Tag: Legalization

With Emergency Rules, Vegas Gears Up for Nevada’s July 1 Cannabis Launch

With the July 1 launch of Nevada’s adult-use cannabis market less than a week away, state regulators in Nevada are rushing to make sure all regulations are in place before doors open at dispensaries—some as early as the stroke of midnight.

Officials in Clark County and Las Vegas have approved a combined 37 dual-use permits for medical marijuana dispensaries to begin selling adult-use cannabis. And yes, there’s one on the Strip.

Saturday’s festivities were up in the air as recently as last week, after a Carson City judge ruled in favor of alcohol wholesalers who sued, arguing that the ballot measure approved by voters in November gives them exclusive rights to cannabis distribution licenses in the state for 18 months.

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But according to state Department of Taxation spokeswoman Stephanie Kapstein, as long as retail stores sell products that meet packaging and labeling requirements that were adopted at an emergency meeting held Monday, the July 1 launch can proceed as planned.

Not all areas will see stores open, however. Some cities have enacted local bans on adult-use cannabis. In Henderson, for example, the City Council in February approved a six-month moratorium on adult-use cannabis sales.

Emergency Regulations Adopted

The Nevada Tax Commission held a meeting Monday to adopt emergency regulations  that govern adult-use marijuana packaging and labeling.

Some regulations were already in place. Gov. Brian Sandoval had already approved rules that bar cannabis products that appeal to kids and require labels indicating the amount of THC contained in a product.

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The new regulations, according to the Las Vegas Sun, prohibit any cannabis packaging that depicts cartoon characters, mascots, action figures, balloons, or toys that might appeal to children. Advertising also can’t depict anyone under the age of 21 and cannot appear in publications or other media if the audience is more than 30% children. Advertising at sports or entertainment events at which people younger than 21 are allowed to attend will also be prohibited.

And in addition to labels indicating THC levels, products must also carry warnings against driving while under the influence.

The full emergency regulations, which are good for 120 days, are included in a PDF at the end of this article.

State Moving Forward With Licenses

Despite the legal hiccup with the alcohol distributors last week, Taxation Department spokeswoman Klapstein says officials are moving ahead full bore into day one of legalization.

More than a hundred letters have been sent to medical marijuana businesses conditionally approving them to join the adult-use market, according to the Record Courier. That includes cultivators, processors, edibles producers, and dispensaries across the state.

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Medical marijuana dispensaries will be able to sell adult-use cannabis if they have more in stock than they need for medical cardholders. Klapstein said auditors will be on the lookout to make sure dispensaries don’t stock up on excess cannabis before Saturday’s launch.

Yes, There Will Be a Dispensary on The Strip

Party animals in Las Vegas this weekend will be pleased to learn that cannabis can be purchased at a few dispensaries that are either on the Las Vegas Strip or just a stone’s throw away.

Essence Vegas, which has two locations in the city, will be open to customers at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday. Adults can visit either the Essence-Strip or Essence West location.

Reef, another shop near the Strip, will also launch adult-use sales immediately after midnight. The store has announced that State Sen. Tick Segerblom, who has championed legal cannabis in the Silver State, is scheduled to make the first purchase of the night.

Las Vegas ReLeaf will also be open on July 1. The store is located less than a block away from the Strip.

Not near Vegas? Visit Leafly’s dispensary finder to locate a Nevada cannabis store near you.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Growing Demand Drives Flurry of Aussie–Israeli Cannabis Partnerships

An Israeli company will partner with an Australian one to help boost clinical education opportunities around medical cannabis. The two companies, iCAN: Israel-Cannabis and Melbourne-based LeafCann have announced a joint-venture to collaborate on a range of initiatives including medicinal cannabis research, product development, and education.

The venture will be called iCAN: Australia, and, according to LeafCann Group CEO Jaroslav Boublik, the companies will “develop global clinical education initiatives to bridge the gap between public demand and practitioner education.”

Despite significant interest in medical cannabis in Australia, a slow rollout and onerous application process has frustrated patients seeking access to treatment. Nationwide, only 41 patients in the country have been prescribed medical cannabis through an authorized prescriber.

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With the move, LeafCann becomes the latest of several Australian medical cannabis companies to partner with Israeli firms and researchers. MMJ Phytotech has a license agreement with the Israeli Yissum Research Development Co. as well as research links with Hadassah University Hospital in Jerusalem. And on the education front, the Israeli cannabis start-up accelerator Cann10 recently announced that it will be running Australia’s first medical school course on cannabis at Deakin University.

For iCAN: Australia’s part, the joint venture will develop educational programs within Australia’s Registered Training Organisation framework. According to an iCAN spokesperson, that means it will be eligible for healthcare workers’ required continuing professional development credits, will be endorsed by medical colleges and the government, and will also be tax deductible for medical professionals to attend.

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The programs, meant to address what’s seen as dearth of formal medical cannabis education opportunities in the country, “are designed by highly credentialed medical educators and will provide training that contributes to recognised professional certification and diplomas for Medical Practitioners including GPs, specialists, nurse practitioners, nurses, aged care workers and pharmacists,” spokesperson Daniel Goldstein said in a statement. “We will look to take this curriculum outside of Australia as well and become qualified for continuing education credits in different geographies.”

Education is just one focus of the partnership, which will also “bring world-class cannabis products to the Australian market” according to Saul Kaye, CEO of iCAN: Israel-Cannabis. That’s about as specific as the companies have been on the product front. The joint venture has tight-lipped so far, saying only that “Our products will cover a range of indications and are being prioritized according to the state of the clinical science, critical demand and regulatory limitations.”

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Although it isn’t growing cannabis yet, the Australian half of the partnership, LeafCann, has already submitted licences for cultivation, manufacturing and R&D in Victoria, and it plans to seek licenses for further operations in Tasmania. If Australia decides to allow medical cannabis exports—as the Office of Drug Control has signaled it will—the joint venture will look to offer its products globally.

As regulations settle and ease in Australia, partnerships like that of iCAN: Australia are likely to become more common as companies in Israel, a cannabis R&D leader, aims to capitalize on a growing industry in Australia. In update delivered last week, Bill Turner, the head of Australia’s Office of Drug Control, said that 90 manufacturing and processing license applications had been received. Although the government has been accepting applications since November 2016, almost a third of all applications received so far have been submitted in the past month and a half.

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The crush of activity suggests that despite ongoing regulatory uncertainty and the volatility of cannabis penny stocks, the Australian medical cannabis industry is still attracting eager investment.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Massachusetts Update: Sorting out the Cannabis Conundrum

BOSTON (AP) — After a week of sharp divisions and heated rhetoric over the future of the state’s recreational marijuana law, it’s now up to a conference committee of six legislators to try and sort everything out.

On one hand, there’s a House bill that infuriated pro-legalization activists by proposing a major overhaul of the voter-approved law. On the other, a more restrained Senate bill won praise from the groups behind the November ballot question.

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Democratic Rep. Mark Cusack, the House bill’s lead author, suggested before the votes that the two chambers were in about 80 percent agreement on their respective approaches.

There is, in fact, more common ground than readily apparent given the dialogue of the past week.

The House repealed the ballot question and wrote an entirely new law; the Senate keeps the existing law while offering changes.

Neither the House nor Senate changed the current legal possession limit of up to 1 ounce of cannabis or home growing provisions that permit up to a dozen plants per household.

Each place state oversight of recreational and medical marijuana under the Cannabis Control Commission, which would become larger and ostensibly more independent than under the ballot initiative that puts it under control of the state treasurer.

Both bills allow medical marijuana dispensaries to transition into for-profit companies, but eliminate the head start those companies had been given over other applicants for recreational licenses. Both set guidelines for the testing of all marijuana products by independent labs, and standards for packaging, labeling and marketing.

Both adopt diversity measures designed to level the playing field for minority and women cannabis entrepreneurs, and address the historically disproportionate impact the “war on drugs” had on minority neighborhoods. And with no currently reliable test for marijuana impairment, both ask a task force to study issues around driving under the influence.

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Similarities aside, barriers to reaching a deal by the Legislature’s self-imposed July 1 deadline are many.

A few:

“Repeal and Replace” or “Amend and Improve”

Perhaps the most fundamental difference between the competing bills: The House repealed the ballot question and wrote an entirely new law; the Senate keeps the existing law while offering changes.

More than just legislative sausage-making, it’s a central question conference committee members must resolve before doing much else. Do they start from scratch as the House did or keep on the books — with modest revisions — the law 1.8 million Massachusetts voters approved? The answer may well dictate the parameters of the final bill.

High on Taxes?

The sizeable gulf between marijuana tax rates — 28 percent in the House, 12 percent in the Senate — garnered the most public attention during the past week’s debates.

It may also be the easiest issue to resolve should lawmakers simply agree to split the difference. But the underlying issues are more complicated.

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Senators insisted on a tax low enough to encourage consumers to buy from licensed marijuana stores, thereby crushing the underground market for the drug. House lawmakers sought a tax high enough to pay for what the bill described as a “rigorous regulatory scheme” for the cannabis industry. The House also set an ambitious goal of directing $50 million in marijuana revenues to substance abuse treatment programs.

It’s unclear if a compromise tax of about 20 percent satisfies either or both sets of objectives.

Power to the People?

The House grants local governing bodies — city councils and town meetings for example — power to ban or limit retail shops from opening in their communities. The Senate bill leaves unchanged the current law that requires a voter referendum to shut the door on marijuana establishments.

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There is no readily apparent compromise, so barring a creative solution one side must give on this issue.

If No Agreement, What Then?

Failure by legislators to reach a deal by next Saturday would simply leave the voter-approved law intact, and allow Treasurer Deb Goldberg to begin appointing the Cannabis Control Commission. But a possible scenario in the event of deadlock would be to have conferees separate out and approve items they have consensus on, while resolving to address thornier issues further down the road.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Toronto Police Raid Seven City Dispensaries

Exactly one week after Toronto Mayor John Tory announced impending crackdowns on the city’s illegal-yet-plentiful cannabis dispensaries, Toronto police made good on the promise, executing a series of dispensary raids across the city yesterday morning.

The targets: all seven Toronto storefronts of the BC-based Canna Clinic, along with five Toronto residences and three Vancouver residences.

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Details on the dispensary raids come from the Toronto Star, which reports “[o]fficers at the scene said they were going to arrest the staff members and seize all illegal drugs.” (Also seized: dispensary workers’ cell phones and all money connected to sales.) Staff members exiting one of the raided storefronts told the Star they expected the clinic to reopen within the next few days.

Ultimately, six people were charged in yesterday’s raids, and are due in court today. “Toronto police did not provide information about the charges those individuals will face,” reports the Georgia Straight.

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Stay tuned for more on the raids and the fallout. For now, please enjoy this million-dollar quote obtained by the Star, from a Toronto cop involved in the raids: “It’s not like we want to be doing this, it’s a waste of everyone’s time.”


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

DC Cannabis-Dealing Arrests Back to Pre-Legalization Levels

Washington, DC, voters legalized cannabis possession and cultivation in 2014, but—thanks to Congress blocking the District from launching a regulated market—sales remain illegal. The upshot? Over the past year, arrests for illegal sales have climbed to pre-legalization levels.

In 2016, 220 people were arrested for dealing the drug, according to data from the Metropolitan Police Department. That’s more than double the 2013 total of 99.

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“There’s a hefty demand, the medical program has a high barrier, and we don’t have stores,” , the DC Cannabis Campaign’s co-founder Adam Eidinger told US News reporter Steven Nelson, who first reported the story. “Until we have stores, this is something police—if they want to—can pursue and get lots and lots of arrests.”

Some are concerned those arrests could be disproportionally hitting low-income people and people of color. US News reports that at least three of the arrests for distribution followed $20 stings by police in some of the capital’s poorest neighborhoods.

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According to data from the Drug Policy Alliance, DC police have arrested 78 people for distribution this year as of April 5, putting the District on pace to surpass last year’s number by far.

Public consumption arrests have also been skyrocketing since 2014. That year there were 114 arrests for public consumption. That number jumped to 142 in 2015 and to 402 in 2016.

Arrests for possession, however, have plummeted in the years following legalization. In 2014 there were 1,575 arrests for possession. By  2015, that number dropped to 55. In 2016, it fell to 32.

Type of Arrest 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 (As of April 5)
Distribution 248 333 160 99 108 80 220 78
Possession With Intent to Distribute 1,132 1,170 891 802 461 169 175 79
Possession 4,016 4,256 3,085 2,549 1,575 55 32 11
Public Consumption 0 0 0 0 114 142 402 80
Total 5,396 5,759 4,136 3,450 2,258 446 829 248

Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Massachusetts House Passes Controversial Cannabis Bill, Setting up Showdown

BOSTON—Late Wednesday night, members of the Massachusetts House of Representatives voted 126–28 to pass a bill that would essentially repeal and replace key provisions of Question 4, the ballot initiative that 1.8 million voters passed in November to legalize adult-use cannabis.

Not only have the changes in the House bill angered legalization advocates and Question 4’s authors, they’ve also set up a showdown in the state Legislature. The Senate’s draft bill, which adheres more closely to the ballot measure and aims to limit changes to the voter-approved language, was being debated on Thursday.

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Lawmakers now face a looming deadline if retail operations are to roll out on time for the proposed July 2018 launch date. And if the glacial pace of Massachusetts lawmaking is any teacher, more delays are likely. Even the special session seemed to move at a snail’s pace.

“At 5 p.m., more than 5 hours after start of session, the House just began working through the 118 amendments to pot bill,” reporter Colin A. Young tweeted Wednesday evening.

Both the House and the Senate must debate proposed changes before presenting a final version to Gov. Charlie Baker to sign by a self-imposed deadline of June 30.

Supporters of the voter-approved law favor the Senate’s draft bill, co-sponsored by Sen. Patricia Jehlen (D-Somerville). Jehlen has urged lawmakers to yield to what the electorate voted to enact. “We are not starting from scratch,” she said at a press conference last week. “We are starting from a law that was passed by the voters. It is law, it was passed in a high turnout election, and we need to justify the amendments we make to it.”

“Since when do we tax medicine in the Commonwealth?”

Peter Bernard, Massachusetts Grower Advocacy Council

Among other amendments, the House-passed bill would more than double the retail marijuana tax from 12% to 28%, establish a tax on medical marijuana, take full oversight of the industry away from the state treasurer, and create a five-member Cannabis Control Commission to regulate medical and recreational cannabis, with another member within the state attorney general’s office.

The House bill would also shift power to ban cannabis shops and grow operations away from voters. While Question 4 outlines a public voter referendum system to enact bans, the House bill instead grants that power to politicians and municipal officials, such as boards of selectmen, aldermen, and city councilors.

In a statement about the House bill, Speaker Robert DeLeo (D-Winthrop) said it “reflects a commitment to legalizing adult-use marijuana while upholding our duty to ensure safety and effective management.”

“In addition to the rigorous product testing and security measures, I believe that the independence of the Cannabis Control Commission will allow this new industry to be implemented in a safe and efficient manner,” he said.

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In many sections, the House bill includes either deviations or completely new language from the original ballot measure. Most was written behind closed doors. The process has enraged legalization advocates, who blasted the new bill.

“The House tonight repealed and replaced the historic measure enacted by Massachusetts residents last November,” Jim Borghesani, of the Yes on 4 Coalition, said ina statement. “They did it with virtually no public discussion or debate. Their bill is wrong on taxes, wrong on local control, weak on social justice and irresponsible on regulatory efficiency.”

He called the measure “a far cry from what voters overwhelmingly approved last year.”

Rep. Mike Connolly (D-Middlesex), a vocal legalization supporter, said in a statement after the vote: “I just voted ‘No’ on the House marijuana bill. Overall, it strays too far from the provisions of last year’s ballot question. My expectation is that the Senate will soon adopt a better version of this legislation, and I hope the final law will be more reflective of the Senate version.”

At a “Kill The Bill” rally Wednesday on the steps of the State House, longtime activist and Question 4 co-author Bill Downing echoed that statement. The Senate bill isn’t perfect, he said, but it’s by far closer to the ballot measure than the House version.

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“We’re told by our legislators almost universally that ‘Question 4 was poorly written,’” he said, addressing the crowd. “They said ‘Question 4 was written by the cannabis industry.’ It was not. It was written by me … and a bunch of other people who all worked really hard to make a very fine piece of legislation, and it would have worked beautifully if it hadn’t been messed with.”

“After their claims of having written legislation so poorly,” he added, “to see this House bill come out the way it is written is truly shocking. I doubt that the leaders of the House even understand the language in this bill.”

The House bill is actually a revised version of a previous House draft that, when introduced, drew so much blowback from advocates and officials it was eventually pulled by Speaker DeLeo. In spite of the revisions, the version the House passed last night stirred up rancor and disappointment among critics.

Peter Bernard, of the Massachusetts Grower Advocacy Council, voiced outrage at the proposed changes during the morning rally. Beyond railing against the “incredibly ridiculous 28% tax they want to levy” on adult-use cannabis, he blasted the bill’s proposed 6.25% tax on medical marijuana.

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“Since when do we tax medicine in the Commonwealth?” he asked, predicting that the proposed tax rates on medical and adult-use cannabis would drive both patients and consumers back to the illegal market.

But the most important element of Question 4 to protect, Bernard said, is homegrow. “Both the Senate and the House bills look like they don’t mess with it, but the House bill that we have to kill does,” he explained. “Keeping them from messing with this is something we worked on pretty hard this year.” Bernard said he even took several lawmakers to different home-grow locations to educate them on the matter.

Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson, a legal cannabis supporter and current candidate for mayor, was also at Wednesday’s rally, where he was particularly concerned with language asserting the state could deny business licenses to applicants who have “affiliates or close associates that would not qualify for a license.”

Jackson likened the language to McCarthyism.

“That provision is not even in the language in the state of Massachusetts for alcohol,” he said. “So for them to actually add that over and above is again going to put us in a position where we will not have diversity.”

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Jackson pointed to state statistics as proof that the state’s cannabis laws historically have led to racist outcomes. “We’re a state where, from 2006 to 2016, if you were a black guy, you had a 330% increased chance of getting arrested for possession of cannabis—which was legal at the time—and a 500% increased chance of arrest for distribution.”

The voter-approved ballot question was written to help address that and other social justice issues, such as the expungement of cannabis convictions. “We now,” said Jackson, “have a Legislature who is trying to undercut that.”

Indeed, lawmakers sought to remove a so-called equity provision designed to address racial injustice, but later Wednesdday dropped the effort in the face of pushback from minority caucuses and speakers such as Jackson.

The full text of the bill, H 3768, is available online. At the time of publication, the Senate was still debating proposed amendments to its version of the bill.

Here is the outcome of Wednesday night’s vote:

Unknown


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Vermont House Blocks Marijuana Legalization Compromise Bill

MONTPELIER, VT: Members of the House voted Wednesday to block a marijuana legalization compromise bill, H. 511, from further consideration this legislative session.

The vote came after Senate members approved the bill, which eliminated civil and criminal penalties for the private possession and cultivation of small quantities of marijuana.

Republican Gov. Phil Scott — who had vetoed an earlier version of the bill in May — had also recently expressed his support for the revised legislation.

Further action on the bill during this week’s special veto session required the votes of three-quarters of the House. But only a majority voted to take action on the bill, with almost all Republican House members voting ‘no.’

If enacted, the bill would have permitted adults to legally possess up to one ounce of cannabis and to grow up two mature plants at home.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Vermont Legalization Push Falls Flat, Dead Till 2018

For the fifth time in two years, the Vermont Senate passed a bill that would legalize adult-use cannabis only to see it fizzle out in the House.

During a special veto session Wednesday evening, House Republicans blocked consideration of the legalization bill, S 22, delaying further action on the issue until January.

The measure needed 107 House votes but only received 78. Sixty-three members voted against the plan. The measure was being considered during the special session following a veto by Gov. Phil Scott.

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The bill would have allowed people 21 and older to possess up to an ounce of cannabis and up to six total cannabis plants, two of which could be mature. It would also have removed civil penalties.

When Scott vetoed the bill, he indicated his desire for tougher criminal penalties for selling cannabis to minors as well as for consuming cannabis in the presence of minors. He also called for stiffer penalties for those caught driving under the influence of cannabis.

The revised version of the bill included those changes, clarifying penalties for people who provided cannabis to minors or who consume in a vehicle. The new version would have also expanded the membership and scope of a study commission, which Scott wanted put in place, that would have studied the possibility of a opening a legal cannabis market in the state.

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Nearly all of the House Republicans, who hold 53 seats in the House, voted against considering the cannabis measure during the special session.

“Everybody in this state understands that marijuana is going to become law in Vermont at some point,” said House Republican Leader Don Turner, R-Milton, speaking at a party caucus, according to the Burlington Free Press.

“Someday it’s going to be here,” Turner said. “But is this the time? I don’t know.”

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Vermont Senate Passes Marijuana Legalization Compromise Bill

MONTPELIER, VT — Another bill that would make marijuana legal for adults in Vermont was approved by the Senate on Wednesday, the first day of a two-day veto session.

House Bill 511 reflects a compromise between legislative leaders and Gov. Phil Scott, who vetoed a similar bill, S. 22, in late May. It will now go the House, where it is unclear if a substantial number of House Republicans will agree to waive rules and allow its consideration during the veto session.

A three-quarters vote of the House will be required for the bill to be taken up on Thursday. If the House does not pass the bill during the veto session, H. 511 could receive a vote when the House next convenes.

The legalization language was added as an amendment to H. 511, a bill dealing with highway safety that had already passed the House. It would eliminate Vermont’s civil penalty for adults possessing one ounce or less of marijuana beginning in July 2018 and remove penalties for possession of up to two mature marijuana plants and up to four immature plants. It would also create a study commission to develop legislation to regulate and tax marijuana for adult use. The amended bill would extend the time allotted by S. 22 for the commission to submit its report, add additional agency directors and the defender general to the commission, and increase penalties for dispensing marijuana to minors or exposing them to marijuana smoke in cars.

“Vermont is poised to make history by becoming the first state in which the legislature and governor end the disastrous policy of marijuana prohibition. Just over a year from now, adults will have the same freedoms to grow and possess cannabis that our neighbors in Maine and Massachusetts enjoy,” said Matt Simon, New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project. “The question is no longer ‘if’ Vermont will stop penalizing adult cannabis consumers, but ‘when’.”

“There is no good reason for the House to delay passage of this modest and sensible legislation,” Simon said. “Now that Gov. Scott has agreed with the House and Senate that marijuana should be legal for adult use, House Republicans should follow the governor’s lead and vote to advance this compromise. Failing to waive the rules will only mean the marijuana regulatory commission has less time to do its important work.”

Fifty-seven percent of Vermont voters support allowing adults 21 and older to possess and grow limited amounts of marijuana, according to a statewide survey of 755 registered voters conducted in March by Public Policy Polling. Only 39% are opposed.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Mexico Legalizes Medical Marijuana

A decree issued by Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto today confirmed that Mexico has legalized cannabis for medicinal use after overwhelming support from Mexico’s Lower House of Congress.

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Pena Nieto was once a vehement opponent of cannabis legalization, but has since called for a re-examination of global drug policy after a nationwide public debate on legalization in early 2016. “So far, the solutions [to control drugs and crime] implemented by the international community have been frankly insufficient,” Peña Nieto told the 2016 United Nations General Assembly Special Sessions in April 2016. “We must move beyond prohibition to effective prevention.”

Mexican President Enrique Peña NietoMexican President Enrique Peña Nieto By PresidenciaMX 2012-2018 (Own work); CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Last year, Peña Nieto even went so far as to introduce a measure that would allow Mexican citizens to possess up to an ounce of cannabis without repercussions, but the bill stalled in Congress.

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The medical marijuana bill sailed through the Senate with ease in December 2016, and Mexico’s lower house in parliament passed the bill in April with a vote of 347-7 in favor of approval. Mexico’s Secretary of Health, Dr. José Narro Robles, voiced his support for the measure, saying “I welcome the approval of the therapeutic use of cannabis in Mexico.”

The decree was issued by the president today and specifies that the Ministry of Health will be tasked with drafting and implementing the regulations “public policies regulating the medicinal use of pharmacological derivatives of cannabis sativa, indica and Americana or marijuana, including tetrahydrocannabinol, its isomers and stereochemical variants, as well as how to regulate the research and national production of them.”

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The decree effectively eliminates the criminalization of the medicinal use of cannabis, THC, CBD, and all cannabis derivatives, as well as legalizing the production and distribution of cannabis for medicinal and therapeutic uses.

“The ruling eliminates the prohibition and criminalization of acts related to the medicinal use of marijuana and its scientific research, and those relating to the production and distribution of the plant for these purposes,” stated the Lower House of Parliament, known as La Cámara de Diputados.

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Currently, the only cannabis that will be permitted must contain 1% or less of tetrahydrocannabinol, and the Ministry of Health will be required to study the medicinal and therapeutic effects of cannabis before creating the framework for a medical marijuana program infrastructure.

There will certainly still be hurdles to overcome on the bumpy road to medical marijuana, but Mexico just surpassed the biggest obstacle so far.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.