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WeedWeek: California Weighs Lower Pot Taxes

Posted by | March 20, 2018 | Cannabis News

Cannabisjobs.us
THIS IS WEEDWEEK.
BECAUSE CANNABIS NEWS MATTERS.
DID YOU KNOW? You can list your conferences, festivals and parties for FREE on the site.
Check out those upcoming events here.
Would you appreciate a WeedWeek regional supplement with more news from California? Or more news about the opioid crisis? Sign up at the appropriate link.
Thank you to those of you who have expressed interest in WeedWeek Canada. We’ll be launching very soon as a reasonably priced newsletter with more of a focus on original reporting. Look out for an email soon!
If you consider WeedWeek a valuable resource, consider supporting us with a monthly contribution on Patreon.
Swag and discounts start at $2 a month..
Brandbuilding opportunities to appear in the newsletter with your links and social media handles start at only $50 a month.
LIKE US.
FOLLOW US:
ALEX HALPERIN
IN OTHER WEEDWEEK NEWS:
This week on the podcast, Hayley and Alex talk to Lukas Lucas, a formerly incarcerated cannabis activist and entrepreneur, about prejudice within the industry, why L.A.’s equity program will work and how legalization could benefit African Americans.
The episode lands Monday by 4:20 p.m. Pacific.
Don’t forget to rate it five stars on iTunes!
Previous shows feature:
-Episode 9 Journalist David Bienenstock talks about social justice within the industry and his new podcast Great Moments in Weed
-Episode 8 Jackie Fox (Hayley’s mom) talks about becoming a MED user later in life.
-Episode 7 Dr. Peter Grinspoon, Harvard Medical School, on cannabis, opioids and the medical establishment.
-Episode 6 Anja Charbonneau, editor of design forward cannabis magazine Broccoli
-Episode 4 L.A. cannabis Business attorney Ariel Clark on what cannabis entrepreneurs need to know
-Episode 3 Congressman and longtime legalization supporter Earl Blumenauer
-Episode 2 Emily Dufton, author of Grass Roots: The rise and fall and rise of marijuana in America, on the history of legalization
Comments or feedback? Don’t be shy. Our producer is Katie Long.
Interested in sponsorship opportunities? Contact here.
WeedWeek Canada is a Saturday morning newsletter for professionals in the world’s largest fully-legal cannabis market.
Today in WWCanada:
–Economists say Canada may not be able to balance tax collection and reduced youth use while shrinking the black market
–Lots more on the fight to convert Ontario into a private market.
–Why cannabis equity investing is giving way to debt financing
And much more!
WWCanada is written by Jesse Staniforth, a freelance journalist in Montreal who has reported extensively on indigenous issues, cybersecurity, food safety, and cannabis for outlets including Leafly, ThinkProgress, The Walrus and Salon.
*
The 2018 U.S. midterm elections are coming. Register to vote and/or get the information you need to vote here.
Here’s the news.
POLITICS
California may lower pot taxes (L.A.Times) to help businesses compete with the illegal market. The bipartisan legislation follows agitating by farmers. (Reuters)
Colorado unveiled a new symbol for all cannabis packaging. A new law in Washington will unclutter cannabis labels.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R), said legal states aren’t worried about a federal crackdown. The Boston Globe has the FAQ on the state’s new REC rules. The state will start accepting REC business applications next month.
Activists have sued Florida claiming state MED rules benefit major players and stifle competition.
A Maryland legislative effort to support minority-owned cannabis companies,would reportedly favor existing, white-owned licensees.
WeedNews suggests legalization may have helped Democrat and MED supporter Conor Lamb win a special Congressional election in Pennsylvania by less than 1,000 votes. Republican Rick Saccone, who voted against MED, lost the district which President Trump won by 20 points.
Debts approaching $9 billion make REC legalization an increasingly attractive option in Illinois.
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) includes pot taxes in his budget proposal (Tom Angell). As they contemplate legalization, state lawmakers are emphasizing what it would mean for social justice (N.Y. Times) in the state.
New Jersey voters favor REC legalization (Tom Angell), a poll found. The state isalso mulling home grow (App.).
While Denver issued the first permit, Amsterdam style smoking lounges have arrived in several San Francisco dispensaries, and may be coming to West Hollywood later this year.
The Washington Post visits Humboldt where legalization challenges outlaw growers. I recently reported on the same topic for HuffPost.
Concerns about the application process led a judge to block Arkansas’ first MED licenses from being awarded.
A Delaware task force studying legalization voted to release a controversial report on legalization.
A CBD bill passed the Indiana legislature.
The Oklahoma Senate voted to implement stricter MED rules before the question goes to voters in June.
In National Review, drug policy scholar Jonathan P. Caulkins urges caution before rushing into a for-profit cannabis industry, which would be almost impossible to unwind.
Ontario’s new conservative leader Doug Ford, brother of deceased former Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, said he’d like to see a more open cannabis market in Canada’s most populous province. 🍁For more subscribe to WeedWeek Canada.
Relatedly, the province released the new austere logo for the Ontario Cannabis Store to widespread ridicule. For more see Buzzfeed🍁For even more subscribe to WeedWeek Canada.
UN Secretary General António Guterres, praised decriminalization, which he enacted 20 years ago as president of Portugal.
BUSINESS
After California threatened Weedmaps with civil or criminal charges for promoting unlicensed dispensaries, Weedmaps responded that since the company isn’t a licensee the state doesn’t have the power to regulate it (MJBiz).
Weedmaps cited Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (Ars Technica) which essentially argues that the company is not responsible for the actions of its users. The same defense has been successfully deployed by Backpage, a classifieds site notorious for sex industry ads.
While Weedmaps struck a conciliatory tone (L.A.Times), it was as bold a rebuke to regulators as has been expressed by any cannabis company.
In an editorial, the Sacramento Bee criticized the company.
Alan Brochstein discusses five ways to invest in California cannabis.
Consumers are selling California-legal cannabis in Tijuana.
MJBizDaily asks if your business is ready for increased scrutiny while Jeff Sessions is attorney general.
The Seattle Times profiles edibles brand The Goodship, after it’s acquisition by Privateer Holdings, as it prepares to expand into California.
A first of its kind study determined legalization is a net economic benefit for Pueblo County, Colo. The police chief said the study didn’t take into account the homelessness and poverty his officers see. I wrote about Pueblo for the L.A.Times in 2016.
Delivery services are thriving in Florida, where it’s difficult to open a dispensary.
Snoop Dogg’s cannabis investing fund, Casa Verde Capital, raised $45M. (Snoop also released a gospel album this week, “Bible of Love.”)
Business Insider introduces the stars of cannabis finance.
Fast Company asks if MedMen will become the Starbucks of weed.
Reuters meets New Leaf Data Services which publishes wholesale price data.
Texas hasn’t legalized but entrepreneurs are preparing for the Lone Star green rush anyway.
Bloomberg profiles Hydrotherapy, Quebec’s only legal producer, which wants tofollow convenience stores’ path to global growth. 🍁For more subscribe toWeedWeek Canada.
Cannex, Washington’s largest producer,
Cannabisjobs.us
THIS IS WEEDWEEK.
BECAUSE CANNABIS NEWS MATTERS.
DID YOU KNOW? You can list your conferences, festivals and parties for FREE on the site.
Check out those upcoming events here.
Would you appreciate a WeedWeek regional supplement with more news from California? Or more news about the opioid crisis? Sign up at the appropriate link.
Thank you to those of you who have expressed interest in WeedWeek Canada. We’ll be launching very soon as a reasonably priced newsletter with more of a focus on original reporting. Look out for an email soon!
If you consider WeedWeek a valuable resource, consider supporting us with a monthly contribution on Patreon.
Swag and discounts start at $2 a month..
Brandbuilding opportunities to appear in the newsletter with your links and social media handles start at only $50 a month.
LIKE US.
FOLLOW US:
ALEX HALPERIN
IN OTHER WEEDWEEK NEWS:
This week on the podcast, Hayley and Alex talk to longtime cannabis journalist David Bienenstockabout legalization, social justice within the industry and his new podcast Great Moments in Weed History co-hosted with Abdullah Saeed, formerly of Vice’s Bong Appetit.
The episode lands Monday by 4:20 p.m. Pacific.
Don’t forget to rate it five stars on iTunes!
Previous shows feature:
-Episode 8 Jackie Fox (Hayley’s mom) talks about becoming a MED user later in life.
-Episode 7 Dr. Peter Grinspoon, Harvard Medical School, on cannabis, opioids and the medical establishment.
-Episode 6 Anja Charbonneau, editor of design forward cannabis magazine Broccoli
-Episode 4 L.A. cannabis Business attorney Ariel Clark on what cannabis entrepreneurs need to know
-Episode 3 Congressman and longtime legalization supporter Earl Blumenauer
-Episode 2 Emily Dufton, author of Grass Roots: The rise and fall and rise of marijuana in America, on the history of legalization
Comments or feedback? Don’t be shy. Our producer is Katie Long.
Interested in sponsorship opportunities? Contact here.
WeedWeek Canada is a Saturday morning newsletter for professionals in the world’s largest fully-legal cannabis market. WWCanada aims to deliver key data and insights in a quick, digestible format. Plus, Reporter Jesse Staniforth is incentivized to deliver exclusive scoops.
WWCanada is written by Jesse Staniforth, a freelance journalist in Montreal who has reported extensively on indigenous issues, cybersecurity, food safety, and cannabis for outlets including Leafly, ThinkProgress, The Walrus and Salon.
*
The 2018 U.S. midterm elections are coming. Register to vote and/or get the information you need to vote here.
Here’s the news.
POLITICS
Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, a former executive at drugmaker Eli Lilly, said there’s “no such thing as medical marijuana.” He said the department The department is working on non-cannabis related ways to mitigate the opioid crisis.
A bipartisan group of U.S. Senators introduced legislation to protect banks who work with cannabis companies. Tom Angell also has the latest on veterans lobbying Congress for MED access.
California has already approved more than 2,000 growers licenses, but the Lost Coast Outpost suggests allowing too many growers sets them up to fail.
Nevada put off social use until 2019 (Las Vegas Sun). Regulators also decided tokeep the cannabis and gaming industries separate (Las Vegas Review Journal).
Pennsylvania appears poised to allow smokable flower, which would cut the cost of MED. A Florida judge will hear a case to allow smokable MED.
To increase minority ownership, the Maryland House voted to raise the number of grow licenses from 15 to 20.
Florida lawmakers are withholding $1.9M from the health department because of delays in MED licensing. Also in Florida, legislation on changing how a black farmer can obtain a growing license is headed to Gov. Rick Scott’s (R) desk.
Illinois’ “cannabis candidate” Benjamin Wolf inflated his resume (Chicago Tribune) and allegedly abused women (Politico). Wolf denied any claims of abuse.
Tom Angell looks at the new politics of weed in Illinois.
Five measures to loosen cannabis laws could come before Arizona voters this year.
In Leafly, WeedWeek Podcast co-host Hayley Fox, asks whether expanding Los Angeles’ cannabis agency can boost equity ownership. Equity also got a boost in Massachusetts.
Oakland is considering legislation which would block pot companies from evicting existing tenants.
The D.C. Board of Elections blocked a ballot initiative, which it said would go against city law and Congress, to allow REC sales.
The UN drug enforcement board warned countries not to legalize marijuana🍁For more subscribe to WeedWeek Canada.
Canada’s First Nations’ (Native Canadians) want in on the REC industry🍁For more subscribe to WeedWeek Canada.
A decriminalization bill advanced in Israel.
Colorado Public Radio looks at the push to legalize psychedelic mushrooms in Denver.
BUSINESS
California’s cannabis regulatory chief Lori Ajax told Weedmaps to cease and desist stop promoting unlicensed businesses (OC Register). Lack of compliance could lead to civil or criminal penalties.
Weedmaps does not appear to have responded. (Sacramento Bee) In February, Weedmaps president Christopher Beals said, “The thing is, at the end of the day, we’re an information platform…We’re showing the same information that Google and Yelp and Craigslist and 30 other websites are showing.”
Ajax also sent letters to 900 pot shops suspected of operating without a state license.
Bloomberg says the US is giving away the $30 billion MED industry to Israel and Canada.
Delivery app Eaze’s policy team is hiring to prepare for expansion beyond California.
Business Insider’s Jeremy Berke profiles Navy Capital, a cannabis hedge fund which was up 127% in 2017. Berke also asks what the two highest valued cannabis companies, MedMen and Privateer Holdings, say about the industry.
Bloomberg reports companies are losing interest in employee pot tests.
New Women Grow Chair Chanda Macias defended the company against criticism.
Regulatory software company BioTrackTHC agreed to merge with diversified ancillary company Helix TCS to form what it claims is the industry’s largest ancillary company.
Denver restaurants reportedly can’t staff their kitchens because trimming buds pays better and is easier.
Big Think asks why cannabis companies keep losing their social media accounts.
California collectives which provided low-cost MED to the needy are struggling in the REC era (Sacramento Bee). So are smaller growers (Santa Rosa Press Democrat.).
Massachusetts growers say strict energy rules could force them to use energy efficient LEDs, which are far costlier, and produce lesser product. Read the whole piece by the Boston Globe’s Dan Adams.
Massachusetts pot lobbyists are out in force.
Modern farmer has a primer on indoor gardening.
Trade group National Cannabis Business Association, which has recently faced some tough media coveragehas a possible rival in the Western Regional Cannabis Business Alliance, which has nine state organizations and at least one lobbyist in D.C.
With a major court ruling coming soon, Canna Law Blog asks if CBD is legal.
Tattoo care could be a $1.6 billion CBD market.
Surprisingly, in 2016 Canada fell to second, behind the U.K., in legal MED production. 🍁For more subscribe to WeedWeek Canada.
Canadian producer Aurora Cannabis plans to follow competitor Cronos Group(National Post) onto an international stock exchange. For more see CNBC.
Canadian producer Canopy Growth is among the bidders for Spanish pharmaceutical firm Alcaliber, a major morphine producer. 🍁For more subscribe to WeedWeek Canada.
Canada granted a license to a
Cannabisjobs.us
HIS IS WEEDWEEK.
BECAUSE CANNABIS NEWS MATTERS.
DID YOU KNOW? You can list your conferences, festivals and parties for FREE on the site.
Check out those upcoming events here.
Would you appreciate a WeedWeek regional supplement with more news from California? Or more news about the opioid crisis? Sign up at the appropriate link.
Thank you to those of you who have expressed interest in WeedWeek Canada. We’ll be launching very soon as a reasonably priced newsletter with more of a focus on original reporting. Look out for an email soon!
If you consider WeedWeek a valuable resource, consider supporting us with a monthly contribution on Patreon.
Swag and discounts start at $2 a month..
Brandbuilding opportunities to appear in the newsletter with your links and social media handles start at only $50 a month.
LIKE US.
FOLLOW US:
ALEX HALPERIN
IN OTHER WEEDWEEK NEWS:
This week on the podcast, Hayley and I have a fascinating conversation with physician and Harvard Medical School instructor Dr. Peter Grinspoon. We discuss how the medical establishment thinks about MED, the opioid crisis and Grinspoon’s father, Dr. Lester Grinspoon, a hero of the legalization movement. In addition to his professional expertise, the younger Dr. Grinspoon became addicted to opioids while working as a doctor an experience he describes in his book Free Refills: A doctor confronts his addiction. The episode lands Monday at 4:20 p.m.Pacific.
You can rate us five stars on iTunes whenever you like.
Previous episodes feature:
-Episode 6 Anja Charbonneau, editor of design forward cannabis magazine Broccoli
-Episode 4 L.A. cannabis Business attorney Ariel Clark on what cannabis entrepreneurs need to know
-Episode 3 Congressman and longtime legalization supporter Earl Blumenauer
-Episode 2 Emily Dufton, author of Grass Roots: The rise and fall and rise of marijuana in America, on the history of legalization
Comments or feedback? Don’t be shy.
Our producer is Katie Long.
Interested in sponsorship opportunities? Contact here.
*
The 2018 U.S. midterm elections are coming. Register to vote and/or get the information you need to vote here.
Here’s the news.
POLITICS
Ohio’s state auditor said the state MED program should continue despite “multiple” flaws in the application process (AP). According to the state commerce department, public radio reports, changes were made to internal documents but it’s impossible to know by who since passwords were shared.
Six unsuccessful applicants have sued the state (Cleveland.com) in a lawsuit which alleges scoring errors, regulators who failed to follow their own rules and outside “scoring consultants” with blatant conflicts of interest.
A Trump administration aide resigned after he was told he would not received a security clearance (NYT) for smoking pot several times a few years ago, a disclosure he self-reporting it to the FBI. It followed news of senior aide Rob Porter resigning(Politico) after allegations of domestic abuse surfaced in the press.
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper said U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions seeks to “sow doubt” about legalization’s viability.
Leafly says 99% of California cannabis businesses remain unlicensed. But California regulators have begun to target (MJBizDaily) unlicensed businesses. The Sacramento Bee finds unlicensed local delivery services continue to operate.
WeedWeek podcast co-host Hayley Fox reports Los Angeles’ cannabis agency is “woefully understaffed.
California’s cannabis industry is gaining political clout through campaign contributions.
Massachusetts regulators say anticipated July 1 REC sales could be delayed. They also floated the idea of a state cannabis bank.
A New Jersey lawmaker proposed creating “consumption zones” to address the social use issue. The state’s black lawmakers discussed legalization.
Alaska’s Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R) doesn’t expect the federal government to reschedule marijuana anytime soon.
Detroit plans to challenge two voter approved initiatives which would reduce local control of the industry. Michigan released its cannabis product label.
Arizona Republican Senate candidate and Trump-ally Joe Arpaio supports MED “kind of.”
N.Y. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D) criticized Big Pharma for opposing cannabis reform.
The Trump administration supports continuing restrictive hemp laws.
Colorado dispensary chain Medicine Man named a strain Jeff Sesh-ons.
BUSINESS
Oakland megadispensary Harborside stood up to Hershey’s after the confectioner called Harborside strain Jolly Meds a trademark infraction on Jolly Ranchers candy.
Hershey’s quickly caved. “We stood up to the federal Department of Justice,” Harborside founder Steve DeAngelo said, “We are certainly not going to be intimidated by a candy company.”
The SEC suspended Cherubim Interests and Victura Construction Corp., two cannabis penny stocks which tried to exploit interest in cryptocurrency.
Quebec cannabis grower Agro-Biotech agreed to merge with Vancouver-based Pivot Pharmaceuticals in a C$100M deal.
Pot grow sensor platform Braingrid raised C$2.6M ahead of going public in Canada.
California approved the first provider of surety bonds to cannabis companies.
A proposed bill in California would block employment discrimination against cannabis users. Quartz says it’s not a good idea to tell colleagues you smoke pot.
Retail prices in Oregon are as low as $2/g and still dropping 20% annually. In Washington, conditions also incentivize leakage out of state.
Meanwhile, in Massachusetts they’re worried about shortages when REC goes on sale.
Nearly 4% of Colorado electricity powers pot grows.
A lawsuit which threatened to force a new MED application process in Marylandhas been settled for undisclosed terms.
Canna Law Blog discusses the Open Cannabis Project’s fight to get pot patents right and changes to California event permit rules.
Pennsylvania’s nascent MED industry can’t keep up with demand. And the statemay soon allow flower sales.
The first Louisiana MED dispensaries could open later this year. North Dakota selected BioTrack THC for its cannabis tracking software.
Media company Freedom Leaf is in financial trouble.
Thailand, which has draconian drug laws, may try to become a MED hub.
In the Guardian, I wrote about five female cannabis entrepreneurs.
Leafly lists seven edibles which “changed the game.” The listicle dates back 3,000 years to bhang in India.
Girl Scouts won the OK to sell cookies outside dispensaries.
Sponsored Content
Fire or Ice?
Introducing our incredible line of microdosed & sugarfree Fire Cinnamon Mints and Ice Spearmints! Chill your breath and your mind with these icy spearmints, microdosed with our ultra-pure, incredible THC oil.Available in 2mg pieces for adult users and 5mg pieces for medical patients.
Prefer a fruity flavor?
Our Stimulating Mixes Fruit Tarts combine a tangy apple, lemon and grape flavors deliver a tart punch to your palate along with a microdose of our incredible oil for discreet medicating on the go. These tarts are gluten free, non-GMO, and always triple-lab tested for potency, purity and safety.
Last but not least… Watermelon CBD!
We’re already dreaming of summer! Our 1:1 THC:CBD Watermelon Tarts are bursting with flavor and always gluten free. Sweet, sour & juicy our Watermelon CBD Tarts combine the benefits of CBD with the relaxation of THC. So sit back and enjoy our “seedlesss” watermelon.
*
HEALTH & SCIENCE
U.S. House Rules Committee Chair Pete Sessions — no relation to AG Jeff — who’s among the most anti-pot legislators in Washington, said marijuana use leads to opiate addiction, a claim largely unsupported in the medical literature.
Marijuana “merchants of addiction…are making it more powerful and more powerful and more powerful,” Sessions said. “When I went to high school … in 1973, I graduated, marijuana, on average, is 300 times more powerful. That becomes an addictive element for a child to then go to the next thing.”
In 2016, the Washington Post’s Christopher Ingraham wrote alcohol and tobacco are more likely to lead to opioid use than cannabis.
An Arizona House panel approved a proposal which would make it a felony for doctorsto evade state MED rules.
A paper in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association
Cannabisjobs.us
This week on the podcast, Hayley and I talked to Anja Charbonneau, founder of Broccoli, a fashion-forward cannabis magazine for women. Among much else, Anja talks about the global cannabis community, finding a place for cutting edge design in the cannabis world, and a favorite weed inspired song. The episode drops Monday at 4:20 p.m.Pacific.
You can rate us five stars on iTunes whenever you like.
Previous episodes feature:
-Episode 4 Cannabis Business attorney Ariel Clark on what cannabis entrepreneurs need to know
-Episode 3 Congressman and longtime legalization supporter Earl Blumenauer
-Episode 2 Emily Dufton, author of Grass Roots: The rise and fall and rise of marijuana in America, on the history of legalization
Comments or feedback? Don’t be shy.
Our producer is Katie Long.
Interested in sponsorship opportunities? Contact here.
*
Recommended: The N.Y.Times’ Dan Barry wrote a powerful piece on this week’s massacre in Parkland, Fla.
The 2018 U.S. midterm elections are coming. Register to vote and/or get the information you need to vote here.
So much news.
POLITICS
Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner (R) partially lifted his hold (Reuters) on Justice Department confirmations “as a show of good faith for continued positive conversations,” with Attorney General Jeff Sessions on protecting state legal cannabis businesses from federal prosecution.
Gardner said the Justice Department had “moved more and more” toward agreeing(Denver Post) to unspecified “concrete protections in Colorado for our state’s voters when it comes to decisions they made related to marijuana.”
Gardner backed down days after Sessions, in prepared remarks (Forbes), implied Gardner was endangering national security. Sessions added, “I cannot and will not pretend that a duly enacted law of this country — like the federal ban on marijuana — does not exist. Marijuana is illegal in the United States — even in Colorado, California, and everywhere else in America.”
Politifact says there are limited privacy protections for legal cannabis customers.
New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D) announced her support for Sen. Cory Booker’s (D-N.J.) REC legalization bill. Both are considered contenders in 2020. Vice predicts the next Democratic president will legalize REC.
Rolling Stone says California is blocking Native American tribes from entering the industry.
A Florida lawsuit argues the state’s strict MED program — only 10 commercial grow licenses — violates the spirit of the 2016 ballot initiative. Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz (R) has become known as a die-hard supporter of 1) President Trump and 2)Cannabis reform.
In New Jersey, a bi-partisan group of lawmakers prefers decriminalization to legalization, for now. Pro-legalization governor Phil Murphy (D) discussed legalization.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, (R) who opposed REC, criticized proposed regulations (Boston Globe), which would allow delivery services and social use, as too permissive. He also wants to set energy-use standards (MassLive) for the industry. For more see WWLP.
Detroit placed a moratorium on new MED business permits.
Ohio offered to “pause” its much criticized MED approval process.
Utah lawmakers are taking “baby steps” to legalize MED for the terminally ill.
In Canada, the Senate reached a REC legalization timeline, with a vote to be held by June 7 and sales delayed until at least August. And don’t expect legalization to replace the grey market.
Israel’s ultra-orthodox deputy health minister has reversed himself and now opposes MED exports.
The cannabis community celebrated President Obama’s official presidential portraitwith its botanical theme.
During Denver shows the Pod Save America crew talked to dispensary owner Wanda James, and cannabis writer and Cannabist founding editor Ricardo Baca. Baca also talked to WestWord about cannabis media and his content business Grasslands.
BUSINESS
Canadian e-commerce giant Shopify will handle online and in-store sales in for Ontario, Canada’s most populous province. Seeking Alpha likes the deal for Shopify.
The province of Quebec has inked supply agreements with six MED producers.
Al-Jazeera visits Canopy Growth, one of Canada’s largest producers. The Canadian industry has its sights on global conquest. CBC looks at the Canadian edibles market.
Publicly-traded Kush Bottles received a $6M investment from Maryland-based cannabis fund Merida Capital.
The Cannifornian explains the state’s 35% cannabis tax. An L.A. Times Op-Ed says a proposed public bank in California could do more than serve cannabis businesses. “At a time when California has so many pressing needs, from transportation to water delivery, a public bank could help stretch scarce dollars and rebuild the state.”
California biotech company Librede won a $1.5M NIH grant to develop its “yeast-based cannabinoid production platform.”
TheStreet suggests the best ways to invest in cannabis. Hint: It’s mainly “weed-adjacent” companies.
Pernod-Ricard, the world’s second largest spirits company says legalization hasn’t hurt North American sales, but it is monitoring the situation.
Willamette Week (Portland) looks at the Open Cannabis Project, the open-source database “that can save the cannabis industry” from overly broad patents.
The all-cash industry is causing problems and confusion in Michigan.
A private BYOC club opened in Massachusetts telling customers they could smoke anything that’s legal in the state including tobacco. A Denver business is close to winning a social use permit.
Comedian Chelsea Handler is joining the industry.
Sponsored Content
Fire or Ice?
Introducing our incredible line of microdosed & sugarfree Fire Cinnamon Mints and Ice Spearmints! Chill your breath and your mind with these icy spearmints, microdosed with our ultra-pure, incredible THC oil.Available in 2mg pieces for adult users and 5mg pieces for medical patients.
Prefer a fruity flavor?
Our Stimulating Mixes Fruit Tarts combine a tangy apple, lemon and grape flavors deliver a tart punch to your palate along with a microdose of our incredible oil for discreet medicating on the go. These tarts are gluten free, non-GMO, and always triple-lab tested for potency, purity and safety.
Last but not least… Watermelon CBD!
We’re already dreaming of summer! Our 1:1 THC:CBD Watermelon Tarts are bursting with flavor and always gluten free. Sweet, sour & juicy our Watermelon CBD Tarts combine the benefits of CBD with the relaxation of THC. So sit back and enjoy our “seedlesss” watermelon.
*
HEALTH & SCIENCE
Cannabis is a safe and effective treatment for seniors suffering from chronic pain, data published in the European Journal of Internal Medicine found. In a study of more 1,186 Israelis, after six months more than 93% of respondents reported an improvement in their condition.
Activist group Grannies for Grass has a satellite group in Australia which calls itself the Canna Nannas.
A study from the American Osteopathic Association found cannabis use can activate latent psychiatric problems.
A study found alcohol is more dangerous to the brain than cannabis. A longitudinal analysis found cannabis using “street-involved youth” have a lower rate of starting to inject drugs than their non-cannabis using counterparts.
This week on the podcast, Hayley and I talked sex, weed and politics with Dan Savage! Among much else, Dan talks cannabis activism, his favorite brand of cannalube and what he does when he’s stoned. The episode lands Monday at 4:20 p.m. Pacific.
You can rate us five stars on iTunes whenever you like.
Previous episodes feature Congressman and longtime legalization supporter Earl Blumenauer(“So goes the country…”) ; Emily Dufton, author of Grass Roots: The rise and fall and rise of marijuana in America (From just say no…”); and Ariel Clark a cannabis business attorney and founder of the L.A. Cannabis Task Force (“Want to start a weed business?”).
Comments or feedback? Don’t be shy.
Our producer is Katie Long.
Interested in sponsorship opportunities? Contact here.
*
The 2018 U.S. midterm elections are coming. Register to vote and/or get the information you need to vote here.
So much news.
POLITICS
Contrary to the available science, Attorney General Jeff Sessions blamed marijuana for the opioid crisis. “The DEA said that a huge percentage of the heroin addictions starts with prescriptions. That may be an exaggerated number — they had it as high as 80 percent — we think a lot of this is starting with marijuana and other drugs,” he said.
To alleviate the epidemic Sessions told Americans to “take some aspirin sometimes and tough it out.” He also praised White House chief of staff former Marine Gen. John Kelly for refusing opioids after a recent minor surgery.
Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner (R) has kept his word to hold up judicial nominees until Sessions adjusts his position on state legal industries. Gardner has prevented as many as 11 nominees from getting a floor vote.
Sessions’ remarks attracted criticism from veterans groups who strongly support MED access as a possible opioid exit drug.  Reason produced six studies which say Sessions is wrong. Vox piles on.
Meanwhile Democrats are calling for a hearing on Sessions’ decision to rescind the Cole Memo.
parody video about Jeff Sessions’ secret past as a weed-loving jam band musician fooled a few people. His band was called The Jeff Sessions.
The Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment which protects state legal MED businesses from federal prosecution was extended until March 23 as part of the budget deal. It’s the eighth time the amendment has been extended.
Republicans blocked an amendment from Congressman Jared Polis (D-Colo.) which would have prevented federal prosecution of state-legal cannabis businesses.
The Senate Judiciary Committee could discuss legalization this year.
California has issued about 2,400 temporary cannabis licenses, but top regulator Lori Ajax anticipates ongoing supply problems. CityLab looks at equity efforts in California.
Massachusetts’ REC market is preparing to open on schedule (MassLive) onJuly 1. Gov. Charlie Baker called for a slower, two-phased roll-out (Boston Globe).
Amid criticism, Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) defended the state’s efforts (Florida Politics) to implement a MED program. Christian Bax, the state’s top marijuana official, is under fire from several sides (Bradenton Herald.)
In a reversal, Connecticut Gov. Dan Malloy (D) is willing to consider legal REC to solve the state’s budget woes.
New Jersey’s Ocean and Monmouth counties formally oppose REC legalization. The state anticipates a “cutthroat” business climate.
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders (Ind.) launched a petition against prohibition.
Some red state Democrats think a pro-legalization platform can help them win in November.
Tom Angell runs through the legalization initiatives on the table in Wisconsin, Nebraska, Illinois, Georgia and other states.
A MED bill in Missouri would be limited to terminally ill patients. To clear up confusion, several conservative states may legalize CBD. Tennessee House Speaker and gubernatorial candidate Beth Harwell (R) supports a MED billdescribing it as an alternative to opioids..
Canada may not be ready for REC sales (Reuters) by the hoped for date of July 1. Liberals say conservatives are holding up debate (Globe and Mail) in the Senate. For more see CBC.
British Columbia released its new regulations.
Under pressure from Trump, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu hit the brakes on MED exports. Greece is fast-tracking MED legalization.
Tiny Lesotho became the first African nation to legalize cultivation. American company Corix Bioscience stands to benefit.
The Antigua and Barbuda Parliament voted to allow possession.
A push to legalize psychedelic mushrooms moved closer to the Denver ballot.
BUSINESS
Publicly-traded, North Carolina tobacco company Alliance One said it is entering the U.S. hemp market and the Canadian cannabis market (New Cannabis Ventures.) It has acquired controlling stakes in Canadian licensed producer Canada’s Island Garden, and applicant Goldleaf Pharm. For more see MJBizDaily.
MenMen claims to be the first billion dollar US cannabis company, after receiving a $30M investment at that valuation.
Vaporizer powerhouse PAX Labs named Silicon Valley veteran Bharat Vasan as its new CEO.
Paragon, a cannabis blockchain company which raised $70M in an initial coin offering, has been sued by investors who allege the company didn’t file its offering with regulators. In a statement, founder Jessica VerSteeg, a former Miss Iowa, said the company is “dedicated to staying compliant with all applicable laws.”
AdWeek looks at the industry’s ongoing social media woes.
In what was later determined to be a hack of Washington’s new track and trace software system, computer glitches caused havoc for retailers and vendors(MJBizDaily). The new system is from Colorado-based MJFreeway which has suffered a string of embarrassing problems. The Seattle Times has more on the scramble to keep product on shelves.
After a 40-month legal battle Colorado credit union Fourth Corner won conditional approval from the Federal Reserve to offer banking services to ancillary businesses, but not plant-touching companies. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin appears to support bank access for cannabis businesses.
Partner Colorado Credit Union, which serves the industry, has been hit with a wrongful termination lawsuit which claims the plaintiffs witnessed CEO Sundie Seefried using cocaine. The company denied the allegations and called the suit groundless.
Colorado cannabis sales hit a record $1.5 billion in 2017.
According to ZipRecruiter, cannabis job postings climbed 445% in 2017.
A handful of companies own 30% of California’s 540 temporary licenses for “small” operations. Legalization has been tough for California’s pre-existing, unlicensed delivery services. It has also put pressure on cannabis events and festivals.
BDS Analytics/Arcview predict Florida will be a billion-dollar market.
In Oregon, state auditors found cannabis businesses can easily manipulate sales and inventory data before passing it to the state, creating potential for abuse. New Mexico wants to revoke a business’s license for submitting false audit reports.
An unsuccessful license applicant in Pennsylvania, is calling for a do-over which would halt the industry days before MED sales begin. The entity calls the state’s selection process “flawed, inequitable and unconstitutional.”
A member of Ohio’s MED advisory panel who quit said the state program plans weren’t working for patients. (Cleveland.com) (Cincinnati.com has the FAQ on Ohio’s MED industry, scheduled to open in September.)

Sunshine State cannabis advocate John Morgan will finally have his day in court, where he will argue that Florida should allow MMJ patients to smoke their legal medication.

Cannabisjobs.us
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Our latest post comes from , Centuria CEO Michael Brubeck who warns cannabis investors: Get ready to lose everything.
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WeedWeek’s Holiday Gift Guide is still up featuring special offers on some great gear.
Here’s the news.
POLITICS
The world’s largest and most important REC market opens in California on Monday.
The Financial Times surveys some California companies. The AP meets some California edibles players. The Washington Post visits the future cannabis resort of Nipton, Calif.
One small-time Mendocino grower is worried about the future.
The San Francisco Chronicle’s Green State has a REC launch guide including explainers on California’s cannabis lawstaxes and one from me on why it took so long. Mother Jones ran a quick guide on how it’s all supposed to workUSA Today has more.
One prominent L.A. dispensary may be closed Monday, in deference to legal concerns. SoCal Growers are moving out to the suburbs. For Green State, I wrote about the massive grows popping up in the California desert.
Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson (D) wrote a blog post on the city’s regulatory approach. S.F. is launching a PSA campaign to warn kids about the risks of cannabis use.
In Leafly, Hayley Fox explains why California packaging rules will hit dispensaries hardest.
The Golden Gate transit authority followed S.F. to ban cannabis ads on buses and ferries.
At Rolling Stone, Amanda Chicago Lewis has industry predictions for 2018 including “the end of ‘indica’ and ‘sativa.” and the first legal consumption lounges.
The L.A. Times looks at how Congressional Republicans’ opposition has created a “wild west” distribution climate in D.C. “Nowhere is more pot sold so openly and publicly without any of the rules and regulations that elsewhere have come with legalization.” Through delivery service Trending Leafs, for example, customers buy an empty glass jar for $50 and it arrives containing “gifts.”
Eight Pennsylvania businesses can start growing MED. The Cleveland Plain Dealer editorialized that Ohio should redo its grow-license application process to correct for flaws and perceived biases.
Las Vegas’ Congresswoman Dina Titus (D) tweeted in favor of cannabis banking reform.
After the previous effort collapsed, Maine lawmakers anticipate an aggressive push to pass a REC law in 2018. New Hampshire lawmakers propose pardoning some with minor pot offenses and allowing MED patients to grow at home.
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) will soon decide whether the state’s MED vote will be during the June 2018 primary or on election day in November. The Dallas Observer rounds up the Texas situation.
Nebraska Gubernatorial candidate Krystal Gabel (R) will campaign on full decriminalization, plus pardons for non-violent cannabis offenders. Gabel says Nebraska could be home to a multi-billion dollar hemp industry.
Missouri activists say they’ll have the 150,000 signatures they need for a MED initiative. Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) says he’s “not there YET” on legal MED.
West Virginia’s Republican Senate Majority leader doubts legal REC would solve the state’s money woes.
Kevin Sabet’s anti-legalization group Project SAM saw a victory in that “No state legalized marijuana in 2017.” (West Virginia legalized MED in April.)
Tom Angell is offering a legislation tracking tool for cannabis laws in all 50 states. Here’s what’s on the 2018 legislative calendar.
Buzzfeed has a useful piece on everything that could go wrong with REC legalization in Canada.
A Chinese anti-drug official blamed legalization, in part, for climbing U.S. demand for synthetic opioids, many of which are manufactured in China.
BUSINESS
The lawyer for the former Chief Medical Officer of MED company Vireo Health has accused Minnesota law enforcement of evidence manipulation and witness intimidation. His client and another former employee face felony charges for allegedly smuggling $500,000 worth of cannabis oil from Minnesota to New York in an armored vehicle.
Canadian pot stocks soared in anticipation of California. Analyst Alan Brochstein warned investors that the market remains tricky.
Marijuana Policy Project founder Rob Kampia is no longer with the organization. He’s starting a new company called Marijuana Leadership Campaign. In 2010, Kampia took a leave of absence from the organization amid sexual harassment concerns. Tom Angell says a major newspaper story detailing further allegations against Kampia is in the works.
A bank ended its relationship with Sacramento canna-law firm Greenbridge Corporate Counsel after Greenbridge declined to provide information on its clients.
A Florida judge halted the award of a coveted Florida grow license to a black farmer, a provision of state MED law. It’s the latest twist in a complex legal case.
In the N.Y. Times, Julie Weed looks into how cannabis companies raise capital.
FiveThirtyEight says the market increasingly favors larger businesses.
Financial firm Edward Jones says Canadian pot stocks remain risky.
A new cannabis exchange traded fund started trading on NYSE Arca under the symbol MJX. Canadian MED producer Cronos Group is the fund’s largest holding. Seeking Alpha has more.
Operating company and consultancy MJardin raised $20M.
Canna Law Blog has some recommendations for protecting your business from employee malfeasance.
Privateer Holdings, parent company to Leafly, Marley Natural and Canadian MED brand Tilray, acquired Washington edibles brand The Goodship.
The Cannabist looked at 2017 in cannabis search trends on Google.
HEALTH & SCIENCE
More pregnant U.S. teenagers and young adults are smoking cannabis. Existing research suggests cannabis exposure in the womb can impair growth and neurodevelopment. For more see here, and here.
A medical review found several stroke cases in cannabis users who did not display other at-risk symptoms.
Colorado police suspect youth cannabis use has climbed since legalization, despite studies which found it has not. For more see here.
GW Pharmaceuticals has submitted its CBD epilepsy drug Epidiolex to the FDA for approval and expects a response on June 27.
Physician and Weedmaps advisor Dr. Bonni Goldstein writes about how cannabis may prevent serious illnesses.
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WeedWeek: How Sessions Could Crack Down, PLUS: A Hot Start-Up Collapses

 

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WeedWeek publishes 400-600 word essays, arguments, observations and fact-based criticisms by outside contributors. We do not accept payment for publishing work.
Our latest post comes from , Centuria CEO Michael Brubeck who warns cannabis investors: Get ready to lose everything.
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Contact Adrienne Nascimento to add an offer for your product.
Here’s the news.
POLITICS
As part of a spending measure, Congress temporarily extended the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer Amendment, which blocks the Justice Department from prosecuting state-legal MED businesses, until January 19.
Politico reports on U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ sustained attack on the amendment and what a crackdown might look like. Marijuana Policy Project’s (MPP) Morgan Fox “worries less about SWAT team raids than the possibility the Department of Justice would quietly send letters to landlords who rented to legal marijuana businesses to threaten them with asset forfeiture.”
Reason argues that a crackdown remains unlikely. Back in February, I argued something similar in Slate.
Federal pot policy stood still in 2017, Rolling Stone writes.
California lawmakers and craft growers say the state’s new REC rules favor large growers.  New environmental regulations for cannabis grows are coming to California as well. (Grows are damaging NorCal watersheds.)
Here are the stores and cities that will be open January 1. But regulatory controls against pesticides and other contaminants won’t yet be in place.
L. A. will send inspectors to dispensaries, the way it does with restaurants. The city also said it will not start to accept license applications  until January 3.
Los Angeles magazine offers a consumer’s guide for California’s REC system. S.F. could vote on creating a city cannabis agency in June.
Ten years after legalization, Michigan, the country’s second largest MED market,released applications for MED licenses. For more see here.
Alaska regulators warn the potency labels on cannabis products may be inaccurate.
New York lawmakers will hold a hearing on REC legalization in January. The Chicago Tribune discusses why Illinois has been slow to legalize.
The “Marijuana Doomsday Didn’t Come,” an opinion piece in USNews argues.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the REC market would open next summer, not July 1 as previously expected.
Austria’s new right wing government plans to ban the sale of cannabis seeds and plants. It’s currently legal to sell non-flowering plants.
After its experiment in drug decriminalization, Portugal is considering cannabis legalization.
New Zealand released a MED legalization bill. Iceland’s “Pirate Party” proposed legalizing MED.
BUSINESS
Inc. has a juicy story on the collapse of Tradiv, a promising online cannabis marketplace with funding from Poseidon Asset Management, Anslinger Capital, Sand Hill Angels and CanopyBoulder, among others. It involves sexual harassment allegations against co-founder Geoff Doran (he broadly denies them), and another co-founder, Aeron Sullivan, who had a religious awakening while on LSD.
Tripp Keber resigned as CEO of Colorado edibles brand Dixie. Keber will take on a role with BR Brands, an affiliate of private equity firm Rose Capital, which is building a portfolio of cannabis brands. At Dixie, he’ll be replaced by longtime partner Chuck Smith.
There’s been a shake-up at the National Cannabis Industry Association. Denver activist and entrepreneur Kayvan Khalatbari resigned from the board and Genifer Murray, former CEO of defunct start-up CannLabs, was terminated as chief of staff after only two months on the job. The industry’s largest lobby said it’s in stronger shape than ever, but Khalatbari said stay tuned for more info.
Rob Kampia, the former MPP head, who had to take a leave of absence in 2010 for lewd comments, is no longer on the Students for Sensible Drug Policy advisory board. More allegations surfaced about his time at the organization. And his former chief of staff Alison Green called him a “serial sexual harasser.” In a statement Kampia cited the MPP board’s position that no harassment had taken place since 2010.
Founder Isaac Dietrich reclaimed the CEO spot at MassRoots and the troubled company was, as of Thursdayfacing eviction from its Denver office for owing almost $40,000 in rent.
In California, the battle is on between big weed and craft weed.
MJBizDaily is following dispensary Berkeley Patients Group as it transitions into the legal REC market.
Talks are underway between California, the Feds and banks on how to offer financial services to the state’s cannabis industry.
Banks are skeptical about a proposed California plan to bring banks into the industry. Former California Attorney General Bill Lockyer (D) is starting a cannabis distribution business called C4 Distro.
First Green Bank, which offered banking to cannabis businesses in Florida, is exiting the business.
Nevada’s 273 cannabis businesses employ 6,700 workers. Alaska growers don’t like the state’s wholesale tax.
For the cannabis industry, CNBC says, bitcoin is an alternative to banks.
Fast Company asks if cannabis is imitating the tech industry’s lack of diversity.
KQED reports on unionizing workers. The piece focusses on Hugs Alternative Care in Sacramento, where CEO David Spradlin brought in the union in 2011. “My hope has always been that the cannabis industry doesn’t turn into 7-Eleven,” he said.
Insurer Lloyd’s of London rejects a Colorado homeowner’s claim on a house destroyed in a hash manufacturing accident.
Hawaii’s MED program needs more workers.
Snoop Dogg’s media outlet Merry Jane is partnering with Jack in the Box to offer the “Merry Munchie Meal.
Wal-Mart stopped carrying its “marijuana Christmas tree.
HEALTH & SCIENCE
Critics says the available data underestimates youth cannabis use in Colorado. They also say kids get cannabis from their parents and other family members. (Denver launched a campaign to prevent youth cannabis use. It includes a social media game show called “Weeded Out.
In Oregon, the number of teens who went to the ER or called emergency services for marijuana poisoning, climbed from 40 in 2015 to 70 in 2016.
In Texas, more than 345,000 epilepsy patients won’t be able to access MED under the state’s program.
Willamette Week examines a grassroots effort to fight a secretive attempt to patent cannabis genetics.
The VA is denying a story, (first broken by Tom Angell) that it has loosened its guidelines on MED.
Colleges remain dead set against cannabis use by students, for fear of losing federal funding.
Testing cannabis for contaminants remains a challenge for states.
U.S. life expectancy declined for the second straight year in 2016, due largely to a 21 percent jump in fatal opioid overdoses. In hard-hit Pennsylvania, authorities continue to endorse tough criminal penalties
Cannabisjobs.us

WeedWeek, 12/16/17: Peter Thiel’s Magic Mushroom Play to Begin Clinical Trials

THIS IS WEEDWEEK.
BECAUSE CANNABIS NEWS MATTERS.
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IN OTHER WEEDWEEK NEWS:
WeedWeek has introduced a new feature called WeedWeek Forum, the cannabis world’s Op-Ed page. Many of you are are eager to share your thoughts and expertise. Here’s your chance to publish on the WeedWeek site.
WeedWeek publishes 400-600 word essays, arguments, observations and fact-based criticisms by outside contributors. We do not accept payment for publishing work.
This week, Centuria CEO Michael Brubeck warns cannabis investors: Get ready to lose everything.
Want to contribute? Check out the writer’s guidelines here.
WeedWeek’s Holiday Gift Guide is up featuring special offers on some great gear.
Contact Adrienne Nascimento to add an offer for your product.
Here’s the news.
POLITICS
After Attorney General Jeff Sessions met with legalization opponents, Tom Angell asked Twitter if anyone could expand a photo of the agenda. It revealed “a concerted pitch during the meeting to convince Sessions to launch a federal crackdown on states that have ended cannabis prohibition.”
In an email, I asked attendee and anti-legalization activist Kevin Sabet if he could make a political case for a crackdown. He didn’t respond.
Reminder: The Rohrabacher-Blumenauer Amendment, which blocks Sessions’ Justice Department from prosecuting state-legal MED businesses, expires on Friday.
Doug Jones (D), the former prosecutor who won Sessions’ former Senate seat in Alabama, has far more liberal views on criminal justice reform.
California issued its first batch of cannabis business licenses. Fast Company asks if the market is ready after a year of wildfires.
The state created a digital tool to help grey market businesses go legit. Cheech Marin promoted it in a PSA.
San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee died unexpectedly. As the city’s first Asian-American mayor, he faced criticism from elderly Chinese for his support for cannabis businesses. Acting mayor London Breed also supports legalization.
App looks at the path to legal REC in New JerseyEntrepreneurs are excited about weed in the Garden State.
Vermont could legalize REC within weeks. Hawaii voters oppose legal REC.
Cook County (Chicago) may give voters a chance to legalize REC. Hartford City Council supports REC legalization in Connecticut.
For cannabis, Leafly says the end of net neutrality, “could stifle advocacy efforts, hamper small businesses, and prevent medical patients from accessing vital information.”
City regulated consumption lounges may be coming to Vegas. Massachusetts approved a social use policy. Denver received its first application for social use from a business called The Coffee Joint.
Massachusetts is considering equity provisions to support minority cannabis entrepreneurs.
Maryland released data on diversity in the state’s industry.
An Arizona state senator wants to ban MED billboards. MED patient enrollment is way up in New Mexico.
Ohio defended its license award process against critics. A scorer had ties to a company awarded one of the 12 coveted large grow licenses.
More than 70% of Georgia Republicans support legal MED.
Canadian senators may want to grill Prime Minister Justin Trudeau about legalization. And some conservatives in the body say REC legalization could be delayed past the anticipated July 1 launch. Ontario’s REC law takes effect July 1, 2018.
An opinion piece in iPolitics says it’s not a problem that Canadian legalization violates several international treaties.
Canadian provinces appear settled on a 75-25 revenue split with the federal government on pot taxes after rejecting a proposed 50-50 split. Coming soon, local governments politely ask for their share.
Provincial laws banning home grows could be overturned in court.
REC legalization appears to be working in Uruguay.
BUSINESS
Compass Pathways, a U.K. company investigating psilocybin as a treatment for depression, plans to begin clinical trials next year. Silicon Valley eminence Peter Thiel, whose Founders Fund previously invested in cannabis firm Privateer Holdings, is an investor.
As it tries to hold off a hostile takeover by Aurora, Canadian MED producer CanniMed says Aurora may have violated securities law as part of its bid.
Leafly’s Peter Hecht dives into the leadership struggle at troubled social app MassRoots. Alan Brochstein offers “seven warning signs investors should have heeded.”
Baker, a software platform for dispensaries to retain customers, raised $8M in a round led by Poseidon Asset Management. The company says revenue is up 600% since January.
Canna Law Blog discusses what blockchain financial technology could mean for cannabis.
Bloomberg looks at the racketeering (RICO) lawsuits threatening cannabis businesses. MJBizDaily has more on this “existential threat” to the industry.
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram profiles two Texan executives at Colorado-based Organa Brands (O.Pen Vape.)
After Eugene Antifa activists disclosed ties between Oregon lab OG Analytical and white supremacists, consumers have directed anger against other businesses with OG in their name.
Debit app CanPay will offer cashless payments at some Maryland dispensaries. CanPay CEO Dustin Eide discusses how the service helped Hawaii’s MED program to go cashless.
A company dropped plans for a $20M grow in Michigan.
Canadian cannabis companies raised more than $1.5 billion in 2017. Even if you think it’s a bubble, It’s difficult to short sell Canadian pot stocks.
Lovell’s Drugs became the third Canadian pharmacy chain to sign a deal to sell MED.
An opinion piece at USNews asks how NAFTA will affect marijuana markets.
Quartzy looks at upscale smoking accessories and says, “For some cannabis-curious consumers, good design just might be the ultimate gateway drug.”
Weed and wine tours are increasingly a thing. California winery Rebel Coast released an alcohol-removed, cannabis-infused sauvignon blanc.
Sponsored Content
Introducing incredible Wellness, a line of cannabinoid health products including THC & CBD tinctures, a distillate vaporizer, 500mg THC bath salts and high milligram cannabinoid suppositories. In the wake of a study released this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association stating that a third of CBD products are mislabeled- incredible Wellness is committed to triple testing every single product and mandates the use of the highest-quality ingredients.
“Cannabis has become paramount in my healing process. After an NFL career full of injury to both my brain and body, I use CBD daily as a tool to combat inflammation. Pain can tend to get in the way of everyday activity. CBD can help take the edge off as you get through your day and address your ailments!” – Eugene Monroe, retired NFL player.
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HEALTH & SCIENCE
A study found THC may reduce the cognitive decline common in HIV patients. Another study found CBD can reduce symptoms in patients with psychosis.
A study found cannabis and vaping are more popular than cigarettes among teenagers. The study found teen cannabis use is largely holding steady while use of other illegal drugs has held steady or declined.
The World Health Organization said CBD doesn’t warrant international scheduling.
Pediatric healthcare workers have
Comments Off on Cannabis and other substances just got decriminalized in Norway! Truly shows that the world is moving forward on the issue.

Cannabis and other substances just got decriminalized in Norway! Truly shows that the world is moving forward on the issue.

Posted by | December 13, 2017 | Cannabis News

Drug use should no longer be punished, but treated. The majority in the Storting now makes a historic transformation of Norwegian drug policy, and will transfer responsibility from Justis to health.

“The majority will stop punishing people who struggle, but instead give them help and treatment,” said Nicolas Wilkinson, SV’s health spokesman in the Parliament.

There are the parties Ap, Right, SV and Left behind the change. Wilkinson says it’s a march order to the government to start work on moving the first-line reaction to drug addicts from the courtroom to the health service.

“This is the start of a big rush reform. Now a big effort is being done to switch the system from punishment to help, says the SV representative.

<p> DISCRIMINALIZES: Nicholas Wilkinson (SV) is a member of the parliamentary majority who will transfer responsibility for the use of drugs from the justice sector to the health sector. </ p>
DISCRIMINIZES: Nicholas Wilkinson (SV) is in the majority of the majority who will transfer responsibility for the use of drugs from the justice sector to the health sector.

PHOTO: AUDUN BRAASTAD , NTB SCANPIX

“Now, a large aid device must be built up to allow the users to get help right away, from detoxification to the heaviest users and to the social follow-up of young people taken with a small dose,” Wilkonson told VG.

“It is important to emphasize that we do not legalize cannabis and other drugs, but we decriminalize,” said Sveinung Stensland (H), deputy chairman of the Storting Health Committee.

“The change will take some time, but that means a changed vision: Those who have a substance abuse problem should be treated as ill, and not as criminals with classical sanctions such as fines and imprisonment,” says Stensland to VG.

National Convention Resolutions

Prior to the National Assembly in the Right of the Spring, Minister of Health, Bent Høie (H) in VG, advised that he had turned from believing in punishment, rather to offer assistance and treatment .

A few days later, SV followed up with a similar country meeting decision . and in April, Ap agreed that drugs should still be illegal, but that addicts should get help instead of punishment.

The majority in the Storting writes in the statement that they “wish to transfer responsibility for the community’s follow-up for the use and possession of illicit drugs for their own use, from the justice sector to the health service.”

Disclaimers

But the Ap and the Right take a reservation that neither SV and Left are in:

It will still be a “ban on use and possession of drugs”. However, the two major parties agree to “change the authorities’ reactions to persons taken for use and possession of drugs, from punishment to help, treatment and follow-up.”

Moves threshold for punishment

– It is not free for drug crimes. But the threshold for punishment is moved. This can free resources from the police, which can be harder after traffickers, “said Wilkinson.

In February, the Health Committee in the Storting travels on a study trip to Portugal, which has implemented a similar reform with decriminalization.

Website research, no in 2016 had a major report on the experiences from Portugal.

PS: Frp and KrF disagree that drug addiction is resolved by decriminalizing drug use: “Decriminalizing even narcotic drugs is to deprive drug use and to send out signals that harm both use, environmental impact and testing”, they write.

Cannabisjobs.us

WeedWeek: MED Protections (Barely) Extended; L.A. Sets Rules

THIS IS WEEDWEEK.
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IN OTHER WEEDWEEK NEWS:
WeedWeek has introduced a new feature called WeedWeek Forum, the cannabis world’s Op-Ed page. Many of you are are eager to share your thoughts and expertise. Here’s your chance to publish on the WeedWeek site.
WeedWeek publishes 400-600 word essays, arguments, observations and fact-based criticisms by outside contributors. We do not accept payment for publishing work.
Want to contribute? Check out the writer’s guidelines here.
WeedWeek’s Holiday Gift Guide is up featuring special offers on some great gear.
Contact Adrienne Nascimento to add an offer for your product.
Editorial
1. President Trump’s Federal Communications Commission (FCC) wants to end net neutrality. As John Oliver put it, net neutrality prevents internet providers like Comcast, AT&T and Verizon from engaging “in any sort of fuckery that limits or manipulates the choices you make online.
To learn more about preserving net neutrality, go to Battleforthenet.com.
So much news.
POLITICS
Congress extended the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer Amendment, which blocks the Justice Department from prosecuting state-legal MED businesses for two weeks, as part of the budget deal. It’s not clear whether the amendment will be re-extended.
Repeal of industry-despised tax rule 280E didn’t make it into the Senate version of the Republican tax bill, but Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner (R) hopes to get it into the final version. A Colorado dispensary is suing the IRS claiming 280E taxed them twice.
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions (R), held a closed-door meeting with legalization opponents yesterday. Attendees included Ronald Reagan Attorney General Edwin Meese III; Kevin Sabet, head of Smart Approaches to Marijuana; Harvard Medical School professor and member of President Trump’s drug and opioid abuse commission Bertha Madras; Robert DuPont, former head of the National Institute on Drug Abuse; and David Evans, executive director of the Drug Free Schools Coalition. It’s not clear if Sessions has met with legalization supporters as attorney general.
Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously to regulate California’s largest REC market. The new rules promise extra support to entrepreneurs with past drug convictions and those in areas deemed most affected by the war on drugs. But there are tight zoning restrictions as well. For more see here and here.
Activists say the lack of size caps on commercial grows in California will make it harder for small farmers to survive. For more see here.
After falling short last session, Vermont appears set to legalize REC legislatively in early 2018. Massachusetts is considering social use.
San Francisco voted in favor of a proposed Sunset District dispensary, which has faced opposition from older Chinese residents.
Seattle Weekly looks back at five years of legal REC in Washington.
Maryland named a health system CEO as head of the state’s MED regulator. The previous director, a former state trooper, was the second to resign in two years.
In Michigan, proposed MED rules leaked to the press.
The U.S. Army is issuing more waivers for recruits who have used cannabis in the past.
Anne McLellan, who led Canada’s federal task force on legalization, predicts REC will pass the conservative Senate in time to meet the government’s July implementation deadline.
Canada’s First Nations demand control of the cannabis industry in their territories.
German activists collected 50,000 signatures, forcing the Bundestag to debate REC legalization. An Irish lawmaker said legal REC is inevitable within a few years. For more see here.
The U.K. has a cocaine glut.
A dispensary owner won a city council seat in a conservative Washington town.
Washington cannabis activist JoAnna McKee, died at 74. McKee, opened Seattle’s first dispensary in 1993, five years before Washington legalized MED. McKee was a fixture at cannabis hearings in the state legislature, known for wearing colorful eye patches.
BUSINESS
The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in Christie vs. NCAA, a case assessing whether New Jersey can partially legalize sports gambling. Christie has implications for whether the federal government can block state efforts to legalize cannabis. The judges appeared sympathetic to the case for federalism (states rights).
Oregon-licensed testing company OG Analytical and its co-owners are mutually severing ties after Eugene Antifa alleged the co-owners have ties to neo-Nazi groups. CEO Bethany Sherman denied being a neo-Nazi and said her only “crime is a thought crime.” At least one grower, HiFi Farms, ended its relationship with the lab.
A pesticide-related lawsuit against Canadian MED producer Organigram, is expanding its scope to claim the company’s product made people ill. The company said it has not received any evidence of sickened patients.
REC demand in Canada could be 40% higher than expected, according to Colorado research firm Marijuana Policy Group.
North American legal cannabis sales will reach about $10 billion this year.
After October wildfires destroyed dozens of NorCal cannabis farms, wildfires in southern California threatened to taint cannabis grown in Los Angeles and San Luis Obispo counties.
Cannabis biotech firm, GW Pharmaceuticals plans to raise more than $250M from American depository shares.
Canna Law Blog discusses how to protect a business from bad-actor employees.
Oregon regulators launched a “Go legal!” campaign to promote the state’s industry.
Bloomberg discusses the partnerships cannabis brands use to expand across state lines.
Reuters finds top business talent going into cannabis. Lawyers are moving in as well, despite risks.
The Economist explains the industry’s cash problem. But more companies and states have figured out workarounds. Dispensaries remain skeptical about cryptocurrency, according to Green Market Report.
The U.S. Justice Department issued a reminder that cannabis businesses, including ancillary businesses, don’t have access to the U.S. bankruptcy system.
Ohio officials called for a freeze on MED licenses after it came out that a Maine cannabis consultant with a 2005 felony drug conviction evaluated license applications in the state. The consultant wouldn’t be eligible to receive an Ohio license.
Also in Ohio, a backer of the state’s failed 2015 legalization bid is threatening to sue the state.
Track and trace and advertising issues are the most common infractions by Washington cannabis businesses.
Aside from lawyer David Welch, the new owners of L.A.Weekly appear not to have ties to the cannabis industry.
OmniEarth, a start-up founded by Brigham Young University student Joseph Walker, has developed an organic fertilizer popular with cannabis growers. It’s made from nightcrawler droppings.
To save their businesses, a number of Oregon MED shops are converting to REC.
Denver’s city auditor says the cannabis regulator has improved but needs to be more transparent on how pot taxes get spent.
Leafly interviewed a cannabis packaging designer.
Canadian provinces are struggling to set cannabis prices. The idea is legal weed should be affordable enough to coax users away from the illegal market but not so cheap that younger people overconsume. Nova Scotia plans to sell REC in government liquor stores.
Colorado cannabis company MJardin has acquired a “major” stake in Ontario-based Grand River Organics, a “late-stage applicant” for a MED license. Terms were not disclosed.
Canadian producer Canopy Growth plans to build Denmark’s first legal MED grow.
New Frontier released a $149 report on the Brazilian market.
The Hemp Industries Association is suing the DEA, for classifying CBD as a controlled substance. Arguments before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals are scheduled for February.
HEALTH & SCIENCE
Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes for Health, acknowledged a lower rate of opioid overdoses and deaths in legal cannabis states. The data, he cautions, shows correlation, not necessarily causation.
The idea that certain drugs prime users to use more drugs, known as “common liability theory,” has breathed new life into the idea of gateway drugs.
Colorado has new rules for cannabis research. Colorado researchers will study

Nova Scotia announced on Thursday its plans to regulate legal cannabis sales when the recreational market opens next summer. The Nova Scotia Liquor Corp. will have full control over online and storefront sales, justice minister Mark Furey said at a news conference, following the strict regimes announced by Ontario and New Brunswick.

“The NSLC has the experience and expertise to distribute and sell cannabis, keeping it out of the hands of young people and making it legally available in a safe, regulated way,” Furey explained. Further details on how many storefronts will be open will be announced in the coming months.

Cannabisjobs.us
THIS IS WEEDWEEK.
BECAUSE CANNABIS NEWS MATTERS.
DID YOU KNOW? You can list your conferences, festivals and parties for FREE on the site.
Check out those upcoming events here.
Would you appreciate a WeedWeek regional supplement with more news from California and/or Canada? Or more news about the opioid crisis? Sign up at the appropriate link.
Do you consider WeedWeek a valuable resource? Consider supporting WeedWeek with a monthly contribution on Patreon.
Swag and discounts start at $2 a month.
For $25 a month you get five (5!) WeedWeek stickers, discounts to all future WeedWeek events, a postcard from Los Angeles, cannabis capital of the world and you get to join a monthly Google hangout with me and other WeedWeek supporters to discuss the latest news…
Brandbuilding opportunities to appear in the newsletter with your links and social media handles start at only $50 a month.
LIKE US.
FOLLOW US:
ALEX HALPERIN