Colorado legislates legal cannabis rules, Washington hands task to Alcohol Board
By Jeremy Daw, JD, weedthepeoplebook.com
Since two states legalized adult cannabis sales and use last November, they have taken different approaches to the voter mandates. Colorado’s Amendment 64 Implementation Task Force, an appointed body of experts and bureaucrats, has released its final recommendations for how to treat cannabis businesses in the state’s new legal regime. By contrast, Washington State has outsourced much of its implementation of Initiative 502 to an outside group.
Colorado’s A-64, approved by a 55-45 margin by voters, placed a constitutional imperative on state bureaucrats to regulate so-called “recreational” cannabis in a manner similar to alcohol, but many of the specific regulations like tax rates and cultivation restrictions were left unaddressed by the voter-approved ballot initiative. The Task Force’s recommendations, which are preliminary and non-binding, are thus the first proposed rules for many specific
Read More: Two states take different approaches to legalization
By Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director
California medical marijuana patient Daisy Brant has had her infant child literally torn from her breast twice to be handed over to Child Protective Services and been charged with child abuse because police found medical marijuana growing in her home. She won the first case, got her child back, was raided again and is now fighting the second case as a new published study shows how wrong and cruel the police have been in this and other cases in what amounts to little more than what Brant has called “government-sanctioned child-stealing.”
“The role of child protection in grow-operations,” a study in the March 2013 International Journal of Drug Policy, shows that children who live in homes where marijuana is being cultivated do not suffer from adverse health effects at any greater rate than do comparable children in cannabis-free environments.
A pair of investigators
Read More: Study: Home marijuana gardens not a health risk for children
By Phillip Smith, stopthedrugwar.org
A marijuana policy trifecta hit Capitol Hill in February 2013 regarding recreational marijuana, medical marijuana, and hemp.
Early in the month, reformist House members filed bills to end federal cannabis prohibition and tax the trade, and in mid month a bill to legalize hemp. By the end of the month, legislators had filed bills to protect medical marijuana patients and providers, and US senators filed a companion bill to legalize industrial hemp.
Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), who earlier sponsored a marijuana tax bill, rolled out House Resolution 689, the “States’ Medical Marijuana Protection Act;” Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA) introduced House Resolution 710, the “Truth in Trials Act;” and Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and three co-sponsors filed the “Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2013,” a companion bill to House Resolution 525.
Blumenauer’s bill, introduced with bipartisan co-sponsorship, would grant federal recognition to medical use and remove
Read More: Bipartisan hemp and marijuana bills hit US Congress
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, one of the most powerful and top-ranking leaders of the Democratic Party in the US, told a Denver Post columnist that she agrees that federal authorities ought to respect state marijuana laws.
When Electa Draper asked, “What are the measures in Washington (DC) that might address states that legalize marijuana and what is your view of federal policy,” Pelosi expressed her support for state laws and encouraged a tax and regulate marijuana policy in an interview published March 11, 2013.
“I support the leadership of Jared Polis, who has been a leader on this issue as well as other members. I understand some of the Republican members support the law now that is passed, even if they didn’t before. But in any case, to answer your question, what is my position regarding the states that have medical marijuana or recreational marijuana as the law
Read More: Top House Democrat supports state-regulated cannabis
By Dale Gieringer, canorml.org
Data show that California has an excellent DUI record, but unfounded scare stories about marijuana and driving were raised again in the news.
A survey of nighttime drivers by the Office of Traffic Survey reported Nov. 19, 2012 that one in seven were “under the influence of drugs,” according to the LA Daily News. The study did not pretend to assess whether motorists were affected or impaired by drugs, however, only if they had used them recently, as it employed oral-swab drug tests that are sensitive to use for up to three days.
Marijuana was reported in 7.4% of drivers, more than any other drug, including alcohol (7.3%). Police spokesmen predictably opined that marijuana is a bigger DUI risk than alcohol. “The biggest problem right now is medical marijuana,” said LA Sheriffs’ deputy Sgt. Philip Brooks. “People seem to think it’s a legal substance.” [Editor’s
Read More: The bogus marijuana DUI scare
By Jeffrey Steinborn, Attorney at law, potbust.org
While everyone you know may think it’sfine to use cannabis responsibly, 750,000Americans get busted for it every year.Here are 10 keys to staying out of jail.
1. Break only one law at a time. If you’reholding or using cannabis — that’s one.Don’t break any more. Particularly in yourcar, all laws must be religiously obeyed.
2. Practice home hygiene. Sooner or later,someone is going to come to your housewho might turn you in if s/he sees somethingsuch as a pipe, a joint, a bud or agrow room. These things should alwaysbe kept where they can’t be seen.
3. Never invite trouble home, and don’tdo things that bring police to your house.Smoke out back, away from the frontdoor.
4. Protect the privacy of your home as bestyou can. Remember noise and odors travel.‘Private property’ signs, gates andfences give your lawyer a chance to arguethat
Read More: How to not get busted
By Ken Wolski, RN, MPA
Twenty patients each purchased a half-ounce of marijuana from the Greenleaf Compassion Center in Montclair Dec. 6, 2012, the first day of New Jersey’s Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) and nearly three years after the state’s Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act was signed into law in January 2010. Patients are entitled to two ounces a month, but Greenleaf CEO Joe Stevens said it initially has to ration the supply to accommodate demand. Over 300 patients have obtained ID cards from the state and are in desperate need of medicine.
New Jersey’s medical use law is regarded as the strictest in the nation. Only a limited list of debilitating conditions qualify and home cultivation is not allowed. All cannabis must be obtained through state-licensed dispensaries, or alternative treatment centers (ATCs). The law calls for six to open, two each in the northern, central and southern regions.
Read More: First dispensary opens in NJ
Polls: Americans want Obama to back off cannabis
By Paul Armentano, norml.org
As 2012 wound down, national polls reported that a majority of US citizens favor legalizing marijuana and even more want the federal government to butt out in states that legalize.
In a Public Policy Polling automated telephone survey of 1,325 voters — commissioned by the Marijuana Policy Project — 58% of respondents said they thought cannabis should be legal and only 34% opposed legalization. A solid plurality of voters said the federal government should not interfere with the new legalization measures in Colorado and Washington.
A recent Angus Reid Public Opinion poll of 1,002 randomly selected adults found that 54% of US citizens favor legalizing cannabis. Respondents in the Northeast expressed the highest support (61%), while those in the South voiced the least (51%). Nationally, 65% of respondents aged 18 to 34 favor legalization — but only
Read More: Shift in public opinion and political climate