Weedmaps.com Donates $1 Million to California Legalization Campaign

Weedmaps.comweedmaps, a website that connects people with medical cannabis dispensaries and doctors, has contributed $1 million to a campaign looking to place a recreational cannabis legalization initiative on the 2016 general election ballot.

The money, donated by Weedmaps Media, LLC (formed in 2008), was given to Californians for Sensible Reform. It’s unclear exactly what the language of the proposed initiative will be, but it’s expected to be revealed in the coming days.

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Legislation to Reform Tax Laws for Cannabis Businesses Filed in U.S. House and Senate

U.S. Representative Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) have introduced the Small Business Tax Equity Actphotocredithuffingtonpost of 2015 in both the House and the Senate. The bill would end unfair taxation issues faced by legal, state-sanctioned cannabis businesses by altering Section 280E of the federal tax code.

“The small businesses that make up the legal cannabis industry are working overtime to be responsible, contributing members of their communities,” said Aaron Smith, executive director of the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA). “So it’s particularly outrageous that when they try to do the right thing by paying their federal taxes, they end up penalized with double and triple tax rates.”

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Initiative to Legalize Recreational Cannabis Filed in Arizona

An initiativeari to legalize cannabis, titled the Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act, was filed today in Arizona.

The proposal was filed with the Arizona Secretary of State by representatives of the Marijuana Policy Project, Safer Arizona and Arizona’s cannabis business community.

 “It was a long and deliberative drafting process involving a diverse group of stakeholders,” says Carlos Alfaro, Arizona political director for the Marijuana Policy Project. “There were some bumps in the road, but in the end everyone came together to produce the best possible law for Arizona. We are united in this effort to end marijuana prohibition and replace it with a system in which marijuana is regulated and taxed similarly to alcohol.”

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Oklahoma Senate Unanimously Approves Medical Cannabis Oil Bill

Oklahoma’sok full Senate, with a unanimous 46 to 0 vote, has passed House Bill 2154, a proposal to legalize the medical use of cannabis extracts. The measure has already passed the state’s House of Representatives with a 99 to 2 vote, and now heads to Governor Mary Fallin for consideration.

Under the proposed law, a child with epilepsy who receives a recommendation from a physician would be authorized to possess and use cannabis extracts such as tinctures and oils that have low amounts of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). University medical centers would be allowed to produce, dispense and study the medicine.

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Vermont Lawmakers File Legislation to Prohibit Alcohol Possession and Sales

Vermont Representatives Chris Pearson (P-Burlington) and Jean O’Sullivan (D-Burlington) have filed legislation to prohibit thenoalcohol “possession, cultivation, distribution and sale” of alcoholic beverage.

The proposal, House Bill 502, would establish criminal and civil penalties for the possession, manufacturing or distribution of alcohol, with penalties being identical to those of cannabis. Medical use of alcohol would be allowed, to put it in line with the fact that the medical use of cannabis is allowed.

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Georgia Governor Signs Medical Cannabis Bill into Law

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal signing House Bill 1 into law.

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal signing House Bill 1 into law.

To the sounds of thunderous applause, Governor Nathan Deal signed House Bill 1 into law Thursday, a proposal to legalize the medical use of cannabis extracts.

“For the families enduring separation and patients suffering pain, the wait is finally over,” said Governor Deal. “Now, Georgia children and their families may return home, while continuing to receive much-needed care. Patients such as Haleigh Cox, for whom this bill is named, and others suffering from debilitating conditions can now receive the treatment they need, in the place where they belong — Georgia.”

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Colorado House Passes Bill to Allow Those on Probation or Parole to Use Medical Cannabis

A Colorado proposal (House Bill 1267) to allow those on probation or parole to use medical cannabis has been 420given initial approval by the state’s House of Representatives.

“If it’s in the constitution, you should have the right to use it on probation,” says Representative Joe Salazar (D-Thornton), the bill’s primary sponsor.

The vote occurs just days after Arizona’s Supreme Court ruled that medical cannabis patients are allowed to use the medicine while on probation or parole.

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Medical Cannabis Legalization Bill Passed by Iowa Senate

The IowaMedical Marijuana Senate voted Wednesday to pass Senate File 484, which would establish a comprehensive medical cannabis program that includes a system of state-licensed manufacturing centers and dispensaries.

Under the proposed law, the Iowa Department of Health would be in charge of regulating and licensing medical cannabis dispensaries and production centers, and would be required to license these outlets by April 1st, 2016. To have their application accepted, dispensaries must agree to open by July 1st of the same year

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Bipartisan Federal Bill to Reschedule Cannabis Introduced

Representatives cannabisMorgan Griffitth (R-Virginia) and Earl Blumenauer (D-Oregon) filed federal legislation this week that would reschedule cannabis and cannabidiol (CBD).

Specifically, the Compassionate Access Act would “reschedule marijuana from its current position as a Schedule 1 drug under the Controlled Substances Act, which asserts the drug has no medical use and limits the ability of researchers to study the drug’s safety and effectiveness as a treatment”. This would “allow the states to provide appropriate access to patients needing these legitimate, medical treatments under the supervision of their physician”.

According to a press release, the proposal is supported by the Epilepsy Foundation, the American Academy of Neurology, and Americans for Safe Access.

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Hawaii Senate Votes to Legalizes Medical Cannabis Dispensaries

With a 23 to 2 votehawaii-maui-4, Hawaii’s full Senate has passed House Bill 321, a proposal to legalize medical cannabis dispensaries. The Bill has already passed the full House of Representatives, but will be sent back for another vote for concurrence purposes before being sent to the governor.

If passed into law, the measure would legalize the state-licensed cultivation, production and distribution of cannabis to qualified patients who’ve received a recommendation from a physician The bill mandates that each county has at least one operating dispensary, with a minimum of 21 throughout the state.

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Cannabis Decriminalization Law Now in Effect in Jamaica

A lawcannabisplant decriminalizing the possession and cultivation of cannabis for everyone 18 and older, while legalizing it for medical, scientific and religious purposes, took effect in Jamaica on Wednesday, April 15th.

Under the new law – which was approved by lawmakers in February – the possession of up to two ounces of cannabis, and the private cultivation of up to five cannabis plants, is no longer an arrestable, criminal offense, but instead is a simple ticket. The proposal also establishes a cannabis licensing authority to oversee regulations for the cultivation, production and distribution of cannabis for medical, scientific and religious purposes.

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D.C. Council Passes Bill to Prohibit Pre-Employment Cannabis Testing

Thed.c.2 Washington D.C. Council has approved the Prohibition on Pre-Employment Marijuana Testing Amendment Act of 2015 (Bill 21-25). The measure was passed on a unanimous voice vote.

According to an official summary of the bill, it would prohibit employers “from requiring a prospective employee to submit to a drug test for marijuana use as a part of the application procedure.” In addition, the legislation “requires the Mayor to: Establish a public information campaign on the impact of marijuana use and abuse; Report to the Council information regarding health education programs in public schools related to substance abuse; Evaluate the effectiveness of the District’s treatment programs regarding the use and abuse of marijuana.”

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