Marijuana and Cannabis Legislation
Although it has been a U.S. territory since we swiped it from the Spaniards in 1898, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico is rarely taken into consideration when discussing American politics.
But with the issue of various levels of cannabis reform quickly becoming a dominant topic of debate here on the mainland, there is a rising wave of support for a 3-way blast of more progressive pot legislation for Puerto Ricans.
After decades of the war on drugs, countless efforts to decriminalize dope, and tens of thousands of drug arrests, Florida has finally reached a turning point. The marijuana movement has reached critical mass.
In January, the state supreme court ruled that voters can decide whether or not to legalize medical marijuana in November. Some Floridians may not even have to wait that long. Yesterday, one of the legislature's most conservative committees voted overwhelmingly to approve a bill allowing certain strains of marijuana for epilepsy patients. The Miami New Times has the rest.
Tuesday marked one of the best of times for marijuana reform in the nation's capital of Washington D.C., and one of the worst of times.
It truly seemed to be a tale of two cities yesterday as the local District council voted 10-1 to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of weed, while right across town federal U.S. lawmakers were battling with the Chief Deputy of the DEA over anti-weed talking points as tired as most of the cranky old men arguing.
Hey Florida, would you like to be carrying 2.5 ounces of marijuana right now? How about tending your own marijuana garden at home with up to six plants? Or would you rather buy marijuana from a store and have the tax proceeds go to the state? Well, call your state senator and tell them you support SB 1562.
The bill, which would legalize marijuana for recreational purposes, has absolutely no chance of passing, but it's the thought that counts. Miami New Times has the full story.
A Georgia bill that would (sort of) legalize medical cannabis for children only has gained overwhelming approval from the state House yesterday and now heads to the state Senate for approval.
CBD-rich hash oil.
House Bill 1107, also called the "Therapeutic Cannabidiol Research Act of 2014", would allow for clinical trials on CBD for children suffering from severe forms of epilepsy. The bill does not legalize CBD for adults, nor does it come anywhere close to legalizing medical cannabis as a whole.
A bill that could legalize medical use of marijuana in Minnesota undergoes its first test this morning. It's scheduled for conversation at the House Health and Human Services Committee, and both sides of the debate have begun preparing their people.
At the moment, the list of speakers remains hush-hush as committee administrators want to avoid the possibility that either side will try to stack the room. It'll be made public about two hours before the meeting. Minneapolis City Pages has the complete story.
A bill legalizing just CBD and only for seizure disorders was unanimously sent to the Georgia state House this week, advancing what would arguably be the country's most restrictive medical cannabis laws to date.
CBD-rich oil from Colorado's Kind Love dispensary.
The bill, sponsored by Georgia Republican state Rep. Allen Peake, is aimed at helping the families of children suffering from rare disorders. Peake says he wrote the bill after meeting several sick Georgia children.
Medical marijuana supporters in Kentucky are celebrating a small victory this week, as a compassionate medical cannabis bill made it's way out of a Democrat-controlled Health and Human Services Committee meeting. The bill will now go before the House for consideration.
United we stand, divided we fall my arse.
Sadly, that might be about as far as House Bill 350 will move in the otherwise conservative House and Senate.
It's been nearly five years since New Jersey passed medical marijuana laws in their state, but so far few dispensaries have opened and others have dragged their heels to the point where patients have had enough.
Yesterday, the state Assembly Regulatory Oversight Committee took an hour to listen to testimony from patients and dispensary owners fed up with the current system. Among their gripes: dispensaries have taken more than three years to open, patients in parts of the state have little access to legal meds and doctors should be able to write pot recommendations without having to sign up themselves up with a onerous physician registration system.
The hearing came after more than 16,000 emails and calls were made to the state health department from frustrated cannabis patients.
Kern County, which stretches from the California Coast Ranges, east over the Sierra Nevada mountain range and into the Mojave Desert, has been a key battleground in the war on medical marijuana over the past two years in Southern California.
In June of 2012, a 69% majority of voters approved Measure G, which enacted a de facto ban on all storefront dispensaries in the county, as a reaction to a rapid addition of pot shops in the relatively small high desert towns. Bakersfield, the county seat, was exempt as it had its own regulations in place, but the rest of the county saw restrictions so tight, that all existing weed shops found themselves out of compliance almost overnight.
Local cannabis advocates have spent the past year and a half arguing against Measure G, calling it a farce and political stunt, to no avail. Their latest attempt, however, used an idea you almost have to be baked to come up with - and it worked.