Bill to Clear Marijuana Misdemeanors in Washington Passes Committee

As expected, Washington State’s House Committee on Public Safety voted this morning to approve House Bill 1661, moving it towards a full House vote. The bill would allow those convicted of a cannabis possessioweed-in-hand-300x199n misdemeanor – up to 40 grams for those 18 and older – to have it removed from their record. The committee voted 6-5 in favor of the bill.

The primary sponsor of the measure, Rep. Fitzgibbon, says the chances are “really good” that it will pass the House. Newly elected Governor Jay Inslee hasn’t stated his position on the bill, but it would be unlikely for him to veto such legislation. Its fate in the Republican-controlled Senate is less than certain, but its passage isn’t an impossibility, especially considering that the measure has several Republican sponsors.

As always, we’ll keep you up-to-date on future news regarding this legislation, and other cannabis related news stories.

– TheJointBlog

WA Legislation To Clear Cannabis Misdemeanors Expected To Pass Out Of Committee

This afternoon lawmakers from Washington State’s House Committee on Public Safety held a public hearing to discuss a handful of measures, including House Bill 1661, which would allow the hundreds of thousands of people who have been convicted of a cannabis possession misdemeanor in Washington State to have it removed from their record.

Tens of thousands of cannabis convictions could be vacated with the passage of House Bill 1661.

Tens of thousands of cannabis convictions could be vacated with the passage of House Bill 1661.

The bill is sponsored by a bipartisan group of 21 legislators, and a majority of speakers at the hearing were in support of the measure.

An executive session has been scheduled for tomorrow morning at 10AM, where a vote will likely be held on the bill. According to a lawmaker who wished to remain anonymous, it’s expected to pass out of committee, moving it on its way towards a full House vote.

This would be a major step towards this measure becoming law. We applaud the members of the committee who have shown support for this bill, and for those who decide to vote on the side of justice Continue reading

Support Legalization? You’re Part of the Marijuana Majority

In a society that couldn’t hide its celebrity obsession if it tried, opinions of the famous – whether it rock star, movie star or athlete – tend to hold weight in the minds of those who admire these individuals. For better or worse.marijuana-majority-featured-image

This is what makes the newly launched Marijuana Majority a vital component of pushing cannabis legalization forward, and into the mainstream.

Founded by Tom Angell, who until recently was Media Relations Director for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, Marijuana Majority is a website and social media movement that aims at compiling the ultimate list of celebrities, scientists, lawmakers, etc., who support an end to our failed war on cannabis.

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Oregon College Offers New Course On Hemp

OSU

Oregon State University

This month Oregon State University will begin registration for a new course offered this coming spring: WSE 266 – the study of hemp.

The 3-credit course will examine the historical and political contexts of hemp, as well as growing, and industrial applications.

“It’s an up and coming crop in the United States and we are going to need professionals coming out of academia who are experts in multiple areas,”said Anndrea Hermann, the instructor coordinating the class. Intended to appeal to a wide variety of applicants, ranging from those in food science studies all the way to students of fashion industry, there is no doubt seats will fill up fast.

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Medical Cannabis Support Needs to Continue Alongside Recreational Legalization

By Brian Grimmer, Washington State cannabis activist

There is a disturbing discussion occurring among cannabis legalization advocates: Is it time to abandon medical cannabis advocacy in favor of focusing on outright legalization? As a patient and cannabis advocate, I resoundingly say “NO!” – do not abandon the patients. medical-marijuana-symbolIt is the most effective avenue the cannabis movement has within its arsenal to win the “hearts and minds” of those who oppose cannabis law reform.

Two states in the country now allow for the recreational use of cannabis in addition to medicinal use. In these states, plus the 16 other states and D.C., where medical cannabis is permissible, the path to legalization has been blazed (pun intended) by successful medical cannabis campaigns. The secondary success of medical cannabis, beyond the compassionate treatment of those in need, lies in the fact that the prevalence of medical use in the communities where such use is acceptable has been successful in softening the overall attitudes towards cannabis within these communities. Continue reading

Legalization Bill To Be Filed In Maine

Tomorrow at noon, legalization advocates and state lawmakers will hold a press conference in Maine to introduce legislation that would legalize cannabis in the state.

MedicalMarijuana2-JCR-600x399The measure, being referred to as “An Act to Tax and Regulate Marijuana”, would legalize cannabis for adults in a similar fashion to alcohol, and is planned to be based roughly on legalization initiatives that recently passed in Washington and Colorado.

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Colorado Task Force Decides Cannabis Legal For All, Not Just Residents

Colorado’s cannabis task force – set up by Amendment 64 to recommend regulations to the legislature for legal cannabis sales – voted today to approve an amendment that would maintain the legality of out-of-state individuals using and purchasing cannabis. Opponents had hoped for the task force to vote in favor of requiring legal purchasers of cannabis to be state residents.

sitemgr_photo_544“Imposing a residency requirement would almost certainly create a black market for recreational marijuana in the state,” stated Colorado Rep. Dan Pabon, who’s a member of the task force.

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Four Cannabis Bills Pending in New Hampshire; Two Legalization, One Decrim, One Medical

On Thursday, New Hampshire’s House Criminal Justice and Public Safety committee heard roughly six hours of public testimony on three cannabis related bills that would either legalize, or decriminalize cannabis in the state. This comes just days after polling released from the University of New Hampshire found 56% of New Hampshire residents support legalizing cannabis like alcohol, and nearly 80% support its legalization fowhite-widow-xlr medical purposes.

Among these three was a measure filed by Republican State Rep. Mark Warden, in what he calls the “tomatoes bill”. This measure would remove all state criminal penalties associated with cannabis possession, and would allow people to grow cannabis freely as if it were tomatoes. In what he calls a “purist” approach, this is the measure most likely to garner intense praise from within the cannabis community for its bold approach.

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Majority of U.K. Residents Support Legalizing or Decriminalizing Cannabis

53% of residents in the U.K. support legalizing the production and supply of cannabis, or at the very least decriminalizing its possession. This is according to polling released today, conducted by Ipsos MORI, one of the nation’s top polling firms.

The poll was orderemarijuana-england-ukd by the Transform Drug Policy Foundation, a registered charity that considers itself “UK’s leading centre of expertise on drug policy reform”.

The poll also found that 67% support the “government commissioning a full independent review of drug policy”, which includes examining the impact of legalizing the supply and production, and decriminalizing possession, of other illegal drugs.

This comes not long after the country’s Home Affairs Select Committee called for a review of U.K.’s drug policy, requesting a royal commission to consider the decriminalization of all illegal drugs.

– TheJointBlog

Former U.S. Attorney, Appointed By Ronald Reagan, Fighting For Medical Marijuana In Arizona

In the fight to keep medical cannabis legal in Arizona, advocates were recently given a secret weapon.

Melvin McDonald isn’t your stereotypical supporter of medical cannabis. Mormon by faith, a former judge, and a former U.S. Attorney appointed by Ronald Reagan, Melvin reaches a much-needed audience when he speaks out about the need to allow patients safe access to this medicine.

Melvin McDonald.

Melvin McDonald.

“I was a leader in the drug wars in the 1980’s….I’d been appointed by President Reagan as the US Attorney. Our number one priority in Arizona was drugs and we battled drugs all the years I was US Attorney”, Melvin told Arizona Family.

Now, he understands that cannabis is medicinal; “Marijuana works with certain kinds of illnesses. I’ve seen it”.

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