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1 Canada: Column: The Cannabis Experience From The U.S. Tells Us TheTue, 29 May 2018
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Picard, Andre Area:Canada Lines:109 Added:06/01/2018

In 2012, Washington State voted to legalize marijuana. By 2014, the world's first system for legally growing, processing and retailing cannabis was operating.

As Canada prepares to go live with pot sales in a few months, what can we learn from four years of practical, hands-on experience in the western United States?

The first take-away is that all the fretting about the impact on children and teens is largely unwarranted.

Before legalization, 17 per cent of Grade 10 students in Washington State said they had smoked pot in the previous month. Four years of legal doobies later, 17 per cent of Grade 10 students say they have smoked pot in the previous month.

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2 Canada: Medicinal Cannabis Use Can Help Mitigate Symptoms Of PTSDThu, 31 May 2018
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Leeder, Jessica Area:Canada Lines:84 Added:05/31/2018

People who have post-traumatic stress disorder but do not medicate with cannabis are far more likely to suffer from severe depression and have suicidal thoughts than those who use marijuana, new national research says.

Based on cross-country data from Statistics Canada, the observational study by researchers at the British Columbia Centre for Substance Use shows that Canadians with PTSD who use medicinal cannabis are 60 per cent to 65 per cent less likely to have major depressive episodes or thoughts of suicide compared with those who do not treat their symptoms with medical marijuana. The study is the first national-scale indication of the effectiveness of cannabis at mitigating the hallmark symptoms of PTSD. It was presented on Thursday at the annual conference of the Canadian Public Health Association in Montreal.

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3 US FL: Sarasota County Moves To Ban Recreational MarijuanaWed, 30 May 2018
Source:Sarasota Herald-Tribune (FL) Author:Rodriguez, Nicole Area:Florida Lines:53 Added:05/30/2018

SARASOTA COUNTY -- The county is moving to ban the cultivation and sale of recreational marijuana if the practice is ever legalized in Florida.

The County Commission last week unanimously voted to authorize its staff to draft an amendment to current county laws to prohibit the growing, processing and sale of recreational marijuana should it ever become legal in the state. Commission Chair Nancy Detert was absent for the vote.

The move comes several weeks after the commission approved the county's first two medical marijuana dispensaries. The commission on April 10 voted to allow Trulieve to open a medical marijuana dispensary in a freestanding building in the Venice Pines Shopping Plaza on Jacaranda Boulevard -- the county's first approved dispensary. A day later, the board approved a request by Sarasota-based AltMed to open a medical marijuana dispensary at 5077 Fruitville Road in the Cobia Bay shopping plaza.

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4 US NC: Proposed Bill Raises Amount Of Pot Leading To ChargesFri, 25 May 2018
Source:Charlotte Observer (NC) Author:Ward, Myah Area:North Carolina Lines:49 Added:05/25/2018

State Rep. Kelly Alexander, D-Mecklenburg, introduced a bill this week that would significantly increase the amount of marijuana a person could have in his or her possession for personal use before being charged with a misdemeanor or felony.

Under Alexander's bill, a person would not be charged with a misdemeanor unless he or she had more than 4 ounces of marijuana. Under current law, possession of more than a half-ounce is a misdemeanor. A person would have to have more than 16 ounces -- more than 10 times the current limit -- to be charged with a felony.

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5 CN BC: Craft Cannabis Growers In B.C. Sound Alarm Over Survival OfFri, 18 May 2018
Source:Nelson Star (CN BC) Author:Kane, Laura Area:British Columbia Lines:98 Added:05/23/2018

Open letter sent to federal Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould and her B.C. counterpart David Eby

Jessika Villano sells a potent array of dried cannabis, oils, salves and even bud-infused bath bombs at Buddha Barn Medicinal Society - all grown and processed by small-scale British Columbia producers.

Villano doesn't want that to change when marijuana is legalized later this year, and she's among the proponents of local craft cannabis who are pushing the federal and provincial governments to ensure its survival.

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6 US: Cannabis Start-Ups Pay Taxes The Hard WaySun, 20 May 2018
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Weed, Julie Area:United States Lines:137 Added:05/20/2018

Charity Gates phones her contact each month to make an appointment. When the time comes, she and a colleague drive around Denver, collecting stacks of $20 bills she has stored in various safes since the last delivery. She counts the cash and places it in small duffel or sling bags, carrying up to $20,000 at a time.

She then drives to a gray two-story office building downtown and parks on the street or in a pay lot nearby. Ms. Gates fears being robbed, so the two dress simply to avoid attention and use different vehicles and delivery days to vary their routine. "We hold our breath every time we go," Ms. Gates said.

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7 US FL: Judge Weighs Ban On Patients Smoking Medical MarijuanaWed, 16 May 2018
Source:Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, FL) Author:Kam, Dara Area:Florida Lines:111 Added:05/16/2018

Cathy Jordan credits pot with helping her defeat the odds in the battle against Lou Gehrig's disease she's waged for more than 30 years.

And although she can now legally obtain the cannabis treatment she's relied on for decades, Jordan is prohibited from what she and her doctors swear is the best way for her to consume her medicine -- smoking joints.

Jordan is among the plaintiffs challenging a state law that bans smoking pot as a route of administration for the hundreds of thousands of patients who are eligible for medical marijuana treatment in Florida.

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8 US PA: Now That Marijuana Is Legal, Could Magic Mushrooms Be Next?Wed, 16 May 2018
Source:Philadelphia Daily News (PA) Author:Ostrov, Barbara Feder Area:Pennsylvania Lines:149 Added:05/16/2018

In Oregon and Denver, where marijuana is legal for recreational use, activists are now pushing toward a psychedelic frontier: "magic mushrooms."

Groups in both states are sponsoring ballot measures that would eliminate criminal penalties for possession of the mushrooms whose active ingredient, psilocybin, can cause hallucinations, euphoria and changes in perception. They point to research showing that psilocybin might be helpful for people suffering from depression or anxiety.

"We don't want individuals to lose their freedom over something that's natural and has health benefits," said Kevin Matthews, the campaign director of Denver for Psilocybin, the group working to decriminalize magic mushrooms in Colorado's capital.

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9 US: Sessions Further Complicates Medical Marijuana ResearchFri, 11 May 2018
Source:Ft. Worth Star-Telegram (TX) Author:Irby, Kate Area:United States Lines:121 Added:05/11/2018

Amid budding efforts to research the medical benefits of marijuana, a simple problem has emerged -- how do you research marijuana if no one can produce it under federal law?

Despite a solution proposed in mid-2016, which allowed the Drug Enforcement Administration to approve marijuana manufacturers, only the University of Mississippi has been approved, despite dozens of applications to do so. And there's no sign the DEA intends to approve others anytime soon.

Advocates seem to blame one person for the delays: Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Ian Prior, spokesman for the Department of Justice, declined to comment on the issue.

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10 US PA: Pa. Lawmaker Asks To Erase Marijuana Convictions For PatientsTue, 08 May 2018
Source:Philadelphia Daily News (PA) Author:Wood, Sam Area:Pennsylvania Lines:37 Added:05/11/2018

A Pennsylvania legislator introduced a bill Monday that would give medical marijuana patients a chance of expunging a conviction of marijuana possession if the charge resulted from their use of cannabis for medical purposes.

The bill is sponsored by State Sen. Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery), and does not have any support yet from Republicans who control the legislature. To be expunged, patients would have to prove they had a doctor's diagnosis for one of the 21 approved serious health conditions at the time of the conviction. The patient would also have to provide evidence they were using cannabis to treat the condition.

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11 US MA: Can The Mass. Marijuana Industry Help Heal CommunitiesSat, 05 May 2018
Source:Boston Globe (MA) Author:Adams, Dan Area:Massachusetts Lines:184 Added:05/05/2018

From Wall Street to Silicon Valley, industries across America are struggling to redress decades of discrimination and boost the ranks of minorities and the disenfranchised in their workforces.

But what if you could design an industry from scratch? Could you somehow bake in diversity and fairness?

We're about to find out.

Last month, Massachusetts rolled out the country's first statewide marijuana industry "equity" program, giving preferential treatment to people who are typically marginalized by the business world.

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12 US PA: Temple U. Researchers Take A Leading Role In Medical MarijuanaMon, 30 Apr 2018
Source:Philadelphia Daily News (PA) Author:Wood, Sam Area:Pennsylvania Lines:116 Added:05/04/2018

Pennsylvania is gearing up to become a global center for cannabis research. Yet for more than a decade, Philadelphia has been on the forefront of investigations into the medicinal uses of marijuana.

Sara Jane Ward has built a reputation exploring marijuana's effects on pain and addiction using animals at Temple University's Lewis Katz School of Medicine.

Ward and her colleague Ronald Tuma, a professor of physiology and neurosurgery, lead a team of 10 researchers at Temple's Center for Substance Abuse in North Philadelphia.

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13 Canada: CREA Calls For Moratorium On Homegrown MarijuanaMon, 30 Apr 2018
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Ligaya, Armina Area:Canada Lines:102 Added:05/04/2018

Canada'€™s real estate industry organization is calling for a moratorium on growing recreational marijuana at home until the government sets out nationwide regulations for the practice.

Ottawa'€™s proposed marijuana legalization regulations allow Canadians to grow up to four marijuana plants at their residences. Medical users are already allowed to grow at home after a federal court ruled in 2016 that the government cannot ban patients from growing their own cannabis.

However, the Canadian Real Estate Association said the ban it is requesting applies to home cultivation for recreational users when marijuana legalized later this year.

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14US CA: Cannabis Cup: Sacramento Hosts First Marijuana Festival InFri, 04 May 2018
Source:Sacramento Bee (CA) Author:Harvey, Barbara Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:05/04/2018

A cloud of smoke hung over Cal Expo Friday afternoon as thousands gathered for the High Times Cannabis Cup, the first permitted event in California to allow recreational use of marijuana.

Organizers expected upwards of 15,000 people over the course of the two-day festival, which boasts musical performances from acclaimed artists, including Lauryn Hill, Lil Wayne, Gucci Mane, Rich The Kid, Cypress Hill, Rick Ross and Ludacris.

The event was at risk of becoming a music-only festival until the Sacramento City Council approved a license for on-site consumption and sales in a 6-2 vote Tuesday. Weeks earlier, a similar High Times event had its permit denied by the San Bernardino City Council just before it was scheduled to take place.

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15US TX: Texas Family Fights To Broaden Medical Marijuana Rules ForWed, 02 May 2018
Source:Houston Chronicle (TX) Author:Najarro, Ileana Area:Texas Lines:Excerpt Added:05/02/2018

"He was beautiful," said his mother, Bonnie. "He was perfect."

But when Micah turned 3, he began lining up his toy cars in a row and just staring at them. His limited vocabulary became more limited. He forgot how to go potty.

Jensen, 47, quit her job as an executive assistant to take care of and homeschool him.

Early one morning, she felt something shudder in her bed. Beside her, Micah trembled uncontrollably and she saw his skin turn a deep shade of blue and purple. He gasped for air.

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16US LA: Medical Marijuana Bills Clear Another Hurdle, Head To TheWed, 02 May 2018
Source:Times-Picayune, The (New Orleans, LA) Author:Clark, Maria Area:Louisiana Lines:Excerpt Added:05/02/2018

A group of Louisiana parents of children with severe autism had cause for celebration Wednesday (May 2) as a bill (HB 627) that expands medical marijuana as a treatment option for the condition cleared another hurdle through the legislature.

It was one of two medical marijuana medicals aimed at expanding the patient base in Louisiana that passed through the Senate Health and Welfare committee. The other bill (HB 579) authored by Rep. Ted James, D-Baton Rouge, adds glaucoma, post-traumatic stress disorder, chronic pain and Parkinson's Disease to the roster of conditions already approved for treatment with medical marijuana. Both bills will head to the Senate for a full vote.

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17 US: More Businesses Are Mellowing Out Over Hiring Marijuana SmokersWed, 02 May 2018
Source:Boston Globe (MA) Author:Rugaber, Christopher Area:United States Lines:198 Added:05/02/2018

WASHINGTON - FPI Management, a property company in California, wants to hire dozens of people. Factories from New Hampshire to Michigan need workers. Hotels in Las Vegas are desperate to fill jobs.

Those employers and many others are quietly taking what once would have been a radical step: They're dropping marijuana from the drug tests they require of prospective employees. Marijuana testing - a fixture at large American employers for at least 30 years - excludes too many potential workers, experts say, at a time when filling jobs is more challenging than it's been in nearly two decades.

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18 US CA: Pot To Treat Autism? UC San Diego Scientists To Conduct StudyThu, 26 Apr 2018
Source:State, The (SC) Author:Magness, Josh Area:California Lines:105 Added:05/01/2018

It's already used to treat epilepsy in some children -- and now researchers are examining whether a marijuana compound could also be helpful for those with autism.

The University of California San Diego announced in a news release that it will be conducting a test on children with "severe" autism to see if cannabidiol, commonly referred to as CBD, can help treat some of their symptoms.

The research, which will involve 30 children, was made possible thanks to a $4.7 million donation from the Ray and Tye Noorda Foundation in Lindon, Utah, according to The San Diego Tribune. The goal is to see if CBD can lessen seizures, anxiety and self-harming.

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19 US NY: CNN's Gupta Urges Sessions To Back Medical MarijuanaThu, 26 Apr 2018
Source:Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)          Area:New York Lines:27 Added:05/01/2018

NEW YORK -- CNN's medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta has taken the unusual step of publicly urging Attorney General Jeff Sessions to reconsider his opposition to medical marijuana, particularly as a way to fight the opioid epidemic.

Gupta wrote a public letter to Sessions, saying that he had changed his mind on the use of medical marijuana, and he's certain Sessions can, too. Research and talking to people who say marijuana has eased pain and weaned them off opioids convinced him.

It's an unusual step for a journalist to move into advocacy, by sending a letter to the attorney general. But Gupta says he believes this falls into the category of telling truth to power.

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20US CA: Dianne Feinstein Drops Hard Opposition To Recreational PotTue, 01 May 2018
Source:Sacramento Bee (CA) Author:Irby, Kate Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:05/01/2018

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a longtime opponent of legalizing recreational marijuana, now says the federal government should not interfere in California's legal marijuana market.

In comments to McClatchy Tuesday -- in the middle of a 2018 campaign for her seat in a state that has settled into the legal pot market -- the California Democrat said she was open to considering federal protection for state-legalized marijuana.

Feinstein's office said her views changed after meetings with constituents, particularly those with young children who have benefited from medical marijuana use.

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