unanimously elected Monday afternoon as the commission's chairman.

Kentucky

On Tuesday, a medical marijuana bill was filed. State Sen. Perry Clark (D-Louisville) has filed the Cannabis Compassion Act of 2017 (BR 409), which would allow patients with a specified list of diseases and medical conditions access to their medicine. The bill would allow patients to possess up to three ounces and grow up to 12 plants and envisions a system of regulated cultivators and "compassion centers.

Michigan

On Tuesday, news came that medical marijuana fees are funding the state's war on drugs.Medical marijuana fees have fattened the Michigan Medical Marijuana Fund, and state law enforcement has been tapping into that fund to aggressively go after marijuana. Local sheriffs in the Detroit area have spent more than $600,000 raiding dispensaries in the past year, and there's more where that came from since the fund has raised $30 million. "I really don't think it's appropriate to fund law enforcement on the backs of medical marijuana patients," medical marijuana attorney Matt Abel told the Detroit News. "… It's really a hidden tax on patients."

Montana

Last Wednesday, a state judge cleared dispensaries to reopen. A district court judge in Helena has ruled that a wording error in last month's successful medical marijuana initiative should not keep sick patients from having access to the plant now. The initiative undid a 2011 law that largely undid the original 2004 initiative allowing medical marijuana, but late changes to the initiative resulted in new sections being added, which in turn resulted in a change in section numbering that unintentionally pushed back the date dispensaries could open. "The folks that are maybe the most in need are the least able to provide, to grow their own," the judge said in making his ruling. "I think speed is more important than niceties."

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

Categories: Medical Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Marijuana Legal in MA, DEA Says Even Low-THC CBD Still Illegal, More... (12/15/16)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Thu, 12/15/2016 - 21:00

New England marijuana policy is in flux, as Massachusetts legalizes it, Connecticut's governor disses it, and a key New Hampshire politician says "let's do it," the DEA clarifies that CBD cannabis oils are still illegal under federal law, and more.

[image:1 align:left]Marijuana Policy

Connecticut Governor Doesn't Want to Legalize It. Stopping just short of saying he would veto a legalization bill, Gov. Dannel Malloy (D) said Thursday the legislature shouldn't waste its time on considering the issue. "First of all, I think it's a mistake what Massachusetts has done and other states have done,'' Malloy told reporters in Hartford. "I think we should hit the pause button and watch how it works in the region... I think it's a mistake.''

Massachusetts Legalization Now in Effect. State officials have certified the results of the November 8 election, and that means Bay State residents can now legally possess up to an ounce of pot in public and 10 ounces at home, and they can start growing up to six pot plants per person, with a limit of 12 per house. Marijuana retail and related businesses will not be licensed, though, until January 2018 -- if there are no delays.

New Hampshire Democratic Leader Says It's Time to Create a Path to Legalization. State Sen. Jeff Woodburn (D-Dalton), the Senate Minority Leader, said Wednesday he plans to file a marijuana legalization bill. "I think it's important New Hampshire recognize what's going on around us, but also listen to what the people are asking for. It's important -- I'm a civics teacher by background -- that we have a legitimate government. That means the people have been asking in overwhelming surveys that they support marijuana being legalized and it's important that our elected officials listen to and respond to their desires," he said. New Hampshire is the only New England state that has not even decriminalized possession.

Medical Marijuana

DEA Clarifies That, Yes, It Still Considers CBD to Be Illegal. The DEA Wednesday added a new code for marijuana extracts, including low-THC CBD cannabis oils, in the Federal Register. The code defines marijuana extracts as "an extract containing one or more cannabinoids that has been derived from any plant of the genus Cannabis, other than the separated resin (whether crude or purified) obtained from the plant." That means that marijuana extracts, even those derived from low-THC industrial hemp, are considered marijuana and are placed under Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act.

Maine Governor Says State Should "Get Rid Of" Medical Marijuana After Legalization. Tea Party Republican Gov. Paul LePage called for an end to the state's medical marijuana program Thursday. "If you've got recreational marijuana, it's over the counter," he said. "Why do we need medical marijuana?" But initiative backers said the intent of the legalization initiative was to respect medical marijuana and have "dual programs running side by side."

Tennessee Republicans Roll Out Medical Marijuana Bill. State Sen. Steve Dickerson (R-Nashville) and state Rep. Jeremy Faison (R-Cosby) held a press conference Wednesday to introduce their "conservative proposal" to allow for the use of medical marijuana. Their draft bill would set a limit of 50 grow houses statewide, with each allowed to operate one on-site and two storefront dispensaries. It appears to make no provision for patient or caregiver grows. And it limits medical marijuana eligibility to a small list of specified conditions, including cancer, HIV/AIDS, ALS, PTSD, and Alzheimer's.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

Canada: Top Pot Dispensaries Plan To Expand Before Legalization

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Thu, 12/15/2016 - 08:00
Globe and Mail, 15 Dec 2016 - The entrepreneurs behind Canada's two biggest chains of illegal marijuana dispensaries say they will continue to expand the number of their storefronts aggressively across the country while the federal and provincial governments take the next two years to fine-tune new laws to legalize the substance. A day after an independent panel provided Ottawa with a road map for ending the prohibition on recreational marijuana that could include dispensaries, MP Bill Blair, the government's point person on the issue, warned that, in the meantime, anyone selling marijuana outside the federal mail-order system is breaking the law and police could raid their stores.
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CN ON: Corner Stores, LCBO Left High And Dry

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Thu, 12/15/2016 - 08:00
Toronto Star, 15 Dec 2016 - New federal task force report nixes idea of selling pot at businesses where tobacco or booze are sold Ontario convenience store owners wonder why it appears they're getting the shaft yet again - this time on cannabis sales - after being excluded this year from selling beer and wine while grocery stores got the green light.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Column: Highly-Anticipated Legalization Task Force Report

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Thu, 12/15/2016 - 08:00
Toronto 24hours, 15 Dec 2016 - The weed world is a buzz after the Task Force on Cannabis Legalization released over 80 recommendations for how the government should regulate pot once it becomes legal here in Canada. The task force created their report based on consultations with current medical marijuana users, Indigenous communities, youth groups, experts and governmental bodies from across the country. The nine members of the Task Force, headed by Anne McLellan, also gained firsthand knowledge from places who have already legalized cannabis - travelling to Colorado and Washington State as well as receiving a detailed outline from the government in Uruguay (the only country to date that has a federal regulatory system for accessing cannabis). And, while yes these are just recommendations, this is virtually the ONLY information we have received from the government about how they may move forward with legalization other than Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's recent announcement urging police to enforce the current marijuana laws - a stance that did not sit well for many.
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Chronicle AM: Mexico Senate Approves MedMJ, WI Lawmaker Wants HS Drug Testing, More... (12/14/16)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Wed, 12/14/2016 - 21:46

With the backing of the president, Mexico's Senate has approved medical marijuana; Kentucky's attorney general identifies the opioid epidemic as the state's biggest problem, Nevada drug dogs trained to sniff out marijuana face an uncertain future after legalization, and more.

[image:1 align:right caption:true]Heroin and Prescription Opioids

Kentucky AG Says Opioid Epidemic Should Be Legislature's Top Priority. Democratic Attorney General Andy Beshear said Tuesday that the opioid epidemic -- not a failing pension program -- is the state's biggest problem and the Republican-controlled legislature should make that its top priority. "We have a very important pension problem that we have to tackle, but a pension hasn't killed anyone's father or mother or taken a child from a parent," Beshear said. "This drug epidemic is the single largest threat to the lives of our citizens and also to our economy itself."

Drug Testing

Wisconsin Lawmaker Wants to Impose Drug Testing on High School Students Statewide. Whether to drug test students is a question traditionally left to local school boards, but state Rep. Joel Kleefisch (R-Oconomowoc) is drafting a bill to impose drug testing on some students statewide. He said he will introduce a bill that will require private and public schools to have policies to randomly drug test students who participate in voluntary activities, such as sports or choir or the debate club. Only a handful of Wisconsin school districts currently have such policies.

Law Enforcement

After Pot Vote, Nevada Drug Dogs Face Uncertain Future. With legal marijuana looming in the state's near future, Nevada drug dogs trained to sniff marijuana could be out of a job. Drug dogs are trained to detect various substances and will alert on any of them, but after January 1, they could be alerting on a legal substance, and that means their usefulness to law enforcement is in question. They could be retrained (difficult and expensive) or replaced (expensive).

International

Mexico Senate Votes Overwhelmingly to Approve Medical Marijuana. The Mexican Senate voted 98-7 Tuesday to approve medical marijuana legislation. The move comes after President Enrique Pena Nieto earlier this year signaled his support. Some lawmakers said they were disappointed the bill didn't legalize marijuana outright.

Philippines President Admits Personally Killing People. Speaking Monday about his bloody war on drugs, which has left nearly 6,000 dead in six months, President Rodrigo Duterte admitted to personally killing people while mayor of Davao City, where he has long been accused of tolerating death squads. "In Davao I used to do it personally. Just to show to the guys [police officers] that if I can do it, why can't you. And I'd go around in Davao with a motorcycle, with a big bike around, and I would just patrol the streets, looking for trouble also. I was really looking for a confrontation so I could kill," he said.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

Canada: Marijuana Proposals Issued In Canada

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Wed, 12/14/2016 - 08:00
New York Times, 14 Dec 2016 - MONTREAL - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has promised to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, but that doesn't mean Canada will turn into a giant, smoke-filled set for a Cheech and Chong movie. If Mr. Trudeau adopts the recommendations of a panel he appointed, marijuana's move from the black market to the open market will be highly bureaucratic, heavily taxed and tightly controlled, with advertising and promotion virtually banned.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Growing Concerns

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Wed, 12/14/2016 - 08:00
Ottawa Sun, 14 Dec 2016 - Pot industry players react to marijuana legalization report Pot smokers, dispensary owners and cannabis industry executives reacted Tuesday to the federal government task force recommendations on how Canada should go about legalizing recreational marijuana.
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CN MB: Local Pot Advocate Applauds Federal Task Force Report

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Wed, 12/14/2016 - 08:00
Winnipeg Sun, 14 Dec 2016 - A federal task force report on legalized recreational marijuana marks a "momentous" step toward the normalization of the drug, a local pot advocate said Tuesday. "I think the consensus is this is the day a lot of people, both from the medical cannabis community and recreational users, never thought they would live to see," said Steven Stairs, a medical marijuana user and local "4/20" organizer.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Canada: Task Force Green Lights Legal Pot Sales To Teenagers

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Wed, 12/14/2016 - 08:00
Prince George Citizen, 14 Dec 2016 - OTTAWA - Eighteen-year-olds should be allowed to buy recreational cannabis when the Liberal government launches a globe-leading social experiment in legalizing marijuana next year, a federally appointed task force said Tuesday. The age limit - and the hazy science of pot-impaired driving - were among the most contentious aspects during five months of hearings and research, task force vice-chair Dr. Mark Ware told a news conference in the parliamentary precinct.
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