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1US FL: Volusia Deputy Shoots, Kills Unarmed Man While ServingThu, 05 Mar 2015
Source:Daytona Beach News-Journal (FL) Author:Balona, Patricio G. Area:Florida Lines:Excerpt Added:04/05/2015

Official: Unarmed Suspect Shot In Face While Resisting Drug Search

DELTONA - A Deltona man was unarmed when he was shot and killed by a Volusia County deputy who was entering the home Wednesday morning on a narcotics search warrant, an official said.

Weapons were not found in the home where Derek Cruice, 26, was killed, but Deputy Todd Raible fired his duty weapon after perceiving Cruice's actions during the search as a threat, Volusia County sheriff's spokesman Gary Davidson said.

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2 US CO: Report Says Racial Disparities in Arrests Persist WithThu, 26 Mar 2015
Source:Boston Globe (MA) Author:Wyatt, Kristen Area:Colorado Lines:41 Added:03/27/2015

DENVER (AP) - The legalization of marijuana in Colorado hasn't solved the racial disparities in enforcement that drug-policy reformers had hoped to end, with blacks still far more likely than whites to be charged with pot-related crimes, a new report says.

The report, issued Wednesday by the pro-legalization Drug Policy Alliance, showed that marijuana arrests in Colorado all but stopped after voters made the drug legal in small amounts for those 21 and older.

But the report noted continuing racial disparities involving the marijuana crimes that remain, including public use and possession in excess of the 1-ounce limit.

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3US CA: Support For Legalizing Pot Rising In StateThu, 26 Mar 2015
Source:San Diego Union Tribune (CA)          Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:03/27/2015

Poll Shows 53% Believe Marijuana Should Be Legal; Drought Also Concerns Californians

LOS ANGELES - Support for legalizing marijuana in California appears to be growing gradually stronger, amid talk of renewed efforts to bring a proposal to the state ballot to legalize its use, a statewide poll found Wednesday.

A Public Policy Institute of California survey of 1,706 residents found that 53 percent of likely voters in the nation's most populous state believe marijuana use should be legal. Pollsters said support for legalizing marijuana among all adults is at its highest point since the survey began asking the question in May 2010.

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4US AK: Anchorage Bans Pot at Marijuana Trade Shows Held inThu, 26 Mar 2015
Source:Alaska Dispatch News (AK) Author:Andrews, Laurel Area:Alaska Lines:Excerpt Added:03/27/2015

A marijuana trade show slated for mid-April in downtown Anchorage announced its cancellation on Wednesday, citing a letter sent out last week from Mayor Dan Sullivan's office prohibiting the possession, use or display of marijuana for any marijuana-related event in municipal facilities.

Municipal attorney Dennis Wheeler crafted the letter. Wheeler said that "the municipality at this time is not inclined to allow the use of marijuana in its facilities."

The letter, dated March 20, was sent to municipal facility property managers to provide guidance when approached with inquiries regarding marijuana-related events, Wheeler said.

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5US AK: Column: Did Alaska's Vote to Legalize Change Rules forThu, 26 Mar 2015
Source:Alaska Dispatch News (AK) Author:Woodham, Scott Area:Alaska Lines:Excerpt Added:03/27/2015

The question this week comes from Doug: "Hello, I'm a smoker considering a Section 8 voucher. I suppose its up to the individual landlord, though the Alaska housing authority could have some policy already in place. Any idea? Will I be allowed to possess, use or grow in Section 8 housing?"

The answer here is similar to the previous installment of Highly Informed that dealt with landlords, tenants and cannabis. On one hand - -- the hand that matters most -- nothing is different. Housing assistance rules still depend on federal definitions of illegal drugs. And it'll still be up to the landlord and tenant to agree on rules and make them clear in a lease, and then up to the tenant to abide by them and the landlord to enforce them. But on the other hand, there are interesting complications to think about that stem from the fresh dissonance between Alaska and federal law.

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6US CA: OPED: California Legislators Should Lasso 'Wild West'Thu, 26 Mar 2015
Source:Sacramento Bee (CA) Author:Araby, Jim Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:03/27/2015

With the passage of Proposition 215, California became the first state in the nation to legalize medical marijuana. Nearly two decades later, it has fallen behind. As other states have moved to regulate the cannabis industry, California's industry remains the Wild West.

The absence of a clear set of state regulations leaves a wildly inconsistent set of local ordinances that can literally vary from block to block. To the growing frustration of consumers and neighbors alike, this semi-legitimacy has also left workers vulnerable to a host of potential hazards.

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7 Zambia: Marijuana Smokers Irk MpulunguSun, 22 Mar 2015
Source:Zambia Daily Mail (Zambia) Author:Chisha, Christine Area:Zambia Lines:55 Added:03/27/2015

VILLAGERS in Mpulungu are living in fear for their lives from a group of young men terrorising them after smoking marijuana.

Northern Province minister Freedom Sikazwe disclosed in an interview with the Sunday Mail that a group of young men in Mpulungu meets every morning to smoke the highly potent drug before terrorising innocent villagers.

The minister has attributed the increase of murder cases and lawlessness in the district and other parts of the province to drug abuse, particularly of marijuana by youths.

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8 CN ON: Regulator Scraps Controversial Methadone ListWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Toronto Star (CN ON) Author:Boyle, Theresa Area:Ontario Lines:93 Added:03/27/2015

Registry Was Criticized for Invading Privacy of Addicts

The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario is scrapping its controversial methadone registry, which keeps tabs on recovering addicts who take the drug.

There is no empirical evidence that the 15-year-old registry ever fulfilled its main goal of preventing "double doctoring," Diane Doherty, incoming chair of the CPSO's methadone committee, conceded in the college's latest edition of the newsletter Methadone News.

Double doctoring occurs when patients receive the synthetic narcotic from multiple doctors with the possible intent of selling it.

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9 CN BC: Dispensary Remains Open As A Resource CentreThu, 26 Mar 2015
Source:Chief, The (CN BC) Author:Thuncher, Jennifer Area:British Columbia Lines:42 Added:03/27/2015

Owner says community needs medical marijuana service he offered

For now, Bryan Raiser's medical marijuana dispensary's doors remain open, as a resource centre.

Raiser had been given until March 19 by the RCMP to stop offering marijuana to clients at his newly opened 99 North Medical Cannabis Dispensary in downtown Squamish.

"Only thing I know for sure is there are still those in the community that still desperately need the services that a dispensary provides and 99 North's doors will be open this week to answer the many legal and medical questions around obtaining and using medical cannabis," Raiser said in a statement to The Squamish Chief on Tuesday morning.

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10Canada: Focus Groups Approved of 'Political' Anti-Drug AdsThu, 26 Mar 2015
Source:Ottawa Citizen (CN ON) Author:Butler, Don Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:03/27/2015

Focus groups consulted last fall were keen on a $7-million anti-drug marketing campaign Health Canada was about to launch even though medical groups refused to endorse it because they thought it was too political.

The taxpayer-funded 10 week advertising campaign, which wrapped up in late December, ran at the same time as Conservative radio ads that attacked Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau for promising to legalize and regulate marijuana.

The Canadian Medical Association, the College of Family Physicians of Canada and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons refused to participate in the campaign, describing it last August as a "political football on Canada's marijuana policy."

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11 US CO: Series: No Approved 'Medicine' In MarijuanaWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:133 Added:03/27/2015

Dr. Stuart Gitlow, a physician serving as president of the American Society of Addiction Medicine, does not mince words: "There is no such thing at this point as medical marijuana," he said. It's a point he has made routinely for the past decade, as advocates for marijuana legalization have claimed the drug treats an array of serious illnesses, or the symptoms of illnesses, including cancer, depression, epilepsy, glaucoma and HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.

Backing up Gitlow are the National Institute on Drug Abuse and practically every major medical association in the United States, including the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and the American Academy of Pediatrics, which recently reaffirmed its stance. Cannabis in its various forms is an addictive drug that is especially dangerous to the developing brain - a linchpin the country's largest medical groups give for opposing its legalization.

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12 US CO: Series: Cost May Be Biggest Hurdle To Red CardWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:122 Added:03/27/2015

Critics of Colorado's medical marijuana program say it's a fraud starting with the application process to get a red card, which allows a person to buy and use marijuana.

Is getting on the state's Medical Marijuana Registry as easy as everyone says? The Gazette decided to see what the process involves.

Applying for a red card was a little more involved than buying cold medicine containing pseudoephedrine, but not much. The requirement of a doctor's examination and approval, for example, was as simple as having a quick cup of coffee with a stranger.

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13 US CO: Series: Medical Marijuana Industry Still Growing inWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:431 Added:03/27/2015

Colorado made headlines worldwide when recreational marijuana went on sale to the public in January 2014.

News organizations descended on the Centennial State to document, and hype, the advent of legalized retail pot.

The act of applying for and opening a retail pot business became reality-TV drama. MSNBC filmed a six-part documentary titled "Pot Barons of Colorado." There was great anticipation, and long lines, as pot shops opened for business, and a multimillion-dollar industry was born overnight.

By early February 2015, 334 retail shops were selling pot to the public, based on state Department of Revenue data.

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14 CN ON: LTE: Smoke ScreenWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Expositor, The (CN ON) Author:Doxtdator, Brian Area:Ontario Lines:32 Added:03/27/2015

Re: "More people behind" 420 Rally (March 23)

How reassuring to know that once again Victoria Park will be host to the annual 420 "weedfest." According to one of the organizers "more politicians and local groups" will be involved in this law-breaking extravaganza at this newly renovated (at taxpayers' expense) landmark in the downtown core.

The organizers are almost daring police to interrupt their party but I am sure police and local politicians will not hold these lawbreakers to the letter of the law on that date.

It is also with interest that Monday's Expositor indicated Brantford police are going to initiate a community garden on their property this year. Perhaps people can use this space to grow/cultivate marijuana to support the 420 crowd.

Brian Doxtdator Brantford

[end]

15 US CA: LTE: Drug Addicts Aren't InnocentThu, 26 Mar 2015
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA) Author:Zimmerman, Frances O'Neill Area:California Lines:32 Added:03/27/2015

Re "A gentle lamb taken by wolves," Opinion, March 22

Author Kerry Madden should keep going to Al-Anon. She's still struggling to understand what's happened to her son, a recovering addict, and his dead friend Noah, and she never reveals what their gateway drug may have been. Could it have been pot?

But Madden's confusion and pain testify to the scourge of drug addiction. It takes money, silence, complicity with other users, deals with dealers, and lies upon lies to loved ones and to oneself to become an addict. No one is a "lamb." No one is a "wolf."

No addict is the person you once knew. Everyone involved gets burned - - the addict, the friends, the family. Some addicts die. Some addicts live permanently impaired. Some addicts get sober and live to rebuild.

Frances O'Neill Zimmerman

La Jolla

[end]

16 US CO: Report: Report: Racial Disparities in Arrests PersistThu, 26 Mar 2015
Source:Albuquerque Journal (NM) Author:Wyatt, Kristen Area:Colorado Lines:108 Added:03/27/2015

Black People Still Far More Likely to Be Charged With Marijuana-Related Crimes

DENVER (AP) - The legalization of marijuana in Colorado hasn't solved the racial disparities in enforcement that drug-policy reformers had hoped to end, with blacks still far more likely than whites to be charged with pot-related crimes, a new report says.

The report, issued Wednesday by the pro-legalization Drug Policy Alliance, showed that marijuana arrests in Colorado all but stopped after voters made the drug legal in small amounts for those 21 and older.

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17 US CO: Series: Drug Use A Problem For EmployersTue, 24 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:224 Added:03/27/2015

Two families with deep Colorado roots - the Johnsons of Colorado Springs and the Haseldens of Centennial - have built rival commercial construction companies, each employing hundreds of people and reporting hundreds of millions of dollars in annual revenue. In business, they are practically sworn enemies.

But there is at least one issue where the Haseldens and the Johnsons are in agreement and encourage key members of their staffs to collaborate: construction safety. It is of paramount importance, and all of their employees must be drug-free.

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18 US CO: Series: Parents, Schools Say More Youths Using PotTue, 24 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:130 Added:03/27/2015

Employers aren't the only ones drug testing these days. Parents are springing tests on their kids, who are smoking more marijuana since legalization. The owner of two labs in Colorado Springs reports seeing large increases in such tests.

Amy Mullins, who owns two Any Lab Test Now franchises, says the number of drug tests conducted at her location near Chapel Hills Mall was up more than 22 percent in 2014 over the prior year. It was even higher at her south-side location: Testing was up 45 percent.

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19 US CO: Series: Babies, Children At RiskTue, 24 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:115 Added:03/27/2015

In January, a group of Colorado Springs pediatricians had an unusual topic on the agenda for one of their monthly meetings: Breastfeeding and babies who test positive for THC.

"When that hits the agenda, it's clearly important," said Dr. Darvi Rahaman, a pediatrician at Peak Vista. "There's so many, so many good things about breastfeeding and its positive effects. When a child is born, we and the nursing staff promote breastfeeding. The question is what happens when we know Mom was positive on a THC screen? Do you recommend you breastfeed or not? What do you do?"

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20 US CO: Series: Concerns Over Adolescents' UseTue, 24 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:156 Added:03/27/2015

Much of the latest brain development science conducted around the world shares this bottom line: Adolescent substance use is harmful and a bigger deal than researchers previously thought.

"Parents don't have to accept teen drug use or the notion that drug use is just a part of growing up," said Dr. Christian Thurstone, an associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Colorado, who also serves as medical director of one of Colorado's largest adolescent substance abuse treatment programs.

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21 US CO: Series: Teen: Colorado Voters Were Duped intoTue, 24 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:280 Added:03/27/2015

Nineteen-year-old Kaleb is 41 days and seven hours sober when he sits down for a long conversation about his marijuana addiction.

Two more months, his treatment providers tell him, and he'll likely be able to deliver his first clean drug test in many years showing no presence of THC, the active ingredient in cannabis that produces a euphoric high and can affect the mind and body for weeks after use - especially if you're like Kaleb, who was getting high every day along with about 6 percent of American high school seniors. This according to the federally funded Monitoring the Future, one of the United States' most extensive and longest-running surveys of students' drug use and attitudes toward substances.

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22 Canada: Bill C-2 Could Put Supervised Consumption Sites In PerilWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Woo, Andrea Area:Canada Lines:94 Added:03/27/2015

The House of Commons has passed a bill that critics say will impede the operations of supervised consumption sites such as Vancouver's Insite and will endanger severely addicted Canadians.

Bill C-2, the Respect for Communities Act, consists of a host of new regulations that will make it much more difficult for a community service provider to open one of the harm-reduction sites. The new legislation will also complicate the process by which existing sites have to apply annually for an exemption from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act to operate.

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23 CN AB: Edu: Editorial: Safe Injection Clinics Don't Bring DisrespectWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Gateway, The (U of Alberta, CN AB Edu) Author:Jeffrey, Andrew Area:Alberta Lines:97 Added:03/27/2015

This week, the Harper government showed Canadians they're serious about "respecting communities," but not quite as serious about respecting the health of every Canadian living in those neighbourhoods.

Earlier this week, the House of Commons passed Bill C-2, known as the Respect for Communities Act, a piece of legislation that will add more red tape and bureaucratic hurdles to the implementation of new supervised injection clinics in Canada. Putting these restrictions in place, and the Conservative Party's continued opposition to these clinics, flies in the face of numerous studies and research supporting its existence.

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24 US CO: Editorial: Fix Colorado's Pot ProblemsWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO)          Area:Colorado Lines:90 Added:03/27/2015

Today concludes The Gazette's four-part perspective on the world's boldest public policy experiment with commercialized recreational and medical pot.

The Gazette created a special project team made up of editorial staff and a seasoned reporter to look into these claims and compare them to information compiled after a year of legal recreational marijuana sales in Colorado. We wanted to examine whether claims of legalization are on a path to realization. We also looked for stories that have not been reported to create a clearer picture of the state of the industry.

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25 US CO: Series: Authorities Alarmed Over Increase in Hash OilMon, 23 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:117 Added:03/27/2015

It's known as wax, shatter, honey oil or, simply, BHO - butane hash oil.

Making it is legal in Colorado, but the process of extracting highly potent hash oil from marijuana plants using butane is highly dangerous. And it might be going on next door.

Proponents of Amendment 64 said legalizing recreational sales and use of marijuana would stifle the black market in Colorado. That is not the case; crime statistics indicate we have more to learn about the long-term effects of legal pot on public safety and other concerns.

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26 US CO: Series: Tough Task For Law EnforcementMon, 23 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:113 Added:03/27/2015

The legalization of marijuana has forced police officers to violate federal law, say a group of sheriffs who are suing Colorado over the drug. It has dramatically affected the officers who have to patrol the streets - delivering them a new set of complex problems.

Proponents of Amendment 64 said legalizing recreational sales and use of marijuana would stifle the black market in Colorado. That is not the case; crime statistics indicate we have more to learn about the long-term effects of legal pot on public safety and other concerns.

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27 US CO: Series: Potency Creating ProblemsMon, 23 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:79 Added:03/27/2015

Marijuana isn't just for smokers - especially under the law established by Colorado's Amendment 64.

The state constitutional amendment that legalized the drug's recreational use permits possession of up to 1 ounce of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the active ingredient that produces a euphoric high.

Proponents of Amendment 64 said legalizing recreational sales and use of marijuana would stifle the black market in Colorado. That is not the case; crime statistics indicate we have more to learn about the long-term effects of legal pot on public safety and other concerns.

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28 US CO: Series: Legalization Didn't Unclog PrisonsMon, 23 Mar 2015
Source:Gazette, The (Colorado Springs, CO) Author:Davis, Pula Area:Colorado Lines:239 Added:03/27/2015

Of all the misunderstandings about marijuana's impact on the country, perhaps none is greater than the belief that America's courts, prisons and jails are clogged with people whose only offense was marijuana use. This is the perception, but statistics show few inmates are behind bars strictly for marijuana-related offenses, and legalization of the drug will do little to affect America's growing incarceration numbers.

"It's this myth that won't go away and gets repeated by people who should know better. Unfortunately, no one reads public records," said Ernie Martinez, Denver-based at-large director for the National Narcotics Officers Association Coalition. "But the truth is there - and it looks a lot different than the story pushed by marijuana-legalization advocates and amplified in news media."

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29 US CA: PUB LTE: The Current System WorksWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:East Bay Express (CA) Author:Reed, Kevin Area:California Lines:27 Added:03/26/2015

Every responsible adult in California over the age of eighteen already has access to medical cannabis for nearly any condition he or she deems it to be helpful for, including stress, anxiety and sleeping disorders. Google "medical cannabis doctor" and you will see the many inexpensive local medical cannabis doctor options you have to choose from.

California also already taxes your medication the same as any other retail item you purchase. No one seems to talk about the millions upon millions of tax dollars that California has already been collecting for years. Stay active in local politics and don't let greedy corporations take away your rights.

Kevin Reed, San Francisco

[end]

30 US CA: PUB LTE: Medicinal Oil For The Prince Of PeaceWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:East Bay Express (CA) Author:Clark, William Area:California Lines:88 Added:03/26/2015

Big business interests should not be allowed to outlaw home cultivation. You cannot patent a plant, only the strains you have created. If home cultivation is forbidden, the number of strains available to patients and public alike will be limited to those that enrich a few wealthy, greedy, morally unscrupulous people who favor "limited prohibition" in order to line their own pockets.

Prohibition of marijuana is a premise built on a tissue of lies: "Concern For Public Safety." Our new laws save hundreds of lives every year, on our highways alone. In November of 2011 a study at the University of Colorado found that, in the thirteen states that decriminalized marijuana between 1990 and 2009, traffic fatalities have dropped by nearly 0 percent - now nearly ten percent in Michigan - - while sales of beer went flat. No wonder Big Alcohol opposes it.

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31 US CA: Column: More Downs Than UpsWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:East Bay Express (CA) Author:Downs, David Area:California Lines:121 Added:03/26/2015

The Bay Area Medical Cannabis Industry Seems to Be Taking Two Steps Back for Every Step Forward Lately. Notes From Four of the Front Lines.

Berkeley could add a fourth licensed brick-and-mortar dispensary by the end of the year, now that the March 20 deadline to apply for such a business license has passed. The city has three existing permitted dispensaries - Berkeley Patients Group, BPCC, and CBCB - a number that's been unchanged in a decade, said Charles Pappas, a member of the Berkeley Medical Cannabis Commission.

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32 US PA: OPED: Congress Should Act On CannabisWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Reporter, The (Lansdale, PA)          Area:Pennsylvania Lines:81 Added:03/26/2015

If you believe state Sen. Mike Folmer, some medical professionals are erring on the side of caution when it comes to medical marijuana. Twenty-three states already allow the medicinal use of cannabis, and, according to Folmer, there are doctors in Pennsylvania eager to prescribe it.

The benefits are clear, the risks are low - and for some patients it's their last best chance for relief.

Yet some in the medical field are hesitant to throw their support behind medical marijuana legalization efforts in Pennsylvania - such as House Bill 193 and Folmer's Senate Bill 3 - because of the drug's classification at the federal level.

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33 US PA: Medical Cannabis Hearing HeldWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Daily Review (Towanda, PA) Author:Hrin, Eric Area:Pennsylvania Lines:76 Added:03/26/2015

'Communities That Care' Shares Information

A representative of Bradford County Communities That Care was among those scheduled to appear at a hearing on medical marijuana Tuesday in Philadelphia.

According to Rep. Matt Baker's website, the hearing concerned the practical implications of legalizing medical cannabis in Pennsylvania and its impact on health care professionals.

Baker (R-Tioga/Bradford/Potter), chairman of the House Health Committee, and Ron Marsico (R-Dauphin), chair man of the House Judiciary Committee, held the combined hearing. Baker, however, was unable to attend the hearing, due to a death in the family.

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34 CN ON: 'More People Behind' 420 RallyMon, 23 Mar 2015
Source:Expositor, The (CN ON) Author:Gamble, Susan Area:Ontario Lines:66 Added:03/26/2015

Organizers are planning for the second annual Brantford 420 Rally on April 20 to be bigger than last year's event.

The time of 4:20 and the date of April 20 are associated with marijuana use. This year's rally falls on a Monday. The inaugural event was held on a Sunday.

"It was a hit last year but, with it not being on a weekend, we're not sure how many will be there," said Mike Dinsmore, one of the rally's organizers from the Brantford Cannabis Club.

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35Canada: Medical Pot For Vets Jumps To $4.3 MillionMon, 23 Mar 2015
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:Brewster, Murray Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:03/26/2015

OTTAWA - The cost of providing medical marijuana to the country's injured soldiers under a Veterans Affairs program jumped to more than $4.3 million this fiscal year, an increase of 10 times what was spent last year.

And the number of ex-soldiers eligible for taxpayer-funded, prescribed pot more than quadrupled to 601 patients, according to figures released by the department.

The numbers represent a dramatic escalation, even from last fall, when former veterans minister Julian Fantino was told in a briefing note that there were 224 approved cases.

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36 Canada: Medical Marijuana Costs Soar For VetsMon, 23 Mar 2015
Source:Toronto Star (CN ON) Author:Brewster, Murray Area:Canada Lines:118 Added:03/26/2015

Feds spent $4.3 million on pot prescriptions for ex-soldiers last year

OTTAWA- The cost of providing medical marijuana to the country's injured soldiers under a Veterans Affairs program jumped to more than $4.3 million this fiscal year, an increase of 10 times what was spent last year.

And the number of ex-soldiers eligible for taxpayer-funded, prescribed pot more than quadrupled to 601 patients, according to figures released by the department.

The numbers represent a dramatic escalation, even from last fall, when former veterans minister Julian Fantino was told in a briefing note that there were 224 approved cases.

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37 CN ON: Private Insurer Agrees To Pay For Medical MarijuanaMon, 23 Mar 2015
Source:Toronto Star (CN ON) Author:Teotonio, Isabel Area:Ontario Lines:123 Added:03/26/2015

Waterloo University student hopes victory clears the way for others seeking coverage

After a hard-fought battle, Jonathan Zaid's medical marijuana is being paid for by his private insurance company - a feat some industry insiders say is unprecedented.

Now, the third-year University of Waterloo student, who suffers from a rare illness called new daily persistent headache, is hoping his victory clears the way for other patients seeking coverage for cannabis.

"I had to fight a lot of battles to get to where I am," says the 22-year-old Toronto native. "My persistence paid off in the end."

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38 CN BC: Compassion Club Licensed In Gibsons, Second Dispensary DeniedFri, 20 Mar 2015
Source:Coast Reporter (CN BC) Author:Gleeson, John Area:British Columbia Lines:149 Added:03/25/2015

The Town of Gibsons has issued a business licence for a compassion club, but the operators say no cannabis products will be sold on site - - at least for now.

"We do plan to eventually become a dispensary, but you know the controversy surrounding that," Rainforest Compassion Club co-owner Rod McEwan said Tuesday.

McEwan and his wife Denise - both retired educators - plan to open the store this Saturday, March 21 at Unit 3, 703 Gibsons Way.

The store, initially at least, will sell natural health products and help people to fill out forms so they can obtain medical marijuana legally from a licensed producer.

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39 US FL: OPED: Florida Sentencing Laws Cut Blacks' Chances For SuccessSat, 21 Mar 2015
Source:Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, FL) Author:Schultz, Randy Area:Florida Lines:103 Added:03/25/2015

The tributes to those who braved the nightsticks of Alabama state troopers 50 years ago to march for voting rights were inspiring. The state of Black America a half-century later is depressing.

In a recent report titled "Five Bleak Facts on Black Opportunity," the Brookings Institution laid out where things stand. In 1965, the idea of an African-American president and an African-American attorney general might have been unimaginable, but despite that progress at the top, there's been regression below.

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40CN SN: The Conservatarian CompromiseSat, 21 Mar 2015
Source:Regina Leader-Post (CN SN) Author:Selley, Chris Area:Saskatchewan Lines:Excerpt Added:03/25/2015

In his new book, The Conservatarian Manifesto, National Review contributor Charles C.W. Cooke proposes libertarians and conservatives combine their best instincts to "re-establish (the GOP) as the party of liberty" - a party that's "committed to laissez-faire," that's "tolerant of =C2=85 how others wish to live their lives," and that's abov e all committed to local governments running things as their constituents see fit.

Q Why does America need a "conservatarian" movement?

A There's two reasons. The first is that there is a generational divide within the Republican party, especially on gay marriage and on the war on drugs. If it doesn't adapt, it's going to be out of step with future generations.

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41 CN BC: MP Discusses Recent Events, StatementsFri, 20 Mar 2015
Source:Cranbrook Daily Townsman (CN BC) Author:Crawley, Trevor Area:British Columbia Lines:105 Added:03/25/2015

It's not everyday that a federal Cabinet minister comes to town.

However, Kootenay-Columbia MP David Wilks has been trying to get James Moore out to Cranbrook for the last year.

"I think he was well received and it was great to have him out and about," said Wilks, who spent the day with Moore meeting with different groups all day, including addressing members of the Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce for lunch on Wednesday.

"We met with the Columbia Basin Trust and another group of people regarding broadband," said Wilks. "Broadband's a significant issue in this area, especially to those people who still don't have access to high-speed Internet and we're working toward making that happen."

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42US AK: Wasilla Pulls Back From Tough New Marijuana LawsWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Alaska Dispatch News (AK) Author:Hollander, Zaz Area:Alaska Lines:Excerpt Added:03/25/2015

WASILLA -- The "Smoothie Lady" can celebrate: Some of Alaska's strictest municipal regulations on marijuana got rolled back Monday night in light of concerns that they could violate state law.

The Wasilla City Council voted 4-2 to remove a local prohibition on cooking marijuana edibles -- which includes everything from cannabis butter to brownies to smoothies -- in a home kitchen within city limits.

The council also removed a 2-ounce limit on the amount of pot that can legally be carried in one vehicle, a prohibition more rigorous than the 1-ounce per person, six-plant limit in state law.

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43 US WA: Column: Christian Chronic, Killer Pot, and Some SuingWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Seattle Weekly (WA) Author:Stusser, Michael A. Area:Washington Lines:123 Added:03/25/2015

Passing the Dutchie to the Right This Time.

The idea of Higher Ground is to "elevate the dialogue," and thus it's important to remain open-minded to individuals and organizations on all sides of the marijuana-legalization conversation. With that in mind, let's light the peace pipe and reach the roach across the aisle.

WHAT WOULD JESUS DOO-BIE? Strongly opposing marijuana legislation are activists Alan Gordon and Anne Armstrong, who made headlines by bum-rushing a press conference supporting a new state legalization bill in Rhode Island. The duo aren't against the notion of legal weed, but instead believe that taxing the plant is against the teachings of the Bible, and Satanic. They take issue with the language of the law, claiming medical use of cannabis (which they believe is the Biblical plant called "kaneh-bos") outweighs any laws, restrictions, or taxes.

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44 US CO: Column: Allgreens Beats the Irs, NoCo Hemp ExpoWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Colorado Springs Independent (CO) Author:Crawford, Bryce Area:Colorado Lines:67 Added:03/25/2015

Northern hemp party

At the second annual NoCo Hemp Expo 2015, people can expect to find everything imaginable involving hemp: hemp CBD products, hemp apparel, hemp food, Colorado Hemp Beer, a hemp movie room, caricatures on hemp paper, over 30 expert speakers on topics about hemp, and even a "hemp-bodied sports car." The event will be held April 4 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Ranch Events Complex/Thomas M. McKee Building in Loveland (5260 Arena Circle, nocohempexpo.com). Tickets are anywhere from $15 to $100, with standard costs set for $20 at the door.

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45 US MI: Column: Newcomers And ProfiteersWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Metro Times (Detroit, MI) Author:Gabriel, Larry Area:Michigan Lines:117 Added:03/25/2015

It looks like voting on recreational marijuana is nearly a done deal in Michigan for the 2016 elections, unless the state Legislature gets in on the act and passes a legalization bill even sooner. The Michigan Comprehensive Cannabis Law Reform Initiative Committee (MCCLRIC) has announced its intention to circulate petitions to put recreational legalization on the ballot next year. Another group, the Michigan Responsibility Council (MRC), has reportedly been preparing its own petition for a different system of legalization. And state Rep. Jeff Irwin, D-Ann Arbor, has plans to reintroduce legalization legislation this session.

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46Canada: High Court Tries Medical Marijuana LawFri, 20 Mar 2015
Source:Windsor Star (CN ON) Author:MacLeod, Ian Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:03/25/2015

OTTAWA - Canada's high court is contemplating whether it's a constitutional right to munch cookies, brownies and oils laced with medical marijuana.

Federal regulations restrict authorized users of physician-prescribed cannabis to consuming only dried marijuana plants. Brewing pot in tea, baking it into a brownie or any form of consumption other than smoking the dried plant buds can trigger criminal trafficking and narcotics possession charges under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.

The question Friday before the Supreme Court of Canada, in its first foray into the medical marijuana debate, is whether the Health Canada regulation violated medical marijuana users' constitutional right to life, liberty and safety.

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47Canada: Top Court To Ponder Medical Pot MunchiesFri, 20 Mar 2015
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:MacLeod, Ian Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:03/25/2015

Current law says herb can only be smoked

OTTAWA - Canada's high court is contemplating whether it's a constitutional right to munch cookies, brownies and oils laced with medical marijuana.

Federal regulations restrict authorized users of physician-prescribed cannabis to consuming only dried marijuana plants.

Brewing pot in tea, baking it into a brownie or any form of consumption other than smoking the dried plant buds can trigger criminal trafficking and narcotics possession charges under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.

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48 US OH: More Medical Uses Sought In BillTue, 24 Mar 2015
Source:Columbus Dispatch (OH) Author:Johnson, Alan Area:Ohio Lines:65 Added:03/25/2015

An Ohio group backing medical marijuana is lobbying state legislators to expand an existing bill for children who suffer from seizures.

Ohio Patients Cann wants to see medical marijuana become part of state law, but it would be willing to go to the ballot if necessary, said Bob Bridges of Columbus, the organization's executive director.

"This is strictly for patients," he said. "All the other organizations appear to have a financial incentive for full legalization."

Bridges, who ran unsuccessfully last fall as a Libertarian candidate for state auditor, said lawmakers and average Ohioans might find his group's limited approach to marijuana legalization to be a better alternative than that of ResponsibleOhio. That group got the go-ahead from the Ohio Ballot Board last week to begin collecting signatures for a fall vote on a constitutional amendment to legalize marijuana for personal and medical use.

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49 US GA: Medical Cannabis Bill Scores Key Victory by ClearingWed, 25 Mar 2015
Source:Walker County Messenger (GA) Author:Miller, Andy Area:Georgia Lines:131 Added:03/25/2015

Georgia's medical marijuana proposal took what its chief sponsor called "a giant leap" forward Thursday, March 19, by passing a Senate committee after a long, emotional hearing.

A divided Senate Health and Human Services Committee approved House Bill 1, sponsored by Rep. Allen Peake (R-Macon), after hearing testimony on issues ranging from medical treatment and patients' pain to drug addiction and a lack of research data.

Peake said the legislation, if ultimately passed by the Legislature, can bring home the Georgia parents who are living with their ailing children in Colorado to give the youngsters access to medical cannabis. Colorado's relatively loose marijuana laws have made it a magnet for families whose children need the treatment.

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50 US NY: Column: The War Against The War On DrugsTue, 24 Mar 2015
Source:Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) Author:Harrop, Froma Area:New York Lines:87 Added:03/25/2015

Give thanks for the little things, they say. A bill that would stop the feds from going after medical marijuana users in states that permit such activity is something for which we should give thanks. But it is little.

Let's not criticize the sponsoring senators - Rand Paul, R-Ky., Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., and Cory Booker, DN.J. - for such a small reprieve from the War on Drugs. They've probably gone about as far as they could within the two-faced confines of our national politics.

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