Legalizing marijuana is looming as a next big political showdown at
the Minnesota State Capitol.
Fully legalizing marijuana in Minnesota is looming as a next big
political showdown at the Capitol, as a growing number of states are
ending bans on recreational cannabis.
Gov.-elect Tim Walz, who favors ending marijuana prohibition, will
replace Gov. Mark Dayton, who doesn't. A new Democratic House majority
will debate proposals to legalize next year and will likely take votes
on the issue as soon as 2019 or 2020. And, not one but two legal pot
parties -- the Grassroots-Legalize Cannabis Party and Legal Marijuana
Now Party -- emerged with 5 percent of the vote in statewide
elections, giving them "major party status," which means automatic
ballot access and the chance for campaign subsidies.
[continues 1075 words]
The Minnesota Department of Health is adding the degenerative
neurological disorder to its cannabis program, which includes cancer
pain, epileptic seizures, PTSD and autism. Research is limited, but
findings suggest that cannabis inhibits the formation of proteins
linked to memory loss and dementia.
Alzheimer's disease will be eligible for treatment with medical
marijuana in Minnesota starting next year, becoming the 14th health
condition certified by the state since the program began in 2015.
The Minnesota Department of Health announced Monday that it was adding
the degenerative neurological disorder to its cannabis program, which
already includes cancer pain, epileptic seizures, post-traumatic
stress disorder and autism.
[continues 525 words]
University of Hawaii researchers have discovered that the use of
marijuana may reverse heart failure.
A recent study shows that drugs can protect and reverse damage to the
heart from the stress that progresses the disease. Heart failure can
be caused by heart attacks, leaky valves, hypertension and other illnesses.
Alexander Stokes, assistant professor in cell and molecular biology at
the UH John A. Burns School of Medicine, said the potential medical
benefits of cannabis to treat heart disease is promising.
[continues 101 words]
TRENTON -- New Jersey lawmakers have unveiled their latest proposal to
legalize recreational marijuana use for people 21 and over. A joint
Democrat-led Assembly and Senate committee is expected to discuss the
One bill provides for legalizing an ounce of marijuana for adults 21
and older, setting up a five-person cannabis commission, and taxing
the sale of the substance at 12 percent.
That rate includes the 6.625 percent sales tax. The draft also permits
local governments to apply up to a 2 percent tax on cannabis. An
earlier measure called for gradually increasing tax rates.
The legislation also calls for expediting expungements for people with
marijuana-related criminal backgrounds.
Gov. Murphy supports marijuana legalization. His office did not
comment on the new legislation Wednesday.
Stateside, recreational marijuana use became legal in Vermont on July
1, Oklahoma voters approved one of the country's most progressive
medical marijuana bills in June, the New York Department of Health
officially recommended legalization to the governor and the
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands legalized recreational
Now, legalization advocates are hoping to build on these successes
with a number of statewide ballot measures up for consideration
Tuesday, including full recreational legalization in two states and
medical marijuana in two more. Here's a rundown of what the measures
say and where the polling on them currently stands.
[continues 712 words]
A federal jury in Denver on Wednesday rejected claims involving the
odor from a pot farm made in a case that was closely watched by the
It was the first such lawsuit to reach a jury. Three others are
pending in California, Massachusetts and Oregon.
"The big takeaway is that the verdict is likely to curb the enthusiasm
for bringing these lawsuits in the future," Vanderbilt University law
professor Rob Mikos said.
He said it's easy to show marijuana companies are violating federal
laws against pot, but the Colorado verdict shows the difficulty In
proving actual harm.
[continues 343 words]
Several Florida cities that temporarily banned pot dispensaries now
keep them out permanently.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - Nearly two years after Florida voters
overwhelmingly approved medical marijuana, some cities' temporary
stops to cannabis businesses have turned into outright bans.
Temporary bans in Boca Raton, Coral Springs, Margate, Tamarac and
Pembroke Pines have become permanent, effectively keeping dispensaries
out of certain communities and drawing concerns from medical
marijuana's proponents. They join at least seven other South Florida
cities with bans.
[continues 714 words]
A kindergartner can keep bringing a cannabis-based drug used for
emergency treatment of a rare form of epilepsy to her public school, a
judge ruled Friday.
The Santa Rosa Press Democrat reported that a judge sided with the
family of 5-year-old Brooke Adams.
The Rincon Valley Union School District in Santa Rosa sought to ban
the ointment from school grounds because it contains the active
ingredient in marijuana.
Authorities argued that allowing Brooke to use the drug at school
violated state and federal laws barring medical marijuana on school
[continues 233 words]
More than 80 state legislative or statewide campaigns and campaign
committees have accepted some $800,000 from the medical marijuana
industry during the 2018 election cycle, according to a review of
campaign finance records by the South Florida Sun Sentinel.
That could mean the closure of accounts and a scramble to find a place
to deposit campaign funds. Wells Fargo decided to close the campaign
account of Democratic Agriculture Commissioner candidate Nikki Fried
after she accepted industry money. She then opened an account with
BB&T, which also promptly closed it. She now banks with Florida
[continues 1467 words]
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency on Tuesday granted approval to
Tilray, Inc. to import research-grade marijuana products from Canada
for a clinical trial at the University of California San Diego.
Tilray, Inc.'s shares spiked more than 16 percent Tuesday morning on
the news that it will provide a cannabinoids for a study on essential
tremor (ET), a neurological movement disorder characterized by
involuntary and rhythmic shaking. The clinical trial, which will start
in 2019, will be conducted at the university's Center for Medicinal
Cannabis Research (CMCR). According to the CMCR, current drugs to
treat essential tremor (originally developed for high blood pressure
or seizures) are ineffective for many patients.
[continues 188 words]
Removing marijuana's federal schedule 1 status is a campaign issue in
the 16th Congressional District race.
SARASOTA -- Candidates for the District 16 congressional race are
staking out divergent positions on the question of whether marijuana
should be removed from Schedule 1 status to afford military veterans
another potentially potent option for dealing with PTSD and traumatic
brain injuries, something explored recently by the Herald-Tribune and
supported by a growing field of veterans and national veterans
organizations in the face of an epidemic of military suicides.
[continues 893 words]
A school-based survey shows nearly 1 in 11 U.S. students have used
marijuana in electronic cigarettes, heightening health concerns about
the new popularity of vaping among teens.
E-cigarettes typically contain nicotine, but many of the
battery-powered devices can vaporize other substances, including
marijuana. Results published Monday mean 2.1 million middle and high
school students have used them to get high.
Vaping is generally considered less dangerous than smoking, because
burning tobacco or marijuana generates chemicals that are harmful to
lungs. But there is little research on e-cigarettes' long-term
effects, including whether they help smokers quit.
[continues 367 words]
Employees inspect cannabis plants at the CannTrust Holdings Inc.
Niagara Perpetual Harvest facility in Pelham, Ontario, Canada.
Aurora Cannabis Inc. led pot stocks higher after Coca-Cola Co. said
it's eyeing the cannabis drinks market, becoming the latest beverage
company to tap into surging demand for marijuana products as
traditional sales slow.
Coca-Cola says it's monitoring the nascent industry and is interested
in drinks infused with CBD -- the non-psychoactive ingredient in
marijuana that treats pain but doesn't get you high. The Atlanta-based
soft drinks maker is in talks with Canadian marijuana producer Aurora
Cannabis to develop the beverages, according to a report from BNN
[continues 534 words]
Riverside County's cannabis task force says it seized more than 100
pounds of cannabis and an estimated $75,000 to $100,000 in cash
Friday, Sept. 14, from three sites where The Vault Church says it uses
marijuana as a religious sacrament.
The task force, led by the District Attorney's Office, served search
warrants at three locations operated by The Vault: 291 N. Yale St.,
Hemet; 5298 Mission Blvd., Jurupa Valley; and 5024 Etiwanda Ave., Jurupa
Valley. At the Etiwanda location, they also found two indoor grows,
seized 200 to 300 plants in various stages of harvest and found what
they believe to be the remnants of a butane honey oil lab, according to
a news release.
[continues 223 words]
The family of Botham Jean, the unarmed black man who authorities say
was fatally shot by a Dallas police officer inside his own apartment,
spent Thursday celebrating his life. Hundreds of people filed into the
Greenville Avenue Church of Christ in Richardson, Texas, to pay their
respects at Jean's funeral service, remembering the 26-year-old
businessman as, what his friend Pastor Michael Griffin described him,
"the light in a dark room."
But then around 5 p.m., the family's lawyers were alerted to some
apparent breaking news in the investigation into Jean's death.
[continues 846 words]
Auditor Dave Yost characterized the Department of Commerce's roll-out
of its share of the fledgling program as "sloppy" with dozens of
errors and inconsistencies. The program was supposed to be fully
operational Sept. 8, but the state is months behind in having legal
product on the shelves for purchase.
"The department didn't do a very good job launching this program," Mr.
Yost said. "It did not exercise due diligence to make sure Ohioans
could have complete confidence in the process. The department's work
was sloppy. Ohioans deserved better."
[continues 368 words]
BOSTON - A handful of the marijuana businesses granted provisional
licenses have informed the Cannabis Control Commission they are ready
to be inspected, one of the final steps before retail sales of
marijuana, approved by voters almost two years ago, can begin.
CCC Chairman Steven Hoffman said late last week the agency is working
to schedule inspections for two or three provisionally licensed
businesses. Hoffman said the inspections are expected to take place
"over the next week, plus or minus."
He said it's possible the CCC could vote at its next meeting, Sept.
20, to issue a final license if a business passes its inspection and
fulfills other requirements by then.
[continues 576 words]
Barbara Tillis isn't sure when she'll get to see her son, Corvain
Every few months for the past four years, Tillis, has driven five
hours with her husband, daughter and Cooper's oldest daughter, making
the trip from Rialto to the federal prison in Atwater, near Merced.
They'd spend the day visiting and chatting, and guards would let each
family member give Cooper exactly one hug. When the visit was over,
they'd reluctantly pile into the car and drive home.
[continues 2434 words]
Six days after confirming approval of medical marijuana dispensary
bans in Northboro and Bellingham, Attorney General Maura Healey's
office reversed its decision.
In an Aug. 25 Telegram & Gazette story, a spokesperson for the AG's
office confirmed that the office in June approved bylaws passed in the
two towns that ban medical marijuana dispensaries. The 2012 Medical
Marijuana law originally prohibited any municipality from banning
medical marijuana dispensaries. An AG spokeswoman said at the time the
approval was based on Section 56 (subsection d) of Chapter 55 Acts of
[continues 941 words]
COLUMBUS - Mike DeWine, Ohio's attorney general and Republican
candidate for governor, on Monday denounced as "irresponsible and
dangerous" a proposed constitutional amendment to downgrade low-level,
non-violent drug felonies to misdemeanors.
He stood with prosecutors, judges, treatment center operators, and
addicts to argue that Issue 1 would remove the stick that gets addicts
into treatment as an alternative to prison time.
"This threat, carefully used by our judges, has saved thousands and
thousands of lives," Mr. DeWine said. "Issue 1 would take that away,
and thousands would remain in the grips of opioids by not getting the
treatment they need to recover. Because the truth is that some people
just don't go into treatment unless they are pushed to do it. There's
nothing humane about Issue 1."
[continues 587 words]