Report: Over 200,000 Full-Time Jobs Created by State-Legal Marijuana Businesses

Marijuana businesses that are legal under their state’s law hired 64,000 new employees in 2018, and now employs over 200,000 full-time workers, according to data compiled by Whitney Economics and Leafly.com.

The report, entitled Cannabis Jobs Count, identifies some 211,000 full-time jobs in the legal cannabis sector. This total increases to 296,000 jobs when ancillary employers are also included.

By comparison, 112,000 Americans are estimated to currently work in the textile industry, while only about 52,000 people are employed by the coal mining industry.

“[T]he legal cannabis industry remains a substantial and unrecognized engine of grassroots job creation,” authors concluded. “In fact, cannabis job growth is proceeding at double digit rates in many states despite being overtaxed locally and heavily penalized at the federal level.”

California (67,000 jobs) led the country in cannabis-related employment, followed by Washington (47,000 jobs), and Colorado (44,000 jobs).

The report states:

Some states that have had legal adult-use cannabis sales for a while now—Colorado and Washington opened their stores in 2014—are just now seeing the growth in cannabis jobs start to plateau.

Meanwhile, newly legal states, such as Florida (medical) and Nevada (adult use), are experiencing cannabis job booms with eye-popping gains:

    • Florida grew its cannabis employment by 703% in 2018, adding more than 9,000 full-time jobs.
    • Nevada added more than 7,500 jobs during that same year.
    • Pennsylvania ended 2017 with around 90 cannabis jobs. It ended the 2018 with nearly 3,900.
    • New York grew its cannabis employment by 278%, ending 2018 with more than 5,000 jobs.

 

Commenting on the findings, NORML Executive Director Erik Altieri said: “The federal government needs to deschedule marijuana to allow states to better and more fully benefit from the economic growth engine that is the legal marijuana industry. Further, state regulators need to ensure as this sector expands its economic benefits are shared by all, including and most especially by those who suffered most under the …

Former Colorado Gov. Hickenlooper Vies for Presidential Nomination. But Was He Good on Pot?

Two governors from legal marijuana states are seeking to become the Democrats’ presidential nominee in 2020. We wrote about Washington’s current Governor Jay Inslee earlier this week. Here’s our take on Colorado’s former two-term Governor John Hickenlooper, who announced his candidacy on March 4.

Like Inslee, Hickenlooper opposed his state’s recreational marijuana ballot initiative in 2012 when Colorado’s Amendment 64 passed with 55% of the vote.

By 2014, when the law was implemented and adult-use stores began to open, the Governor stated: “I hate Colorado having to be the experiment. We are going to regulate the daylights out of it.”

He added: “This is going to be one of the great social experiments of the 21st century. But going out and getting tax revenue is absolutely the wrong reason to even think about legalizing recreational marijuana. We’re going to not use this as a source of revenue to help education or expanding health care. We’re going to use it in health care where it will relate to marijuana activity… I don’t think governors should be the position of promoting things that are inherently not good for people.”

Women Grow Announces First East Coast Summit in June

Women Grow NYC holds monthly networking events at Galvanize.

As the cannabis and hemp industries continue to build throughout the U.S., no area has experienced as rapid a growth as the East Coast. Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont (plus Washington, DC) have all established medical-cannabis programs, several states (Maine, Massachusetts and Vermont) have passed adult-use laws and several more are on their way or still weighing the option. Hemp is also poised to be a major force in the region.

Reparative justice, equity programs, diversity and inclusion, environmental and public-safety concerns and evolving regulations are all part of the ongoing conversation shaping East Coast cannabis.

Here’s how Women Grow plans to impact East Coast female entrepreneurs and business leaders.

Summit Moves to DC

Women Grow will bring its annual Leadership Summit to Washington, DC in on June 7-8 at the Washington Court Hotel. It will be the first woman-focused cannabis conference on the East Coast. This is a unique opportunity for us to carry our message to the nation’s capital while introducing the Women Grow brand to a new audience. Women Grow’s new leadership team also hails from the area, exemplifying the many opportunities now available to those outside of traditional cannabis strongholds.

Growing East Coast Markets

As the popularity of adult-use cannabis legislation intensifies nationwide, East Coast governors have responded to this trend by accelerating legalization efforts. New Jersey and New York are discussing such measures, expanding their medical programs to serve more patients and embracing the rising industrial hemp industry.

Gov. Jay Inslee Hypes Washington Cannabis, But Opposed Legalization

 

On March 1, Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced he’s running for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Like many in the crowded Democrat field of candidates, he appears to have been advised that campaigns in this cycle need to support marijuana legalization. There are reasons to doubt his sincerity.

Inslee was elected governor in 2012. Washington voters also approved I-502 that year legalizing marijuana in the Evergreen State. Inslee opposed I-502, which may have cost him votes. Luckily for him, his opponent also was against the measure.

Inslee’s position on marijuana has evolved since taking office and he’s now trying hard to be seen as embracing the concept of legalization.

For example, when Inslee was a guest on Real Time with Bill Maher on HBO last April 20, he joked in the “Overtime” session about marijuana being a “growing industry and well-regulated ” in Washington State. “I can honestly say we’ve got the best weed in the United States of America,” he crowed.

Inslee even recently admitted during an interview on BuzzFeed’s AM2DM show that he legally grows cannabis. “Well, I may not …

Legislation to Regulate and Tax Marijuana in Vermont Passes Senate With Veto-proof Majority

A legislative proposal to tax and regulate marijuana for adult use in Vermont third and final reading in the Vermont Senate Friday with a veto-proof majority; the vote was 23 to 5.

The measure now moves to the Vermont House of Representatives for consideration. Passage in the House would send it to Governor Phill Scott for consideration.

Senate Bill 54, sponsored by 15 of the state’s 30 senators, would create a system of regulated marijuana production and sales for adult use in Vermont, reports the Marijuana Policy Project in a press release. Retail sales would be subject to a 10 percent tax, and municipalities could establish a 1 percent local option tax if they host a retailer. Under the proposal, oversight of the medical cannabis program would be shifted from the Department of Safety to a new independent commission beginning January 1, 2021. It would also change the word “marijuana” to “cannabis” throughout state statutes. A detailed summary of S. 54 is available at http://bit.ly/Vermont-S54.

Laws regulating and taxing cannabis for adult use have been enacted in nine states and the U.S. territory of the Northern Mariana Islands. Vermont and D.C. are the only two U.S. jurisdictions where cannabis is legal but not regulated for adult use.

“We applaud the Senate for its overwhelming approval of this commonsense legislation”, says Matt Simon, New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project, which is leading a coalition in support of the legislation. “We hope members of the House will agree that regulating and taxing cannabis is in Vermont’s best interest. Most importantly, this legislation will make the state safer by creating a safe and legal market through which adults can access cannabis products. It will also have the added benefit of generating new tax revenue for the state, as well as local governments.”

Scott continues: “Cannabis is legal for adults in Vermont, and it’s time for it to be treated …

The Cannabis Industry’s 20 Hottest Pot Stocks of 2019

With mergers and acquisitions moving at a fast pace, it’s hard to know which cannabis companies are the best values. Last year, we provided a list of the Top 12 Canadian Pot Stocks. Here’s an expanded 2019 list that includes U.S. companies investors are high on.

Acreage Holdings

OTC: ACRGF

Based: New York, NY

Cap: $1.65 billion

Stock price: $19.10

About: Holds dispensary and cultivation licenses in 10 states; former Speaker of the House John Boehner And Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney are on their board.

Related Article: They Say It’s an Evolution: On John Boehner’s Cannabis Switcheroo

 

Aphria Inc.

NYSE: APHA

Based: Leamington, ON

Cap: $2.55 billion

Stock price: $10.31

About: The Canadian licensed producer faced a short seller in 2018. Note: Licensed producers are legally allowed to cultivate in Canada.

Related Article: Quintessential Capital Challenges Aphria

Aurora Cannabis Inc.

NYSE: ACB

Based: Cremona, AB

Cap: $7.33 billion

Stock Price: $7.30

About: The Canadian licensed producer met with Coca-Cola in 2018

Canopy Growth Corp.

NYSE: CGC

Based: Smiths Falls, ON

Cap: $16.10 billion

Stock price: $47.10

About: The Canadian licensed producer …

The Current Top 10 Most Popular Marijuana Strains

Among the hundreds – if not thousands – of marijuana strains found around the world, here are the 10 most popular!

blue dream

Blue Dream.

Using data compiled by Leafly, here are the 10 most popular marijuana strains at this very moment:

The Current 10 Most Popular Marijuana Strains:

  • Blue Dream

Blue Dream has remained a mainstay in the marijuana scene for decades. A sativa-dominant marijuana strain, Blue Drea, is a cross between the indica-dominant Blueberry and the sativa-dominant Haze. It’s known for its smooth and uplifting high, as well as its delicious blueberry flavor.

  • Sour Diesel

Sour Diesel is a cross between Super Skunk and Chemdawg, and it stands out due to its strong diesel smell, and its energetic and potent high.

  • Girl Scout Cookies

Girl Scout Cookies (GSC) is a popular mix between OG Kush and Durban Poison It has a powerful high that permeates the body, and a strong, sweet taste and smell.

  • Green Crack

Green Crack has an energetic high and a powerful body buzz that reaches the head. It has a sweet, almost citrus-like taste and smell. The name may not be doing the marijuana industry any favors, but those who try it can easily understand its popularity.

  • OG Kush

OG Kush has been one of the most popular strains for many years year. A cross between Hindu Kush and Chemdawg, OG Kush has an earthy, piney flavor, and a strong head high, that’s loved by many.

  • Granddaddy Purple

Granddaddy Purple is a powerful indica that’s a mix between Big Bud and Purple Urkle. With a berry-like flavor, this strain is a joy to smoke. It’s most known for its dense, kiefy nuggets.

  • Original Glue

Gorilla Glue #4 has been replaced on this list with Original Glue. According to Leafly, “Original Glue (GG4), developed by GG Strains, is a potent hybrid strain that delivers heavy-handed euphoria and relaxation, leaving you feeling “glued” to the couch. Its …

Indiana Gov. Holcomb Ran Frat, Smoked Pot in College

The governor of one of the most conservative states, Indiana’s Eric Holcomb, admitted that he smoked marijuana in college during a February 27 press conference in Indianapolis.

“Have you ever used marijuana?” he was asked.

“Yes,” the Republican governor tersely replied.

“Even though it’s illegal?”

“Yes.”

“When did you use it?”

“College.”

Holcomb was born in 1968 and attended Hanover College in Hanover, IN from 1987-1990 where he was chapter president of Phi Gamma Delta.

He went on to say this about legalizing marijuana in the Hoosier State:

“I’d like to be in line with federal. And if federal law changed… it should change from being informed itself, not allowing some hodge-podge national effort to organically spring up because folks are looking the other way. This would require medical research and science to give us the true evidence on both the medicinal value and the efficacy of recreational use. That’s not here yet. As I understand it, there’s a 12-acre farm in Mississippi that’s responsible for doing the research. I’m not against that research being done. Quite frankly, just the opposite. The sooner

Study: Cannabinoids May Be An Effective Adjunct Treatment for D

Cannabinoids “may be an effective adjunct for the treatment of pancreatic cancer”, according to a new study.

The study, titled Potential Use of Cannabinoids for the Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer, was published by the Journal of Pancreatic Cancer, and has been epublished by the National Institute of Health.

“Cannabinoid extracts may have anticancer properties, which can improve cancer treatment outcomes”, begins the study’s abstract. “The aim of this review is to determine the potentially utility of cannabinoids in the treatment of pancreatic cancer.”

For the study, “A literature review focused on the biological effects of cannabinoids in cancer treatment, with a focus on pancreatic cancer, was conducted. In vitro and in vivo studies that investigated the effects of cannabinoids in pancreatic cancer were identified and potential mechanisms of action were assessed.”

According to researchers, “Cannabinol receptors have been identified in pancreatic cancer with several studies showing in vitro antiproliferative and proapoptotic effects. The main active substances found in cannabis plants are cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).” There effects are “predominately mediated through, but not limited to cannabinoid receptor-1, cannabinoid receptor-2, and G-protein-coupled receptor 55 pathways.” In vitro studies consistently demonstrated tumor growth-inhibiting effects with CBD, THC, and synthetic derivatives.

“Synergistic treatment effects have been shown in two studies with the combination of CBD/synthetic cannabinoid receptor ligands and chemotherapy in xenograft and genetically modified spontaneous pancreatic cancer models”, notes the study. “There are, however, no clinical studies to date showing treatment benefits in patients with pancreatic cancer.”

The study concludes by stating that “Cannabinoids may be an effective adjunct for the treatment of pancreatic cancer. Data on the anticancer effectiveness of various cannabinoid formulations, treatment dosing, precise mode of action, and clinical studies are lacking.”

The full study, published by researchers at the University of Melbourne in Australia, can be found by clicking here.

According to a study of nearly 3,000 people published last year, it was found that …

New Hampshire House Committee Approves Marijuana Legalization Bill

A key committee in New Hampshire’s House of Representatives has given approval to legislation that would legalize marijuana for those 21 and older.

House Bill 481 was passed last week by the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee in a 10 to 9 vote. The measure now moves towards a vote by the full House of Representatives. Passage in the House would send the bill to the Senate; passage in the Senate would send it to Governor Chris Sununu who would have the option of signing it into law, allowing it to become law without his signature or vetoing it.

Under the proposed law, those 21 and older would be allowed to possess up to an ounce of marijuana for personal use. They could also grow up to six marijuana plants (up to 12 per household).

In addition, the legislation would establish a licensed and regulated system of marijuana businesses. Anyone 21 and older – even those who live outside or New Hampshire – would be allowed to purchase from marijuana retail outlets. Marijuana would be taxed at $30 per ounce for dried bud. A cannabis control commission would be established to oversee regulations and licensing for the legal marijuana industry.

State projections show that legalization would bring in at least $20 million, and as much as $31 million, in new taxes each year.

Under the law, the public consumption of marijuana would remain prohibited, but would be just a civil infraction rather than a criminal offense. The infraction would be an $100 ticket.

Public consumption would be banned and subject to a $100 fine on first offense.

“It was a historic vote,” State Representative Robert Cushing , the bill’s primary sponsor, said in an interview with NHPR. “For the first time in history the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee voted to recommend that we put an end to the prohibition of cannabis and enact a law …

New Jersey Politicians Agree on $42 Per Ounce Marijuana Tax

Dasheeda Dawson (CEO of MJM Strategy), Jeff Brown (Assistant Commissioner of New Jersey Department of Health, Oversight of Medical Marijuana Program) and Ellie Siegel (CEO of Longview Strategic) speaking at Accelerate Cannabis at NJPAC in Newark, New Jersey on February 19.

New Jersey cannabis supporters received good news this week: adult-use legalization passed another hurdle.

Sen. Nicholas Scutari, author of Senate Bill 2703, said on Feb. 15 that legislative leaders and Gov. Phil Murphy agreed to impose a $42 per ounce tax rate on recreational marijuana. Senate President Steve Sweeney had wanted a 12% levy while Murphy supported a 25% rate.

“We’re closer than we’ve ever been before,” Scutari stated. “However, if I thought we were all done, I’d be the first person calling a press conference.

This was a major topic of discussion at Accelerate Cannabis four days later on February 19 at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) in Newark. About 150 business people, officials, activists, lawyers and service providers gathered to share ideas about legalized pot in the Garden State. Speakers on a series of panels discussed a wide range of topics from dealing with municipalities to developing new products.

How to Legalize Marijuana in 2019

Could 2019 sound the death knell for marijuana prohibition as we know it in America? Will more states legalize the noble weed before year’s end? Can the federal government actually get out of its own way and allow the full flowering of legal cannabis commerce in the nation and around the world? Will the foreign abandonment of prohibition in favor of legalization push the U.S. to finally end its Draconian policy?

These are important questions to ask while we barrel ahead as a movement and industry. There are two primary reasons why 2019 could actually top 2016 as cannabis’ most significant year of reform ever:

The way states will end their prohibition regimes, and the fact that for the first time in the era of legalization (starting when Colorado and Washington voters legalized it in 2012) Democrats have control of the U.S. House of Representatives.

It’s well within the realm of political possibility that soon a Democratically-controlled House will pass legislation that effectively ends federal cannabis prohibition.

With Canada fully ending cannabis prohibition last year (following Uruguay’s lead) and soon Mexico, dozens of countries around the world are currently passing medical access laws, attracting tens of billions of dollars in domestic investments from around the globe and creating an unprecedented socio-eco-political squeeze on the U.S. government to alter its policy.

Marijuana Banking Bill Passed by West Virginia House of Delegates

Legislation that would protect banks who provide services to medical marijuana businesses has been passed by the full West Virginia House of Delegates.

House Bill 2538 was overwhelmingly approved by the House, with 89 members voting in favor and just seven voting in opposition. The measure, which was introduced by Delegate Eric Nelson (R), now moves to the Senate. Passage in the Senate would put it before Governor Jim Justice for consideration.

“The Legislature finds and declares that the inability to provide banking services needed to collect and remit the fees, penalties, and taxes authorized under the West Virginia Medical Cannabis Act has delayed the implementation and is precluding access by the patients and investment by the persons and entities interested in providing services under the Act”, states the bill’s official text. “The purpose of this section is to provide a solution to the banking problems encountered by the state in connection with the Act.”

To achieve this the state government would no longer be able to “prohibit, penalize, incentivize, or otherwise impair” any financial institution that decides to work with a marijuana-related business that’s legal under state law.

The proposal goes on to state that West Virginia “shall defend the Treasurer and the state officers and employees involved in cannabis-related banking services against any claims, charges, liabilities or expenses and shall indemnify and hold harmless the Treasurer in any state employee involved in cannabis-related banking services provided within the scope of their duties or employment in accordance with the Act, including without limitation, defense in any state, federal, or local court and payment of the amount of any judgment obtained, damages, legal fees and expenses, and any other expenses incurred.”

For the full text of House Bill 2538, click here.

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Trump’s Bush-League Choice for Attorney General Confirmed

President Trump reached back to the first Bush administration for his replacement for Jeff Sessions as the nation’s top law enforcement official. William Barr did that job for 18 months from 1991-1992. His reputation is that of a hardcore drug warrior.

Update: On Feb. 14, Barr was confirmed as the nation’s Attorney General by a 54-45 Senate vote.

A conservative, white-collar lawyer who also worked in the Reagan administration, as Attorney General, Barr favored longer prison sentences for drug offenders, mass drug testing in the workplace, civil forfeiture, pursuing cannabis cultivators as if they were public enemy No. 1 and rigorous use of military in drug law enforcement.

Barr was the federal quarterback leading the efforts at the Department of Justice to block any and all efforts to legalize medical access to cannabis, from appealing NORML vs. DEA out of the administrative courts to quashing the Compassionate Investigative New Drug Program, which, in the early ’90s, had a dozen patients receiving medical cannabis from the government’s pot farm in Mississippi.

As Attorney General under H.W. Bush, Barr favored longer prison sentences

Joy Inside My Tears: The Greening of Kamala Harris

Senate Judiciary Committee member Kamala Harris

During a February 11  appearance on New York City morning radio show, The Breakfast Club, Senator Kamala Harris admitted smoking marijuana in college and said that she supports its legalization.

Even these days, when a serving member of the U.S. Senate says something like that, it’s news. But Senator Harris’s announcement on January 21 that she’s running for the Democratic presidential nomination in the 2020 general election makes her statements all the more significant.

At the 34th minute of the interview (watch below), DJ Envy commented: “They say you opposed legalizing weed.”

“That’s not true,” Harris replied stiffly, then lightened up. “Half my family’s from Jamaica. Are you kidding me?”

Harris’ father Donald is from Jamaican. He came to the U.S. in 1961 to attend the University of California at Berkeley. Her mother, Shyamala, was from India.

Then she launched into a long caveat about pot: “I have had concerns. I believe we need to legalize marijuana and we need to move it on a schedule so we can research the impact weed has on a …

World Health Organization Expert Committee Calls For Changes In Cannabis’ International Classification

The World Health Organization’s (WHO) Expert Committee on Drug Dependence have proposed amending the classification of cannabis under international law.

According to reporting in the British Medical Journal, the WHO policy reversal “takes account of the growing evidence for the medical applications of the drug,” and marks the first time that the agency has reviewed its stance on cannabis in nearly 60 years.

The recommended changes, outlined in a letter by WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and reported on by NORML, call for cannabis to be removed from Schedule IV of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs. Schedule IV is the most restrictive classification under the treaty. Instead, the committee advises that whole-plant cannabis and THC be designated as Schedule I controlled substances under international law.

“The current [international] scheduling of cannabis is as strict as that for heroin,” the BMJ summarizes. “[T]he Committee believes that keeping cannabis at that level of control would severely restrict access to and research on potential therapies derived from the plant.”

In a separate recommendation, the Committee reiterated its 2017 request that preparations containing “pure cannabidiol … and not more than 0.2 percent of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol” no longer be scheduled within the international drug conventions.

The Committee’s policy recommendations now await action from the 53 participating members states of the United Nation’s Commission on Narcotic Drugs. The Commission is anticipated to vote on the issue in March.

In October, NORML delivered over 10,000 public comments to the US Food and Drug Administration urging the agency to recommend that WHO reschedule cannabis internationally.

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Social Cannabis Consumption Taking Off in California and Colorado

Old-style volcano vaporizers are popular at Magnolia Wellness’ consumption lounge in Oakland.

Vape lounges and cannabis cafés are popping up everywhere in 2019. San Francisco has the largest concentration of licensed facilities, with a dozen dispensaries that feature tabletop vaporizers, edibles consumption and, at some, even marijuana smoking. It’s a major trend that will continue around the country in legal states this year.

The latest consumption room to open in San Francisco was Moe Green’s at 1256 Market St. Named after the notorious Las Vegas gangster, the store boasts “three lavish consumption lounges where you can chill, create, work and stop in for a quick smoke.” The Playground is “dedicated to vaping,” The Vault is “where concentrated cannabis extracts are consumed” and The High Roller “features five booths to roll up, light up and smoke.” Each room is stylized to attract a sophisticated tech-oriented crowd.

The other San Francisco lounge that opened in January, the Vapor Room at 79 9th St., was closed due to local regulations and federal harassment in 2012, but is thriving again as a neighborhood joint.

Prop 64 Allows for Social Use 

It makes no sense to legalize cannabis without creating places to use it. California’s state law baked the idea in right from the start, saying “a local jurisdiction may allow for the smoking, vaporizing and ingesting of cannabis or cannabis products on the premises of a retailer or microbusiness licensed under this division.” The law contains added provisions that only those over 21 are allowed access to the consumption area, the inside can’t be visible from the street and no sales of tobacco or alcohol are allowed.

Legislation to Legalize Marijuana Passed by New Mexico Committee

Legislation that would legalize marijuana for everyone 21 and older has been passed by a key House committee in New Mexico.

The House Health and Human Services Committee passed House Bill 356 by a vote of 5 to 2, with all of the “Yes” votes coming from Democrats.

“Prohibition simply does not work, and the country is coming to the realization of that”, said Representative Antonio Maestas, one of the bill’s sponsors.

The measure would allow those 21 and older to possess and grow personal amounts of marijuana. They would be authorized to purchase the plant from a licensed retail outlet.

The proposal would establish a 19% tax on recreational marijuana sales. The tax revenue would be split between law enforcement, health and research programs, and city and county governments. The measure would also allow for the expungement of past charges that would become legal if it’s passed.

The proposal must now be passed by the full House of Represents and then Senate before it can be sent to Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham for consideration. Govewrnor Grisham has said she would support a legalization law under certain conditions, such as having strong safeguards to prevent children from obtaining cannabis.

For the full text of House Bill 356, click here.

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How to Prevent Cannabis Surpluses and Shortages

The rollout of marijuana legalization has not been smooth. On one side, there’s a push for revenue; on the other, there’s a desire for tough regulations and enforcement. While businesses get caught in the middle, consumers go along for the ride and patients run the risk of being mowed over.

Greed Rules: The Case of Oregon

Legislators often see legal marijuana as a cash cow. If money is the motivation, authorities will push to issue as many licenses to as many businesses as possible, which can lead to overproduction and oversupply. Take the legal marijuana state of Oregon, for instance.

People in Oregon grow a lot of weed. The Beaver State has been a net marijuana exporter for decades. The state’s medical-marijuana program was approved by voter initiative in 1998, yet it wasn’t until 2013 that the state legislature passed a bill to license and regulate dispensaries. Voters approved a legalization measure in 2014 and adult-use sales started in 2015. Then, in 2016, the legislature repealed a residency requirement for marijuana businesses and opened up Oregon’s marijuana industry to out-of-state investment.

“We’ve created an oversupply problem,” says Anthony Taylor, co-founder and legislative liaison for the patient advocacy organization Compassionate Oregon. “Before we legalized cannabis for the adult-use population, we were already producing about five times what the state consumes, and when the Oregon Liquor Control Commission came in and threw all that infrastructure away in favor of their new infrastructure, it created this situation that’s virtually collapsing in on itself.”

Hawaii Committee Unanimously Approves Bill to Legalize Marijuana

Legislation to legalize marijuana for everyone 21 and older has been unanimously passed by its initial committee in Hawaii’s Legislature.

Hawaii Senate Bill 686 was introduced by Senator Kalani English (D) along with 11 cosponsors.  According to its official summary, the measure “Legalizes the personal use, possession, and sale of marijuana in a specified quantity” and “Requires licensing to operate marijuana establishments”.

The measure sets the possession limit at one ounce. It would also allow for the personal cultivation of six marijuana plants, up to three of which can be mature. In addition, the measure establishes a licensed and regulated system of marijuana businesses.

The measure will now moves towards a vote by the full House of Representatives. Passage in the House will send it to the Senate. If also passed by the Senate, it will be sent to Governor David Ige for consideration.

For the full text of Senate Bill 686, click here.

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An Apology from Joe Biden for His Drug War Sins Would Be Nice

Sen. Joe Biden chaired the Justice Committee from 1987-1994. Sen. Ted Kennedy looks on. (Photo: Greg Gibson/AP)

I attended my first US Senate committee hearing about 30 years ago this year. It was the confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee of William Bennett to be the nation’s first Drug Czar. The hearing was chaired by Senator Joseph Biden, the Democrat from Delaware.

The post of Drug Czar – Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, to give the job its proper name – as well as the Office of Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) itself was created by Joe Biden and his colleagues in the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988.

People need to be aware that Biden was one of the architects of our modern drug war. He made news recently when he admitted his support for harsh drug and crime policies was a “big mistake” and that he “may not have always gotten things right” when it comes to criminal justice policy.

It’s a prime example of much too little and very much too late. It’s also just the most recent attempt by Biden to excuse his past.

Study: Marijuana Consumption Linked to Increased Sperm Count

Men who have consumed marijuana have higher sperm counts than those who have never used it, according to a new study published in the February 6th issue of the journal Human Reproduction.

This longitudinal study “included 662 subfertile men enrolled at the Massachusetts General Hospital Fertility Center between 2000 and 2017.” The men “provided a total of 1143 semen samples; 317 men also provided blood samples in which we measured reproductive hormones.”

Researchers found that “Men who had ever smoked marijuana had higher sperm concentration and count and lower serum FSH [follicle stimulating hormone] concentrations than men who had never smoked marijuana; no differences were observed between current and past marijuana smokers.”

The following is the method researchers used to come to this conclusion:

Use of marijuana and other drugs was self-reported at baseline. Standard protocols were followed for measuring semen quality, sex hormones and DNA integrity. We used linear mixed effect models with a random intercept to evaluate the associations of self-reported marijuana smoking at enrolment with semen parameters from subsequently collected samples, and linear regression models for sperm DNA integrity and serum reproductive hormones, while adjusting for confounders including smoking and cocaine use.
Below are the main results of the study:
Men who had ever smoked marijuana (N = 365) had significantly higher sperm concentration (62.7 (95% confidence interval: 56.0, 70.3) million/mL) than men who had never smoked marijuana (N = 297) (45.4 (38.6, 53.3) million/mL) after adjusting for potential confounders (P = 0.0003). There were no significant differences in sperm concentration between current (N = 74) (59.5 (47.3, 74.8) million/mL) and past marijuana smokers (N = 291) (63.5 (56.1, 72.0) million/mL; P = 0.60). A similar pattern was observed for total sperm count. Furthermore, the adjusted prevalence of sperm concentration and total sperm motility below WHO reference values among marijuana smokers was less than half that of never marijuana smokers. Marijuana smokers had significantly lower follicle

Autoflowering Seeds: The Expert’s Guide

Man holding autoflowering seeds

One of the most righteous things about modern cannabis genetics (other than the sky-high THC counts) is the introduction of autoflowering seeds. The first hints of the autoflowering revolution popped on the scene as early as 1995, with the first commercial autoflowering strain (Lowryder) hitting the market around 2005.

If you’re wondering why we’re making such a big deal about autoflowering seeds and the plants they produce, read on. In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know to become an expert in autoflowering marijuana.

Photoperiod-Dependent Seeds

Before we explain autoflowering seeds, it’s essential that you understand the other side of the cannabis coin.

Photoperiod-dependent seeds (or photoperiodic for short) are your classic indica, sativa, and hybrid strains with names even the newest of noobs is probably familiar with (like Blue Dream, Sour Diesel, and Thin Mint Girl Scout Cookies).

So what sets these apart from autoflowering seeds? It’s all in the name, man. But “photoperiod-dependent” isn’t the most self-explanatory of monikers.

So let’s dissect and divide in order to better understand this multi-syllabic monstrosity.

  • Photo means light
  • Period is a length of time
  • Dependent means determined by

Put all that together (and add in a few more words for clarity) and you come up with:

Seeds whose flowering point is determined by the length of time they’re exposed to light.

These types of seeds respond to changes in light (i.e., the length of exposure) to “know” when to produce flowers. And the flowers are the things that all your growing efforts should be aimed at.

Autoflowering marijuana plants

To better explain, think about the summer and fall seasons. During the longest days of summer, an outdoor plant might get 15 hours or more of sunlight. After the summer solstice, the number of hours of daylight decreases.

This is usually the “cue” for plants to begin flowering. It’s the basic growing cycle that farmers have been …

Washington Senate Committee Passes Bill to Allow Patients to Buy Medical Marijuana Tax Free

Legislation in Washington State to allow qualified medical marijuana patients to purchase their medicine tax free has been passed by the Senate Labor and Commerce Committee.

Senate Bill 5234 was filed by Senator Karen Keiser (D) along with a bipartisan group of three other lawmakers. It was passed by the Labor and Commerce Committee today, sending it towards a vote by the full Senate.

The measure states that “Qualifying patients or designated providers who have been issued a recognition card, are exempt from the 37 percent excise tax on purchases of marijuana concentrates, useable marijuana, or marijuana-infused products, if the products have been identified by DOH as beneficial for medical use and are purchased from a marijuana retailer with a medical marijuana endorsement.”

Each seller making exempt sales “must maintain information establishing eligibility for the exemption in the form and manner required by the LCB.”

For the full text of the bill, click here.

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