Florida Judge Rules Limit on Medical Cannabis Businesses is Unconstitutional

A circuit court judge in Florida has ruled that the state’s limit on medical cannabis businesses is unconstitutional as it runs contrary to the intent of the voter-approved initiative that legalized the medicine.

Leon County Circuit Judge Charles Dodson ruled that an arbitrary cap on medical marijuana treatment centers, passed by state lawmakers in 2017, “directly contradicts the amendment” that legalized medical cannabis.

“Such limits directly undermine the clear intent of the amendment, which by its language seeks to prevent arbitrary restriction on the number of MMTCs authorized to conduct business in the state”, Dodson wrote in his ruling. “The amendment mandates the availability and safe use of medical marijuana by qualifying patients”.

Dodson also ruled that the state’s requirement of “vertical integration” is unconstitutional.

“It’s the first time any judge has weighed in on the licensing process at all, and what he said was unequivocal”, says Florigrown CEO Adam Eland. “What he’s saying, and I think this is super clear, is what you’re doing is unconstitutional”.

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California: Medical Cannabis for Pets Bill Passed by Assembly, Advances in Senate

Legislation to explicitly allow and regulate the medical use of cannabis for pets is advancing in the California Legislature.

California Assembly Bill 2215 would expand “the intent of the Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA) to control and regulate cannabis and cannabis products for medicinal use on pets.” The bill would define “cannabis products” to include products intended for medicinal use on a pet. The bill wouldn’t allow a veterinarian to administer medical cannabis, “but allow a veterinarian to discuss the use of cannabis on an animal for medicinal purposes without being disciplined or denied, revoked or suspended by the Veterinary Medical Board (VMB). ”

The measure states that the VMB “would have until July 1, 2019 to promulgate guidelines for veterinarians to follow when discussing the use of cannabis”, and it “Provides that a cannabis product for use on a pet may only be sold to an adult 21 years or age or over by a licensee who has been issued a retailer license, as specified.”

The proposal quietly passed the Assembly at the end of May in a 60 to 10 vote. Yesterday in the Senate Appropriations Committee it was “ordered to second reading pursuant to Senate Rule 28.8.”

If the bill is passed by the full Senate, it will be sent to Governor Jerry Brown for consideration.

The full text of Assembly Bill 2215 can be found by clicking here.

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Proposed US Tariffs Threaten Vaporizer Industry

The Blinc Group’s Arnaud d Dumas Rauly: “The cannabis industry will suffer from these tariffs.”

The US vaporizer industry is in a panic over proposed 25% tariffs on Chinese products. This would affect pen devices, hardware and batteries. China dominates the worldwide vaporizer hardware market.

“The rationale behind this administration’s trade war against China is twofold: stealing American jobs and stealing American IP and know-how,” Arnaud Dumas de Rauly, co-founder and co-CEO of the New York-based vape company, The Blinc Group, tells Freedom Leaf. “However, as it pertains to vaping products, none of these jobs and know-how are in the US to begin with. The cannabis industry will suffer from these tariffs.

“The supply of raw material isn’t big enough in the US to support a switch to US manufacturing,” he continues. “The skillsets aren’t in the US either. Bottom line, these tariffs will not bring jobs to America. In addition, given the small margins (10-15%) on the hardware, the cost of these tariffs will be passed on to consumers, which will limit patient/consumer access to cannabis products, especially in states like Florida and New York, whose medical programs relay on vaping products. Finally, the regulatory uncertainty is already stifling the cannabis industry, so this trade war will be adding ‘federal action’ onto already struggling businesses. It just doesn’t make sense, not to mention the loss of taxes on a state level that will result from the limited access.”

ARNAUD DE DUMAS RAULY: “These proposed tariff increases will do great harm to American businesses, medical marijuana patients and adult use consumers.”

On July 24, Dumas de Rauly testified at public hearings conducted by The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative regarding proposed tariffs on $16 billion worth of Chinese products.

Report: Drug Legalization Would Add $100 Billion to U.S. Budget

Ending the drug war would result in an additional $100 billion annually for the U.S. budget, according to a new report conducted by The Cato Institute.

“Drawing on the most recent available data, this bulletin estimates the fiscal windfall that would be achieved through drug legalization”, states the report. “All told, drug legalization could generate up to $106.7 billion in annual budgetary gains for federal, state, and local governments.” Those gains would come from two primary sources: decreases in drug enforcement spending and increases in tax revenue.

The report estimates that “state and local governments spend $29 billion on drug prohibition annually, while the federal government spends an additional $18 billion.” Meanwhile, “full drug legalization would yield $19 billion in state and local tax revenue and $39 billion in federal tax revenue.

“Legalization can reduce government spending, which saves resources for other uses, and it generates tax revenue that transfers income from drug producers and consumers to public coffers,”  Jeffrey Miron, the institute’s Director of Economic Studies, states in the report.

The full report can be found by clicking here.

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Rohrabacher Received Campaign Donations from Manafort, Had Meetings with Assange and Butina

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) may be a friend to marijuana legalization, but that’s where his liberal leanings stop. The Congressman is a major backer of Donald Trump and has been implicated in Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential campaign.

Though his name has not been mentioned so far in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s interference in the election, it’s now known that Rohrabacher attended a 2013 meeting with former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who’s been indicted by the special counsel.

Rohrabacher, Manafort and former Rep. Vin Weber, a Minnesota Republican who’s now a lobbyist with Mercury, were at the meeting on Mar. 19, 2013, which was disclosed in retroactive filings with the Justice Department last year that detailed Manafort and Rick Gates’ work for the European Center for a Modern Ukraine. Gates, a former Trump campaign aide and Manafort associate, pled guilty on Feb. 23 to felony charges of conspiracy and making false statements in a plea bargain with Mueller.

Gates lied about the 2013 meeting and his Ukraine-related work with Manafort. He’s charged with “admitting to take part in a conspiracy to hide tens of millions of dollars that he and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort obtained from their consulting work related to Ukraine.” Gates later helped Manafort prepare “a report that memorialized for Ukrainian leadership the pertinent Ukraine discussions that Manafort represented had taken place at the meeting.”

Illinois Governor Signs Bill Allowing Medical Cannabis to be Consumed at Schools

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner has signed into law a bill allowing students who are medical cannabis patients to use their medicine on school premises.

Governor Rauner’s signing of House Bill 4870 comes roughly two and a half months after the legislature passed the measure by a vote of 149 to 3.

The legislation is known as Ashley’s Law, named after 12-year-old Ashley Surin who uses medical marijuana to treat the epilepsy she developed during chemotherapy. The  bill amends the Illinois School Code to require “a school district, public school, charter school, or nonpublic school to authorize a parent or guardian of a student who is a qualifying patient to administer a medical cannabis infused product to the student on school premises or a school bus if both the student (as a qualifying patient) and the parent or guardian (as a designated caregiver) have been issued registry identification cards under the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act.”

The measure  “Provides that a parent or guardian may not administer a medical cannabis infused product if the administration would create disruption to the school’s educational environment or would cause exposure of the product to other students”, and “Provides that nothing in the provision requires a member of the school’s staff to administer a medical cannabis infused product to a student.”

An amendment  passed by the House states:

Provides that the provision may be referred to as Ashley’s Law. Defines terms. Provides that, in addition to the parent or guardian of a student who is a registered qualifying patient, an individual registered with the Department of Public Health as a designated caregiver may administer a medical cannabis infused product to that student. Makes conforming changes. Provides that a parent or guardian or other individual may not administer a medical cannabis infused product in a manner that, in the opinion of the school district or school, would create a disruption to the

Illinois Governor Signs Bill Allowing Medical Cannabis to be Consumed at Schools

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner has signed into law a bill allowing students who are medical cannabis patients to use their medicine on school premises.

Governor Rauner’s signing of House Bill 4870 comes roughly two and a half months after the legislature passed the measure by a vote of 149 to 3.

The legislation is known as Ashley’s Law, named after 12-year-old Ashley Surin who uses medical marijuana to treat the epilepsy she developed during chemotherapy. The  bill amends the Illinois School Code to require “a school district, public school, charter school, or nonpublic school to authorize a parent or guardian of a student who is a qualifying patient to administer a medical cannabis infused product to the student on school premises or a school bus if both the student (as a qualifying patient) and the parent or guardian (as a designated caregiver) have been issued registry identification cards under the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act.”

The measure  “Provides that a parent or guardian may not administer a medical cannabis infused product if the administration would create disruption to the school’s educational environment or would cause exposure of the product to other students”, and “Provides that nothing in the provision requires a member of the school’s staff to administer a medical cannabis infused product to a student.”

An amendment  passed by the House states:

Provides that the provision may be referred to as Ashley’s Law. Defines terms. Provides that, in addition to the parent or guardian of a student who is a registered qualifying patient, an individual registered with the Department of Public Health as a designated caregiver may administer a medical cannabis infused product to that student. Makes conforming changes. Provides that a parent or guardian or other individual may not administer a medical cannabis infused product in a manner that, in the opinion of the school district or school, would create a disruption to the

Study: THC May Treat Agitation In Alzheimer’s Patients

The administration of nabilone, a synthetic compound meant to mimic the effects of  natural THC, reduces agitation and other behavioral symptoms in Alzheimer’s patients, according to new research.

“Results of a randomized, double-blind clinical trial suggest that nabilone — a synthetic cannabinoid — may be effective in treating agitation in people with Alzheimer’s disease”, states a press release for the study, which was presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) 2018.

“Agitation, including verbal or physical outbursts, general emotional distress, restlessness, pacing, is one of the most common behavioral changes associated with Alzheimer’s as it progresses, and can be a significant cause of caregiver stress,” said Krista L. Lanctôt, PhD, Senior Scientist at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and Professor of Psychiatry and Pharmacology/Toxicology at the University of Toronto.

Lanctôt and colleagues investigated the potential benefits of nabilone for adults with moderate to severe Alzheimer’s dementia with clinically significant agitation. Over the 14-week trial duration, 39 participants (77 percent male, average age 87) received nabilone in capsule form (mean therapeutic dose=1.6 +/- .5 mg) for six weeks, followed by six weeks of placebo, with one week between each treatment period. In addition to measuring agitation, the researchers assessed overall behavioral symptoms, memory, physical changes and safety. They found that:

  • Agitation improved significantly in those taking nabilone, compared to placebo, as measured by the Cohen-Mansfield Agitation Inventory (p=0.003).
  • Nabilone also significantly improved overall behavioral symptoms, compared to placebo, as measured by the Neuropsychiatric Inventory (p=0.004).

 

The researchers also observed small benefits in cognition and nutrition during the study. More people in the study experienced sedation on nabilone (45 percent) compared to placebo (16 percent).

“Currently prescribed treatments for agitation in Alzheimer’s do not work in everybody, and when they do work the effect is small and they increase risk of harmful side effects, including increased risk of death. As a result, there is an urgent need …

Alaska Garnered Over $11 Million in Taxes from Legal Marijuana Sales in FY 2018

According to data released by the Alaska Department of Revenue, the state earned over $11 million in taxes from the sale of marijuana and marijuana products in FY 2018.

In total, Alaska made $11,094,808 in tax revenue from marijuana sales during FY (fiscal year) 2018. This surpasses the Department of Revenue’s predictions for the year by around $2 million.

The highest earning month for FY 2018, which began on July 1, 2017 with the final day being June 31 of this year, was June with $1,257,513 in marijuana taxes brought  in. The lowest month was July at $577,901.

In Alaska, marijuana was legalized through a citizen’s initiative in 2014, with those 21 and  older allowed to purchase, possess and use up to an ounce (with the possession limit rising to four ounces when in a private residence). The state’s first licensed marijuana retail outlet opened nearly two years later in October, 2016.

Under the state’s law, marijuana is taxed at $50 per ounce for bud, and $15 per ounce for leaves and other trimmings.

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Study: 75% of Physicians in New York Have Patients Who Use Medical Cannabis, Neuropathy the Most Common Qualifying Condition

According to a new study more than seven out of every 10 physicians in New York have patients who use medical cannabis, with the most common qualifying condition being neuropathy.

The study of practicing physicians, MDs or DOs, in New York found that “More than 75% reported having patients who used cannabis for symptom control, and 50% reported having patients who inquired about MMJ [medical marijuana] within the past year”. The majority (71%) agreed that “MMJ should be an option available to patients”.

The study found that the most common qualifying medical condition among medical cannabis patients to be neuropathy, followed closely by cancer, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease.

Among the medical professionals who have patients using the plant for symptom contol, the most common symptoms were “pain (83%), anxiety (54.7%), nausea (46.2%), depression (37.1%), cachexia (31.1%), and 17.9% for other indications, including for spasticity, sleep issues, and seizures.

For the study, which was published the National Institute of Health’s official website. “A 30-item questionnaire was developed by our research team based on surveys developed by others, but adapted to NY-specific needs (Supplementary Data—Survey).” This survey “sought to obtain perspectives on the NY-MMP from practicing physicians. Survey questions included categorical/nominal, ordinal, and continuous data.”

Survey responses from close-ended questions were sorted and analyzed using Survey Monkey and Excel, and Prism statistical software. Responses from open-ended questions were analyzed through thematic categorization and frequency analysis.

The full text of the study can be found by clicking here.

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Medical marijuana initiative filed in Mississippi

Yesterday, Mississippians for Compassionate Care filed an initiative with the Secretary of State’s office that would make medical marijuana legal in Mississippi. The group is aiming to bring an amendment to the state constitution to voters in 2020. The first step to getting it on the ballot is to collect over 100,000 signatures from all over the state. You can read the proposed amendment here.

The signature collection is a huge undertaking and the campaign will need lots of volunteers to circulate petitions in their area. If you are a Mississippi resident who is willing to help collect signatures, please email the signature collection coordinator: JB Brown.

For more information on the campaign or to get involved, please go to www.medicalmarijuana2020.com. It’s time for patients suffering in Mississippi to have access to medical marijuana.

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How To Use A One Hitter And Why You Should Get One

one_hitter_1

A one hitter is a small pipe with a narrow bowl that is designed and used for a single inhalation, or one hit. It typically holds about 25 milligrams of cannabis (a single hit). Although you may be most familiar with the one hitter that looks like a cigarette, there are actually a few different traditional styles of one hitter pipes.

one hitterSource: dhgate.com

Traditional Styles Of One Hitter Pipes

Kiseru

The kiseru is a Japanese pipe typically made of metal and bamboo — metal for the mouthpiece and bowl with bamboo in between. Kiseru became popular in the 17th century and can even be found mentioned in some Buddhist textbooks.

Midwakh

MidwakhSource: turbosquid.com

The midwakh is a Middle Eastern pipe that is traditionally used to smoke tobacco mixed with herbs. These one hitter pipes are mostly produced in the United Arab Emirates and can be made out of a multitude of materials, including wood, bone, metal, or glass.

Sebsi

A sebsi is a Moroccan pipe with a narrow clay bowl. The stem is made of wood and has been traditionally used to smoke cannabis pollen, or kief. They can be up to 18 inches long.

Chillum

chillumSource: karmagroupindia.com

Chillums are straight, conical one hitter pipes that feature a channel connected from end to end. They are typically made of clay and have been in use since the 18th century. Originally, chillums were smoked by hindu monks in India, but they have made their popularity has now spread across the world.

How Do You Use A One Hitter?

One hitter pipes are easy to use. You fill the narrow chamber or bowl with your weed, pack it in tightly, light up, and take a puff. Inhale slowly but steadily to get the best hit and avoid pulling in ash. There are some techniques you can use to make using a one hitter more enjoyable, though.

Use The Right Consistency