Legislation Introduced in Congress to Legalize Marijuana Like Alcohol at Federal Level

Companion bills filed in the House and Senate on Thursday would remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act and create a federal regulatory process for states that choose to regulate the cultivation and sale of marijuana for adult use.

Legislation was introduced in the Senate and House of Representatives on Thursday that would end marijuana prohibition at the federal level and replace it with a system in which marijuana is regulated and taxed similarly to alcohol.

Bills filed by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO) would remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act, leaving states to determine their own marijuana policies, and impose federal regulations on marijuana businesses in states that choose to regulate marijuana for adult use. Wyden’s bill would also enact a federal excise tax on marijuana products. In the House, the tax is being proposed in a separate bill introduced by Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR).

Wyden and Blumenauer also filed marijuana policy “gap” bills that would eliminate many of the collateral consequences associated with federal marijuana convictions without removing marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act.

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Legislation to Legalize Medical Marijuana Passed by Full West Virginia Senate

Medical marijuana would be legal under a bill approved today by West Virginia’s full Senate.

Substitute Senate Bill 386 was passed through its third and final reading today with a 28 to 6 vote, sending it to the House of Representatives. Passage in the House would send it to Governor Jim Justice for consideration.

The proposed legislation would legalize medical marijuana possession and use for those with a qualifying condition who receive a doctor recommendation. The West Virginia Medical Cannabis Commission would be created to oversee a regulated and licensed system of cannabis cultivation centers and dispensaries. Dispensaries would be authorized to distribute cannabis and cannabis products to qualifying patients.

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Researchers Identify Genes that Give Marijuana its Flavor

University of British Columbia (UBC) scientists have scanned the genome of cannabis plants to find the genes responsible for giving various strains their lemony, skunky or earthy flavors, a finding that researchers call “an important step for the budding legal cannabis industry”.

“The goal is to develop well-defined and highly-reproducible cannabis varieties”, said Jörg Bohlmann, a professor at UBC, in a press release sent today. ” This is similar to the wine industry, which depends on defined varieties such as chardonnay or merlot for high value products.” Bohlmann says that their genomics work “can inform breeders of commercial varieties which genes to pay attention to for specific flavour qualities.”

The research is part of an ongoing collaboration between Bohlmann, graduate student Judith Booth, and Jonathan Page, an adjunct professor in the botany department who founded the cannabis testing and biotechnology company Anandia Labs.

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WA Measure Allowing Medical Cannabis on School Grounds Passes Senate Committee, Already Passed House

Legislation that would require school districts to allow students who are medical cannabis patients to be administered their medicine on school grounds has advanced in Washington’s Legislature.

House Bill 1060 was given approval yesterday by the Senate Early Learning & K-12 Education Committee. Earlier this month the proposal passed the full House of Representatives with a 78 to 19 vote. The measure must now pass through one more committee before it can be voted on by the full Senate; passage in the Senate will send it to Governor Jay Inslee for consideration.

The legislation; “Requires a school district to permit a student who meets certain requirements to consume marijuana for medical purposes on school grounds, aboard a school bus, or while attending a school-sponsored event”, and; “Requires the board of directors of a school district to adopt a policy that authorizes parents, guardians, and primary caregivers to administer marijuana to a student for medical purposes while the student is on school grounds, aboard a school bus, or attending a school-sponsored event.”

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Most Popular Indica Marijuana Strains So Far in 2017

Here’s a look at the 10 most popular indica-dominant marijuana strains so far in 2017.

indica

Purple Kush. (Photo: StrainSpot.com)

Although sativa strains have been all the rage in recent years, indica strains still (and will always) have their place in the cannabis world. Known for their intense pain relieving effects, indica strains are excellent for those wanting to relax and relieve some stress (or depression or anxiety); they’re also great for those wanting to get some sleep, or those who simply like a powerful high.

That said, below are the top 10 most popular indica marijuana strains so far this year, using data compiled by Leafly:

A genius mix of Big Bud and Purple Urkle, Granddaddy Purple is easily one of the best indicas on the market. The strain has a sweet, berry-like flavor, and dense, kiefy nuggets. The high is incredibly potent and relaxing.

Bubba Kush is known for its enjoyably strong and subduing effects, that result in almost instant relaxation. The strain has a pine-like flavor with tasty notes of chocolate and coffee. Bubba Kush owes much of its lineage to OG Kush, which itself is one of the most legendary marijuana strains around.

According to Leafly: Northern Lights stands among the most famous strains of all time, a pure indica cherished for its resinous buds, fast flowering, and resilience during growth. Itself a descendant of indigenous Afghani and Thai landrace strains, Northern Lights has given rise to famous hybrids like Shiva Skunk and Super Silver Haze.”

Although it’s been around for a while now, Blue Cheese is easily the newcomer on this list of legendary strains. Blue Cheese is a mix of Blueberry with U.K. Cheese. It has a sweet and savory taste and smell of berry and blue cheese, giving it one of the most unique flavors of any marijuana strain available.

Fans of Purple Kush will be less-than-surprised to see it on this list. The years-long mainstay is a cross between Hindu Kush and Purple Afghani ; the results are a powerful, long-lasting high that rushes throughout the head and body. Unless you don’t like indicas (or cannabis in general), it’s almost impossible to not fall in love with Purple Kush.

 

Top 10 Sativa Marijuana Strains of 2017 (So Far)

Here are the 10 most popular sativa-dominant marijuana strains so far in 2017.

sativa marijuana strains

Super Silver Haze.

Recently we listed the top 10 marijuana strains so far in 2017. Now, we will be more specific by breaking down the top sativa-dominant strains.

Sativa marijuana strains have gained massive popularity in recent years; this popularity continues to grow as more people begin to understand the differences between sativa, indica and hybrid strains. Given that sativa strains are often great for daytime use, and great for a high without drowsiness, their popularity makes perfect sense. However, not all sativas are created equally, and here we list some of the best.

Without further ado, below are the top 10 most popular sativa marijuana strains so far this year (using data from Leafly):

Sour Diesel earns its place at the top with a unique and enjoyable taste, and a high that exemplifies why sativas are so loved: its heady with a nice, uplifting body buzz, and it accomplishes this without making you drowsy. It’s pretty much always an excellent choice.

With its sweet, citrus-like flavor and smell, and balanced high, Green Crack has shot into prominent in recent years. Many in the cannabis community, for good reason, are opposed to its name and believe that it does the marijuana movement no favors, but if you can look past that what you’ll find is an enjoyable smoke with an even, smooth high.

Jack Here, for good reason, is about as legendary a sativa strain as there is. Its prominence over the past couple decades haven’t prevented it from remaining popular to this day; even as legal cannabis takes hold across the country. Jack Herer is an excellent cross between Northern Lights and Shiva Skunk; this results in piney flavor and smell that’s a complete joy to consume.

Durban Poison, which has African Sativa lineage, has gained worldwide notoriety for its sweet smell and energetic, uplifting high. As with many strains on this list, Durban Poison is perfect for daytime use or wake-and-bake sessions, making it a go-to strain for regular cannabis consumers.

According to Leafly: “Lemon Haze has been characterized as smelling of fresh peeled lemon slices with a similar taste. Its buds appear to be green and yellow with amber hairs on the trichomes, giving it the yellow tint. This strain’s THC has been measured at about 15-20% with a CBD of 0.38%.”

When Super Silver Haze debuted in the late 90s, it burst onto the cannabis scene; it was a first-place winner at each of the first three High Times Cannabis Cups in 97, 98 and 99. It has remained a well-loved and much-coveted marijuana strain ever since.

This sativa-dominant strain is a mix of Northern Lights, Skunk and Haze; all three much-respected strains in their own rights. This results in a sweet, earthy flavor and smell.

Strawberry Cough earns its name with a taste of sweet strawberries, with a backdrop of pine. This potent sativa-dominant strain has remained popular for years, even though its exact lineage is a bit of a mystery.

Alaskan Thunder Fuck. (Photo: TheNug.com)

ATF is known for its dense, kiefy nuggets. It’s also know for its relaxing and euphoric high. The headiness of this strain makes it more potent than many other sativa strains, but it’s uplifting enough to remain a solid daytime option.

Super Lemon Haze is a sativa-dominant hybrid; it’s a cross between Lemon Skunk and Super Silver Haze which has is a two time Cannabis Cup winner. As the name implies, the taste and smell is that of sweet lemons.

Maui Wowie, with its sweet, tropical flavor, has become known for its pleasant and smooth high. Excellent for relieving stress, this strain is far from the most potent sativa around, but is a joy to consume regardless.

 

Trump Administration Names Richard Baum Acting Drug Czar

The Trump Administration has named Richard Blaum as the nation’s acting Drug Czar.

The ONDCP Seal.

Richard Blaum will serve as the Drug Czar until the Senate confirms a permanent director. The Drug Czar is the unofficial but oft-used term for the Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP)

Baum has served in a variety roles at the ONDCP over the past several years; in fact, he has had a role at the ONDCP through four different presidents. Blaum helped lead the development of the National Drug Control Strategy and recently served as Chief of the International Division at the ONDCP. He was part of the United States Delegation to the recent meeting of the United Nations’ Commission on Narcotic Drugs, which took place in Austria.

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West Virginia Senate Votes to Legalize Medical Cannabis

West Virginia’s Senate has voted in favor of a measure to legalize medical cannabis.

The Senate passed Senate Bill 386 through its second reading yesterday, shortly after it was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The bipartisan measure must now be passed through one more vote in the Senate before moving to the House of Representatives; this vote will likely come later today, as it was placed on today’s calendar for a third reading.

Senate Bill 386 would allow those with a recommendation from a physician who register with the state to possess and use cannabis and cannabis products for medical purposes. The measure would establish a system of licensed cultivation centers and dispensaries, to be overseen by the West Virginia Medical Cannabis Commission, which the bill would create.

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Florida Lawmakers Approve Bill to Butcher Medical Cannabis Law Approved by Voters

A Florida House committee has overwhelmingly passed a measure that would drastically alter a medical cannabis law approved by voters last year.

The House Health Quality Subcommittee passed House Bill 1397 yesterday with a 14 to 1 vote. The measure, sponsored by House Majority Leader Ray Rodrigues, would prohibit the smoking of medical cannabis and cannabis products and would ban edibles entirely. In addition, it would prohibit patients from vaping unless they are terminally ill. This would leave patients to rely on other methods of consumption such as topicals and pills.

This would be a drastic change to Amendment 2, the initiative that legalized medical cannabis in the state; it was approved by voters in November with 71% in favor. The constitutional amendment allows those with a recommendation from a physician to possess and use medical cannabis, and to purchase it from a licensed dispensary.

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Law Enforcement Figures to Testify Today in Favor of South Carolina Bill to Legalize Medical Cannabis

A longtime leader of the South Carolina Sheriffs’ Association, the U.S. attorney for South Carolina from 2010 to 2016, and a former local police officer will testify in favor of legislation that would legalize medical cannabis.

At 2:30 p.m. ET today, Jeffrey Moore, Bill Nettles, and Raeford Davis will join leaders of Compassionate South Carolina outside the Gressette State Office Building (1101 Pendleton Street, Columbia) for a news conference in support of Senate Bill 212. The bill would allow patients with certain debilitating conditions to access medical cannabis if their doctors recommend it. They will then testify at the Senate Medical Affairs subcommittee hearing on SB 212, which is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. ET in Room 308.

Jeffrey Moore served 32 years as executive director of the South Carolina Sheriffs’ Association before retiring in 2014. Bill Nettles served as U.S. Attorney for the District of South Carolina from 2010-2016. Raeford Davis spent four years as a patrol officer and two years as a detective with the North Charleston Police Department. He left policing in 2007 after being injured in the line of duty.

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