Browsing: Follow that story

den_20150625_cannabisstation_slentz_07_1_Scott Lentz

Commercial marijuana products sold in Colorado may have to start undergoing heavy-metals testing as soon as 2019, according to the state Marijuana Enforcement Division.

Although not as intimidating as Slayer and Megadeath, heavy metals such as cadmium, arsenic and nickel can be harmful if inhaled, ingested or applied to the skin regularly. According to the National Institutes of Health, long-term exposure to heavy metals can lead to liver or kidney damage, abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, heart abnormalities, a disrupted nervous system, anemia and more.

But what do heavy metals have to do with legal pot?

medical marijuanaScott Lentz

Four weeks from now, voters in Michigan, Missouri, North Dakota and Utah will all be deciding measures that would lift legal restrictions on marijuana — but all in different ways. And Colorado, too, has another marijuana-related issue on the ballot.

A Michigan ballot proposal would set up a licensed retail system similar to Colorado’s, while North Dakota voters will decide whether to allow marijuana possession and distribution (but without a comprehensive business licensing system), as well as expunging certain marijuana-related crimes.

the_green_solution_collins20171215_003 (1)Jacqueline Collins

Although cannabis and Colorado are inextricably linked in the minds of many outsiders, most of the state still bans pot businesses, according to new data from the state Marijuana Enforcement Division. Even so, over 550,000 pounds of cannabis were harvested throughout the first half of 2018.

While possession and personal cultivation were legalized throughout Colorado after voters approved Amendment 64 in 2012, the measure also gave towns and counties the right to ban dispensaries, commercial growing operations and other licensed pot businesses within their borders. So far, most of Colorado is still declining the green rush.

woman-marijuana-grower-marijuana-grow-istockiStock/cyano66

The Drug Enforcement Administration appeared to take a large step forward on Thursday, September 27, when it confirmed that it would reclassify Epidiolex as a Schedule V substance. The move follows Food and Drug Administration approval and classifies the marijuana-derived cannabidiol (CBD) medication under the DEA’s lowest restriction for drugs, so physicians and pharmacies can now prescribe and dispense it in all fifty states under federal law.

Despite the headlining news, the reaction in Colorado was a mixed bag, ranging from ho-hum to angry disappointment.

qweeeeeedLindsey Bartlett

A Miami man flew to Denver International Airport on a quest to buy a specific BMW, but he didn’t find a car. Instead, a lawsuit alleges, he was extorted for $50 by an Advantage Rent A Car employee and given a rental car with forty pounds of marijuana in the trunk.

The lawsuit, filed in Colorado district court by Woodrow & Peluso LLC on behalf of Nang Thai, is seeking damages as a result of Advantage’s “fraudulent conduct, theft and serious breaches of conduct.” The lawsuit accuses Advantage of violating the Colorado Consumer Protection Act and committing civil theft, false imprisonment, breach of contract, fraudulent concealment and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

jason-greenlabs-hospital (1)Courtesy of Jason Margolies

Cannabis has become a popular alternative treatment for cancer, but with one of its own fighting for his life, the legal pot industry has geared up to fight the disease on a different level. A member of that industry for five years, Jason Margolies was diagnosed with stage-four colon cancer at the beginning of 2018.

Suffering from Crohn’s disease since at least 2000, Margolies considered himself lucky to have never required surgery, but that changed last fall when his health began to decline. An operation found a tumor in his chest; initially labeled benign, it was actually malignant. In January, doctors found that cancer had spread to his lungs and abdomen.

stoned.driving.anthony.cameraAnthony Camera

Recent Colorado Department of Transportation figures show that stoned-driving fatalities went down from 2016 to 2017 for those over the legal intoxication limit but up in fatal crashes involving drivers who tested positive for any marijuana in their system, whether above the line or under it. Such mixed results are typical according to a new report, which acknowledges that getting firm answers about the risks involved with driving high remains an enormous challenge.

And there are plenty of reasons why.

trumpjulydenverBrandon Marshall

Has the Trump administration secretly organized a committee of federal agencies to “combat public support for marijuana,” as Buzzfeed reported on August 29? The article describes White House memos and emails instructing fourteen federal agencies and the Drug Enforcement Administration to submit “data demonstrating the most significant negative trends” about marijuana to the Marijuana Policy Coordination Committee.

According to an unclassified summary obtained by Buzzfeed, committee notes are not to be distributed externally and require a close hold. Among other things, “departments should provide…the most significant data demonstrating negative trends, with a statement describing the implications of such trends.”

smoking.driving.file.photo.800Thinkstock file photo

The number of fatalities involving at least one driver over the legal limit for marijuana impairment in Colorado went down from 2016 to 2017. However, such fatalities are up during the same period for those testing positive for cannabis use at levels either above or below that limit. And the inconsistencies in regard to the collection of the information makes the scope of the issue unclear.

Those are among the revelations contained in new data from the Colorado Department of Transportation. But while CDOT spokesperson Sam Cole acknowledges that its digits leave plenty of room for interpretation, he doesn’t see any ambiguity when it comes to the bottom line.

1 2 3 4 33