PHOENIX - Foes of legalizing adult recreational use of marijuana in
Arizona are trying to keep the issue from going to voters in November.
Legal papers filed in Maricopa County Superior Court contend the
legally required 100-word description misled people into signing the
petition to put the issue on the ballot. Issues range from the
definition of "marijuana" to how the law would affect driving while
The lawsuit comes as a new survey Tuesday finds widespread support for
the proposal a=80" with more than 6 out of every 10 likely voters saying
they will support it if it is on the ballot. Pollster Mike Noble of OH
Predictive Insights said the query of 600 likely voters found that
just 32% say they're definitely opposed.
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Like myself, I suspect many citizens of Lethbridge were alarmed by the
finding of misappropriated funds within ARCHES, and the subsequent
withdrawal of provincial funding to their supervised consumption site
(SCS). As an RN who has worked for a number of years in harm
reduction, I am reeling for our clients and their families in terms of
how this will impact them.
One thing is clear - the inappropriate management of funds within one
agency does not refute decades of empirical research behind the
effectiveness of harm-reduction interventions in mitigating
drug-related health and social issues. This financial audit was not
intended to evaluate the effectiveness of harm-reduction services
provided to people who use drugs. To conflate findings of financial
mismanagement with lack of effectiveness in harm reduction would only
further exacerbate drug-related health issues.
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Criminalization of simple drug possession has had 'devastating
effect,' says AIDS Saskatoon director
A Saskatoon police spokeswoman said city police generally lay drug
possession charges as a result of an investigation into something else.
Criminalization of possession of illicit drugs for personal use has
had a "devastating effect," says the AIDS Saskatoon's executive director.
Jason Mercredi said he fully supports a call by the Canadian
Association of Chiefs of Police on the federal government to
decriminalize simple possession of illicit drugs for personal use. The
CACP made the call last week after issuing its findings in a report.
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As state law enforcement played whack-a-mole with illegal marijuana
fields, local communities protested the "invading army."
Driving through Humboldt County last winter, I heard radio ads for
help harvesting and selling cannabis crops, as well as for products
geared toward commercial cultivation. But less than 40 years ago, the
same area was one of the main battlefields of California's war on pot
By the late 1960s, the three counties of the Emerald Triangle had
developed a reputation for growing a high-quality product. Demand grew
rapidly, and prices skyrocketed, fueling greater production. In 1983,
after several unsuccessful attempts to cut down production, the state
started the Campaign Against Marijuana Planting, or CAMP.
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Prof Joe Boden, of the University of Otago, provides a view from
inside the expert panel on cannabis ahead of this year's cannabis referendum.
A year ago several New Zealand academics, me included, were invited to
join the expert panel on cannabis by the Prime Minister's Chief
Science Adviser, Prof Juliet Gerrard.
With the referendum on the legalisation of cannabis planned for this
year, the Prime Minister had asked Prof Gerrard to assemble the panel
in order to present research on cannabis, cannabis-related harm and
cannabis law reform to New Zealanders in an accessible manner.
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A recent poll suggests 51 per cent of British Columbians are buying
all product legally
B.C. has had a difficult road to getting cannabis users interested in
purchasing from legal retailers over their neighbourhood dealer, but a
recent poll suggests that the province may finally be winning the
battle over bud.
A Research Co. poll released earlier this month found that 51 per cent
of B.C. respondents who have consumed cannabis in the past six months
have bought all of their products from licensed retailers. That's an
18-point increase from a similar survey conducted in October 2019.
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If the idea of decriminalizing possession of small amounts of illicit
drugs once sounded radical, the coalition of people who now espouse
the idea would certainly seem to be strange bedfellows.
On July 9, the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police called on the
federal government to decriminalize possession of small amounts of
illicit drugs; B.C. Premier John Horgan asked Prime Minister Justin
Trudeau to do the same in a Jul. 20 letter. Benjamin Perrin, the top
criminal justice adviser in Stephen Harper's "tough-on-crime"
administration, recently wrote a book in support of decriminalization,
and major publications, including The Globe and Mail, have published
editorials urging the same.
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SACRAMENTO - Alarmed that unlicensed cannabis sellers continue to
dominate California's pot market, state lawmakers are moving toward
imposing steep new fines on businesses that provide building space,
advertising platforms and other aid to illicit operations.
Those who provide assistance to illegal pot sellers would face civil
fines of up to $30,000 per day under legislation approved unanimously
by the state Assembly that is now pending in the Senate. A final vote
on the proposal is expected sometime after lawmakers return to
Sacramento this month.
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Listen to the police
Let's talk about decriminalizing all drugs
We're having a national conversation about policing and criminal
justice. Examining our drug laws is a natural extension of this debate
More than nine years ago, writing about the war on drugs, this
editorial board encouraged the government of then-prime minister
Stephen Harper to get bolder with decriminalizing cannabis.
"By any reasonably broad metric," we wrote then, the war on drugs "has
been an abysmal failure. According to estimates by the UN - by no
means a liberal organization when it comes to drug policy - worldwide
consumption of opiates rose 34.5 per cent from 1998 to 2008, cocaine
by 27 per cent, and cannabis by 8.5 per cent. In achieving that abject
failure, tens of thousands of people have been killed."
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Dr. Lester Grinspoon, a Harvard psychiatry professor who became a
leading proponent of legalizing marijuana after his research found it
was less toxic or addictive than alcohol or tobacco, died on June 25
at his home in Newton, Mass. He was 92.
His son David confirmed the death.
Dr. Grinspoon was an unlikely crusader for marijuana. At first, he
believed that it was a dangerous drug. When the astronomer Carl Sagan,
a friend who was also teaching at Harvard, offered him a joint in the
late 1960s, Dr. Grinspoon warned him against continuing to smoke it.
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SAN FRANCISCO - As the novel coronavirus rages on, few industries have
experienced quite as many highs and lows as California's cannabis industr=
Just a month ago, it looked like California's weed trade was headed
for a shutdown, which would have landed a devastating blow to many
businesses that are already struggling. Then, state officials deemed
pot "essential," and many stores reported the biggest days of sales
since recreational marijuana became legal. Now, a more sobering
reality is setting in: The marijuana industry is unable to tap into a
federal stimulus package or bank loans.
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The 10-year labor agreement between the N.F.L. and players union that
was ratified on March 15 is filled with dozens of incremental changes,
most notably the one-percentage-point increase in the share of league
revenue that the players will receive.
One of the biggest overhauls in the agreement, though, was a change
the league had long resisted: loosening the rules governing players'
use of marijuana.
Under the new collective bargaining agreement, players who test
positive for marijuana will no longer be suspended. Testing will be
limited to the first two weeks of training camp instead of from April
to August, and the threshold for the amount of 9-delta
tetrahydrocannabinol - or THC, the psychoactive compound in marijuana
- needed to trigger a positive test will be raised fourfold.
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The retail showroom of INSA, a farm-to-bong cannabis company in western
Massachusetts, is a clean industrial space on the first floor of a four-story
brick building in the old mill town Easthampton. When I visited recently,
before the coronavirus shut down recreational sales and forbade crowds, the
crew of eight behind the glass display cases looked a lot like the staff
you'd see dispensing lattes at Starbucks or troubleshooting iPads at the
Genius Bar: young, racially diverse, smiling. They were all wearing black
T-shirts with the INSA motto, "Uncommon Cannabis." Standing in line with me
were a white-haired couple leaning on canes; a 40-something woman in a black
pantsuit, who complained that the wait would be longer than her lunch break;
a bald man in a tweed jacket; and a pair of women in perms and polyester
discussing the virtues of a strain called Green Crack. We were all waiting at
a discreet distance from the counter, as you would at the bank, for the next
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SKOPJE, North Macedonia - In a desolate industrial zone of this
capital city, a cannabis grow house is under construction that, when
finished, will span 178,000 square feet, about the size of a Walmart
superstore. At full capacity, 17 tons of marijuana a year, worth about
$50 million, will be harvested. Among the planned offerings is an
American strain known as Herijuana, a portmanteau of "heroin" and
"marijuana," which has received some rhapsodic online reviews.
"I feel blown to the dome omg," wrote a fan on Leafly, a cannabis
review site. "It also gave me the ability to rap."
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Largest such move in California comes amid nationwide push for
criminal-justice reform and relaxing drug laws
Los Angeles County will vacate nearly 66,000 marijuana convictions
dating back to the 1960s, part of a growing national effort to reduce
The move, announced Thursday by Los Angeles County District Attorney
Jackie Lacey, will dismiss convictions for tens of thousands of
individuals, the majority of whom are black or Latino.
"As a result of our actions, these convictions should no longer burden
those who have struggled to find a job or a place to live because of
their criminal record," Ms. Lacey said in a press conference Thursday.
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Using cannabis tax revenues to plug local budget holes has been an
effective talking point in advancing marijuana-legalization proposals
across the country ("Cities Look to Marijuana Taxes for Help," U.S.
News, Feb. 5). However, it is vital that lawmakers also use these
cannabis tax revenues to fund programs that serve the individuals
whose lives and communities have been destroyed by the misguided,
racially biased policies of America's war on drugs. Decriminalization
and expungement bills don't go far enough.
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Give Marijuana Tax Revenues to the Harmed We have a moral imperative
to try to right the wrongs of the war on drugs. We should start by
investing in the very communities it harmed.
It is a sad day when cities and states use pot to entice residents
from states that haven't legalized it to help pay for their
irresponsibly designed and funded pensions and fixing their pot holes.
South Beloit, Ill., faces steep bills to fund its firefighter and
police pensions and repave its cracked streets. Now, Mayor Ted Rehl
has a plan to help cover the shortfall: marijuana.
South Beloit, less than a mile from the Wisconsin state border, will
welcome its first cannabis dispensary later this year. Recreational
cannabis became legal in Illinois on Jan. 1 but remains illegal in
Wisconsin. The Illinois town hopes to collect roughly $1 million a
year in taxes on marijuana purchases, mostly by Wisconsinites.
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Kevin Sabet has it backward in "How Legal Weed Shops Feed the Vaping
Crisis" (op-ed, Jan 21). Here in California, not a single case of vape
disease has been traced to a legal, state-regulated source, according
to the state Bureau of Cannabis Control. Rather, the source of the
problem is illicit manufacturers of contaminated goods on the
Contrary to Mr. Sabet, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
never examined the safety of state-regulated vapes. Rather, it
attributed 16% of vape disease cases to so-called "commercial"
sources, loosely defined to include all "dispensaries, vape or smoke
shops, stores and pop-up shops" regardless of their legality. In
California, illicit pot outlets outnumber legal ones by over 2 to 1,
no thanks to burdensome taxes, regulations and local and federal bans
on legal outlets.
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From makeup and oils to capsules for stress relief, cannabis-based
goods are flowing into the marketplace. But while they may not get you
high, they can still cause you problems at work.
Cannabidiol or CBD has been showing up in a widening array of goods.
That's because federal legislation in 2018 deemed that hemp - one of
its sources - was not an illegal controlled substance.
But your job could be in jeopardy if one of those products, which are
largely unregulated, contains THC, the same compound that causes
marijuana users to get high.