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Found 11 results

  1. Florida -- Petitions are hitting the streets soon for a new proposed constitutional amendment that would fully legalize marijuana use, possession and cultivation by adults in Florida. A political action committee called Floridians For Freedom, associated with a longtime marijuana advocacy group called the Florida Cannabis Action Network, announced Tuesday it has gotten state approval to begin seeking signatures to get their measure on the November, 2016, ballot. Read More...
  2. Washington, D.C. -- State lawmakers are calling on the federal government to change its drug laws to let states experiment with marijuana and hemp policy. The National Conference of State Legislatures, the de facto bipartisan group of lawmakers, passed a resolution at its annual meeting Thursday calling on the federal government to amend the Controlled Substances Act to authorize state marijuana laws and on the administration to keep its nose out of state pot policies. Read More...
  3. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie ® said on Monday that the war on drugs has been a "failure" -- even though he has vowed to enact a federal crackdown on marijuana, a substance that has been a primary target of the drug war for decades. "This is a disease and the war on drugs has been a failure -- well-intentioned, but a failure," Christie said at a presidential forum in New Hampshire on Monday. He went on to say that the country should "embrace" people who are addicted to drugs and alcohol, offering them a chance at rehabilitation rather than incarceration. Read More...
  4. Congress Puts Stop to War on Medical Marijuana with Protections Amendment Dec 15, 2014 On Saturday, Senate approved a $1.1 trillion spending package to keep the government running. Tucked away in that package was an amendment that will block the Department of Justice from arresting or prosecuting anyone who sells or uses medical marijuana in the 34 states that have some form of medical marijuana law on record. This will stop the DOJ from conducting raids on medical marijuana dispensaries and stop them from arresting individuals involved in the medical marijuana industry who are complying with state law. The new amendment also has protections for industrial hemp. President Obama is expected to approve the bill. Once he does, the new amendment has the potential to impact a number of pending cases against medical marijuana business owners and patients who have been targeted by the federal government despite complying with local and state laws. “When the House first passed this measure back in May, we made headlines; today we made history,” Rep. Sam Farr (D-Calif.), who in May introduced the medical marijuana protections amendment with co-sponsor Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.), told The Huffington Post regarding the bill’s passage. “The federal government will finally respect the decisions made by the majority of states that passed medical marijuana laws,” Farr added. “This is great day for common sense because now our federal dollars will be spent more wisely on prosecuting criminals and not sick patients.” A statement issued by Americans for Safe Access following the spending bill’s passage Saturday called the measure “historic” and said patients’ rights advocates believe it “will dramatically impact DOJ enforcement, including ending federal medical marijuana raids, arrests, criminal prosecutions, and civil asset forfeiture lawsuits.”
  5. Washington -- Medical marijuana advocates are on the attack in a new ad against House Republican Conference Chair Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) for her recent vote against an appropriations amendment to block the Drug Enforcement Administration from cracking down on state-legal medical marijuana programs. The appropriations measure, which was introduced at the end of May, prohibits the DEA from spending funds to arrest state-licensed medical marijuana patients and providers. While the amendment passed in the House, reform group Americans for Safe Access has since targeted ads against some of the lawmakers who voted "no" -- including Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.) and Democratic National Committee Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) -- and have now set their sights on McMorris Rodgers. Read More...
  6. Seattle -- Legislation aimed at bringing Washington State’s largely unregulated medical marijuana system under state control, which state officials have said is crucial to maintaining order as the legalized sale of recreational marijuana begins this year, died late Thursday night without a vote as the House and Senate adjourned. “I’m taken aback,” said Gov. Jay Inslee, a Democrat, after the Legislature concluded its regular session for the year with the legislation still on the calendar. “Many people at the last moment apparently did not want a bill.” Read More...
  7. New York to Hold Medical Marijuana Hearings In December, the state of New York will hold public hearings in Buffalo and Mineola on legalizing marijuana for medical purposes. The hearings are part of lawmaker efforts to get voters on board with the idea of legalizing medical marijuana. A bill proposed by Senator Diane Savino and Assemblyman Richard Gottfriend would regulate the sales and dispensing of medical marijuana. Under their proposal, physicians licensed to prescribe controlled substances could certify patients to use medical marijuana. Those patients would register with the state’s Department of Health before being able to access their medication. Medical marijuana would be dispensed through hospitals, pharmacies, or other not-for-profit organizations. The hearings are sponsored by the New York State Assembly. They are scheduled for 10 a.m., Dec. 5, Buffalo City Hall; and 10 a.m., Dec. 18, Nassau County Legislative Chambers. [Source]
  8. New Hampshire Moves Forward Without Homegrow Provision Negotiators in New Hampshire’s House and Senate met Tuesday to discuss a provision in the state’s proposed medical marijuana bill that would allow patients to grow their own medicine at home. The Senate believed that patients should not be able to grow at home, while the House left the growing provision in. After meeting to negotiate yesterday, the House and Senate agreed to remove the homegrow provision from New Hampshire’s proposed medical marijuana law. In exchange for the House agreeing to remove the homegrow provision, the Senate agreed to specify that the commission implementing the system would be appointed as soon as the bill is passed, in order to ensure that patients gain access to their medical marijuana as quickly as possible. In addition to the Senate not approving of people growing their own medicine, New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan said that she would not sign the bill into law if the home grow provision remained. Those lawmakers who were opposed to letting patients grow their own marijuana feared that it would be difficult to regulate and that medical marijuana could be used as a front for the black market. Supporters, on the other hand, believed that allowing people to grow at home was necessary in order to guarantee immediate access to medicine. Writing the rules for the medical marijuana dispensaries could take up to a year, leaving patients with no access to medicine. Representative Donna Schlachman, the bill’s main sponsor, expressed disappointment in the decision to eliminate homegrows without the establishment of other safeguards for patients until dispensaries are up and running. She stated, “We have really opened this bill up so law enforcement in any town that is really against any form of the legalization of therapeutic cannabis is in a position to arrest people simply because they’ve applied for their card and it hasn’t come in yet.” Despite some lawmakers’ disappointment and disapproval, this compromise means that New Hampshire is not far from legalizing medical marijuana. [Source]
  9. The Many Different Faces Of Marijuana In America USA -- On Tuesday, Vermont moved to decriminalize the possession of marijuana for quantities up to an ounce, replacing potential prison time for arrests with fines. Peter Shumlin, the state's governor, made a telling distinction between weed and "harder" drugs when he announced the move. "This legislation allows our courts and law enforcement to focus their limited resources more effectively to fight highly addictive opiates such as heroin and prescription drugs that are tearing apart families and communities," he said. Read More...
  10. Restrictive new ordinance passes 4-1, sharply limits sites where dispensaries may locate Ordinance will make it harder for patients like Rudy Reyes, a Cedar Fire victim burned over 60% of his body, to obtain medical marijuana.“Virtually all of them are either undeveloped land, cement factories, mining operations, even land that’s zoned for treatment of radioactive materials,” -- Kate Valentine of Americans for Safe Access July 2, 2010 (San Diego) – A restrictive new ordinance passed Wednesday by the San Diego County Board of Supervisors will sharply limit locations where medical marijuana dispensaries are allowed and make it extremely costly for operators. The measure passed by a four-to-one vote. Supervisor Ron Roberts cast the lone dissenting vote. “I think we’re violating the spirit of the law,” said Roberts, referring to the ballot initiative approved by California voters 14 years ago to legalize medical marijuana. The new regulations limit dispensaries to industrial zones and require an armed license, video monitoring and license fees of up to $20,000. Supervisor Dianne Jacob introduced an amendment which further restricts allowable locations by increasing minimum distance between dispensaries and homes from a proposed 500 feet to 1,000 feet, as well as raising distances from churches, parks and schools from 600 to 1,000 feet. These are the same distances required for strip clubs. County planners contend that there are at least 15 potential sites that could meet those guidelines, including areas near Gillespie Field and the Ramona Airport, as well as freeway-close locations in Alpine, Borrego Springs, Campo, and Julian. But there’s a big catch. “Virtually all of them are either undeveloped land, cement factories, mining operations, even land that’s zoned for treatment of radioactive materials,” said Kate Valentine of Americans for Safe Access, a group that supports access for medical marijuana patients. There are no buildings on the sites, Valentine added. So add costs of building a new structure to the already steep price of opening a dispensary in the unincorporated area. Supervisors Pam Slater-Price and Greg Cox acknowledged that patients may have to drive long distances to get their medical marijuana prescriptions filled in cities within the county where permitting is more lenient. Slater-Price cautioned patients to refrain from taking their medications until after they drive home. Supervisor Horn recently expressed frustration that federal law prohibits distribution of medical marijuana in pharmacies. San Diego’s Board of Supervisors have fought a long battle against medical marijuana access. In 2005, Supervisors Bill Horn, Slater-Price and Jacob voted to oppose a state law that required counties to create medical marijuana registries and issue I.D. cards to patients. The County’s district attorney also helped federal drug agents crack down on dispensaries locally. Supervisors used taxpayer money to file a lawsuit in 2006 seeking to overturn Proposition 215, the measure passed by both state and county voters a decade earlier. The County lost its case in court but fought all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, which last year refused to consider the County’s appeal. Critics of medical marijuana dispensaries contend that some are fronts for illicit drug use. Strolling down the boardwalk at Venice beach, the air is redolent with the aroma of weed. A hawker outside a marijuana clinic advises passersby that “the doctor is in.” Several speakers from anti-drug groups asked Supervisors to ban marijuana cooperatives outright, an option that County Counsel has said would not be legal. Where to strike a balance between reasonable access for patients suffering from cancer or other medical conditions while preventing access to unauthorized individuals remains a bone of contention. At Wednesday’s hearing, numerous medical marijuana patients testified that medical marijuana provided their only source of relief from painful and debilitating symptoms –with fewer side effects than other prescription pain medication options. Medical marijuana is also useful in alleviating nausea among chemotherapy patients. The County’s new ordinance requires dispensary operators to maintain accurate records of transactions including names and contact information of suppliers. It also prohibits sale of foods or beverages containing marijuana. The clinics would be regulated by the Sheriff, a choice some medical marijuana advocates have also criticized, arguing that the Department of Health and Human Services would be a preferably regulatory entity to have oversight over dispensaries. “I’m more convinced than ever that what we’re doing is the wrong thing,” said Roberts, who also cast the lone dissenting vote in 2009 against drafting the controversial ordinance. In casting that vote, he stated, “At some point, some of the leaders of this community need to accept that (Proposition) 215 is the law.” Roberts’ opponent in the November election, Steve Whitburn, also supports patients’ access to medical marijuana and opposes the County’s tough new ordinance. But Jacob insisted that the Board has taken the high road. “What the staff brought before us is the best we can do,” she concluded. http://eastcountymag...e.org/node/3686 Trix
  11. Veterans of the Marijuana War As part of an ongoing project to erect a national Marijuana War Memorial, we're seeking Veterans of the Marijuana War - whether well known or unknown - willing to share their own personal stories of serving on the front lines as growers, smugglers, dealers, activists, convicts, lawyers, politicians, smokers or medical patients. If you have a story that you would like to share with us, please send it to vmw@hightimes.com Also The MMMA would love to hear your story as well, Get in contact with a staff member on how we can get your story out to the public. Trix
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