Will Colorado Have Enough Pot Stores? Posted by on December 10, 2013 at 05:54:20 PT By Katy Steinmetz Source: Time Colorado -- Call it Black Wednesday. Recreational marijuana goes on sale legally in Colorado on Jan. 1, and Denver officials are worried that the city’s retail shops won’t be anywhere close to meeting demand.
At a city-council meeting Monday, lawmakers in Colorado’s largest city raised questions about licensing delays and the prospect of people queuing up for hours in what have been historically low temperatures. Read More... Here's How Many Pot Shops Will Open In Denver Posted by on December 10, 2013 at 05:29:15 PT By Matt Ferner Source: Huffington Post Colorado -- As few as five to ten Denver-area pot shops may be allowed to start selling recreational weed when Colorado's landmark law goes into effect on January 1, despite more than 100 businesses waiting for approval from the city.
Dispensary owners say they're facing delays that could prevent a vast majority of shops from being able to sell retail marijuana to adults 21-and-over come the new year. Read More... A Pot Editor Elicits Quips Posted by on December 09, 2013 at 05:27:21 PT By Christine Haughney Source: New York Times Denver -- Newspaper editors typically operate behind the scenes, overseeing reporters inside the newsroom and outside the spotlight.
But since Ricardo Baca was named the marijuana editor of The Denver Post last month, he has been celebrated across the globe. He has appeared on CNN and “The Colbert Report.” Long-lost high school acquaintances have surfaced, with one inviting him to his friend’s basement for a smoke. Emails have flooded in from freelancers and readers, offering up their expertise on the subject matter. Read More... Woman's Christian Temperance Union Targeting Pot Posted by CN Staff on December 08, 2013 at 08:35:03 PT By David Sharp, Associated Press Source: Associated Press Portland -- The mansion that serves as Maine headquarters of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union lay largely fallow until recently, with drug needles, liquor bottles and pornographic magazines littering the grounds. Now, in the state where Prohibition had its roots and in a city that just legalized recreational marijuana, the WCTU is overhauling the building and looking to reinvent itself.
Leaders of the organization, which is committed to abstinence, plan to take a lower-key approach, compared with the old days when crusading women terrorized saloon owners. Read More... Families See Colorado as New Frontier on Marijuana Posted by on December 06, 2013 at 05:13:03 PT By Jack Healy Source: New York Times Fountain, Colo. -- As their children cooed from wheelchairs and rocked softly in their arms, the marijuana migrants of Colorado clasped hands, bowed their heads and said a prayer of cautious thanks. They thanked God for the dinner of roast turkey and mashed potatoes, for their children and for the marijuana-based serum that has drawn 100 families to Colorado on a desperate pilgrimage to quell the squalls of seizures inside their children’s heads. They have come from Florida and Virginia, South Carolina and New York, lining up to treat their children with a promising but largely untested oil that is considered legal medicine in this cannabis-friendly state. Read More... Mark Kleiman, Pot's Go-To Guy Posted by on December 05, 2013 at 13:40:04 PT By Patt Morrison Source: Los Angeles Times USA -- Come New Year's Day, in Washington state and Colorado, marijuana will be legit, courtesy of two ballot initiatives. How do you create a legal business out of an illegal one? After 13 years of Prohibition, the country at least had an earlier legal liquor market to refer to. That's where Mark Kleiman comes in, the go-to expert on these matters. A UCLA professor of public policy and author and coauthor of books like "Marijuana Legalization," he's heard all the jokes about "hemperor" and "your serene high-ness." He was consulted by Washington state's liquor control board, which has to come up with the nuts and bolts for the new law and which asked him for, well, the straight dope.
What did Washington want to know? Read More... High Court Hears Medical-Marijuana Case Posted by on December 04, 2013 at 14:36:45 PT By Marc Caputo Source: Miami Herald Florida -- Tallahassee’s political establishment has repeatedly blocked legislative votes on medical marijuana and will ask the Florida Supreme Court Thursday to follow suit and keep the issue away from state voters in 2014.
Led by Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, opponents have raised a host of objections to the proposed state constitutional amendment, which they say could lead to de facto “unfettered” marijuana legalization under the guise of compassionate medicine. “The proposal hides the fact that the Amendment would make Florida one of the most lenient medical-marijuana states,” says Bondi’s initial court brief. Read More... Pot Shots Fired: Recreational vs. Medicinal Posted by on December 04, 2013 at 07:29:18 PT By Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux Source: American Prospect Washington State -- As Washington begins to accept applications for the state’s first regulated recreational pot shops, cries of protest about its plans for medical marijuana are coming from unexpected quarters: the left. A year after voters put their state on track to become one of the only places in the world where marijuana can be legally owned and sold for purely recreational use, the state legislature still has to decide what to do with its rickety, fifteen-year-old medical-marijuana system. With the Department of Justice’s hawkish eyes trained on the state—determined to ensure that the drug, which is still illegal under federal law—remains under strict control, some bureaucrats and lawmakers are afraid that Washington’s unregulated medical-marijuana system could doom the whole experiment. Read More... Courts, US Public at Odds Over Worker Firings Posted by on December 03, 2013 at 12:48:52 PT By Daniel B. Woods, Staff Writer Source: Christian Science Monitor Colorado -- A worker in Colorado who undergoes a random drug test is found to test positive for marijuana use, but in less than a month pot-smoking will legal in there. Can a company with a zero-tolerance policy for illegal drug use still fire that worker, or should it instead adjust its policy on employee drug use? That's just one of many questions that employers in both Colorado and the state of Washington are wrestling with as they adjust to new marijuana laws, which as of Jan. 1 will permit individuals to buy and possess up to an ounce of pot. Read More... Chris Christie Says No To Expanding MMJ Bill Posted by on December 02, 2013 at 14:39:12 PT By Susan K. Livio, The Star-Ledger Source: Star-Ledger Trenton -- The latest bill to expand the medical marijuana program is only days old, but Gov. Chris Christie said he already knows he won't sign it.
The bill would allow registered medical marijuana patients in New Jersey to buy the drug in another state where it's legal and bring it home. Six of the 19 states and Washington D.C. that have medical marijuana programs have such reciprocity agreements by which they recognize patients outside of their own state. Christie told reporters today he is "not open to it," and believes it's just a back door way to legalize marijuana for everyone. Read More... Pharmacists Prepare For Medical Marijuana Posted by on December 02, 2013 at 06:29:31 PT By William Weir, The Hartford Courant Source: Hartford Courant Connecticut -- East Lyme pharmacist Laurie Zrenda sees the state's medical marijuana program as a possible way to take her career in a promising direction. "I've been a retail pharmacist for 26 years and it gets a little old after a while," she said. "The chain stores have taken over."
With little opportunity to work for an independent pharmacy, or own one herself, she is one of 21 people applying for a state license to run a medical marijuana dispensary. "This is the chance to live the dream and own my own business," she said, "and it will be good for people, too, I think." Read More... Marijuana's Risk To Drivers Debated Posted by on November 29, 2013 at 19:53:48 PT By Dan Freedman Source: San Francisco Chronicle Washington -- As California advocates ponder a renewed push to legalize marijuana for adults, law enforcement officials and traffic safety experts are warning of a side effect of states allowing the drug for medical or recreational use: the danger caused by people driving while high.
Research is incomplete on how much marijuana it takes to impair driving. But Gil Kerlikowske, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, said being even a little intoxicated on marijuana is unacceptable. Read More... Mass. Activists Push To Fully Legalize Marijuana Posted by CN Staff on November 28, 2013 at 10:08:12 PT By Steve Le Blanc, Associated Press Source: Associated Press Boston -- Pro-marijuana activists in Massachusetts have already succeeded in paving the way for dozens of medical marijuana dispensaries and decriminalizing possession of small amounts of the drug.
Now many of those same activists have set their sights on the full legalization of marijuana for adults, effectively putting the drug on a par with alcohol and cigarettes. And those activists — as they have in the past — are again hoping to make their case directly to voters. Read More... Should Marijuana Be Regulated Like Alcohol? Posted by on November 26, 2013 at 05:28:55 PT By Nicole Debevec, United Press International Source: United Press International USA -- A domino effect driven by more available information is expanding acceptance of and support for reform of U.S. marijuana policy -- whether for medical or adult recreational use.
"What's driving this growth in support is an increase in information about issue," said Mason Tvert, communications director for the Marijuana Policy Project in Denver. "More information is available now than ever before; it's talked about more than ever before and more support grows for ending the prohibition." Read More... Peter Lewis, Advocate Of MJ Legalization, Dies Posted by on November 24, 2013 at 07:10:48 PT By Luisa Kroll, Forbes Staff Source: Forbes USA -- Peter Lewis, chairman of Progressive Insurance, died on Saturday afternoon at his home in Coconut Grove Florida apparently due to natural causes. He had just celebrated his 80th birthday on November 11.
Lewis was probably the country’s most high-profile billionaire backer of drug law reform. During the November 2012 election, he spent almost $3 million helping secure the passage of marijuana legalization bills in both Washington state and Massachusetts. The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws estimated that Lewis had spent well over $40 million funding the cause since the 1980s. Read More... Worcester Has Most Applicants for Dispensaries Posted by on November 23, 2013 at 07:24:14 PT By Kay Lazar, Boston Globe Staff Source: Boston Globe Massachusetts -- Worcester trumps Boston for the most popular place in Massachusetts to open a medical marijuana dispensary, according to a list released Friday by state regulators of the 100 applicants vying for a license.
Nine of the nonprofit companies chose Worcester, while six selected Boston. Framingham and Lowell tied for third-most desirable, with five applicants apiece. Northampton attracted three applicants, but Cambridge, with a similarly liberal populace, attracted just one applicant. Read More... Fed Raids Seek Ties To Colombian Drug Cartels Posted by on November 22, 2013 at 14:56:20 PT By Jeremy P. Meyer and Eric Gorski and John Ingold Source: Denver Post Denver -- Colorado marijuana businesses raided this week by federal agents are being investigated for a possible connection to Colombian drug cartels, sources told The Denver Post on Friday.
Three sources, who have knowledge of the investigation, spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to speak. Investigators believe the businesses that were raided are all "one big operation," a source said. Read More... Raids on Colorado Pot Hint at a Crackdown Posted by on November 22, 2013 at 09:48:10 PT By Jeremy Daw Source: AlterNet Colorado -- The coordinated raids of at least a dozen Denver dispensaries on Thursday are the latest federal law enforcement actions to occur in the wake of legalization votes last November in Colorado and Washington states. The coordinated raids in Colorado follow raids that took place in Washington this summer, and when analyzed side by side, the federal actions hint at an emerging pattern in organized pot crackdowns. Characterized by cooperation across multiple levels of government and timed to deliver maximum political effect, this new method of federal interference with the medical marijuana movement sends a clear message to a marijuana industry still in its formation stages. Read More... World's First Recreational MJ Sales License Issued Posted by on November 22, 2013 at 08:42:29 PT By Matt Ferner Source: Huffington Post Colorado -- The world's first recreational marijuana retail license was granted to a dispensary in Colorado this week -- so start saving up, because the Rocky Mountain High will soon be for sale.
Annie's, located in the mountain and gambling town of Central City, was the recipient of the historic license and posted this on their Facebook page earlier this week to celebrate: The Central City pot shop is owned by Strainwise, which owns eight dispensaries in Colorado and hopes all eight shops are approved for the recreational license, according to Westword. Read More... Feds Raid Denver-Area Marijuana Dispensaries Posted by on November 21, 2013 at 15:08:35 PT By Jeremy P. Meyer and Eric Gorski, Denver Post Source: Denver Post Denver -- Seven weeks before the nation's first retail marijuana shops open in Colorado, federal authorities Thursday morning raided more than a dozen Denver metro area marijuana facilities.
In the largest federal raid on Colorado marijuana facilities since medical marijuana became legal, federal law enforcement agents with an assist from local police officers executed search and seizure warrants at multiple dispensaries and cultivation facilities throughout the region — at least a dozen in Denver alone. Read More... Feds Raid Boulder County Marijuana Grows Posted by on November 21, 2013 at 14:34:45 PT By Erica Meltzer and Mitchell Byars Source: Daily Camera Colorado -- Federal authorities raided more than a dozen marijuana facilities in the Denver metro area, including grow operations north of Boulder, on Thursday morning as part of an ongoing criminal investigation.
Department of Justice spokesman Jeff Dorschner kept details about the investigation close to the chest, but said he could state "unequivocally" that the actions were consistent with federal guidelines issued earlier this year that said marijuana businesses operating in compliance with their states' laws and not tied to other criminal activity would not be targeted for enforcement. Read More... Poll: 82 Percent Favor Medical Marijuana Posted by on November 21, 2013 at 07:34:36 PT By Marc Caputo Source: Miami Herald Miami -- If a medical marijuana initiative makes Florida's ballot next year, it could pass with an astonishing 82 percent of the vote, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday that finds voters also favor outright legalization as well. Support for the proposed constitutional amendment is strong among voters of every political stripe, age and income level, with independents lending the most support: 88 percent, the poll shows.
The overall 82-16 percent support for medical marijuana is the biggest to date. The previous high-point for Florida approval was about 70 percent in a poll taken earlier this year by the medical-marijuana advocacy group, People United for Medical Marijuana. Read More... One Step at a Time on Marijuana Posted by on November 20, 2013 at 18:58:30 PT Baltimore Sun Editorial Source: Baltimore Sun Maryland -- The politics surrounding marijuana in Maryland have come a long way during the last few years. A law allowing token penalties for those who claimed medical reasons for using the drug was controversial less than a decade ago. Now the state is launching a medical marijuana program, and the state Senate easily passed a bill this year decriminalizing possession of small amounts of pot for any reason. Now, with polls showing a majority of the state favors outright legalization, a gubernatorial candidate is making a regulation-and-taxation scheme part of her platform. Del. Heather Mizeur says marijuana should be legalized and regulated the same way alcohol and tobacco are, and she would use the tax revenues from its sale to pay for an expansion of pre-kindergarten education. Read More... Details of WV Medical Marijuana Bill Emerge Posted by CN Staff on November 20, 2013 at 16:42:18 PT By Brock Vergakis, The Associated Press Source: Associated Press Charleston, W.Va. -- The first details about a proposal to legalize the use of marijuana for medical purposes in West Virginia emerged on Wednesday during a legislative committee meeting.
The legislature's Joint Health Committee was told during an interim meeting that a bill allowing the use of medical marijuana is being drafted for consideration in the upcoming legislative session. Read More... Don’t Treat NNJ Patients Like Recreational Users Posted by on November 19, 2013 at 16:55:06 PT By Steph Sherer, Special to The Times Source: Seattle Times Washington -- Gov. Jay Inslee and the state’s legislators are poised to make history as they devise a plan to harmonize their medical cannabis program with one that allows anyone 21 or older to buy and possess marijuana. What Washington lawmakers decide will shape how patients are treated elsewhere in the nation.
Inslee has shown courage implementing Initiative 502, pushing the federal government through letters and meetings to accept his state’s new adult-use marijuana law. As a congressman, he fought to protect the medical cannabis program in his state from federal interference. Now that same determination is needed to support the spirit of the 1998 medical-marijuana state initiative that created safe access. Read More... Mizeur To Propose Legalization of Marijuana Posted by on November 19, 2013 at 10:02:06 PT By John Wagner Source: Washington Post Maryland -- Maryland Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Heather R. Mizeur on Tuesday will propose legalizing marijuana and using the tax revenue it generates to fund pre-kindergarten education, according to an advance copy of her plan.
Mizeur, a Montgomery County delegate who faces Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown and Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler in next year’s Democratic primary, proposes that Maryland regulate marijuana much like it does alcohol. She estimates that taxing the drug could yield up to $157.5 million in new revenue for the state each year. Read More... U.S. Attorneys in California Defy Obama on MMJ Posted by on November 18, 2013 at 06:40:56 PT By Amanda Reiman Source: Huffington Post California -- Last week, the Alameda County (CA) Board of Supervisors passed a resolution asking the Federal government to, "end Federal interference on the municipal and state laws allowing medical marijuana, and... requests that President Obama begin a discussion about the potential benefits of reforming federal laws on marijuana use in all forms, including medicinal and recreational uses." Their desire for clarification and support on this issue is understandable. Two of the oldest and most respected dispensaries in California, Harborside Health Center and Berkeley Patients Group, both in Alameda County, have been targeted by the Feds on numerous occasions, even in light of strict regulations imposed by their localities, and a squeaky clean track record of providing both a crucial public health service and a large amount of tax revenue. Read More... Let Floridians Vote on Medical Pot Posted by CN Staff on November 17, 2013 at 05:59:09 PT By Sun Sentinel Editorial Board Source: Sun-Sentinel Florida -- Floridians deserve to know the truth about a proposal to legalize medical marijuana. Here it is: Some people want voters to decide whether pot should be allowed for medical purposes, as prescribed by a doctor. Some don't.
Some of the state's most prominent leaders have lined up against a push to place medical marijuana on the 2014 state ballot. They argue the ballot language is deceptive, hiding the scope and permissiveness of the constitutional amendment. They demand it be kept off the ballot. Read More... A Marijuana Stash That Carried Little Risk Posted by on November 16, 2013 at 05:18:00 PT By Jim Dwyer Source: New York Times New York -- Walking down Eighth Avenue a few weeks ago, I made sure my backpack was fully zipped shut. Inside was a modest stash of pot, bought just an hour or so earlier. A friend knew someone in that world, and after an introduction, then a quiet, discreet meeting, I was on my way to the subway. Never before had I walked through Midtown Manhattan with it on my person. There were four cookies in vacuum-sealed pouches — “edibles” is the technical term — and then a few pinches of what was described as “herb.” Read More... Judge Nixes MMJ Users Right To Grow Their Own Posted by on November 14, 2013 at 12:55:27 PT By Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services Source: Arizona Daily Star Phoenix -- Medical marijuana users have no constitutional right to grow their own drug, a trial judge has ruled.
Judge Katherine Cooper of Maricopa County Superior Court threw out a challenge by two men to a provision in the 2010 voter-approved Arizona Medical Marijuana Act that says only those living farther than 25 miles from a state-regulated dispensary can cultivate the plants. She said there is no basis for their claim that the provision limits their health-care rights. Read More...
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