Earlier this week Alaskan Congressman Don Young announced, in a press release, that he’s joining a growing list of bipartisan sponsors who support H.R. 1523, the Respect State Marijuana Laws Act of 2013. The measure would explicitly protect marijuana consumers and businesses from federal prosecution if they’re following state law, such as in Colorado and Washington where recreational marijuana retail sales were recently legalized. The measure would effectively put an end to the U.S. government’s prohibition on marijuana – it would be up to the states to decide their marijuana laws.
Today, after weeks of debate, Colorado’s Senate and House approved House Bill 1318, which would establish a 25% tax on recreational marijuana sales. The tax would be split up into two parts; a 15% excise tax, and a 10% sales tax. The governor is expected to sign the measure, which would put it to a vote of the people this November. The tax money would be used for school construction, as well as regulating the newly-legal recreational marijuana industry.
The Senate also approved House Bill 1317 this morning, sending it to the full House. The measure would enact specific regulations on the marijuana industry, which includes everything from basic regulations such as requiring operators of marijuana retail outlets to be Colorado residents, to adjusting penalties for a minor possessing marijuana to be analogous to a minor possessing alcohol. Continue reading
The group plans to start a study soon with the University of Arizona’s College of Pharmacy in an attempt to examine dosing guidelines, as well as guidelines for keeping contaminants out of such foods and drinks.
New Hampshire’s Senate Health Education and Human Services Committee has taken the state one more step towards becoming the 20th in the nation to legalize some form of medical marijuana. The committee approved House Bill 573 with a unanimous 5-0 vote. The measure has already passed the House with an overwhelming vote of 286-64. Committee
If approved , the measure would authorize qualified patients to possess up to 2 ounces of cannabis, and would establish several state-licensed dispensaries for them to obtain it from. Continue reading
Today, Governor Jan Brewer officially signed legislation in Arizona, approving it into law, which would allow colleges in the state to conduct marijuana research. The state’s House and Senate approved the measure last month.
The bill would remove a provision that was placed in a piece of 2012 legislation which banned all marijuana from college campuses, even if the marijuana was possessed or consumed by a qualifying patient in the state, or was being used for scientific research.
Today, with a strong 24-6 vote, Vermont’s full Senate voted to approve legislation to decriminalize the possession of up to an ounce of marijuana, making it a simple ticket, rather than an arrestable misdemeanor. The measure passed the full House in April with a 92-49 vote.
Under current law, someone possessing up to an ounce in Vermont can be charged with up to 6 months in prison, making this effort a huge opportunity to free up prison space, as well as police resources, allowing them to focus on serious crimes, rather than someone possessing the dried bud of a nonlethal plant.
This morning, after years of debating the issue, Colorado’s Senate approved a THC driving bill, House Bill 1325, with a 23-12 vote. Similar to the much-debated provision included in Washington State’s Initiative 502, the measure would set the standard for impairment at 5ng/ml (nanograms per milliliter) of THC, meaning that someone’s considered guilty if they have that amount or more than that in their blood. A blood draw would be taken to determine someone’s THC levels.
The measure, which has already passed the House, now goes to Governor John Hickenlooper for final approval. A spokesperson for the governor has stated that he’s expected to sign the bill.
[Update: Thankfully, efforts to repeal Colorado’s Amendment 64 have died in the Senate, and will not be advanced this session!]
Just minutes before midnight tonight, on the last day for them to approve a measure, a Colorado Senate committee voted to approve legislation designed to repeal the legality of recreational marijuana sales, made legal by Amendment 64, which was approved by double-digits in November.
Recently the proponents of Amendment 64 held a press conference to denounce what they said were secretive efforts being discussed in Colorado’s Legislature to repeal the new law. In the following days, the efforts died down, and any effort towards such a repeal seemed to fall through.
This Wednesday, May 8th, Ed Forchion – known by many as NJWeedman after successfully being nullified of intent to distribute a pound of marijuana in New Jersey – will begin his national “Jury Nullification Tour”, a tour intending to raise awareness about jury nullification (a process we explain in a recent article). In short, jury nullification is an age-old practice, though rarely implemented, whereby juries have the right to determine the guilt or innocence of a defendant based on their moral interpretation of the law.
The tour will begin in Bellingham Washington with a “Jury Nullification Awareness Protest”, to be held in front of the Whatcam County District Court (311 Grand St. in Bellingham, WA), to protest the raid and pending-charges of three medical marijuana safe access operators.
According to today’s press release: Continue reading
Many medical marijuana opponents often cite in their opposition – with no valid backing – that the majority of patients aren’t actually sick, and are using marijuana “just to get high”. This is, of course, based on an assumption that they know what someone who’s “sick” looks like, as if all ailments are visible.
Besides this assumption being a fundamental fallacy, what those who make this argument don’t understand, is that all marijuana use is medicinal.
Hear us out.
People are rapidly beginning and continuing to understand the vast medical benefit that marijuana contains, helping with everything from glaucoma to multiple sclerosis. Many of the dozens of conditions that marijuana helps are conditions where it brings immediate relief.
For example, when someone with glaucoma consumes cannabis, they typically have an immediate easing of pressure in their eyes, and their sight improves drastically. Someone with cancer who takes a few tokes will have an increased appetite, and less nausea. So on and so forth. Continue reading