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Medical Marijuana

US HI: New High

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Tue, 05/05/2015 - 07:00
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 05 May 2015 - A Bill That Would Allow for the Establishment of Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Passes Conference Committee and Is Due for a Vote Some 15 years after medical marijuana use became legal in Hawaii, lawmakers are suddenly on the verge of permitting dispensaries to sell the drug to the 13,000 patients across the state.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

US WA: Column: Let The States Make Drug Law

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Tue, 05/05/2015 - 07:00
Seattle Times, 05 May 2015 - Howard Wooldridge, a Washington lobbyist, is a former detective and forever Texan on an important mission - trying to persuade the 535 members of Congress to end the federal war on marijuana. Liberals tend to be an easier sell than conservatives. With liberals, Wooldridge dwells on the grossly racist way the war on drugs has been prosecuted.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Puerto Rico Okays MedMJ, TX Pot Bills Killed, NV Harm Reduction Bill Moves (5/4/15)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 05/04/2015 - 22:02

The Supreme Court wants to know what the Obama administration thinks about that lawsuit over Colorado's pot law, a Hawaii dispensary bill is back from the dead and being considered today, a Nevada harm reduction bill advances, a federal drug defelonization bill is introduced, and more.

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

Supreme Court Asks For Obama Administration Position on Suit Over Colorado Pot Law. The US Supreme Court today asked for the administration's views on the lawsuit filed by Nebraska and Oklahoma against Colorado's marijuana legalization law. This signals that the high court is taking an interest in the case.

Arkansas Attorney General Rejects Wording of Legalization Initiative. Attorney General Leslie Rutledge last Friday rejected the proposed popular name and ballot title of a proposed legalization initiative. "The Arkansas Industrial Hemp and Medical Cannabis Amendment" did not mention any limits on industrial hemp or medical marijuana use, Rutledge said. Petitioners can submit a revised initiative.

Puerto Rico Governor Signs Executive Order Legalizing Medical Marijuana. Puerto Rican Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla Sunday signed an executive order legalizing medical marijuana. The move comes after years of discussion in the US island territory.

Medical Marijuana

Hawaii Dispensary Bill Back from the Dead. Negotiations over the dispensary bill, House Bill 321, collapsed last Friday, but after drama over the weekend, a Senate and House conference committee is set to reconsider the bill today. Sixteen of 25 senators had asked for reconsideration after conference committee chair Sen. Josh Green refused to agree to a final version of the bill. Senate President Donna Mercado then threw him off the committee, and Kim and House Speaker Joseph Souki sent out a letter late Friday saying the bill would be reconsidered today. Click on the link for all the juicy details.

Illinois Advisory Board Votes Against Adding Anxiety and Diabetes. The board has rejected adding anxiety and diabetes to the list of qualifying conditions and diseases, but is still considering whether to add Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

ACLU to Sue Over Firing of Rhode Island Medical Marijuana Patient. The ACLU of Rhode Island says it plans to file a complaint against an employer who refuses to hire medical marijuana patients, even though it is legal in the state. Lawsuits challenging the firing of medical marijuana users have been turned away in California and Michigan.

Harm Reduction

Nevada Assembly Approves Bill With 911 Good Samaritan, Opiate Overdose Reversal Drug Provisions. The lower house voted last Friday to approve Senate Bill 459, a harm reduction bill containing both provisions allowing greater access to the opiate overdose reversal drug, naloxone, and provisions that would reduce -- but not remove -- penalties for those who report drug overdoses. The Senate has already approved it, but it needs one last vote there after changes in the Assembly. Gov. Brian Sandoval (R) supports the bill.

Sentencing

Federal Drug Defelonization Bill Filed. Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) has filed HR 2153, which would make certain federal drug offenses misdemeanors and eliminate the crack/powder cocaine sentencing disparity. The bill has been assigned to the House Judiciary Committee, the House Energy Committee, and the House Education and Workforce Committee.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

Puerto Rico Governor Signs Executive Order Legalizing Medical Marijuana

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 05/04/2015 - 18:26

[This story was written in collaboration with AlterNet and first appeared here.]

Puerto Rican Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla Sunday signed an executive order legalizing medical marijuana. The move comes after years of discussion in the US island territory.

[image:1 align:left caption:true]Under the order, the Puerto Rico Health Department is enabled to authorize the use of marijuana and its derivatives for health reasons. The order directs the secretary of health to produce a report laying out rules and regulations for the new system within 90 days.

"We're taking a significant step in the area of health that is fundamental to our development and quality of life," Gov. Garcia said in a statement. "I am sure that many patients will receive appropriate treatment that will offer them new hope."

The Puerto Rican legislature debated medical marijuana in 2013, but a final vote on that bill was never taken, and the issue was stalled until Garcia Padilla acted. He has the support of many, if not all, legislators.

"It's a step in the right direction. One of the benefits that patients say they receive the most is pain relief," said Jaime Perello, president of the Puerto Rican House of Representatives in remarks reported by the Associated Press.

Not everyone was on board, though.

Garcia Padilla's order leaves the island's drug laws in "judicial limbo," warned opposition legislator Jennifer Gonzalez.

But the Drug Policy Alliance liked what it was seeing.

"Gov. Garcia's executive order is exactly what was needed," said DPA executive director Ethan Nadelmann. "It was the right and legal thing to do given both the absence of a ballot initiative process in Puerto Rico and the inability of the legislature to pass needed legislation."

"Gov. Garcia's action is a compassionate move, and demonstrates a regard for scientific evidence," says DPA Americas policy manager Hannah Hetzer. "This will alleviate the unnecessary suffering of thousands of patients in Puerto Rico, while also generating revenue and much-needed employment."

Puerto Rico becomes the second US territory to legalize medical marijuana, after Guam. Some 23 states and the District of Columbia have also legalized it, and the federal government has signaled it is not going to interfere.

It also becomes the second Caribbean entity to legalize it, after Jamaica. In Latin America, it is also legal in Uruguay, which has legalized recreational as well, and medical marijuana crops are being grown in Chile with government approval.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN BC: Report Urges Pot Dispensary Crackdown

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Mon, 05/04/2015 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 04 May 2015 - With cannabis businesses multiplying, tickets for bylaw offences and suspensions or revocations of licences are needed, city staff say The City of Victoria should crack down on marijuana businesses in the community because their numbers are increasing in B.C.'s capital and some are exposing youth to the drug, says a staff report.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN BC: Pot Shops Multiply Despite Health Worries

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Mon, 05/04/2015 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 04 May 2015 - The effectiveness of marijuana in suppressing chronic pain, reducing nausea in chemotherapy patients and controlling muscle spasms, among other things, has allowed proponents to label the narcotic as a medicine. That branding is now paying dividends for drug retailers in Vancouver, where a growing number of pot shops are opening, billing themselves as "medical marijuana dispensaries."
Categories: Medical Marijuana

US NV: Growth Industry

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Mon, 05/04/2015 - 07:00
Las Vegas Sun, 04 May 2015 - Nevada Lawmakers Get Up-Close View of Colorado's Pot Business With medical marijuana already here and full legalization on the ballot in 2016, a group of Nevada legislators took a trip to Denver last weekend to get an up close look at how the state is handling its booming cannabis market.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

US NY: NY's Pot Lottery

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sun, 05/03/2015 - 07:00
New York Post, 03 May 2015 - 300 vying for five medical licenses The race is on to secure the five licenses to be granted under New York state's medical marijuana program, which takes effect in January. And the cash--crop lottery could bring in millions for the winners.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

US NM: Column: Marijuana Still More Popular Than Politicians

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sun, 05/03/2015 - 07:00
The New Mexican, 03 May 2015 - Right after last November's general election, in this very column, I made the contention that marijuana was more popular than either gubernatorial candidate - Republican Gov. Susana Martinez and Democrat Gary King - at least in Santa Fe and Albuquerque. I made that claim based on the number of votes that (nonbinding) marijuana-decriminalization initiatives received in Santa Fe and Bernalillo counties. In both counties, the pro-marijuana position got more votes than either of the candidates.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: What's The Buzz?

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sun, 05/03/2015 - 07:00
Ottawa Sun, 03 May 2015 - Vapour lounge draws activists, medical marijuana users - and opinions The clock strikes 4:20 p.m. on a sun-baked Friday afternoon in the capital, and the patrons of Ottawa's most buzzworthy new establishment take notice.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

US HI: Legislators' Unusual Steps Keep Pot Measure Alive

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sun, 05/03/2015 - 07:00
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 03 May 2015 - The story of marijuana as medicine at the state Capitol this year was a story of careful preparation, dogged grass-roots politics and compassion for those who suffer from chronic illnesses. And don't forget the impact of money. Bills to establish marijuana dispensaries in Hawaii have stalled in the state Legislature for years, but dispensaries suddenly emerged this year as one of the most talked-about issues for lawmakers. It was an issue so important they refused to allow it to die.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

US CA: Tending To The Issue Of Medicinal Pot

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sat, 05/02/2015 - 07:00
Los Angeles Times, 02 May 2015 - California Lawmakers Are Considering Multiple Plans to Regulate Marijuana Shops and Growers SACRAMENTO - California lawmakers are wading into the politically sticky issue of regulating medical marijuana, laying groundwork for state control of the sale and cultivation of cannabis with the expectation that voters will legalize recreational use next year. Brennan Linsley
Categories: Medical Marijuana

US HI: Pot Dispensaries Measure Hangs On

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sat, 05/02/2015 - 07:00
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 02 May 2015 - Despite an all-out political push reinforced by some of the best-known lobbyists in the state, an effort to establish state-regulated dispensaries to distribute marijuana to legally registered patients in Hawaii remains in limbo. The measure stalled during last-minute negotiations between House and Senate lawmakers Friday and appeared to be dead, but was later revived in a last-minute procedural maneuver.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Reps Call for Better DEA Head, US Afghan Opium Boondoggle, Mexico Violence, More (5/1/15)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Fri, 05/01/2015 - 20:57

The House rejects medical marijuana for vets, Georgia's governor signs a CBD cannabis oil bill, Congressmembers call for a progressive DEA head, the US spent $8.4 billion to wipe out Afghan poppy crops and got squat, there's a new report on prohibition-related violence in Mexico, and more.

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

House Rejects Medical Marijuana Access for Vets by Three Votes. An amendment from Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) to allow Veterans Administration doctors to fill out state medical marijuana recommendation forms for veterans was defeated Thursday by a vote of 213-210. The amendment was to the spending bill to the Veterans Administration.

California Assembly Passes Medical Cannabis Organ Transplant Act. The Assembly approved Assembly Bill 258, filed by Assemblymember Marc Levine (D-San Rafael). The bill bars anyone in the organ transplant process from using a patient's use of medical marijuana to deny them a transplant, unless that use is clinically significant to the transplant process. The bill now heads to the state Senate.

Georgia Governor Signs CBD Cannabis Oil Bill. Gov. Nathan Deal (R) Thursday signed into law House Bill 1, the "Hailey's Hope Act." The law will allow qualifying patients to use CBD cannabis oils containing less than 5% THC. Click on the link to see the list of qualifying conditions.

Drug Policy

Congressmembers Call for a More Progressive DEA Head. Eight members of Congress have sent a letter to the White House urging it to replace disgraced outgoing DEA head Michele Leonhart with someone who will "reflect your administration's policies. Leonhart, they said, "leaves behind a legacy of strident opposition to efforts to reform our nation's drug policy." Click on either link for more.

International

Afghan Opium Production Jumps Despite $8.4 Billion US Effort. The US has dumped $8.4 billion into fighting opium production in Afghanistan since invading and occupying the country in late 2001, but has basically gotten squat for its efforts, according to the latest counternarcotics efforts in Afghanistan, and the country is the global leader in illicit opium cultivation and production," the quarterly report concluded.

Italian Army Begins Growing Medical Marijuana. To address a shortage of medical marijuana in the country, the Italian Army has begun growing medical marijuana in a bunker inside a pharmaceutical plant in Florence. "The aim of this operation is to make available to a growing number of patients a medical product which isn't always readily available on the market, at a much better price for the user," Colonel Antonio Medica told Italian website Corriere della Sera. The operation is expected to produce about 220 pounds annually.

Mexico Drug Trafficking Violence Declines, But Still Deadly. An annual report from the University of San Diego's Justice in Mexico project finds that homicides have declined for the third year in a row and that cities such as Acapulco, Chihuahua, and Ciudad Juarez have seen dramatic reductions in violence, but that new areas of concern have emerged, including the states of Morelos and Jalisco. "Violence remains relatively high and the security situation remains problematic in certain parts of the country," said the report, Drug Violence in Mexico.

Mexican Gunmen Shoot Down Military Helicopter in Jalisco, Killing Three Soldiers. A military helicopter trailing carloads of suspected cartel gunmen was hit with gunfire from the convoy today, resulting in a crash landing that left three of the 11 troops on board dead. The attack came as violence roiled the state: More than a dozen trucks and buses were torched in Guadalajara, gunmen clashed with police in the town of Autlan, and five banks were torched in Ciudad Guzman. This is the turf of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel, which killed 20 police officers in the state in two ambushes in March and April.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN SN: Column: Should Marijuana Be Legalized?

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Fri, 05/01/2015 - 07:00
The Observer, 01 May 2015 - SHOULD MARIJUANA BE LEGALIZED? The other day as I scrolled through my Facebook the usual advertisements popped up, but I also saw numerous references to 420, April 20. Now I'm not sure how that time/day was chosen, but similar to people drinking and saying, "It's five o'clock somewhere," a 420 culture has developed surrounding marijuana.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN BC: Victoria Considering Dispensary Overhaul

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Fri, 05/01/2015 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 01 May 2015 - Victoria's mayor says she is closely watching Vancouver's bid to regulate marijuana dispensaries because there may be lessons as the B.C. capital grapples with the "regulatory quagmire" associated with such operations. "Our staff are working very closely to figure out what they have done that we could also do," Lisa Helps said in an interview.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN SN: Column: Legalize Pot? Perhaps Not...

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Fri, 05/01/2015 - 07:00
The Observer, 01 May 2015 - LEGALIZE POT? PERHAPS NOT... This column is not an argument either for or against the use of marijuana. My middle-aged, mom-ish self is now part of a demographic that is more in tune with the use of pot medically, rather than recreationally, so I feel I would be spectacularily unqualified to make an emotional argument on either the pro or the con side on whether the use of pot is morally right or wrong.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

US MO: Single Mom's Pot Case Garners Global Support

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Fri, 05/01/2015 - 07:00
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 01 May 2015 - KANSAS CITY, MO. - Shona Banda says she had a clear choice: Live in misery or use medical marijuana to ease her Crohn's disease and risk going to jail. Turned out to be an easy call for the Garden City, Kan., woman. She said her symptoms eased to the point where she could return to work and once again play with her young son.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

US OH: Debate Flares Over Pot Issue

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Fri, 05/01/2015 - 07:00
Dayton Daily News, 01 May 2015 - Legalization Backers: Police Can Focus More on Serious Crime. but Sheriff Says Plan Won't Curb Violence. Supporters of a controversial plan to legalize marijuana in Ohio say one of the benefits to the public is that law enforcement could focus more on serious crime.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Federal Pot Banking Bill, OK Okays CBD Oil, IN Needle Exchange Approved, More (4/30/15)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Thu, 04/30/2015 - 22:09

Seventeen congressmembers introduced a federal marijuana banking bill, CBD cannabis oil gets approved in Oklahoma, medical marijuana advances in Louisiana, Indiana approves needle exchange programs, and more.

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

Federal Marijuana Banking Bill Filed. Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) and 16 bipartisan cosponsors yesterday introduced the Marijuana Business Access to Banking Act (HR 7076), which would allow marijuana businesses to open bank accounts. The bill would provide banks with a "safe harbor" so they can offer accounts to such businesses without fear of federal retaliation.

Rhode Island House Committee Hears Testimony on Legalization Bill. The House Judiciary Committee yesterday heard testimony on House Bill 5777, the marijuana regulation, taxation, and legalization bill from Rep. Thomas Slater. No vote was taken; the bill was held for further study. Click on the title link for more hearing details.

Medical Marijuana

Oklahoma Governor Signs CBD Cannabis Oil Bill. Gov. Mary Fallin (R) today signed into law House Bill 2154, also known as Katie and Cayman's Law. It allows for the use of CBD cannabis oil by children suffering from epileptic seizures and sets up a study program.

Louisiana Medical Marijuana Bill Wins Senate Committee Vote. Only a year after overwhelmingly rejecting a similar bill, the Senate Health Committee Wednesday unanimously approved a medical marijuana bill, Senate Bill 143, sponsored by Sen. Fred Mills, Jr. (R-Parks). The bill is set for a Senate floor vote next week. The bill does not allow for smoked marijuana; only marijuana processed into oils.

New Synthetic Drugs

North Carolina House Votes to Ban New Synthetics. The House voted unanimously today to add more compounds to the state's list of illegal drugs. House Bill 341 adds the NBOMe (N-bomb) compounds to the list. The drugs are described as similar to LSD. The bill now heads before the Senate Rules and Operations Committee.

Texas House Approves Bill Giving Cops More Power to Move Against Synthetics. With no debate and on a voice vote, the House Wednesday approved House Bill 1212, which would give law enforcement greater ability to move against synthetic drug manufacturers. A final vote of approval was expected today, and then the bill moves to the Senate. Similar legislation is already moving in that chamber.

Harm Reduction

Indiana Legislature Approves Needle Exchange Programs. Faced with an HIV outbreak in one southwestern county, the legislature last night approved a bill allowing for the establishment of needle exchange programs throughout the state. Gov. Mike Pence (R) says he will sign SEA 461.

International

Canada Supreme Court to Take Up Mandatory Minimum Drug Sentencing. The Supreme Court announced today that it will hear an appeal of mandatory minimum sentencing for drug offenses in the case of R v. Lloyd. Lloyd was arrested carrying small amounts of heroin, crack, and meth, and was subject to a one-year mandatory minimum sentence, but the Provincial Court found that sentence to be cruel and unusual. The BC Court of Appeal overturned the Provincial Court and increased his sentence. Now, the Supreme Court will decide if the sentence violates Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Categories: Medical Marijuana
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