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1 US TX: PUB LTE: Asset Forfeiture CorruptsWed, 30 Dec 2014
Source:Dallas Morning News (TX) Author:Wills, Suzanne Area:Texas Lines:47 Added:12/30/2015

Re: "Apply due process to forfeiture - Powerful tool has become another government idea gone awry, says David Simpson," Dec. 23, Viewpoints.

Thanks to Rep. David Simpson for calling attention to the most corrupting influence in law enforcement: civil asset forfeiture. According to an analysis of 43,000 state and local reports submitted to the Justice Department Equitable Sharing Program, nearly $2.5 billion was seized. In up to 81 percent of the cases, no indictment was ever filed.

Civil forfeiture laws presume seized property to be tainted. Property owners must prove in court that their money or property was acquired legally in order to get it back. This is almost always more expensive than giving up the legally acquired property.

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2 US CA: Column: The Year In WeedTue, 01 Jan 2015
Source:North Coast Journal (Arcata, CA) Author:Scott-Goforth, Grant Area:California Lines:97 Added:12/01/2015

A year into legal, recreational (or as advocates would have us say, "adult use") pot sales in Colorado - and six months into Washington sales - the sky still hasn't fallen. That's a relatively short period of time on which to base any long-term predictions, but here's one that's nearly certain: Legalization will continue to spread. The smooth (but not without hiccups, unfulfilled expectations and uncertainties) rollout of legal weed means a cascade of states will follow. Alaska, Oregon and Washington, D.C. legalized pot in 2014 (looks like Congress will kill the capitol's buzz, though).

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3 CN ON: PUB LTE: Doesn't Add UpThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Expositor, The (CN ON) Author:Beyer, Charles Area:Ontario Lines:38 Added:01/30/2015

Re: $2M in pot seized (Jan. 24)

Twenty police officers were spotted at a restaurant last Saturday night having coffee and doughnuts. One officer looked as if he was 250 pounds and his plate sported six sprinkly doughnuts. Doughnuts were 60 cents each. Wanting to aggregate total consumption and cost I figured we could multiply 20 officers by six doughnuts for a total consumption of 120 doughnuts. Therefore 120 doughnuts multiplied by 60 cents equals a total cost of $72 at that night's coffee break.

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4US CA: San Diego Approves First Medpot DispensaryFri, 30 Jan 2015
Source:San Diego Union Tribune (CA) Author:Garrick, David Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:01/30/2015

San Diego gave final approval on Thursday to the city's first legal marijuana dispensary, which will be run by an HIV-positive San Diego State University lecturer who smokes pot daily to relieve his symptoms.

It will be the first legal dispensary to operate in the city since California voters approved the use of medical marijuana in 1996. Located near the Otay Mesa international border, it's expected to open in early March.

San Diego joins nearly 50 other cities across the state that allow legal medical marijuana dispensaries, but it will be the only city in this county to allow them. The county government, however, allowed a dispensary to open last summer on the outskirts of El Cajon.

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5 US CA: LTE: Keep Pot Shops Out Of Our CommunitiesFri, 30 Jan 2015
Source:San Diego Union Tribune (CA) Author:Logan, Nancy Area:California Lines:33 Added:01/30/2015

Regarding the article "Will San Diego be a pot mecca?" (Jan. 24): It is important to know that the pro-pot people from outside the cities of La Mesa and Encinitas spent at least $130,000 on fliers and endless robocalling.

The ballot measures' titles were misleading since they called for "regulating pot shops," confusing to those who voted "Yes" mistakenly so that there would be precautions in place to protect their towns and kids. Thankfully the majority voted "No."

Residents of these cities will not change their minds because San Diego City Council and staff did not read the attorney general guidelines, which state marijuana is to be exchanged between a patient and a caregiver, not sold from a store.

Nancy Logan

Encinitas

[end]

6US AK: Alaska Lawmakers Hear From Administration on MarijuanaFri, 30 Jan 2015
Source:Alaska Dispatch News (AK) Author:Dischner, Molly Area:Alaska Lines:Excerpt Added:01/30/2015

JUNEAU (AP) - Health concerns and workplace issues were flagged for further consideration by Alaska lawmakers Thursday as they continue work on drafting regulations for the legalization of recreational marijuana.

Alaska's chief medical officer, Jay Butler, told the Senate State Affairs Committee that there are many unknowns regarding marijuana's impacts, but he said there appear to be some long-term risks associated with the drug, particularly for adolescents. A public education campaign on potential risks is needed, Butler said.

The committee's chairman, Sen. Bill Stoltze, R-Chugiak, asked Butler to formalize recommendations on health issues for the committee.

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7 CN ON: Psych Ward A Hotbed Of SmugglingThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:London Free Press (CN ON) Author:Sher, Jonathan Area:Ontario Lines:91 Added:01/30/2015

Victoria Hospital Crisis: Day Passes Were Scrapped and Visiting Hours Slashed to Stem the Flow

London's Victoria Hospital scrapped day passes and slashed visiting hours to stem the flow of illegal drugs into a psychiatric ward already in crisis from overcrowding and violence, The Free Press has learned.

The flow of drugs had been a long-standing challenge in a ward where a significant minority of mentally ill patients also battle addiction. Patients would get drugs from visitors or while out on a day pass.

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8US CO: Mbank Drops Colo. A Week After Opening Pot AccountsTue, 27 Jan 2015
Source:Denver Post (CO) Author:Migoya, David Area:Colorado Lines:Excerpt Added:01/30/2015

The Oregon community bank that a week ago openly welcomed Colorado marijuana industry customers has changed its mind, publicly saying it doesn't have the infrastructure to handle the overwhelming response for service.

But people familiar with the move say the retreat was pressed by federal banking regulators who stepped in late last week to tell MBank executives that crossing several states to work with an industry that remains illegal under federal law was simply too risky.

"Following national press, the volume of inquiries in Oregon, Washington and Colorado has been so overwhelming that we don't currently have the infrastructure to adequately support all these customers," MBank CEO Jef Baker said Monday. "Colorado is the farthest from our market area and the most difficult to provide the quality customer service to."

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9 CN BC: Edu: Legalization Activist Marc Emery To Speak At UBC On TuesdayMon, 26 Jan 2015
Source:Ubyssey (CN BC Edu) Author:Lenz, Alex Area:British Columbia Lines:95 Added:01/30/2015

Marc Emery's downtown office looks exactly the way you'd imagine it would - adorned with bongs, weed art and a visiting cat. No other work setting would be appropriate for an activist who has dedicated his life to libertarianism and drug legalization.

Over the past twenty years, Emery has firmly established himself as local celebrity and an international symbol for the legalization of marijuana. After spending just over four years in various US federal prisons for selling marijuana seeds across the border, Emery is now campaigning for the Liberal Party's success in the upcoming elections. Headed by Justin Trudeau, the party has taken an explicitly pro-legalization standpoint.

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10Canada: Series Of Setback Hits Fledgling Medical Marijuana IndustryWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:Quan, Douglas Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:01/30/2015

Almost a year after the federal government revamped the way medical marijuana is produced and distributed in Canada - moving from home-based operations to large-scale commercial ones - the fledgling industry continues to encounter growing pains.

A trial set to begin next month in Federal Court will hear patients argue that the price of marijuana charged by commercial producers is too high, depriving them of medicine to treat serious ailments. Until a decision is made, individuals who previously held licences to possess and grow their own marijuana have been allowed to continue doing so.

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11CN BC: Neighbours Pan Medical Pot PlanWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:Nanaimo Daily News (CN BC) Author:Barron, Robert Area:British Columbia Lines:Excerpt Added:01/30/2015

Group in Yellow Point 'virulently opposed' to application to construct facility on Quennel Road

A proposal for a medicinal marijuana operation in Yellow Point is not getting rave reviews from many of its neighbours.

The Yellow Point Concerned Citizens group, consisting of neighbours from the area, claim to be "virulently opposed" to an application by Vancouver-based Wildflower Marijuana Inc. to construct and operate a medicinal pot facility on Quennel Road.

Spokeswoman Frances Lasser said the group has sent letters to Health Canada, provincial and federal politicians and has received support from the Regional District of Nanaimo in its campaign to halt the project in its tracks.

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12 US AZ: LTE: Muse's Letter Full Of Unsubstantiated ClaimsThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:East Valley Tribune (AZ)          Area:Arizona Lines:46 Added:01/30/2015

Letter to the Editor

I take exception to the Kirk Muse letter (Jan. 18), and his unsubstantiated claims. He stated that there are 2.2 million prisoners because of the "war-on-drugs policies" of the United States. He then claims that the "war" is an excuse to imprison "black and brown people."

I would ask him to clarify a few things:

Does he believe the large number of prisoners have nothing to do with a more permissive society?

I suppose that means the lawyers and judges and their outrageous "exceptions and interpretations" do not encourage potential lawbreakers to suppose that all they'll get is a slap-on-the-wrist.

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13 CN SN: PUB LTE: Include StudentThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:StarPhoenix, The (CN SN) Author:Boechler, Marilyn Area:Saskatchewan Lines:27 Added:01/30/2015

The article Student banned from using medical marijuana at school (SP, Jan. 15) is very disturbing.

It makes no mention that student Michael Wileniec's presence at Nutana Collegiate caused any problems for staff or students. Why can't he go to school?

Is the Saskatoon public school system not inclusive? Are special needs students not given an equal opportunity to get an education? If not, why not?

Marilyn Boechler Saskatoon

[end]

14 US AK: Lawmakers Hear From Administration on MarijuanaFri, 30 Jan 2015
Source:Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (AK)          Area:Alaska Lines:56 Added:01/30/2015

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - Health concerns and workplace issues were flagged for further consideration by Alaska lawmakers Thursday as they continue work on drafting regulations for the legalization of recreational marijuana.

Alaska's chief medical officer, Jay Butler, told the Senate State Affairs Committee that there are many unknowns regarding marijuana's impacts, but he said there appear to be some long-term risks associated with the drug, particularly for adolescents. A public education campaign on potential risks is needed, Butler said.

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15 US AK: Editorial: Legislature Has Three and a Half Weeks toFri, 30 Jan 2015
Source:Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (AK)          Area:Alaska Lines:79 Added:01/30/2015

During the past week, the Legislature took its first stab at marijuana regulation since the passage of the ballot measure that will make pot possession and use legal on Feb. 24. It did not go well. Senate Bill 30 took the odd approach of leaving laws spelling out penalties for possession and use of the drug in place, with the stipulation that those arrested for breaking those laws could use the drug's legalization as a defense in court.

Not surprisingly, the bill was roundly panned in committee hearings and has been declared dead - a rewrite is scheduled to be unveiled Monday. This time, legislators need to get it right - statutory changes must be made in the next three and a half weeks to be in place by the time the law takes effect.

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16 US: Federal Agency Weighed Spying On Cars At Gun ShowsWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:Wall Street Journal (US) Author:Barrett, Devlin Area:United States Lines:101 Added:01/30/2015

Proposal Within DEA in 2009 Was Never Carried Out, Justice Department Officials Say

WASHINGTON - A federal agent proposed using license-plate readers to scan vehicles around gun shows in order to aid gun-trafficking investigations, according to an internal Justice Department email.

Justice Department officials said Tuesday that the 2009 proposal was rejected by superiors and never implemented. The email was part of a series of Drug Enforcement Administration documents describing how the agency is building a national database tracking the movements of vehicles in the U.S. The documents were obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union through a Freedom of Information Act request and reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

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17US CO: New Rule Book For 'Pot For Beginners'Fri, 30 Jan 2015
Source:Denver Post (CO) Author:Baca, Ricardo Area:Colorado Lines:Excerpt Added:01/30/2015

Industry Adjusts to New Packaging, Potency

Colorado's pot industry will face its first major regulatory shift of 2015 on Sunday when popular but controversial infused edibles will be forced to comply with new packaging, labeling and potency restrictions passed last year.

Under the new regulations, edibles sold recreationally must be wrapped individually or demarked in increments of 10 or fewer milligrams of activated THC, the major psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. The state's recommended dose is 10 milligrams. Edibles packaging, too, is changing as new, more child-resistant restrictions go into effect.

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18 US CA: Editorial: They Know Where You've BeenFri, 30 Jan 2015
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA)          Area:California Lines:66 Added:01/30/2015

The military calls it "mission creep" - sending troops out for one purpose, then adding to their marching orders over time. This kind of metastasis is innocuous in some contexts, but not so benign when the government is collecting information about innocent people going about their daily lives.

A perfect illustration is the Drug Enforcement Administration's expansive license-plate tracking program that privacy advocates brought to light this week. What began as an effort to confiscate guns and cash from drug traffickers heading to Mexico has reportedly expanded into a general purpose surveillance tool for law enforcement agencies that treats millions of ordinary Americans as potential suspects.

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19 US DC: PUB LTE: Organized 'Grass-Roots'Fri, 30 Jan 2015
Source:Washington Post (DC) Author:Popovich, Matt Area:District of Columbia Lines:30 Added:01/30/2015

Eric Wang's Jan. 25 Local Opinions commentary, "The cost of a political opinion," characterized William V. Jones III, the founder of the group "Two. Is. Enough. D.C.," as a concerned citizen who merely made an anti-marijuana Web site and participated in a few meetings, rather than someone who should have been fined for campaign law violations.

Before registering as a campaign, Mr. Jones collected contributions without disclosure or oversight, had large banners printed with his message and branding and brought in a former congressman to help him host a news conference announcing the launch of his political group. Mr. Jones was the head of what was, by all outward appearances, an unregulated political campaign formed to oppose a specific ballot measure, Initiative 71. His fining hardly shows overreach by D.C. government.

Matt Popovich, Washington

[end]

20US: Ore. Lawmaker: Did FDIC End Banking Deal?Fri, 30 Jan 2015
Source:Denver Post (CO) Author:Migoya, David Area:United States Lines:Excerpt Added:01/30/2015

A congressman is demanding to know what role a federal banking regulator had in the quick withdrawal of Oregon-based MBank's offer to take on Colorado-based marijuana businesses.

U. S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D- Oregon, said he was "disheartened" to read a Denver Post story that described MBank's decision to pull out only a week after it had announced it would bank legal pot businesses in Colorado.

"The article alluded to pressure from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation as a factor in MBank's decision," Blumenauer wrote FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg onThursday. "If this is true, it raises serious questions about the application of federal financial oversight."

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21 US CA: State Seeks Water Rules For Pot GrowersFri, 30 Jan 2015
Source:Press Democrat, The (Santa Rosa, CA) Author:Callahan, Mary Area:California Lines:171 Added:01/30/2015

State officials have begun rolling out a new environmental initiative designed to win the cooperation of marijuana growers in protecting Northern California waterways and fisheries from the kinds of degradation that commonly result from pot cultivation.

A team of state and local agency representatives conducted a series of unannounced inspections last week of gardens in the Eel River watershed near Garberville, visiting 14 properties over three days along Sproul Creek. The creek went dry last summer for the first time in many years from what environmental officials believe was the combined effects of drought and unregulated water withdrawals for marijuana irrigation.

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22 CN MB: PUB LTE: Regulated Pot Past DueThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Winnipeg Free Press (CN MB) Author:Buors, Chris Area:Manitoba Lines:24 Added:01/30/2015

I would like to thank David Asper for coming out of the cannabis closet and advocating for a regulated market (Time to regulate marijuana, Jan. 24).

The time for that action was 30 years ago; it is now long past due that we repeal the entire war on drugs. It is prohibition that brings the harm to society.

Chris Buors Winnipeg

[end]

23 US HI: OPED: It's Time to Legalize Marijuana and Reap Its ManyThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Honolulu Star-Advertiser (HI) Author:Ryan, Tracy Area:Hawaii Lines:71 Added:01/29/2015

Hawaii should not wait any longer to join the list of states that have legalized marijuana. There is simply too much at stake for us to allow our Legislature to peck away at this for five or 10 years without taking real action.

Hawaii was once an important exporting state. Many of us remember the period before the Green Harvest eradication program and other measures that ruined this business here. Law enforcement turned us into a net importer from California and paved the way for our meth-amphetamine problems. Public opinion has finally caught up to common sense on marijuana issues with political pressure applied to end the enforcement efforts on the Big Island.

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24 US CA: Column: Better Off DryWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:SF Weekly (CA) Author:Roberts, Chris Area:California Lines:122 Added:01/29/2015

Summertime in Northern California is long, hot, and dry. The ideal atmosphere for a float down the Russian River is also the perfect climate for growing the things you'd want to bring along on that river trip. Hops, good wine grapes, and world-class cannabis all thrive in the heat.

As America finally cottons to the notion of cannabis as a legitimate industry, growing marijuana is proving itself a viable career. The average farmworker in America takes home a little more than $30,000 a year. California fruit pickers and animal stewards make slightly more money, but some farmworkers in the state can take home as much as $41,800 annually. That's the average wage for a farmworker on a marijuana patch, according to the Emerald Growers Association, a trade group for outdoor farmers. And if you own the plot of land where pot is grown, you can clear an average of about $100,000 a year, according to a survey of 50 pot farmers in nine counties.

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25 US CO: Column: Wyoming Keeps Cannabis Possession CriminalThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Boulder Weekly (CO) Author:Rucker, Leland Area:Colorado Lines:112 Added:01/29/2015

Even if they don't support legalization, more and more states are changing or considering changing marijuana possession laws from criminal to ticket offenses.

But not all state legislators are ready to make that move. In a floor vote last week, the Wyoming house killed Bill 49. Sponsor Jim Byrd, a Cheyenne Democrat, wanted the state to turn cannabis possession cases into civil offenses: Fine anybody with up to a half ounce $50 and anybody with a half ounce to an ounce $100.

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26 US AZ: Column: No MedicineThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Tucson Weekly (AZ) Author:Herreras, Mari Area:Arizona Lines:70 Added:01/29/2015

A Tucson Man Finds Himself in the Hospital Unable to Take the MMJ He Needs

When James Ball went to St. Mary's Hospital he assumed he would be able to consume some medical marijuana edibles he had with him to help control the pain.

He has a medical marijuana patient card, issued by the state, so he figured it wouldn't be a problem. However, he was told the only thing he could take for pain would be what they'd prescribe, and he didn't want to take pain killers.

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27 US CO: Column: Can I Substitute Pot For Pain Meds?Thu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Westword (Denver, CO) Author:Breathes, William Area:Colorado Lines:65 Added:01/29/2015

Dear Stoner: I was just released from the hospital with an aneurysm in my groin. They gave me Oxycodone, but it's too strong for me. I was wondering if smoking a little pot would relieve me in terms of pain and my appetite.

Vegas Jimmy

Dear Jimmy: Pain meds are no joke; they can cause as much discomfort as they help mask. I was given Percocet after surgery a few months ago and found myself in the same boat: too high from the pills and no appetite. Pot helped, though for me it doesn't so much kill the pain as it does allow me to ignore it. But that's all pain pills seem to do, too - and pot is much more comfortable and manageable. I relied on some heavy Kush varieties like Skywalker OG and Bubba Kush to help manage the pain without sending my head into the stratosphere. For appetite, sativas usually work best for me; mixing in a bowl of Sour Diesel or 707 Headband every now and then got me hungry enough to put back some of the pounds I'd lost during surgery. But don't ignore your pain or suffer needlessly: If the pot doesn't work out, ask your doctor to prescribe a pain med that isn't as strong (or addictive) as Oxycodone.

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28 US CA: Column: Up Sproul CreekThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:North Coast Journal (Arcata, CA) Author:Scott-Goforth, Grant Area:California Lines:90 Added:01/29/2015

SoHum residents got their first taste of a new enforcement regimen targeting the environmental impacts of marijuana grows last week.

It was hardly jackboots and black helicopters, according to State Water Board enforcer Cris Carrigan, who developed the pilot enforcement program with other state and local agencies (See "A Big Stick," Oct. 23, 2014).

Representatives from Fish and Wildlife, the California Water Board, the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office and a county code inspector obtained administrative warrants for 14 properties in the Sproul Creek watershed, and visited them over the course of three days.

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29 US CA: Will a Divided Marijuana Community JeopardizeThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Sacramento News & Review (CA) Author:Downs, David Area:California Lines:131 Added:01/29/2015

California Marijuana Legalization in 2016 Looks Anything but Certain

California marijuana legalization in 2016 looks anything but certain after a major January meeting where leading activists showed how divided they remain. The possibility of ending nearly a century of cannabis prohibition within the next 650 or so days has increased factionalism within the reform movement.

In a small hotel banquet room on the waterfront of Oakland's Jack London Square, luminaries of pot-law reform rehashed grievances and honed new disputes over future initiative language, as well as campaign funding and control.

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30 US CA: Column: A High For Down LowThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Sacramento News & Review (CA) Author:Bealum, Ngaio Area:California Lines:71 Added:01/29/2015

What's this I hear about a cannabis-infused sex lube? Does it work?

- -Delores Poussey

Yes. It exists. The most popular brand, called Foria, is a mix of coconut oil and cannabis. All of the reviews I have seen have been positive, with most users reporting pleasant, tingly sensations in their nether regions. Sounds like fun to me. I am a fan of mixing weed and sex. Who doesn't like to do the smokey-pokey? It's a bit pricey (the small bottle will set you back about 44 bones), but whatever floats your man-in-the-boat. Have fun.

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31 US AK: PUB LTE: Grow What People WantWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:Alaska Dispatch News (AK) Author:Gasparetti, Arnie Area:Alaska Lines:21 Added:01/29/2015

Two dividends a year? Why don't we as a state grow and sell what the people want? The state controls everything. From the seed to the pipe. Everything is so simple sometimes.

- -- Arnie Gasparetti

Wasilla

[end]

32US AK: Legislators Send Marijuana Crime Bill Back to DrawingThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Alaska Dispatch News (AK) Author:Caldwell, Suzanna Area:Alaska Lines:Excerpt Added:01/29/2015

Anchorage Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux said Wednesday she would postpone meetings of the state House and Senate judiciary committees on a bill that would define Alaska's criminal marijuana laws until drafters complete a version of the law that better reflects "the will of the people."

The decision in Wednesday's joint Judiciary Committee meeting came after backlash from both legislators and supporters of Ballot Measure 2 who expressed concern and confusion over provisions in Senate Bill 30 on how to address use and possession of recreational marijuana.

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33 US AK: Alaska Marijuana Bills Put On Hold For RewriteThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (AK)          Area:Alaska Lines:57 Added:01/29/2015

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - Bills that would decriminalize small amounts of marijuana have been put on hold while lawmakers wait for a new draft that better reflects the intent of voters.

During a joint session of the House and Senate Judiciary committees Wednesday, Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux, R-Anchorage, said the bills, versions of which were introduced in both the House and Senate, are being rewritten. The bills were intended to legalize 1 ounce or less of marijuana for adults 21 and older.

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34US CA: Column: Federal Rule Won't Keep State's Cops FromThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:San Diego Union Tribune (CA) Author:Greenhut, Steven Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:01/29/2015

Sacramento - In 2008, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms received bad publicity after it handed out to employees pocketknives engraved with "ATF" spelled out: Always Think Forfeiture. The agency was, in essence, caught encouraging its employees to seize as much property as possible under controversial civil asset-forfeiture programs.

ATF stopped giving out the pocketknives, but federal, state and local agencies have come to depend increasingly on seized assets to bolster their budgets. Many new "toys" departments buy - fancy new vehicles, military-style equipment, weaponry and gadgets - are funded this way.

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35 US AK: Critics of Failed Marijuana Bills Say the MeasuresThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (AK) Author:Buxton, Matt Area:Alaska Lines:85 Added:01/29/2015

JUNEAU - After a disastrous first hearing on a bill dealing with legalized marijuana, lawmakers didn't mince their words Wednesday to say the bill, as drafted, was dead.

"I want to announce that it's not this committee's intention to move either of these bills," said House Judiciary Chairwoman Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux of two bills critics said undermined the voter initiative legalizing marijuana. "We're not going to do anything more on these bills ... until these bills come back from legislative drafting in a form that we feel reflects the will of the people."

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36 US AK: Fairbanks Pot Panel Convenes, Cites Concerns About NewThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (AK) Author:Bohman, Amanda Area:Alaska Lines:90 Added:01/29/2015

FAIRBANKS - Brandon Emmett, executive director of Citizens for Responsible Cannabis Legislation, held up a package that once held marijuana-laced cookies.

The black package with a red dot and white lettering required a knife or scissors in order to be opened, Emmett said.

"A child is not going to see this and say, 'Hey, there is candy in there,'" he told a roundtable of the heads of most of the major institutions in Fairbanks.

The group gathered Wednesday at the invitation of Fairbanks North Star Borough Mayor Luke Hopkins to begin discussing local marijuana regulations, such as if and where marijuana will be allowed to be grown, processed, packaged and sold.

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37Canada: Fledgling Medical Marijuana Industry Hit By Series OfWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:Windsor Star (CN ON) Author:Quan, Douglas Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:01/29/2015

Federal Court to Hear Complaints From Patients

Almost a year after the federal government revamped the way medical marijuana is produced and distributed in Canada - moving from home-based operations to large-scale commercial ones - the fledgling industry continues to encounter growing pains.

A trial set to begin next month in Federal Court will hear patients argue that the price of marijuana charged by commercial producers is too high, depriving them of medicine to treat serious ailments. Until a decision is made, individuals who previously held licences to possess and grow their own marijuana have been allowed to continue doing so.

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38 CN SN: PUB LTE: Stick To EducationWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:StarPhoenix, The (CN SN) Author:McKay, Bill Area:Saskatchewan Lines:41 Added:01/29/2015

I am concerned about the article Student banned from using medical marijuana at school (SP, Jan 17).

Surely there is more to this story. If not, the ruling is a most astonishing example of a Kafkaesque bureaucracy gone mad by functionaries unqualified to make it. It would be laughable if they were not possibly destroying a young man's future.

In addition, the ruling is tinged with hostility by the superintendent's emotionladen use of the phrase, "under the influence," and her conflation of a prescribed medical treatment with being "under the influence of alcohol or drugs."

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39Canada: Medical Marijuana Industry LanguishingWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:Quan, Douglas Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:01/29/2015

VANCOUVER - Almost a year after the federal government revamped the way medical marijuana is produced and distributed in Canada - moving from home-based operations to large-scale commercial ones - the fledgling industry continues to encounter growing pains.

A trial is set to begin next month in Federal Court that will hear patients argue that the price of marijuana charged by commercial producers is too high, depriving them of medicine to treat serious ailments. Until a decision is made, individuals who previously held licences to possess and grow their own marijuana have been allowed to continue doing so.

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40CN BC: Grieving Vancouver Mothers Speak Out About Gang LifeWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:Vancouver Sun (CN BC) Author:Bolan, Kim Area:British Columbia Lines:Excerpt Added:01/29/2015

Video Campaign Created to Help End the Bloodshed

Two Metro Vancouver mothers who lost their children to gang violence six years ago say they hope a new anti-gang video campaign will help steer youth away from the deadly lifestyle.

Brianna Kinnear's mother Carol is featured in a video campaign aimed at steering youth away from gang violence. In the videos, she talks about Brianna, who was shot dead at 22 in 2009.

Carol Kinnear, who's featured in six videos created by the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit and Odd Squad Productions, says she wants to spare other parents from the devastating pain that has rocked her family.

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41Canada: Fledgling Industry Hit By Series Of SetbacksWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:Vancouver Sun (CN BC) Author:Quan, Douglas Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:01/29/2015

Constitutional challenge, advertising restrictions, product recalls have all had an impact

Almost a year after the federal government revamped the way medical marijuana is produced and distributed in Canada - moving from home-based operations to large-scale commercial ones - the fledgling industry continues to encounter growing pains.

A trial set to begin next month in Federal Court will hear patients argue that the price of marijuana charged by commercial producers is too high, depriving them of medicine to treat serious ailments. Until a decision is made, individuals who previously held licences to possess and grow their own marijuana have been allowed to continue doing so.

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42Canada: Fledgling Medical Pot Industry Hit By SetbacksWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:Regina Leader-Post (CN SN) Author:Quan, Douglas Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:01/29/2015

Almost a year after the federal government revamped the way medical marijuana is produced and distributed in Canada - moving from home-based operations to large-scale commercial ones - the fledgling industry continues to encounter growing pains.

A trial set to begin next month in Federal Court will hear patients argue that the price of marijuana charged by commercial producers is too high, depriving them of medicine to treat serious ailments. Until a decision is made, individuals who previously held licences to possess and grow their own marijuana have been allowed to continue doing so.

[continues 839 words]

43 US MA: PUB LTE: With One Ballot After Another, Voters HaveThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Boston Globe (MA) Author:Pillsbury, Jim Area:Massachusetts Lines:36 Added:01/29/2015

Our new governor should be reminded that the voters in this state have overwhelmingly approved all ballot questions relating to medicinal use and decriminalization of marijuana since 2000 ("Baker staunch in opposition to legalizing marijuana"). Regardless of what the federal government has to say about the issue, citizens across the country have voted for legalization for many reasons, not the least of which is the tax revenue generated by the emerging industry.

Governor Charlie Baker and Senate President Stanley Rosenberg should also keep in mind that the Justice Department has given a slightly green light to Native American Tribes to grow and sell marijuana, despite the federal laws against it. As Dylan so aptly put it: "The times they are a-changin'."

The war over this plant and on hemp has drowned under the weight of its own propaganda and misinformation, and Massachusetts voters know it. We will have the last word in this 50-year-long "Reefer Madness" movie, one way or another.

Jim Pillsbury

Framingham

[end]

44 US MA: PUB LTE: Our Elected Leaders May Just Come to See theThu, 29 Jan 2015
Source:Boston Globe (MA) Author:Epstein, Steven S. Area:Massachusetts Lines:40 Added:01/29/2015

It is interesting news that the Senate president, not known as a friend of the initiative process, created a special Senate committee on marijuana, and that Governor Baker, despite saying he is "going to always be opposed to legalizing" recreational use, also is curious about the experiments with legalization in other parts of the country ("Baker staunch in opposition to legalizing marijuana," Metro, Jan. 23).

Perhaps this indicates that the Legislature will attempt, before the printing of the 2016 ballots, to do what activists will surely accomplish with an initiative. For it is long past time to end an ineffectual, unreasonable, and unwholesome policy of prohibition and replace it with reasonable regulation and low rates of taxation.

[continues 96 words]

45US VT: Shumlin on Marijuana: 'Been There, Done That'Wed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:Burlington Free Press (VT) Author:Burbank, April Area:Vermont Lines:Excerpt Added:01/29/2015

MONTPELIER - Gov. Peter Shumlin says his days of smoking marijuana are over, even if the Vermont Legislature votes to legalize the drug.

Shumlin stopped using marijuana as he grew into adulthood, he recounted during a news conference at the Statehouse.

"Been there, done that," Shumlin said. "My guess is that a lot of Vermonters of my generation feel like I do about marijuana, which is, it is something we smoked when we were young. ... As I took on more responsibility or I don't know what in my late 20s, I just found that it wasn't much fun anymore.

[continues 381 words]

46 US VT: Shumlin: 'Responsibility' Ended His Use of PotWed, 28 Jan 2015
Source:Rutland Herald (VT) Author:Goswami, Neal P. Area:Vermont Lines:74 Added:01/29/2015

MONTPELIER - Gov. Peter Shumlin said Tuesday he has no plans to partake in legal marijuana if the state moves to allow it.

"No," Shumlin said, when asked by Seven Days reporter Terri Hallenbeck if he would smoke legal weed. "Been there, done that."

Shumlin appeared caught off guard when asked when he last smoked marijuana.

"Oh, my God," Shumlin said. "It was a while ago. I'm old."

During an open-ended press conference Tuesday, the 58-year-old governor then clarified that he last smoked pot in his late 20s, but gave it up as his responsibilities grew.

[continues 405 words]

47 US FL: Florida Bill Expands Medical Use Of PotTue, 27 Jan 2015
Source:Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, FL) Author:Sweeney, Dan Area:Florida Lines:94 Added:01/29/2015

Measure Also Tackles Flaws In 2014 Initiative

Although a proposed medical marijuana amendment failed in the 2014 election, medical use of the plant could come to Florida as soon as July 1, 2016.

That's the date by which Florida would have to begin issuing marijuana patient ID cards under a bill filed Monday by State Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg. The bill would allow patients with certain medical conditions to obtain marijuana with a doctor's recommendation. It also addresses several of the criticisms levied at the unsuccessful constitutional amendment ballot initiative.

[continues 558 words]

48CN AB: Shooting Sends Man To HospitalMon, 26 Jan 2015
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Stark, Erika Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:01/29/2015

Resident says northeast gas station now a hot spot for gangs and drugs

A man was shot near a northeast liquor store in Calgary on Saturday night.

Police and EMS workers received reports of gunfire at about 8: 15 p.m. on the 5300 block of Rundlehorn Drive N. E., near the Rundle liquor store.

Emergency crews transported a 30-year-old man with potentially life- threatening injuries to Foothills Hospital. Police said Sunday the man's condition remains serious, but he's expected to survive.

[continues 283 words]

49 US WA: Legal Pot In Blaine A Short Walk From B.C.Tue, 27 Jan 2015
Source:Surrey Leader (CN BC) Author:Nagel, Jeff Area:Washington Lines:82 Added:01/29/2015

Marijuana stores have been sprouting all over Washington State since retail trade in the drug was legalized in a referendum, but the first one has now opened within walking distance of the B.C. border.

Evergreen Cannabis is aimed squarely at the Canadian market and its Blaine storefront at 922 Peace Portal Drive - with a sign that reads "recreational marijuana store" - is within sight of both the Peace Arch and White Rock.

"I know I am controversial because I am close to the border," owner Jake Lamont, a Birch Bay resident, told Black Press this week.

[continues 440 words]

50 US WA: U.S. Marijuana Sold With A WarningTue, 27 Jan 2015
Source:Peace Arch News (CN BC) Author:Nagel, Jeff Area:Washington Lines:82 Added:01/29/2015

Marijuana stores have been sprouting all over Washington State since retail trade in the drug was legalized in a referendum, but the first one has now opened within walking distance of the B.C. border.

Evergreen Cannabis is aimed squarely at the Canadian market and its Blaine storefront at 922 Peace Portal Drive - with a sign that reads "recreational marijuana store" - is within sight of both the Peace Arch and White Rock.

"I know I am controversial because I am close to the border," owner Jake Lamont, a Birch Bay resident, told Black Press this week.

[continues 440 words]


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