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1US CA: Editorial: California Cities' Reefer ReluctanceFri, 10 Nov 2017
Source:San Francisco Chronicle (CA)          Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:11/14/2017

Demonized for decades, marijuana remains controversial even on the brink of its statewide legalization - and even in pot-friendly strongholds such as San Francisco. The city is one of many still debating local regulations that will either embrace an overdue retreat from the drug war or effectively prolong the failed policy at the neighborhood level.

For vacillating municipal officials, some context is in order. This week alone, New Jersey and Virginia voters resoundingly elected gubernatorial candidates promising to liberalize marijuana policy; Constellation Brands, a Fortune 500 seller of many popular wine and beer brands, was reported to have bought a nearly $200 million stake in a Canadian cannabis company; and California's attorney general approved signature-gathering for a ballot measure to legalize psilocybin mushrooms.

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2US CA: Colton Group Petitioning To Put Citizen-Backed MarijuanaSun, 12 Nov 2017
Source:Press-Enterprise (Riverside, CA) Author:Whitehead, Brian Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:11/14/2017

A citizens committee in Colton has launched an initiative to regulate and tax local cannabis cultivation, manufacturing and distribution in order to generate millions of dollars in revenue for law enforcement, schools and public safety programs.

The Committee for Safer Neighborhoods and Schools recently filed its proposed marijuana ordinance with the city and will soon begin gathering signatures for placement on the 2018 ballot.

Meanwhile, the Colton City Council awaits a drafted ordinance of potential regulations recommended by a committee of city leaders and other representatives.

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3US CA: Column: City Hall Strangely Worried Over Weed As Legal UseSat, 11 Nov 2017
Source:San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Author:Knight, Heather Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:11/14/2017

When 74 percent of San Francisco voters last year backed legalizing the adult recreational use of marijuana statewide, the idea was to make it easier to buy and smoke pot - a substance that has never been that hard to buy or smoke in San Francisco anyway.

Tell that to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.

The Keystone Cops of Cannabis have spent countless hours over endless committee meetings in recent weeks, devising ways to dramatically limit where people can buy and sell marijuana once the substance becomes legal for recreational use statewide on Jan. 1.

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4US CA: Editorial: Pushing Marijuana Back Into The Shadows With HighSat, 11 Nov 2017
Source:Press-Enterprise (Riverside, CA)          Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:11/14/2017

A global credit rating agency says taxes on recreational marijuana in California could reach 45 percent in some places, high enough to keep the thriving black market in business despite legalization.

The report by Fitch Ratings, "Local Taxes May Challenge Cannabis Legalization in California," warns that state and local taxes may combine to threaten the government revenue expected from the sale of legalized cannabis and cannabis products. The recreational use of the drug will be legal in California starting Jan. 1 under Proposition 64, the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act, passed by voters last November.

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5US CA: San Francisco Pot Proposal Aims To Help Victims Of 'FailedWed, 01 Nov 2017
Source:San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Author:Swan, Rachel Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:11/06/2017

Each of San Francisco's 11 supervisors has called for "equity" in the city's cannabis laws, meaning they want to create a racially diverse industry that gives former drug offenders a shot at success.

On Wednesday, Supervisor Malia Cohen presented an ordinance to help the city achieve its social justice goals when sales of recreational marijuana become legal throughout the state in January. The city won't issue permits to sell recreational cannabis until an equity program is approved.

Cohen's proposal - modeled after a similar program that Oakland approved in March and another that's being considered in Los Angeles - would prioritize permits for dispensary operators with marijuana arrests or convictions between 1971 and 2009. Also eligible for priority would be entrepreneurs who committed other nonviolent crimes during that time period, or who earn 80 percent of San Francisco's area median income, or who were displaced from their homes within the past 22 years.

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6 US CA: California Slapping High Taxes On Marijuana, Causing StickerSun, 05 Nov 2017
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA)          Area:California Lines:103 Added:11/05/2017

California's legal marijuana marketplace is coming with a kaleidoscope of new taxes and fees that could influence where it's grown, how pot cookies and other munchies are produced and the price tag on just about everything.

Be ready for sticker shock.

On a retail level, it costs about $35 to buy a small bag of good quality medical marijuana in Los Angeles, enough to roll five or six joints.

But in 2018, when recreational sales take hold and additional taxes kick in, the cost of that same purchase in the new market is expected to increase at the retail counter to $50 or $60.

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7 US CA: Editorial: Can Los Angeles Repair The Damage Done By The WarSat, 04 Nov 2017
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA)          Area:California Lines:108 Added:11/04/2017

Make no mistake, the war on marijuana has not been colorblind. Despite national surveys showing that white people and black people use marijuana at approximately the same rates, blacks have over the years been nearly four times more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession than whites.

That disparity is as true in Los Angeles as it is elsewhere in the country. African Americans comprise less than 10% of the population in L.A. Yet between 2000 and 2017, blacks represented 40% of marijuana-related arrests. Latinos made up 44% of arrests. Whites made up only 16% of arrests, according to a city consultant's analysis of Los Angeles Police Department data.

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8US CA: Pot Farmers Fear Crops May Go Up In SmokeFri, 13 Oct 2017
Source:USA Today (US) Author:Hughes, Trevor Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:10/13/2017

CALISTOGA, Calif. - Marijuana farmers and dispensary owners across Northern California are nervously watching as wildfires burn through some of the state's prime cannabis growing areas and destroy valuable crops, which could drive up prices for consumers across the country.

"This is right smack in the middle of people's harvests," said Eli Melrod, the CEO of Solful Dispensary in Sebastopol, in northern California. "It couldn't have been worse timing, frankly."

A single marijuana plant can be worth up to $5,000, but pot growers can't get crop insurance like traditional farmers or the vintners whose grapevines tend to get most of the attention here.

Wildfires are burning across parts of Napa, Sonoma and Mendocino counties, which are known for both wine and marijuana, particularly among high-end consumers willing to pay a premium for the name.

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9 US CA: Hundreds Applied To Be On California's Pot Advisory CommitteeThu, 05 Oct 2017
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA) Author:McGreevy, Patrick Area:California Lines:37 Added:10/05/2017

With just three months left to draft new rules for marijuana sales in California, the state on Wednesday appointed a panel of industry members, health experts, law enforcement officials and union leaders to provide advice during the effort.

The 22-member Cannabis Advisory Committee will help the Bureau of Cannabis Control develop regulations on the cultivation, transport, testing and sale of medical and recreational marijuana, with state licenses scheduled to be issued starting Jan. 2.

"These individuals represent the diverse backgrounds of California and the cannabis industry and have the necessary experience to make the committee successful," said Dean R. Grafilo, director of the state Department of Consumer Affairs. He said hundreds of people applied for the panel.

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10US CA: California Marijuana Grow Houses Account For 75 Percent OfWed, 04 Oct 2017
Source:Fresno Bee, The (CA) Author:Branan, Brad Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:10/04/2017

If you are 21, you can grow marijuana in California. But the rules vary by city. Here is what's legal in Sacramento if you want to grow pot.

California's illegally grown marijuana, once largely produced in national forests and other outdoor locations, is increasingly found indoors, federal statistics show.

In 2016, authorities seized 313,000 plants from indoor operations in California, which made up 75 percent of all indoor plants taken nationwide, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

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11 US CA: San Diego Legalizes Supply Chain For Marijuana OperationsWed, 04 Oct 2017
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA) Author:Garrick, David Area:California Lines:69 Added:10/04/2017

Making indoor pot farms and manufacturing sites for edible products legal will boost the economy, create jobs and improve the quality and safety of local marijuana, City Council members said before approving the legislation in a 6-3 vote. (Oct. 4, 2017)

Making indoor pot farms and manufacturing sites for edible products legal will boost the economy, create jobs and improve the quality and safety of local marijuana, City Council members said before approving the legislation in a 6-3 vote. (Oct. 4, 2017)

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12US CA: Recreational Marijuana Sales Won't Start In January In SFTue, 26 Sep 2017
Source:San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Author:Swan, Rachel Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:09/28/2017

People eager to start buying recreational marijuana from shops in San Francisco when sales become legal throughout the state in January are going to have to wait a little longer.

The city won't issue permits to sell recreational marijuana until it passes new laws to regulate the industry and creates an equity program to help low-income entrepreneurs, people of color, and former drug offenders break into the market.

According to Supervisor Jeff Sheehy, who introduced an ordinance with proposed regulations at Tuesday's Board of Supervisors meeting, city officials still have no idea what that program will look like or how it will operate.

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13 US CA: Months Before California Allows The Sale Of Marijuana ForThu, 28 Sep 2017
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA) Author:McGreevy, Patrick Area:California Lines:69 Added:09/28/2017

Months before California allows the sale of marijuana for recreational use, the state has launched an education campaign about the drug, including highlighting the potential harms of cannabis for minors and pregnant women.

The state is scheduled to issue licenses starting Jan. 2 for growing and selling marijuana for recreational use, expanding a program that currently allows cannabis use for medical purposes.

In response, the California Department of Public Health has created a website to educate Californians about the drug and its impacts, including how to purchase and safely store cannabis.

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14 US CA: L.A. Is Set To Be A Hot Market For Marijuana SalesMon, 25 Sep 2017
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA) Author:Reyes, Emily Alpert Area:California Lines:182 Added:09/27/2017

The idea of alarms critics of the marijuana industry, who argue that such venues would become a nuisance and drag down property values.

The idea of alarms critics of the marijuana industry, who argue that such venues would become a nuisance and drag down property values.

Los Angeles lawmakers are laying the groundwork for what is widely expected to be one of the hottest markets for marijuana in the country, one that could bring more than $50 million in taxes to city coffers next year.

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15US CA: More Cannabis Businesses Could Be Coming To San JacintoSat, 23 Sep 2017
Source:Press-Enterprise (Riverside, CA) Author:Shultz, Craig Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:09/26/2017

When more cannabis businesses begin operating in San Jacinto, Councilman Andrew Kotyuk said residents don't need to be struck with a case of reefer madness.

"This is not Cheech and Chong," Kotyuk said. "This is a biotech doctorate and masters who work with highly trained technicians in a medical environment."

The City Council voted last week to increase the number of cannabis businesses from six to 16.

San Jacinto already has given preliminary approval to three license requests for outdoor cultivation and three more for indoor, which had been the limit. Those have gone to five companies, one that applied for both indoor and outdoor operations.

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16US CA: Editorial: Governments Wisely Moving To Regulate MarijuanaTue, 19 Sep 2017
Source:Press-Enterprise (Riverside, CA)          Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:09/20/2017

Just a couple of years ago, discussions of how to deal with marijuana in the Inland Empire were limited. Now, several Inland jurisdictions are considering opening up to marijuana businesses, an overdue development given the failure of prohibition and the anticipated availability of commercial sales of marijuana in 2018.

Late last month, the Riverside County Board of Supervisors voted to move forward with plans to draft regulations for marijuana businesses in the county's unincorporated areas. The move came after an ad-hoc committee of Supervisors Kevin Jeffries and Chuck Washington concluded that regulating and taxing marijuana "would enable the County to better manage an already growing and uncontrolled industry," as opposed to simply banning marijuana.

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17 US CA: Pot Edibles That Look Like Gummy Bears Should Be Illegal ToThu, 14 Sep 2017
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA) Author:McGreevy, Patrick Area:California Lines:31 Added:09/19/2017

California companies would be prohibited from selling marijuana edibles made in the shape of a person, animal, insect or fruit under a measure given final legislative approval Thursday and sent to the governor for consideration.

"We are trying to protect children," said Assemblyman Rudy Salas (D-Bakersfield), who authored AB 350.

Lawmakers said marijuana edibles have been made in the past to look like gummy bears or miniature pineapples. In April, some middle school students in San Diego got sick after a classmate sold them marijuana-laced gummy bears.

The state plans to begin issuing licenses for the sale of recreational marijuana to people 21 and older in January, so lawmakers have introduced several bills aimed at preventing pot from being marketed to minors.

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18 US CA: Olivia Newton-John Cannabis Treatment: She Uses Marijuana InSun, 03 Sep 2017
Source:Kansas City Star (MO) Author:Darby, Adam Area:California Lines:54 Added:09/03/2017

Singer Olivia Newton-John has used medicinal marijuana during her battle with breast cancer and plans to promote the drug this week to raise money for her wellness and research center.

"I will do what I can to encourage it. It's an important part of treatment, and it should be available," Newton-John, who announced a second battle with breast cancer in May, told News Corp. Australia.

"I use medicinal cannabis, which is really important for pain and healing," she said. "It's a plant that has been maligned for so long, and has so many abilities to heal."

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19 US CA: Ten Bills Regulating Pot In California Are Sidelined For TheFri, 01 Sep 2017
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA) Author:McGreevy, Patrick Area:California Lines:65 Added:09/01/2017

Ten bills aimed at regulating marijuana were shelved Friday by state lawmakers, giving California's new Bureau of Cannabis Control time to finish its own rules before lawmakers pile on with additional restrictions.

The bills held by the Senate Appropriations Committee without comment would have further regulated where pot can be used, how marijuana is marketed, the trademarking of products and would have required the state to produce a consumer guide.

The actions come as the state Bureau of Cannabis Control is preparing to begin issuing licenses and regulations for the growth, transport and sale of marijuana for medical and recreational use starting Jan. 2.

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20US CA: Legal Marijuana: Fresno City Council Passes Ban On PotThu, 31 Aug 2017
Source:Fresno Bee, The (CA) Author:Sheehan, Tim Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:08/31/2017

When it comes to buying pot for pleasure, Fresno won't be on the recreational map

Retail marijuana dispensaries and other businesses related to recreational use of marijuana will be barred from setting up shop in Fresno after the City Council voted 4-3 Thursday to prohibit such establishments.

Proposition 64, approved by California voters in November 2016, legalized the possession and recreational use of marijuana. It also legalized the sale of marijuana for recreational use starting Jan. 1, 2018 -- but gave cities and counties the authority to regulate or prohibit commercial cannabis operations in their jurisdictions.

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