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Will the Legalization of Medical Cannabis Transform The Drug into a High-End Product in California? — Pot Valet

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Will the Legalization of Medical Cannabis Transform The Drug into a High-End Product in California?


icon  15 Jan, 2017  /  icon  0        Author: Paul

In November 2016, Californians agreed to pass Proposition 64 making it legal to cultivate, produce, sell and manufacture cannabis products for medical use. Since then, many things have taken place in the industry, and more changes are even expected to take place. For the first time in decades of war against the use or possession of the drug, the state has allowed researchers to carry out more research to find out what the drug can do in the field of medicine. Besides that, the state is also licensing doctors and clinics to prescribe it to patients. With all these happenings, we can say that, indeed, cannabis is no longer in the group of those other drugs that only thrive in the black market.

As many parties and players in the industry continue to welcome the use of the drug for medical and recreational reasons, there’s also a move to clear the controversy between the state and the federal laws regarding the use of this drug. Though we are not sure about the time when these laws will be okay, we can say that in a year’s time, cannabis industry will entirely be a new thing altogether. Even entrepreneurs who have for a long time not had an interest in the market are beginning to carry out tests in preparation for a full venture into the industry. However, many are not yet ready since a lot of things remain unclear such as how new entrants will find a place in the industry and kick off operations.

Other industries such as the luxury industry are also expected to capitalize on the legalization of cannabis. Very soon we’ll start seeing marijuana leaf in apparel designs. That aside, some expensive accessories, pipes, and even vaporizers are also currently being redesigned to come up with new forms that will attract users of marijuana. All these are activities we would not have imagined if the state did not welcome the move to have medical cannabis approved for use. That’s why for many people, the legalization of the drug opened a new era of a series of improvements not only for cannabis products but also in other industries where the drug can play a role.

While a lot of innovation is taking place in the cannabis industry, the state is also projecting an increase in revenue collection. Funds collected will help support other projects by the state. Furthermore, the legalization of the drug will help reduce cases reported every year involving the illegal handling of the drug. In fact, the state loses a lot of money every year because of such cases that usually see many people end up in jail or get high penalties. With the permission to handle the drug for medical purposes, such cases will no doubt reduce to a minimum level. It, therefore, means that in about two years from now, marijuana will be a totally different drug from what we’ve always known. Remember that for a long time it’s been associated with crimes and contribution to the boom in the black market. With the new laws, all these will soon be stories of the past.

Just as like other products such as cigarettes have had designer makeovers, we are likely to see new cases of cannabis fashion brands if already they are not there in the market. Every time a product gets a new face, everything changes right from packaging, mode of sales and pricing. This is what we should also expect for cannabis once things are okay under the new law. In fact, there are already lots of changes in the industry. Medical cannabis clinics and doctors are getting more and more customers placing orders while others are requesting for licenses to start using medical cannabis. All these are changes and developments attributable to the passing of Proposition 64 last year. Besides that, people nowadays have the freedom to talk and discuss issues related to marijuana. In the past, that was never the case because any dealing with the drug had been decriminalized.

In terms of volume of sales, it’s expected that marijuana dispensaries will make more sales from now henceforth. Even as we wait for the industry to take off, there are already some strains of cannabis doing well. With all these happenings and the expectation that more states will legalize the drug, it’s estimated that by 2020, the U.S. will getting $22billion in annual revenue. A high percentage of these projected revenues will largely be from the recreational sales. Indeed, we can say that the move to pass the Proposition late last year will open more opportunities not only in the cannabis industry but also in other areas. Soon, marijuana will entirely be a new thing. We, however, have to still wait a little bit for full legislation and opening up of the new marijuana industry.

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How Long Does Your Marijuana Stay in Your System?


icon  12 Jan, 2017  /  icon  0        Author: Paul

With the legalization of marijuana for medical use, many people are getting interested in this hot topic and are asking a lot of questions regarding its use. One of the most asked questions at the moment is how long the marijuana stays in one’s body after use. To help answer this question, many researchers are now carrying out studies to find out the medical benefits of the drug and the length of time they stay once smoked or taken as an edible. While there’s no one answer for this question, we can explain its effects in many ways depending on how regular it’s used and the body’s rate of metabolism. Besides that, the active chemicals in the medical marijuana determine the effects and how long the last in the user’s system.

The Active Chemicals in Marijuana

Marijuana has at least two active chemicals namely cannabidiol(CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol(THC). According to experts, these are the chemicals that have medical applications. The first one (CBD) impacts the brain while the other one has relieving properties and is used to relieve pain. When taken by either smoking or by ingesting cannabis products, these two chemicals will remain in your system for a period that’s determined by different factors. These factors include the length of time you’ve been using the drug, intake method, and the strain you are taking.

According to health experts, the intake of THC pills such as Dronabinol is more effective and tends to remain in your system for a longer time compared to when you smoke marijuana. In fact, that’s the reason why many doctors usually prescribe it to those patients experiencing a lot of pain or are suffering from health conditions that are painful. It, therefore, means that once you take such pills, you should expect to test positive for THC for weeks depending on the amount you are taking. That’s why it’s recommended that you shouldn’t drive if you are under such medical cannabis products.

Weight/Body Fat Also Determine How Long the Drug Stays In Your System

Although the active chemicals in medical cannabis serve the same purpose among users, how long they stay in their bodies is also affected by one’s weight or body fat. Individuals with high body fat tend to keep THC is their systems for a longer time compared to those with low body fat. According to experts, body fat slows down the process of clearing THC metabolites. That means if you want to know how long your medical cannabis will stay in your body, know your body weight in relation to height. Furthermore, individuals who take high amount of cannabis in relation to their weight will have difficulty in clearing it from their system. On the other hand, those who take less will easily get rid of THC from their system. To avoid having it for too long in your body, it’s recommended that you seek help from a medical marijuana doctor, so you get prescription of the best strain and amount for you.

Low versus High Dosage

When it comes to the dosage of marijuana, an individual who takes a high dose will test positive for a long time. In fact, such people will even continue testing positive long after they stopped using the drug. To help reduce such instances, doctors usually prescribe a dosage that’s okay with your medical conditions and the reasons you are using the drug. If you find that you’ve been recommended to take an extremely high one, then the chances are that your medical condition is severe and there’s need for you to ingest a high dose, so you probably enjoy the benefits for long. Low dosage means that you need only small amount of the chemical in your system. All these variations are things that only doctors understand and are the best people to seek their help regarding the amounts that you need in your body.

Dosage can, however, be a tricky area when it comes to the amounts of marijuana that remains in your body. A perfect example that can help explain the common controversy here is a situation where an individual takes a smaller amount of a highly potent THC. At such instances, one will test positive for the drug for a very long time even despite the fact that they took a small amount. That’s why it’s very vital to get a doctor’s advice before picking any strain as your best one for use. If you drive, then you need to be careful lest you fail to pass a drug test.

As said earlier, the length of time that your medical marijuana will stay in your system depends on many factors. As such there is no straight answer when it comes to this most asked question. To avoid issues, you need to discuss with your doctor several things that include dosage, your body weight, frequency of usage, and of course the modality of administering it. Do you think you need some tricks to expedite marijuana clearance from your system? Keep all the factors we mentioned in mind and you’ll not have many issues especially if you are to undergo a drug test.

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Marijuana Delivery Services

How to create Marijuana Shatter, Crumble, Wax and other Cannabis Concentrates


icon  06 Jan, 2017  /  icon  0        Author: Jack

Recreational Marijuana is now legal in some regions around the United States and the trend to decriminalize this drug is now gaining momentum all over the country. With this, in place, there is a growing need for products related to marijuana due to expanding markets. In light recreational weed legalization, the extraction of cannabinoids from cannabis into different products is the process which has acquired fame over the past six years. The typical products which are extracted include a shutter, crumble, wax and dabs all of which have different uses, extraction processes and the ways in which they are consumed. Many questions are asked by different people on how these products are extracted from cannabis and the effect in which each of them has on one’s body. This article will show painless and easy steps of making shatter, crumble and wax from cannabis.

Shatter
Shatter is the purest and strongest cannabis extract out there which has an amber and glass-like transparent color. The process of extracting this product from cannabis amazes many who often ask questions on how much shutter are yielded through a BHO. To start with, there’s need for a large number of cannabis trichome buds, glass tubes, coffee filters, butane cans, and clamps. Other necessities include a heating oven for maintaining the required temperature and vacuum pump whose primary task is to rid butane from the extract.

To begin the process, the butane can is inserted into a measuring cup and the process can be done a second time to achieve maximum results. This is soon followed by getting rid of the solvents from butane through evaporation method which allows this solvent to dry into the amber colored resin. The process of purging the solvent requires a temperature of 91 degrees for more than 16 hours. A 3 cfm one stage vacuum pump is finally used to remove the impurities from the final product. The pressure gauge, on the other hand is used to tell the amount of heat the glass dish that contains the oil has to avoid destroying the product through excessive heat.

Of all the cannabis concentrates, the shutter is the most potent and should go through additional filtering to remove naturally occurring components such as waxes and fats allowing it to keep its active ingredients before consumption.

Wax
Getting a clean and quality wax at home is an uphill task to many as challenges emerge mostly if there is a lack of enough equipment. Lack of vacuum, for instance, can ruin the flavor of the final product. Before starting the process of extraction, it is wise to collect the supplies needed for the task ahead. The easiest tools which are cheaply available for such work are:

Hair dryer, coffee filters, hose clamp, extraction tube, Razor blades, Pyrex dish, plastic tube and can of butane.

The process begins with preparation of the extraction tube. A fine ground bone is first packed into the extraction tube tightly enough. Coffee filters; two, in this case, are then placed at the end of the extraction tube and secured using a hose clamp. Once stable, the excess parts of the filters are cut off using a sharp and clean razor to prevent the oil building up on the filter and the adapter tip is then secured with an appropriate size adapter.

Now a plastic tub is filled with hot water after which the Pyrex dish is placed on it carefully.  At this stage, all the components should be made sure they are secured and free of holes. It is also important to ensure that no water is inside the dish during this time by holding it with a piece of cloth as it might be hot. Continue blasting until it comes out clear.

To extract the content, leave butane to boil inside the Pyrex dish until all the content has been purged. This can be achieved by observing the dish as it heats until it stops making bubbles. A hair dryer can now be used to blow directly into the oil for about a minute to remove the bubbles. One should, however, avoid holding it too close as it may damage the wax.

Now remove the oil that has stuck in different parts of the dish and spread it evenly and heat it accordingly till it melts down and butane escapes. The dish should be taken to the cold area such as the tap to allow the settlement of the wax. The wax should be left to cool for about 5 minutes before sealing it as it will be damaged if left open for a long time.

Kief
Kief is one of the simplest cannabis concentrates. It is composed of trichomes broken away from the dried marijuana and extracted through specialized filtering screens. The process followed in obtaining this concentrate makes it one of the low-quality extract despite some of the extractors having managed to produce a clean and quality product by employing the dry and sieve method.

To extract kief, sifter box, pair of scissors and about eight cannabis plants which include stem and stalks are required. Trim the plants and leave them overnight before removing trichomes from the leaves and place them in a bag. Now empty the content into the sifter box and shake them for a while after which you can now pull the plate to find kief which is then scrapped and placed in a jar after obtaining the right amount.

This is not the only method of extracting kief as one can also decide to use either gumby method or bubble bag alternative.

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Support for Cannabis - Celebrities That Help Clean Marijuana’s Image

Support for Cannabis - Celebrities That Help Clean Marijuana’s Image


icon  04 Jan, 2017  /  icon  0        Author: Paul

Marijuana has received a lot of publicity in the past few years and it’s legalization for recreational use has been heavily debated. Recently, the public voted to legalize recreational cannabis in California and that provided significant momentum to the industry. This is mostly because marijuana has gotten a lot of positive press and support from high-profile people, including celebrities. There are many who are quite vocal in favor of either medical or both medical and recreational marijuana and some of them are mentioned below:

Bill Gates
This might come as a surprise to many, but Bill Gates is a supporter of marijuana. He might not have spoken on the subject much, but sometimes actions speak more than words. The billionaire and business wiz said “Yes” when the vote for initiative 502 to legalize recreational marijuana use was carried out in Washington State. He has publically stated that it’s a good idea to see how policy for recreational use works in a few states before creating a national policy on the matter.

Morgan Freeman
Morgan Freeman is probably everyone’s favorite Hollywood personality. From his distinct voice to his acting prowess, he has charmed the entire nation for decades now. His fans know him to be very open minded on a surprising number of things, including recreational use of marijuana. He has declared that we should legalize marijuana across the board. He has openly admitted that he consumes medical marijuana to deal with chronic pain of fibromyalgia

David Letterman
David Letterman might seem like a surprising person to be on this list, but he has publically admitted to smoking a small amount of marijuana almost every night at some point of his life. He claimed that was the reasons why he was so calm and mellow in some of this early shows and presentations.

Rihanna
Rihanna’s presence in this list isn’t surprising at all. She’s a known rebel and is always intent on following her own mind and desires. She doesn’t shy away from posting pictures of her smoking weed on social media and has openly admitted that she smoked almost every day. While she has taken some steps to curb the habit, she’s still a very active support for marijuana legalization.

Jennifer Aniston
Jennifer Aniston might not portray the rebel aura that Rihanna exudes, but she’s no stranger to marijuana. In fact, she has openly admitted to smoking occasionally and is fully in support for legalization. Many Aniston fans might be surprised by this but Aniston believes there’s nothing wrong with the habit.

Miley Cyrus
This is another name on the list that won’t surprise many people because like Rihanna, Miley Cyrus isn’t afraid to do what she wants and have her own opinions. She’s very vocal and enthusiastic about her support of marijuana legalization. In an interview with the Rolling Stones, she called it the best drug on earth.

Willie Nelson
The beloved country music star has been an active and ardent supporter of marijuana legalization for a long time now. He actually owns a cannabis company and sells products in states where marijuana is legal for medical and recreational use. He has always believed that marijuana has health benefits and uses it to feel more rested and relaxed.

Snoop Dog
Snoop Dog is very vocal about his support of marijuana and has used it on camera a number of times. If you watch is documentary, you’ll notice that he uses marijuana quite often in the video. Snoop Dog also owns a marijuana company called Leafs by Snoop and sells his products in Canada and Colorado only.

Lady Gaga
Does it really surprise you that Mother Monster is on this list? In fact, it would be surprising if Lady Gaga wasn’t present on this list. She has openly admitted to smoking weed to help deal with the stress and anxiety that comes with her profession. She smokes on a regular basis and is consistently vocal in her support for marijuana and its benefits.

Justin Timberlake
Timberlake has been a teen heartthrob for several years and is very careful about what he supports and doesn’t. While his support for marijuana might come as a surprise to most, it’s not something he shies away from. He has admitted to smoking weed on several occasions but his reasons for supporting legalization go beyond simple consumption. He believes legalization and regulation of marijuana will reduce crime rates by providing controlled access to people.

As you can see, there are many celebrities and well-respected people who support legalization and believe in the benefits of marijuana. This has contributed significantly to the reputation and image of marijuana and shed a positive light on the drug. Without the visibility and approval provided by big-name personalities, the marijuana legalization wouldn’t have gotten the momentum it did.

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The 2016 Global Marijuana Legalization Wave

The 2016 Global Marijuana Legalization Wave That Has Swept Countries


icon  30 Dec, 2016  /  icon  0        Author: Paul

The legality of the use of cannabis for recreational and medicinal purposes has for a long time been a hot debate in many countries. However, nations and states seem to have noted something significant with this drug that remains the world’s most widely cultivated and consumed drug. Though the laws vary across the world, there seems to have been a wave that has seen more than 20 countries soften their tough laws regarding the use of Marijuana. In the US alone, medical/recreational Marijuana is now legal in more than half of its states.

Indeed, the global trend of legalizing Cannabis had great momentum and was unstoppable in 2016. The process kicked off a few years ago and seemed to have borne fruits as evidenced by the growing list of countries that are drafting laws and regulations to govern the use of this most produced and trafficked drug in the world. Even the states and nations that had firm laws all along regarding its use are now trialing laws intended to give the drug a new place and picture.

Earlier this month, the skeptics of the legalization of cannabis had started expressing their surprise on what the recent studies had found regarding the popularity of this drug. Many thought that it use especially among the teenagers wouldn’t be influenced by the legalization. Contrary to this, the enactment of laws about it, indeed, changed the attitude of many. “…legalization…reduced stigma and the perceived risk of use…which could explain the why…adolescents are using more…” said Magdalena Cerda of the University of California. All these and other studies have shown that, indeed, 2016 was Marijuana’s year.

Canada, Germany, Australia, Ireland and Jamaica approved measures to regulate the medical use of cannabis all in 2016. Australia now grants permission to businesses to get licensing for either cultivating or manufacturing Marijuana products for medical purposes. Besides that, it also allows research on this drug provided it’s related to recreation and the field of medicine. In South Africa, there are efforts also to join the growing list of countries that recognize the drug as of value medically. Decisions are, however, still pending on this debate. These are, however, not the only countries as others too have pending legislation that will no doubt see things change regarding the use of this drug.

As the world continues to welcome this giant drug, researchers argue that there’s need to carry out more surveys and research to help inform the policy makers. “ We need…data to inform the policies…happening” Said Ryan Vandrey of Johns Hopkins University in the US. He has no stance whether the move by countries to legalize Marijuana is good or bad but wishes that the process be done carefully and after carrying out sufficient research to help inform the policy making in many states in the US especially those in the process of drafting laws to govern the use of the drug. He wishes that the approval of new therapy be backed by relevant data.

When it comes drug reform policies or laws, Portugal comes in as the pioneer in this area. It did not decriminalize the possession of cannabis alone but all drugs for personal use back in the year 2001. It thus has the greatest evidence when it comes to the impact of such moves on policy. Having trailed the reforms for more than a decade now, this great nation argues that there’s need to draw a clear line between the use of cannabis for recreation and for medicinal purposes to avoid possible confusion that might cause serious problems. So will other countries take this idea into consideration or will just accept to be swept by the global wave of marijuana legalization? Well, time will tell.

According to Castel-BrancoGoulão, the director-general of the General-Directorate for Intervention on Addictive Behaviors and Dependencies in Lisbon, “people confuse recreational and medicinal use” He further argues that approval of laws legalizing cannabis for use for medicinal purposes is okay due to the strong benefits of the drug when used for alleviation of chronic pain, anxiety, vomiting, nausea and muscle spasms. All these and other facts about the drug are the points he insists should be taken into consideration when it comes to this hot topic. That’s why many experiments are now being carried out in various parts of the world to put things clear regarding the medical and recreational use of the much-debated cannabis.

The wave is now strong, sweeping across many countries including even those we thought would never be affected. The Wheels are now in motion across the world, and it’s just a matter of time before we see what other countries are going to do. It will no doubt be very interesting to see what’s going to happen as we usher in the new year of 2017.

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It’s a different Ball Game altogether for Legal Marijuana Growers in California

It’s a different Ball Game altogether for Legal Marijuana Growers in California


icon  21 Dec, 2016  /  icon  2        Author: Jack

Legal marijuana cultivators are driving a different kind of success in California. The decriminalization of recreational weed in California is forming a gold rush for warehouses to host weed grows. Investors don’t have a lot of options to directly cash in on California’s recent move to legitimize weed. Presently, there are no marijuana producing organizations publicly trading the substance. On the other hand, cannabis remains unlawful under the federal government. All the same, they wait in anticipation for a lift in the demand for warehouses as legitimate weed companies continue to look for space to cultivate their marijuana supply. In the coming few months, the demand for weed is expected to shoot up and that is why marijuana delivery companies are committed to increase the weed grows for a steady supply.

Company shares such as those of Rexford Industrial Realty Inc, Terreno Realty Corp and Prologis Inc that have enormous exposure to the market in California must benefit even if they do not lease to cannabis firms directly.  This is for the reason that, marijuana companies should pay above-set market rates for outmoded facilities that are ideally appropriate for the indoor cultivation of weed plants and for storing marijuana products as well. Apparently, this takes out some of the space in an already competitive market and pushing general rents higher than expected. Marijuana companies will find several distressed properties and still use them. In most cases, they will have the money to make payments for the same regardless of the cost. This way, it permits companies with contemporary facilities to even charge more. The real estate asset trusts for warehouses based in California are attractive to many investors.  This emerging demand is somewhat expected to be of great benefit to the owners.

In November 2016, California legalized recreational cannabis for adults. This achievement was first made in Colorado and Washington D.C. Other states that have passed recreational weed laws are Alaska, Oregon, Nevada and Massachusetts. The increasing demand for warehouse space in the state of California for cannabis-related firms comes as customers are searching for marijuana for sale online. Some of the retailers are placing another demand through the establishment of distribution centers. In 2014, the rent for warehouses increased by 10% in Colorado following the start of legal cannabis sales, according to CBRE, a real-estate data organization.  The First Industrial Realty Trust Inc. shares that at 5% of assets had the largest allocation of its portfolio in Colorado increased to 25% within the same year. This resulting figure was twice that of the broad S&P 500 Index.

Marijuana cultivated indoors is basically more consistent and contains a higher concentration of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) than any other grown elsewhere. Well, the fund ownership is steadily increasing in a falling market. The number of funds with shares of warehouse companies in California is increasing as the wide real estate sector starts to slip. For instance the number of funds holding Prologis, which is the biggest warehouse REIT generally, has about 20% of its portfolio in California. According to the Morningstar data, this was an 11% increase over the last quarter of the year.  Fund ownership of Terreno and Rexford, smaller firms that have 20% or more of their portfolios in California increased by almost 2%. Generally, the MSCI U.S. REIT index has slipped by 4% over the last 3 months. This has occurred as investors left companies focused on dividends in search of higher rates of interest. The Rexford and Terreno shares are both up roughly at 9% and Prologis shares are also up at 4% over the same period of time even with lower yields compared to the 3.6% of the S & P Real Estate segment.

According to analysts, the increasing power of pricing from a highly competitive market must help the warehouse companies focusing on California to counter the rising rates of interests. The growth of rent is very robust and there is some occupancy that can be leased out at higher rates. As of now, about 90% of Rexford’s inventory has been given out for rent. Looking at the 96% lease for all warehouses located in Southern California, the company should get a stronger rent and a growth of occupancy more than its competitors.

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Does Cannabis Actually Help Reduce the Size of Tumors

Kentucky Legislature will Consider Legalizing Medical Cannabis in 2017


icon  13 Dec, 2016  /  icon  0        Author: Sam Wills

The continued legalization of marijuana for different purposes around the United States is something that the federal government will have to live with. The national government still classifies cannabis as a Schedule 1 drug despite a wave of reforms that has seen many people in America access weed in their states. New marijuana laws are coming up in different parts of the nation and the quest does not seem to end any time soon. It is a journey that started in California where marijuana was legalized for medical use in 1996. Later on, many other states took the bold step to defy federal regulations and they too decriminalize marijuana use both for medical and/or recreational purposes. Today, 28 states in the United States have established state laws that govern the cultivation, possession, sale and use of marijuana for different purposes. Kentucky State is also warming up to these reforms. One of its leaders, Senator Perry Clark is lobbying for comprehensive reforms for medical marijuana delivery in the state. If this push succeeds, Kentucky will be the next state to pass a comprehensive program for medical cannabis.

Even though there was some worry that Kentucky legislature may not hear any bills related to cannabis in the coming 2017 session, Clark introduced a legislation that would provide patients with different devastating health conditions the ability to use medical marijuana. Senator Perry Clark seeks to pursue this through Cannabis Compassion Act of 2017. According to this bill, patients in Kentucky found with a terminal illness such as glaucoma, cancer, peripheral neuropathy, AIDS and Crohn’s disease among other diseases can consider using medical marijuana. There are quite a number of health conditions defined in this bill that will be treatable through medical marijuana if a patient’s doctor recommends so. In that case, such patients will be free to possess an amount not exceeding 3 ounces of cannabis and grow 12 plants for individual use. People with various chronic health conditions such as nausea and pain will also be allowed to participate.

Unlike in other 28 states that have passed medical marijuana laws, Kentucky state measure will allow the creation of a medical marijuana industry throughout the state making different marijuana products available in stores all around the state. The Department of Alcoholic Beverage and Cannabis Control will be given the responsibility of tracking and watching over the industry. This latest medical weed bill for Kentucky is similar to a measure that was presented by Clark at the start of 2016. The former measure called for the elimination of marijuana prohibition in the Bluegrass State. The only big difference is that the new Cannabis Compassion Act of 2017 initiated by Clark will require anyone aged 21 years and above to be given a doctor’s recommendation or get the advice of a specialist before they can buy marijuana or become a beneficiary of the program.

During the summer, several meetings were conducted amongst the legislative powers of the state. The purpose of the meetings was to vet the matter of decriminalizing cannabis for medical use among patients. Even the Republican Governor, Mr. Matt Bevin said that he would give his support to a thorough medical weed program that will allow the substance to be prescribed for use just like any other conventional prescription drug.

Even with all these preparations for the bill next year, there will be a big debate on the matter. This is especially because some legislators are reportedly planning to push for a program that is more restrictive to a point where it only permits access for marijuana use among those who are terminally ill. This condition, however, is also part of the measure that has been submitted by Senator Clark. Officials in Kentucky State will be looking forward to what will be a very interesting year in a month’s time following the holiday break. It will be very difficult for Kentucky State to ignore any discussions about marijuana looking at what is happening elsewhere around the country. There is a lot that is happening and marijuana benefits are much evident among users today. The campaign on marijuana is at its peak with patients making preferences to it over traditional prescription drugs. Cannabis has also proved to be effective for treating pain amongst sporting individuals. These benefits are too pleasant for Kentucky State to ignore.

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Lemon Haze marijuana

Legal Marijuana Shops May Soon be established in Los Angeles


icon  11 Dec, 2016  /  icon  2        Author: Anne Fred

Recent developments in Los Angeles show that marijuana factions are now joining forces to fully permit the operation of cannabis shops in the city. A group that represents various quasi-legal marijuana shops in Los Angeles city will provide its support to help in legalizing these shops. The United Cannabis Business Alliance (UCBA) is removing its measure that had already qualified for the ballot in March.   Instead of significantly splitting the pro-cannabis vote with initiatives that mainly seek the same goal, the UCBA declared that it will instead give its support for Proposition M that was approved for the ballot by the Los Angeles City Council in November 2016.  The UCBA felt that it was important to collaborate to bring more reforms in marijuana. The board of directors in this organization established that the best strategy to ensure uniform marijuana regulations for communities, patients and pot business was by working closely with the City Council of Los Angeles instead of going after approval the initiative that they had drafted through the voters. These were sentiments shared through their president, Mr. Jerred Kiloh. 

The precise language of Proposition M that was the pet project of City Council president, Mr. Herb Wesson has not yet been established. However, Wesson’s office expressed support for both the decriminalization of marijuana delivery services and an increase of the number of cannabis shops in Los Angeles to more than 135 that are currently enjoying limited legal protection. These two sides have been having their differences. On one part, UCBA claims to have the biggest trade association for these quasi-legitimate shops. As a result, the organization has persistently been opposed to the decriminalization of third-party weed delivery services. At the same time, the group has not seemingly been enthusiastic concerning the expansion of the number of marijuana shops.

At the moment, there are about 135 or less medical cannabis dispensaries that enjoy a quasi-legal situation in Los Angeles. This was made possible through Proposition D that was passed in the city in 2013. However, this is subject to change following the passage of Proposition 64 at the state level during the 2016 elections. The new marijuana laws through Proposition 64 allow the consumption of recreational pot in California. However, the laws have well-defined provisions that allow only adults of 21 years and over to cultivate, possess and use weed. That aside, the other thing that may impact on the latest developments in the establishment of marijuana shops in Los Angeles is California’s Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA) that provides for local permission should medical weed dispensaries desire to operate starting January, 2018.

The Southern California Coalition that was the first supporter of Wesson’s strategy was a representation of another significant group of quasi-legal marijuana shops from where customers buy marijuana in the city. According to one of its founders, Virgil Grant, the coalition seeks to ensure that as many as 495 marijuana shops are fully legitimized in Los Angeles. According to Grant, there are as many as 1500 cannabis dispensaries within the limits of the city where most of them have been conducting their operations illegally. Therefore, shutting over 1000 marijuana dispensaries while seeking to decriminalized another 500 could be a solution to Los Angeles’ appetite for marijuana. The proposal by Wesson would turn over Proposition D and leave everything to the City Council to finally decide on the number of shops to be legalized. Under the new recreational cannabis law of California, marijuana shops that get the permission of local and state officials can sell recreational marijuana to people aged 21 years and above from January 2018.  Therefore, it is expected that the marijuana market will continue to expand and that many of the medical cannabis dispensaries in Los Angeles will change to start doing recreational sales. Even with the legalization of recreational marijuana in California, first time users are running to medical marijuana doctors to enquire about the use of cannabis.

The growth of the marijuana industry is good news to all cannabis advocates. However, there are a lot of changes expected to take place in the coming months. All these developments are happening while the federal government continues to regard marijuana as an illegal substance. Most importantly, there is a new administration coming in and its position will contribute a lot in defining the future of marijuana in the United States. The incoming president Donald Trump expressed his opinion concerning the industry and vehemently stated that the issue of marijuana was a matter left to individual states to regulate. However, his recent appointments have caused some fears among weed supporters. Senator Jeff Sessions, an anti-marijuana lobbyist was appointed to be Trump’s attorney general and this has caused panic to marijuana entrepreneurs in California. However, experts say that there is nothing to worry about considering that some of Trump’s supporters are deeply involved in the business. Therefore, legal weed shops in LA may finally come to exist even with the prevailing situation.

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What next for Black-Market Exports after Marijuana Legalization in California?


icon  07 Dec, 2016  /  icon  1        Author: Sam Wills

The impact of marijuana legalization in California is still being analyzed by experts in marijuana-related issues. One of the main issues highlighted in the analysis is how the black market will be affected. Just because Proposition 64 was passed in California doesn’t mean everyone in the marijuana business will take part in the highly regulated market through the state government. While a number of these businesses will take part in the legal marketplace, some may lag behind in the black market, which is expected to take a financial hit. The expansion of the regulated marketplace in the state of California and the expansion of businesses that have access to the controlled marketplace in California will endeavor to cut down on any diversion and reduce out-of-state sales. These are reports according to the California Growers Association as presented by the executive director, Hezekiah Allen. Even though marijuana regulation will do some significant work to eliminate the dealings in the black market within California along with the exports, Allen believes that the black market operations may continue if Proposition 64 is not yet clear on some issues.

The absolute scale of the grow sites in California, for example still remains unresolved. Until now, the requisite number of acres needed for the cultivation of Cannabis in California is not known. As it stands, the land use could be three times more. So the question is: will all those acres for cultivation, some on trespass land, be entitled to enter the controlled market through any of the license types provided through Proposition 64, or will they continue to be illegally unregulated? As customers continue to buy marijuana from marijuana dispensary services, the foundation of the entire weed business should be well addressed and this is none other than the cultivations and control of unregulated enterprises. Therefore, the existing growers willing to operate under the state rules should be given the chance to trade their products in the state. Looking at the focus placed through Proposition 64 on emerging operations including the expansions of the business, California should be able to scale down weed production if the products will be kept in the state.  There is no need for larger cultivations. On the contrary, what is needed are smaller grows.

According to Allen, between 60-80% of the black-market marijuana used nationally comes from California. Most of the weed cultivations, many of which could currently trespass on public land, yield thousands of pounds of bud goods that will never be in a position to get into California’s regulated market. Ideally, these operations exist for exports. Most importantly, this group of growers does not comprise of local farmers. In California alone, there are almost 50,000 grows within the state. The marijuana operations aimed at the diversion could account for a mere 10% of the total grows in California. However, their produce could be about 50% of the circulation around the state. This is something that has been overlooked by many because it doesn’t happen in the open. It is ideally a very separate system. They are not concerned about getting a license or a permit.

At the same time, shipments made to the East Coast could not earn over $200 of net profit according to reports from one of the dealers in the black market. Illegal marijuana cultivations and marijuana delivery services have continued to increase by the day. With such developments coupled with the legalization of recreational marijuana in Massachusetts, Maine, Washington D.C and so on, national shipments a feasible venture. On grounds of exports, the black-market marijuana coming from California is plagued by the recent legalization wave that is now gaining national momentum. These sentiments were shared by Brendan Hill, one of the owners of the Paper & Leaf dispensary in Washington. Unlike other states such as Colorado, California is surrounded by other weed-friendly states such as Nevada and Oregon. Arizona too, has its own program for medical marijuana. Even though California bud goes further than just the state in the surrounding, local marijuana will continue to be accessible to consumers through licensed sources. On the other hand, the black markets that depend on California weed will also dry up. There has been a decreased amount of marijuana imports from Mexico in recent times. If this was anything to go by, then this is probable as America experiences more states passing new marijuana laws that allow marijuana use.

Looking at the seed-to-sale tracking measures in place, it will not be easy for anyone to hide from the law enforcers. All ambiguity is almost done away with and therefore, there will not be any gray-market perplexity that has defined the marijuana industry for years. As long as the taxation and regulations are sufficiently friendly to the business, the illegal market will consequently be phased out.  If the opposite happens with these regulations, then the illegal market may continue to operate.

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California Treasury Seeks Trump’s Guidance on Banking for Marijuana Business


icon  03 Dec, 2016  /  icon  2        Author: Paul

The state of California expects an increased growth in its marijuana industry and the need for participation in a banking system for this industry is much needed. Revenue from the cannabis industry in California is projected to the tune of $1 billion per annum and may even be more. With that in mind, John Chiang, the California Treasurer made an appeal to President-elect Trump to intervene and help the state’s $7 billion weed industry participate in the banking system controlled by the federal government. This is an issue that has been pending for years now even with two decades of medical marijuana legalization. The cannabis industry has not been able to join the national banking system because marijuana remains illegal at the federal level. Despite Californians being able to buy marijuana, the federal government considers it as a Schedule 1 drug and therefore, the reason why it has been locked out from participating in the banking sector.

The need for inclusion into the banking system has been further prompted by California voters who passed on Proposition 64 in the 2016 elections. As it stands now, marijuana is legal in California and is allowed for use both for medical and recreational purposes come 2018. The biggest problem now, however, is the manner in which the state will be able to collect the projected annual taxes of $1 billion from legal marijuana cultivation and sales. This is for the reason that marijuana businesses have had challenges to open bank accounts, getting insurance or even accessing loans from legal financing institutions. All these challenges narrow down to the conflict between state and federal regulations. Due to these differences, states where marijuana has been legalized face difficulties in collecting tax revenue, increased risk of dangerous crime and the inability of a lawful industry based on state law to participate in commerce and banking. These are some of the issues that Mr. Chiang addressed in his appeal to Trump.

Mr. Chiang expressed belief that California is able to come up with a system that will work in this coming one year. Its practicability will be proven through its ability to deal with the many other issues that are prevalent due to the conflict arising between the state and the federal governments. Further, he reiterated that the uncertainty concerning the position of Trump’s administration was posing another challenge. The California vote that passed Proposition 64 is believed to be a representation of the national legalization movement’s largest win throughout history. The new marijuana law will endeavor to at least theoretically tame a market that is a mix of legal, medical manufacturing, sales and huge illegitimate cultivations conducted through drug cartels.

Now that cannabis is criminalized at the federal level, Californians can’t tell the stance that will be taken by the Trump administration when it assumes office. Citizens can only wait and see what will become of their new marijuana economy and other cannabis-friendly states. Trump’s choice of Senator Sessions from Alabama as the attorney general is even worrisome. Sessions openly termed weed as an illegal substance leave alone the expressed desire to include the business in the national system of banking. Well, California is not alone and the ever increasing number of states joining in the reforms for marijuana is believed to put some pressure on the federal government to review its stand. In the list, are 28 other states and Washington, D.C. where cannabis is legalized for different reasons: medical or recreational or both. In some other states, marijuana business has formed a patchwork of tax and banking practices. In Oregon, officials established a fortified office installed with security cameras, bulletproof glass watched by armed guards. The building is meant for the collection of huge payments made in cash for the taxes imposed on marijuana. For Washington, D.C., most pot businesses are paying taxes through electronic means, which is a sign of much improved contact with bank accounts. The number of United States credit unions and banks willing to deal with marijuana money under Treasury Department directives given about two years ago is increasing, though they are usually smaller organizations.

Tax collectors in California, however, gave a report concluding that tax revenue from cannabis-related business may be made in cash terms because pot is not permitted at the federal level and businesses cannot access banking services. According to Chiang, the federal policies have not given certainty for financial organizations to provide access to the weed industry.  California could intensify the banking issue even more. Chiang resorted to forming a group to research on the banking issues that may be an impediment to the anticipated legal marijuana economy in California. Generally, California is prepared to treat marijuana just like alcohol. Currently, patients can even access medical marijuana for sale online. As the new law takes effect come 2018, adults aged 21 years and above will be able to possess a maximum of an ounce of weed along with other regulations. Hopefully, there will be a well established money system to support these operations.

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Is California’s Anti-Tobacco Campaign Challenged through Marijuana Legalization?


icon  02 Dec, 2016  /  icon  1        Author: Jack

The marijuana debate continues and this time round, it is in relation to the dwindling tobacco industry in America.  Many are asking, “Could marijuana legalization be the hope for tobacco manufacturing companies in California?” The decision taken by voters in California to decriminalize marijuana was a big victory for those who advocated for its use.  However, some see other effects more than just the benefits to cannabis users. They believe that it could be of help to the tobacco business as well. Presently, cigarette smoking has gone down and cigarette manufacturing companies have been looking out for ways in which they can expand their market. These views were expressed by a group of researchers in Los Angeles, California. They believe that it is important for the state to be cautious with its bid to implement the use of recreational marijuana round the state. If not, the state government may roll back some of the developments it had achieved in combating tobacco smoking.

Now that citizens can buy marijuana just like cigarette, experts believe that tobacco smoking could be renormalized. One associate professor from the UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine, Mr.Michael Ong said that the tobacco industry could get revived if the move on recreational cannabis was not executed carefully. Therefore, following through the regulation efforts will be important especially with the involvement of public health officials. California has made major developments in fighting the smoking of tobacco. On the other side, an executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, Mr. Ethan Nadelmann said that there is no proof that marijuana is a gateway to increased tobacco smoking.

Tobacco smoking among the adults is rated the second-lowest in the entire country according to the California Department of Public Health. There was a significant drop of over 50% on the number of adults smoking cigarettes between 1988 and 2014. This resulted into reduced heath care costs and a considerable reduction in diseases related to the use of tobacco.  The achievement made against tobacco smoking over the years is as a result of various factors. They include restricting smoking to certain zones, taxes on tobacco and restriction of broad-based campaigns on media and the advancement of programs targeting withdrawal by the smokers. However, there has been an increased use of e-cigarettes in recent times. Individuals aged between 18 and 24 years account for 10% of e-cigarette users. Tough regulations through tax seem to have hit the tobacco industry hard. It may even be pushed lower through Proposition 56 that proposes an additional $2 tax for each cigarette pack. The proposition also seeks to increase taxes imposed on e-cigarettes that have nicotine and other tobacco products. Revenue collected will be used for healthcare payment and increased funding for tobacco prevention and control.

So, what does marijuana’s legalization have to do with increased tobacco consumption? In California, adults aged 21 years and above can grow, purchase and possess small quantities of cannabis for individual use. Proposition 64 also regulates marijuana delivery services and imposes taxes with an objective of paying up for prevention programs and drug education. Marijuana is presently the most used substance among adolescents. Tobacco leaf wrapped together with marijuana, commonly known as blunt, is more socially acceptable among young people. They also consider this version less risky than smoking cigarettes.  Interestingly, young people were reportedly going to use marijuana considering its benefits. Some experts are worried about blunts since they contain both marijuana and nicotine. So, it is the fear of generalization that some people are concerned about.

Basing their argument on Proposition 64, some people believe that cannabis may act like a smoke inhalation trainer. In that case, they think it will be a gateway to the use of tobacco. These views were expressed by one professor Robert Jackler from the Stanford School of Medicine. According to Jackler, both marijuana and tobacco are marketed in the same way. Advertisers deem them as good for relaxation effects and for easing stress. Therefore, there is a tremendous relationship between these two substances. He further reiterated that tobacco manufacturers may easily endeavor to exploit this overlap to get into the marijuana market. For the tobacco manufacturers, they presently have a lot of influence on state regulations and laws and may endeavor to establish small dispensaries and then include cannabis as one of their many products.

Tobacco smoking is down in the United States and therefore, the industry is out looking for substitute products. Therefore, analysts think that the legalization of cannabis in California may give tobacco a new entry back to the market and that they are well equipped to exploit this opportunity.  Actually, it didn’t just start the other day. The tobacco industry made considerations to join the cannabis market during the 1960s and 70s but didn’t succeed. Will it make it this time and challenge California’s efforts to control it?

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Defendants Set Free: Changes Experienced after the Marijuana Legalization Vote in California


icon  29 Nov, 2016  /  icon  1        Author: Sam Wills

As anticipated, the effects of Proposition 64 are being experienced in California. After it was voted in, Proposition 64 became the recent development on marijuana reforms in California. Today, adults aged 21 years and above can now buy marijuana for recreational use in accordance with the stipulated regulations under this proposition. Very soon, any adult will be able to access marijuana online but for now, medical marijuana patients have continued to enjoy many more benefits even with the recent reforms. In San Francisco, one Chris Phillips has tasted the benefits that came with the vote for Proposition 64. Phillips is a cannabis entrepreneur in California who faced five criminal counts and possible imprisonment. He was accused of illegitimately cultivating marijuana at his home. This came following a police raid in June 2016. However, when voters in California legalized the recreational use of marijuana, what they did was simply erase a number of small-time marijuana-related crimes and reduced the punishments for bigger ones that include the cultivation, transportation and selling of cannabis.

The day after the 2016 elections was a defining moment for Phillips. While in the courtroom, his attorney Panzer together with the Alameda county prosecutors made a deal for him to plead guilty to only one of the offenses he was charged with.  This was a great sigh of relief for the 36 year old who has been running a number of marijuana farms, a medical marijuana delivery dispensary in Long Beach as well as an extract brand. By this time, he had been given a bond of 500,000 dollars.  With four children who didn’t like the company of policemen, Phillips said that his situation was stressing his family despite making his efforts to persuade them to feel at ease. Little did they know that further reforms were coming that would see their father free of most of the crimes he was charged with. The debates going on around Proposition 64 focused on how the move would allow adults to have marijuana for recreational purposes. It was also centered on the creation of taxed retail stores and making what has initially been a shadowy industry into a fully grown free-market allowing competition to thrive. However, the main motivation behind the legalization of cannabis was the increasing perception that punishing individuals for marijuana was ineffective in addressing the war on drugs. This is particularly because most of those who got arrested have excessively been people of color.

The effect of Proposition 64 is now being felt across the state of California. The judges from the California courts are now freeing lot of people who had pending cases, since nullified through the provisions of Proposition 64. Quite a number of them found in prison, or on parole or on probation are now starting to petition for a reduced term of their sentences.  At the same time, many Californians who have a rap sheet for marijuana can now clear their names.  These people will not have to worry anymore and in the near future, they will even be able to access marijuana for sale online in accordance to what has been provided through the new marijuana laws. Such are the changes that continue to creep in with time. California has not kept vivid records on marijuana-related crimes. However, the attorney general’s office confirmed that the police have made 8,866 weed-related crime arrests in 2015. Out of this number, 7,987 were adults while the rest were juvenile offenders. The crimes revolved around the cultivation, transportation and the sale of weed. On a rough estimate, about 2000 of the inmates in prison and in jail are affected by the passing of Proposition 64. These sentiments were shared by the Drug Policy Alliance, a change organization that facilitated the sponsorship for the reforms initiative. According to the Legislative Analysts’ Office of California, Proposition 64 could lead to an increased savings by the courts to the tune of millions of dollars per annum.

Joe Rogoway, an attorney practicing in San Francisco and in North Bay as well says that they have been getting a lot of calls concerning this matter on a daily basis. Rogoway, who is also a specialist in Cannabis Law says that he is happy to get these opportunities to help people in the court. The changes are quite many and intense. For instance, the illegal cultivation of a single cannabis plant used to be a crime that was punishable by the law attracting an imprisonment of up to three years. Today, that is gone because it is no longer a crime, made possible through Proposition 64. Many other crimes have also been downgraded or deleted. Yes, weed users will now be able to buy marijuana online without the fears that have been there in the past. This has been a great development in California.

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Are Marijuana Reforms under Trial after Trump’s Election to Office?


icon  19 Nov, 2016  /  icon  6        Author: Paul

Marijuana reforms have come a long way and the people elected into office have always had a major role to play in determining the success or failure of these reforms. About ten days following Donald Trump’s election into office, Americans have started to get signals of how things may turn out for cannabis with Trump’s administration. This is especially after looking at the people Trump is bringing on board to work with him in his administration. Just a few days ago, Trump nominated Senator Jeff Sessions to the office of US attorney general. During the campaign period, Trump pledged support for state laws regarding marijuana. However, nominees to his administration may give Americans some reason to worry. In the past, Sessions has openly shown disinterest in cannabis and most probably, very little can be expected from him as far as the support for marijuana reforms is concerned. However, this is not already determined but his past sentiments send out faint hopes on marijuana use.

Sessions’ Stand on Marijuana
So, what has Session said concerning marijuana in the past? Over the years, he has been quoted expressing his views on marijuana, most of which were not positive connotations. When President Ronald Reagan nominated him for a federal judgeship in 1986, he openly said that he didn’t have a problem with the Ku Klux Clan but changed his stand when he realized that they smoked marijuana. Although he termed this as a joke when questioned about it, he seemed to continue expressing similar views about marijuana and its use. In one of the Senate hearings in 2016, he claimed that good people don’t smoke weed. This was his response to state marijuana laws. In yet another forum, he was of the opinion that adults in Washington should not support the legalization of marijuana. In his sentiments, Sessions asserted that marijuana was a real danger to the welfare of Americans. Moreover, he carried on with the discussion, making implications that even the debate on the decriminalizing of weed could result in a gateway to other drugs. Sessions was of the opinion that, if the discussion about cannabis legalization continued, it would lead to an increased consumption of other drugs such as heroin and cocaine.

Several months later, following Sessions’ assertions, the incumbent Attorney General, Loretta Lynch rubbished the claims of gateway theory. The attorney general said that many people addicted to hazardous substances had a problem of prescription drugs. Lynch further added that, it was not like we are looking at marijuana as a particular gateway. Sessions’ criticism continued throughout the Obama administration period especially on how the federal government dealt with state marijuana legalization laws. The nominated attorney general waiting to take office in the new administration said that Obama was careless in making comments about weed. He reiterated that Obama’s stand on the drug reversed America’s 20 years of war on drugs with a “Just Say No’ plan that was started by Nancy Reagan.

To further highlight on the negatives of marijuana, Sessions took on Lady Gaga’s case of addiction issues in a hearing that included a former Attorney General, Eric Holder. He said that Gaga claimed that she was addicted to marijuana and that it was harmful. He made a proposition that Gaga would talk to the president, a close ally and start to pull back on the legalization position held by several states in America concerning the use of marijuana. Session claimed that weed was not a friend to the health of the American community.

What do we expect when Sessions Takes Office?
It is evident that Sessions has had harsh stands on marijuana. However, we don’t know how Donald Trump will influence his decisions when he takes office. Hopefully, Trump will stand by what he said during the campaign period concerning state-legal marijuana laws and markets. Sessions’ appointment into the next administration is largely believed to reflect on Trump’s view on immigration more than marijuana. For Trump, he has previously expressed belief in the medical benefits found in marijuana. However, he still believes that the matter should be addressed through individual states. Trump said that he agrees with the rights of each individual state to establish whether to legalize marijuana and how each of them can control the adult-use of weed. Nonetheless, Trump has been going back on his past statements and therefore, advocates for marijuana reforms have been left guessing. The only hope left for the voters is to contact their elected officials and request support for programs put in place by the state. It is the voters who decriminalized cannabis in eight states during the 2016 election through the ballot. Therefore, this is not where it ends. Everyone has a responsibility to carry on with the marijuana reforms from time to time.

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Recent Marijuana Legalization in Various States has Created Momentum for Reforms in Texas


icon  16 Nov, 2016  /  icon  9        Author: Paul

In the recently conducted elections, a number of states legalized the use of marijuana for different reasons: some for medical needs and others for recreational purposes. Apparently, these recent developments have been a huge motivation for other states struggling with marijuana laws. Could Texas be among these states that have been pushing for the decriminalization of marijuana over the years? Well, there is every sign to agree to this predisposition. Even before the dust could settle down, the Harris County District Attorney, Kim Ogg is hitting the road again to fight for the legalization of marijuana immediately after, she takes office. In her pursuit of reforms on offences, marijuana-related cases take center stage. She felt that offenders for non-violent crimes, particularly on weed should not go to jail.

Looking at what has happened in states where Marijuana has been decriminalized and seeing the tax revenue and lack of crime, makes this move much easier for Texas to consider. However, we can only wait and see how things will unfold. District Attorney Ogg deeply believes that people shouldn’t have a permanent record, for a small offense such as smoking Marijuana. This came out clearly in the wake of marijuana reforms and especially looking back at how marijuana-related cases have been handled across America in the past.  Currently, state lawmakers in Texas have filed six marijuana-related bills. Most of these bills are targeting the lessening of punishment for individuals caught with small portions of the drug. Ideally, the movement is in a way, seeking the legalization of Cannabis but, that is yet to be established.

Texas Bills Seeking Reforms on Marijuana
A number of bills have been drafted by Texas state lawmakers in search of reforms on marijuana. House Bill 58 is one of the bills that aims at creating a specialty court for offenders found in possession of marijuana for the first time. Also, to be recognized, the House Bill 81 seeks to replace criminal fines with civil penalties for anyone caught with the possession of an ounce of cannabis. Next is the House Bill 82 that seeks to classify the possession of any amount of marijuana up to an ounce, as a Class C crime rather than a Class B crime. Well, there is still the Senate Joint Resolution 17 that gives the voters a chance to decide whether to legalize marijuana in the state of Texas. There is a lot more on this with Senate Joint Resolution 18 meant to give voters an opportunity to decide on whether to use cannabis for medical reasons or not. Per the Texas Tribune, Senate Bill 170 proposes to change the laws, in regards to being in possession of a small portion of marijuana from a criminal misdemeanor, to a civil crime.

Is Texas Following the Trend on Marijuana Reforms?
Majority believe that the developments taking place in Texas are spurred by what has been seen in several other states during the 2016 election. One drug policy professional, Katherine Neill is among those who strongly believe that Texas is emulating the changes that have been realized in such places as California, Nevada and Massachusetts among others. For Texas, they have not yet legalized medical marijuana and seeing others legalize the herb for recreational use could prompt lawmakers to wake up and enjoy the extra tax’s and benefits that come with these bills. Per Neill, Trump’s presidency has a major role to play, in the success or failure of marijuana laws, in individual states and federally. There has been a lot of resistance in the past and for the advocates of marijuana reforms, they can only hope that the republican leadership can give them the support that they need.

With much hope in the decriminalization of medical marijuana, advocates believe that Texas is going to make a huge step towards marijuana reforms. There is a good chance of seeing this happen in Texas, based on what others States have been able to achieve in recent times. Those in support of marijuana legalization in Texas have already expressed support for these bills. Representatives are being pushed by their supporters to push forward these marijuana bills and should they hear their voice, then that would be a great milestone for Texas Marijuana activists.  At least, choosing to place the item on the ballot would create room for voters to make decisions about the medical legalization. More than that, discussions on marijuana will arise and lead to meaningful conclusions regarding its future. These were some of the sentiments shared by Jason Miller from NORML.

Well, there is no problem with Texas legalizing cannabis use because some states have already done so. However, the question is when this will take place and how the regulatory structure and the licensing procedures will be.  With the push for such reforms, the leadership has a big say on what happens. The biggest challenge has been, getting the issues on the ballot. Once they get there, then the people can decide. Whatever the result might be, it provides room for meaningful discussions that will lead to future developments.

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The Marijuana Legalization Craze: Many More States Legalizing Different Marijuana Uses


icon  14 Nov, 2016  /  icon  8        Author: Paul

The history of marijuana in the United States is somewhat an interesting story, especially looking at how things have turned out in recent times. Marijuana legalization is just happening in different parts of the United States and recent entrants in the list have come in with a loud bang. While some States have just started with the legalization of medical marijuana, others have taken it a notch higher by passing laws to warrant the use of recreational marijuana. After the 2016 election, there were a total of 28 states in America that had passed medical cannabis laws. Of these 28 states, eight of them passed marijuana legalization for recreational use for adults aged 21 years and above.  For those who have taken time to study about the reforms on marijuana in the United States, 2016 has been a somewhat successful year for all marijuana lovers.

A lot of pressure is now mounting on the federal government regarding marijuana issues and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the national authorities have a second thought on marijuana legalization.  The United States has fought with this issue since the 17th century and seeing positive trends in modern times is such a huge development. Ideally, there were no other reforms that were passed by so many voters in the 2016 ballots than for marijuana. Out of the five states that sought the decriminalization of recreational marijuana, only Arizona failed in its attempt to do so. That means there other four including Maine, California, Nevada and Massachusetts saw the successful marijuana legalization for recreational uses.

What Information does Marijuana Legalization Send?

So, is it a case of the people versus the federal government and many people have now realized the benefits of using marijuana.. It is a cognitively discordant time for the opponents of marijuana legalization and the war on drugs. Reflecting on these unprecedented wins for marijuana, and looking at what the federal government has been doing to stop such developments, opponents in America have parted lines on this issue. The society seems to be tearing apart over marijuana, as it was indeed a wedge issue in the 2016 election.

President Obama foresaw this revolution and said that the federal government would not succeed in the war against marijuana if California and other states decriminalized it. Apparently that happened in 2016 and for sure, it’s going to be a trying moment for the US’ federal government. Marijuana legalization is becoming common across America and soon, prohibition will be a thing of the past. While there are fears about what a Donald Trump presidency would do, at least he was quoted saying that the issue of cannabis legalization should be left in the control of individual states. Citizens can only wait, to see what will unfold in the near future.

During his campaigns, Trump consistently said that he would respect every law established by individual states on the issue of marijuana legalization. However, his rhetoric on wider criminal justice matters has been somewhat unfriendly. His close associates have over the period of campaigns been opposed to reforms on marijuana laws. Therefore, the latest developments on marijuana law might be at stake. Nonetheless, the proponents of marijuana law reforms are committed to see a successful implementation of the laws as defined by the respective states’ governments. Again, there is a good sign that support for reforms on drug policy are increasing among the Republicans. We are seeing this in the four states that passed laws on medical marijuana – they also voted republicans to office. Notably, the development on marijuana legalization experienced in 2016 was such a huge step in the right direction, to end prohibition across the United States.

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What the New Trump Presidency means to the Marijuana Industry


icon  09 Nov, 2016  /  icon  11        Author: Paul

Players in the marijuana industry have been following the presidential campaigns and election keenly because of the implications of the new presidency to the industry. After a heated campaign period, Trump has won the presidency. The win is good news for his supporters and the marijuana industry as well. Trump has never held a public office before and hence it has been hard for law reformers to predict his move on the legalization of marijuana. However, many legal analysts believe that he will think like a businessman and legalize the drugs because of the high revenues that the industry generates every year. States such as California that have legalized cannabis for medical use have benefited from high tax revenues and low costs of law enforcement.

Trump’s stand on legalization of marijuana has been slippery, which is understandable because of the implications of such laws. However, his responses to questions on the issue and his comments during campaigns indicate that he may support legalization of the drug, especially for medical use. Financial analysts predict $6.7 billion in profits from the industry in 2016. It is unlikely that Trump will ignore such a high income for the country. In one interview at The O’Reilly Factor, Trump revealed his reason for not giving a straight forward on his support or lack of support of marijuana legalization. The drug has negative effects on the user’s health.

Trump issued public statements in the 1990s proposing legalization as the way to win the war on drugs. Many state laws prohibit the use of marijuana especially for recreational purpose but the number of drugs users continues to increase in most states every year. The new president-elect has not denied his position during his campaigns. However, he has been more inclined to legalizing marijuana for medical use and has publicly declared his one hundred percent support for such laws. Trump believes that medical marijuana helps patients with serious health conditions. This could be one of the reasons why he thinks legalizing the drug is good in some ways.

Another reason why Trump’s presidency is good for the marijuana industry is his stand on job creation. During the campaigns, Trump has indicated consistently that he intends to create 25 million jobs to revive the US economy. In the year 2015, the marijuana industry created about 200,000 new jobs. The annual revenue from legal cannabis is expected to increase to $21.8 billion by 2020. Trump is likely to consider the industrial contribution to his promise of creating new jobs and achieving higher levels of economic growth. Allowing the legalization of cannabis in many more states will increase the number of new jobs that the industry creates annually.

One of the issues that Trump has raised in his presidential campaigns and debates is high government spending. The federal and state governments have been spending billions of dollars on the war on drugs. For instance, in the year 2010, the federal government spent $15 billion while local and state governments spent an additional $25 billion in enforcing drug laws. Part of the spending goes to maintaining overcrowded prisons. Trump has criticized previous governments for superfluous spending. Hence, he may cut off the spending on drug enforcement if he will deliver all his campaign promises.

Trump has indicated before that Americans are unwilling to do anything about the war on drugs because enforcement has proved ineffective. The only rational alternative is to legalize the drug. While it is still early to predict what Trump presidency will do about the war on drugs, there are undeniable signs that Trump is likely to support law reformers on making cannabis legal. Cannabis growers, distributors, and users have every reason to celebrate Trump’s win.

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Recreational Marijuana is now Legal in California


icon    /  icon  10        Author: Paul

California is one of the states that were voting for the legalization of recreational marijuana on Tuesday November 8, 2016. Voters approved Proposition 64 making California the largest and most populous state to approve cannabis use for recreational purposes. The state had made a similar attempt six years ago but voters rejected the move. The win comes after an intense campaign that cost more than $16 million.The money raised by supporters was ten times more than that raised by the opponents. The proposition attracted support from all quarters including business executives who have no interest in the marijuana industry. Legalizing recreational cannabis has many implications for users and players in the industry. The state government will earn additional revenue from the proposed heavy taxation on cultivation and distribution of the drug.

The move will lead to an increase in the demand for the drug, which will increase revenues from its distribution. California legalized the use of marijuana for medical purposes 20 years ago and become one of the leading markets for the drug in the US. The high population and large entertainment industry will make the state the leading center for distribution, research and development on cannabis use. Proposition 64 allows individuals above 21 years of age to buy, possess, transport, and use marijuana for recreational purposes. However, the usage is limited to 28.5 grams of the drug.

The approved proposition also allows licensed individuals to grow and sell marijuana in California and other states where the drug is legalized. Adults can grow up to six plants for personal use. Proposition 64 allows retail sales of marijuana by licensed shops. The shops will incur a taxation fee of 15%. California has joined four other states that have passed similar laws, which include Alaska, Colorado, Oregon and Washington. Distributors and users of medical marijuana are excited about the outcome of the vote. However, it will take some time before the businesses can start selling cannabis on retail basis. The proposition limits the sale of the drug to licensed shops and gives the state government up to January 1, 2018 to start issuing licenses to retailers.

There are mixed reactions to the approval of the proposition. Proponents of the law see it as the first step to winning the war on drugs. During the campaigns, the supporters of the proposition pointed out the high cost of enforcing drugs laws in California and other states as well. The federal and state governments use billions of tax revenue to curb drug abuse without earning significant revenues from drugs. Legalizing cannabis use does not only earn state governments additional revenues but also reduces the costs of maintaining congested legal and judicial systems. The prisons are already too congested with drug users who had to turn to the black market to buy or sell the drug. Proposition 64 prohibits large corporations from growing or distributing the drug. The prohibition gives individuals and small scale business an opportunity to benefit from selling the drug.

The state government may consider allowing medical centers that are licensed to sell marijuana for medical use to sell it recreational purposes before the state starts issuing licenses. Such a move will eliminate the delay in using the recreational drug, which is irrational because voters have already made the decision to approve the proposition. The medical centers can get temporal license that will expire once the state issues annual licenses to retailers. Players that support this move argue that creating an unnecessary delay may force users to buy the drug from the black market. One advantage of the approved proposition to the drug users is that price of medical marijuana will remain the same. The new tax charges will only apply to recreational marijuana.

Other issues arising from the approval of Proposition 64 include the differences in standards in the proposition and the standards in the law legalizing marijuana for medical use. The state has to draft new regulations and standards that apply to selling or using the drug for medical and recreational uses. For instance, the new law requires procedures of determining when a user is too intoxicated to drive. The outcome of the vote does not change the provisions on the places where people can smoke the drugs. Smoking in public and other prohibited places remains illegal. Licensed retailers will not be allowed to sell the drugs to minors and neither are users allowed to smoke the drug near children.

The laws prohibiting marketing the drug to minors and driving under its influence remain effective. Users and distributors must abide by existing laws even when buying and selling the drug for recreation use to avoid fines. The state is expected to earn at least one billion dollars from the drug every year in tax revenues. The largest percentage of this revenue will be generated from excise taxes charged on growers and distributors. Growers will incur an additional charge $9.25 per ounce on flowers and another $2.75 per ounce on cannabis leaves. The state will spend the tax revenues generated from the drug on law enforcement, research, and development. Part of the tax revenue will be used in rehabilitation centers and in providing mental health services to recovering users.

The voters’ decision to legalize marijuana use for recreational purposes does not change the federal government’s stand on the drug. The federal government still classifies marijuana among illegal drugs. However, the decision is likely to initiate similar propositions in other states. The prohibition law may fail if the trend is adopted nationwide. Eventually, the federal government may abolish or amend its prohibition laws to legalize marijuana especially for medical use.

 

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Your Guide to California's Recreational Marijuana Laws


icon  08 Nov, 2016  /  icon  6        Author: Paul

California is on the verge of joining other states like Maine, Aziona, Massachusetts and Nevada on the legal use of recreational marijuana. This is an initiative seeking to legalize the use of marijuana amongst adults. Come November 8, Californians will be voting to either pass or reject proposition 64, which is the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA). Once passed, this proposition will allow adults to buy and use cannabis on legal grounds.  But before votes are cast, what laws govern the use of recreational marijuana in California? Here are important regulations to note, in what seems as an improvement of existing laws on recreational marijuana that is still illegal in California. These laws control, regulate and tax the liable use of marijuana among adults as it protects children and safe guards local control, protecting public safety and public health and defending water resources and the environment at large in the following ways:

Possession and use: Any adult of 21 years of age and above will be allowed to use an ounce or less of cannabis. Users are also allowed to take only eight grams of cannabis concentrates. This will end the prohibition law enacted 103 years ago.  However, sales of marijuana for use to adults will have to wait until January 1, 2018 and again will happen in regions that will permit that. Anything done out of these provisions will be punishable by law.

Marijuana Growing and Manufacturing: Adults will be allowed to cultivate marijuana up to six plants for individual use. This will be permitted on a private and enclosed space. However, this limit does not apply to medical patients who are governed by prop. 215 giving them room to cultivate and possess as much marijuana as they would need for medical reasons. On the same note, local authorities are forbidden from completely banning indoor cultivation for individual use.

To protect children from accessing weed and advance the safe use of marijuana by adults, the packaging, labeling and testing of all weed products will be highly regulated as follows: the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) will in charge as the main regulatory agency whereas the Department of Public Health (DPH) will keep watch over the testing and manufacturing of marijuana products. On the other hand, cultivation of marijuana will be under the Department of Food & Agriculture (DFA).

Marijuana Promotion: The advertisement and marketing of recreational marijuana to anyone less than the age limit provided of 21 years or close to places inhabited by children including schools is prohibited.

Penalties for breaching set guidelines:  The penalties for violating guidelines laid out on sale, growing, transportation and the possession with the purpose of selling involving mandatory felonies and misdemeanors have been downgraded.  This will largely eliminated the main cause of felony marijuana arrest all over California. However, felony enhancements are still permitted for third-time offenders and aggravating or violent conditions. Even with all that, the laws do not increase the penalties on top of what is already in force.  Jail and prison sentences for minors under the age of 18 have also been eliminated. Additionally, previous prisoners, parolees and offenders have been given room to petition established courts for resentencing or an automatic dismissal of charges placed against them.

Fine on public use of marijuana: marijuana users found to be using the herb in any public lace will be required to pay a $100 fine. Note that a tobacco smoking area is also regarded as a public place and no one should stay ignorant of that. Further, the laws prohibit the possession or use of an “open container” of cannabis in motor vehicles and that includes back-seat passengers too.  Vaporization in all areas not designated for smoking is also prohibited. However, users can smoke their marijuana on-site in establishments that re well-defined and licensed.

Marijuana Sales alongside Other Drugs: The sale of recreational cannabis shall not be permitted to happen in business that currently engage in the sale of such drug substances as tobacco or alcohol. Therefore, it is very important for dealers and users to consider the true definition of “private” before making assumptions about the business around recreational marijuana.

Driving: Driving while in an impaired state occasioned through the use of marijuana is illegal and will be punishable by the law if anyone will be found a culprit. Therefore, the law maintains that anyone caught driving in an impaired state, as would be determined by officers will be punishable by the law. Users are therefore advised to do personal tests before driving to make sure they will not be found guilty of an offence of this kind.

Tax laws: For those seeking to venture in the marijuana trade industry, there will be a $9.25 tax imposed for every ounce on wholesale growing. This is almost 10% of the existing prices. There will also be a significant 16% excise tax on retailing with an additional 7.5 + % sales tax that still exists.

Additionally, local governments may consider imposing taxes that are not clearly defined based on their discretion. Some may be as significant as 10%. However, industry experts say that the cost of cannabis will decrease significantly in the end.

Revenue from Marijuana: Expected to hit a high of $1billion on annual basis, revenue collected will be directed for treatment and prevention programs, education on drug abuse, restoring the environment, in research and giving grants to law enforcement and local governments in areas that don’t ban the sale of marijuana or individual outdoor growing.

Amendments: Even as citizens prepare to cast their votes, it is important to note that the laws make a provision for amendments in the future. This could be conducted through a simple majority of legislatures.

Federal Regulation: Even with the laws enacted to operate in California for the growth and use of recreational marijuana among adults, cannabis use remains illegal as provided by the federal government. In that case, federal charges will apply should there be practices found to contravene the already established guidelines under the federal Controlled Substances Act.

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The US Federal Government Feels the Heat Coming from Marijuana Votes


icon    /  icon  3        Author: Paul

Marijuana is gaining popularity in the United States and many more states are considering its legalization owing to the many benefits seen with its use. Apparently, the number of marijuana votes is increasingly steadily and the federal government cannot ignore them despite its stand against marijuana legalization. For places like in Colorado, recreational marijuana uses have been legal since the start of 2014. During this time, an entirely new crop of business in the name of cannabis tourism took off. For many travelers to the state, it is a remarkable development following years of hiding the habit of using marijuana. Despite having been smoked for the longest time, marijuana has been voted down in recent times but things are slowly changing. Previous literature presented marijuana as an herb that led to horrors such as suicide and murder. What lacked in these reports is the medical value of marijuana in treating pain among other disease symptoms.

The tone is now changing and it is amazing how people can order marijuana online in some of the states where it has been legalized. Initially, a lot of money was spent to track suppliers and enforce laws against the drug. Despite all these measures put in place, Americans are still rehabilitating the rug. As of today, medical marijuana has been legalized in 25 states in the US. Others like Alaska, Oregon, Washington, the District of Columbia and Colorado have gone ahead to even permit the use of recreational weed. Recreation use of marijuana is also being pursued in places such as Maine, Nevada, Massachusetts, California and Arizona. Other propositions seeking to permit the use of medical cannabis are also underway in such places as Florida, North Dakota, Montana and Arkansas. This is indeed pressure mounting on the federal government to consider reviewing its stand on the cannabis industry.

Interesting Trends on Marijuana
State governments seem to be reaping millions of US dollars from taxes imposed on the sale and use of marijuana. Colorado being one of them, states where recreational and/or medical marijuana has been legalized have experienced an increased revenue collection from marijuana proceeds. However, the operations in the business are not getting a fair treatment and advocates are still dealing with a lot of stigma. There are a number of hoops in the regulatory structure that are hampering progress. This is especially from federal regulatory framework that seems to restrict the use of bank accounts for businesses related to cannabis. With the state taking over in controlling the marijuana business, there is hope that success will be attained in the end.

Effects on public health, public safety and youth outcomes are stands held by the federal government that has made it go slow on the herb. However, these fears have been rubbished by reports from such bodies as the Colorado Department of Public Safety stating that there is no enough proof to warrant making any conclusions against the use of marijuana. Medical marijuana benefits have been a major development in spurring the much anticipated legalization of weed over the years. Looking at what research has presented in recent times, and the insignificant result that has resulted from fighting drugs, legalization seemingly remains as the only viable option.

Reforms on marijuana are turning on the masses in the United States and there is hope for its full fledged legalization looking at the measures taken by different states to support it. It is no longer about medical marijuana alone. Apparently, it is getting past that and despite the government’s failure to federally legalize it even for medical use, recreational use will soon be realized.

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What Does Marijuana Legalization Mean for California?

What Does Marijuana Legalization Mean for California?


icon  06 Nov, 2016  /  icon  3        Author: Paul

California proposition 64, also known as Control, Regulate, and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act will go to vote in November 8th, 2016. Early reports and surveys suggest that the proposition is likely to receive considerable support as 57% of the voters have admitted they would vote for it to be passed. Medical marijuana is already legal in the state and most patients have free access to it if they have a prescription. However, recreation marijuana is still illegal and that’s what this legislation seeks to correct.

What Would Happen if Proposition 64 is Passed?
This proposition will bring about several changes in the already successful marijuana industry. If this proposition is passed and made into a law, it will:

• Allow adults of over 21 years of age to possess and consume marijuana and hemp.

• The law will also allow adults with license to cultivate and sell marijuana in all forms to other legal adults in the state.

• All recreational marijuana will be taxed. Users will have to pay 15% sales tax. The growers will have to pay cultivation tax of $9.25 per ounce for flowers and $2.75 per ounce for leaves.

• Large corporations and businesses won’t receive any permits and licenses to cultivate or sell of marijuana for 5 years. This is done to keep unlawful monopoly in check and ensure there are no unreasonable restraints on competition in this market.

• Medical marijuana prices won’t be affected by the law because these taxes won’t levied on the cultivation and sale of medical marijuana. Lawmakers and California citizens want to keep medical marijuana easily accessible and affordable for patients who use it regularly.

As you can probably guess, these changes will have a huge impact on not just the marijuana industry, but also on the overall economy of the state.

Why is California Important for the Marijuana Movement?
California is one of the most important states in the marijuana industry because it has a population of over 40 million residents, houses some of marijuana’s biggest supporters, is the home of the entertainment industry, and has the 6th largest economy in the world. If marijuana is legalized here, the entire industry will get a significant boost and the legislation would pave the way to legalize it for recreational use in other states as well.

This has already been proven with medical marijuana. California was the first state to legalize it in back in 1996 and over 24 states followed suit. While California is a little late in the recreational use bandwagon, it’ll still be a significant coup for the industry. Recreational marijuana is already legal in Colorado, DC, and four other states. If things go well on November 8th, California will join this group and that would grant the industry more power.

The Economic Impact of The Legalization
Policymakers and authorities want to take their hands on the revenue generated by legal marijuana. The heavy taxes of recreational use will bring in a considerable amount of money. Here’s the financial impact of this legislation:

• The state government will potentially earn $1 billion annually due to the heavy tax on cultivation and sale of marijuana.

• The government would save at least $100 million every year because the state and local authorities won’t have to enforce marijuana-related laws and arrest offenders.

The Social Impact of The Legalization
The law will also have a significant social impact and make things safe for regular marijuana users.

• Legalization will allow the government to control the growth and distribution of marijuana and destabilize the illegal market.

• Minors and people under the age of 21 wouldn’t be able to access marijuana easily.

• There would be a better support system in place for people with substance abuse problems.

There are Still Some Concerns

• Lawmakers worry that the increased taxation and regulation would encourage the marijuana black market. This has already happened in Colorado, Washington, and Oregon. These states have a thriving black market despite the legalization of the recreational use of marijuana.

• Safety is also a concern. There are already several cases of people driving when they’re drunk. Authorities fear that legalization of marijuana would lead to people driving while they’re high and increase the number of accidents and related fatalities.

• Authorities are also concerned about giving minors access to marijuana. If proposition 64 goes through, only people of 21 years and above will have access to marijuana but that isn’t as easy to impose as most people think. Minors can still get their hands on alcohol and tobacco so it’s very likely that they can get their hands on marijuana.
• Federal government has expressed concern that legal marijuana from California and other such states might be directed and sold illegally on other states where the drug is illegal.

Despite all of these concerns, the marijuana movement is still strong and enjoys a considerable amount of support. It’s very likely that proposition 64 will be passed and recreational use of marijuana will become legal in California.

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Marijuana Education for the Upcoming Elections in California

Enlightening the Masses: Marijuana Education for the Upcoming Elections in California


icon    /  icon  4        Author: Paul

California ranks first in terms of population out of the five states that are on the verge of legalizing the regulated use and sale of recreational marijuana. The state passed the proposition on the use of medical marijuana in the past and will be looking forward to make the general use of marijuana legal. New changes and development are anticipated with the voting based on Proposition 64. Maybe, the most important thing for the masses to know is what is contained in the proposition. Ideally, Proposition 64 contains somewhat similar issues as proposed by other states.

What provisions are made in Proposition 64?
Before anyone can claim to like or dislike Proposition 64 on marijuana, here is a list of items that are contained in it:

If passed, adults of the age of 21 and above will be allowed to posses up to an ounce of marijuana flower or 8g of wed concentrates

Individual cultivation will be allowed for up to six plants of cannabis

the industrial cultivation of hemp

As of now, there are pending issues that may be decided upon by the state upon the passing of the proposition and this has to do with taxation. Essentially, the process of taxation and apparatus of regulation would be somehow more complex than is the case in other states.

Why should marijuana be legalized?
Well, the next stop after reading the Proposition 64 would be on the need to legalize the herb. A voter may ask themselves this important question and ideally part of the answer has been provided in the past: for medical reasons. The thought would be, if it is good medicine, why not make it legal for use even for recreation purposes? However, this must be done through a very well-managed and controlled framework.

What people should know about marijuana!

Addiction – There is nothing much that can be said about the addiction tendencies in the use of marijuana. Yes, it is addictive and voters need to know that. That is why proper control and regulation is paramount. Experts say that the conditional chance of dependence is nearly 9%. Like-to-like comparisons have pegged methamphetamine and cocaine at 15% and heroin being the most terrible with a value between 25 and 45%. About 32% of people mostly aged between 19 and 28 years have been found to take marijuana annually. The rate of addiction however, relies on the number of people who are consuming it. Once legalized, it is expected that the addiction number will increase but by what number, that can only be established once the proposition passes.

Generally, between 5-6% of seniors in high school use marijuana on a daily basis across the United States. The number is expected to be much higher for California, which is among the leaders in the use of marijuana in America

Addiction to marijuana is as real as other substances such as tobacco. The frequency of withdrawal symptoms and the harshness of such symptoms compared between tobacco and marijuana users produced indistinguishable results.  Many people know of nicotine dependency that is at a higher rate, maybe more than 33% due to be availability. Owing to the similarities experienced here, marijuana-dependency could record same values.

Marijuana has also been found to impair cognitive and other behavioral functions when abused. Therefore, it is important to know what regulations have been put in place and adhere to them strictly. Failure to hold on to this, there are dire consequences that await such people as would be found misusing marijuana.

Different people have different experiences with the use of marijuana. Therefore, predictions on the effects can be done based n general trends. Ideally, the evidence coming from the use by one person is not enough to make generalizations of some sort. The fact is, a personal experience is not enough to tell it all.

There is a lot to learn about marijuana and its use. However, the most important thing to note is that, the use of marijuana is an area that is still developing and there is more to that lies in wait. There are quite a number of things that we simply can’t tell concerning this herb. Any particular scientific research is limited to the manner in which it was generated. This doesn’t mean that all hopes are dashed but what it means is that, it is important for all to think about marijuana and how best it can be used.

Even before going to cast the votes in the upcoming elections in California, reading over the provisions made in the Proposition 64 would be important.  Essentially, there is a fair bit of good investment of the state’s tax revenue collection through the activities the state has sponsored. It answers some of the concerns highlighted here in a better way even what seems so obvious. This is a positive look but the extent to which things will happen remains unknown.

 

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All Eyes on the Windfall of Money from Marijuana Following its Legalization


icon    /  icon  5        Author: Paul

The legalization of marijuana has attracted a lot of interest from different corners and this includes the money flowing in and out of cannabis trade. Actually, it appears that the aspect of revenue is one of the factors put into consideration by states before they can even consider legalizing marijuana use. The District of Columbia alongside four states in America has legalized marijuana retail sales through a majority vote. On the same trend, there are other 25 states that have allowed the trade of medical marijuana. Since 2011, the marijuana industry has continued to grow in the United States and in the next few years, a lot will have been achieved.

Important Findings about Revenue from Marijuana
In states that have seen the rise of marijuana use such as Washington and Colorado, initial estimates have been exceeded. Tax collections from the cannabis industry are seemingly booming and other states can learn from this. Apparently, it is becoming a multi-billion dollar business by the turn of each and every year. Oregon, Colorado and Washington have made significant steps towards the reduction of marijuana tax rates. As a result, states such as Alaska are now considering it following the failure to significantly reduce this black market with the initial set rates of 30%. New developments have come up with proposed rates ranging between 10 and 25%.

In recent times, tax rates imposed on the final retail sales have been voted as the most valuable taxation. Other taxation forms such as those imposed on marijuana flowers at a specific amount, tax at the producer level instead of the retail level have faced some challenges during the implementation.  Again, medical marijuana doesn’t have strict regulations and as a result, the tax imposed on it is always less than for recreational weed. Therefore, targeting recreational sales in the retail market has been most challenging due to the regulatory structure that requires the imposing of heavy taxes.

With much anticipated hope of increased revenue from marijuana reaching to millions of dollars, establishing this takes a lead time. For example in Washington and Colorado, consumers took time to familiarize themselves with the emerging system. The local authorities and the state spent a considerable amount of time and money to set up necessary structures and a regulatory framework.

For maximum benefits from the revenues accruing from marijuana, attention must shift to issues of health, local enforcement, agriculture and zoning. These concerns have not yet been fully handled in ballot initiatives and now await resolution during the process of implementation.

Possible Benefits with Tax on Marijuana Sales
With the passing of medical marijuana laws in the District of Columbia and in other twenty states, there was hope of increasing revenue collection. This has become a reality in some states while others have not yet started doing so. In the latter, programs have not yet been rolled out and hence don’t have estimates of how much revenue can be collected.  However, the tax windfall documented by some of the states has immensely convinced other states in the region to consider taking on this noble task.   For instance, voters in Florida have a chance this November to amend their constitution in order to legalize the use of medical marijuana for individuals with “debilitating diseases.” If the move turns out successful, it will lead to the opening up of a strong market for medical marijuana amongst the close to 20 million people living in Florida.

In California, which is rated as the most populous state, accrues between $59 million and $109 million of tax collections from the sale of medical cannabis on an annual basis. The earnings from medical weed can give an idea how a state like California may benefit from a complete decriminalization of marijuana. If this is what medical cannabis has been able to earn for the state, the earnings that could result from both the medical pot and recreational marijuana are unimaginable. At the moment, California has very liberal laws on the use of medical marijuana in the United States. What lies in wait is the full legalization for the use of pot among adults, which will lead to an increased revenue collection. A monetary assessment of weed legalization the attorney general’s office in California established that there would be a lot of savings of hundreds of millions of dollars in enforcement efforts. Additionally, the state would gain a lot more in terms of hundreds of millions from the collection of tax revenue.

California is not the only state that has benefited from proceeds coming from the sale of marijuana. For Colorado, the story has been the same. In the first month after the launch of the legal marijuana program, Colorado collected $2.9 million of tax for both medical marijuana and pot for recreational purposes. This was way more than what Colorado would have earned for the medical pot program alone for one month in 2015. Therefore, the cannabis industry is very lucrative for the authorities in terms of revenue collection.

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Hope for Marijuana Legalization in California as Law Enforcement gives Way for Voting


icon  05 Nov, 2016  /  icon  5        Author: Paul

The push for full fledged reforms on marijuana has been on the run for some time now and California seems to edge closer by the day. Based on the much advertised Proposition 64, the people believe that time has come for California to decriminalize and freely regulate both recreational and medical marijuana. Back in 2010, voters in California failed to make recreational marijuana legal where it narrowly lost to the opposition who won with a majority 54%. It was such a close decision that sent the message that the battle was still on. Voting was based on Proposition 19, which was mainly opposed not because the idea of legalizing pot was bad but only because the proposition was not drafted well. Those who voted against it had fears on the manner in which the herb would be regulated.

Today, things have changed a lot. Led by Washington and Colorado, four states have now legalized the recreational use of cannabis amongst adults. No major challenges have been experienced. On the other side, almost half of the states have now accepted the use of medical marijuana and Canada is working towards the use of marijuana among the adults come 2017. With the ongoing campaigns for the upcoming elections, the key presidential candidates consider this a wedge issue. In that case, they have promised not to frustrate the legalization efforts taken up by the individual states.

Over the years, they have been a big shift on perception towards drug policy. This has been prompted by the questions posed concerning the effect that has been realized with the fight on drugs over the decades. Ideally, there have been a lot of expenditures, marginalized communities, abusive drug cartels and overcrowded prisons. That is all that has been achieved significantly. Today, the idea that has been embraced by many is that, the enforcement of prohibition is more costly and yet has produced few benefits. Looking at these mixed outcomes, the federal government has apparently surrendered on its role. The work has now been left upon states to make decisions by themselves concerning the use and regulation of marijuana and in the end enact a national marijuana policy.

Efforts taken through Law Enforcement in California
In a move to legalize recreational marijuana amongst adults, concerned authorities have considered giving the people another chance to vote this November. This will be realized through Proposition 64, which is “the Adult use of Marijuana Act”. It is time for the voters to determine whether the hard stand on marijuana will be removed and left to control drugs such as heroin alone. If successful, this will see the recreation use of pot among adults with proper regulation frameworks.

The take by the law enforcers in California is to give voters a chance to make marijuana legal in the state. However, there are provisions made in proposition 64 that allows the legislatures to make amendments from time to time based on the results of its use. This move is considered better on issues of public health, for maintaining law and order and for the society in general. Well, the proposition is not believed to be perfect but it gives the issue a good standing. It is a very pragmatic and logical strategy of engaging in a process that would see a sober way of legalizing marijuana. The flexibility of regulators and lawmakers to make changes as may deem necessary is much welcome by all interested parties and stakeholders. The stand taken by the Californian governing authorities is that, the process of legalizing marijuana will continue to be in check even if the proposition 64 gets a “Yes” vote.

Although not official, California has ideally legalized marijuana. Almost any adult can access medical marijuana through recommendation and purchase the pot products in a legal manner from medical dispensary. Well, some users have not even bothered to fake any ailment and have bought the herb on the black market without any concern that they may go to jail. To end this, the law enforcement authorities give a chance to proposition 64 to tame the illegal market. In the event that this proposition passes, the law enforcement bodies will allow any person aged 21 years and above to grow, purchase and have marijuana for their own use. This will be allowed in businesses with licensing to warrant on-site use or in private homes.

Essentially, the state will continue to be in control especially on issues to do with licensing and regulation of the marijuana industry. Regulation will be right from the growth of weed, its processing, delivery channels and the selling process. The law enforcement authorities have also expressed interests owing to the revenue that will be collected following the commercial growing and sale of marijuana. It is expected that revenue collections may go up to $1 annually. Looking at the issues highlighted here, the law enforcement takes a soft yet strict stand on marijuana legalization in California. It hopes to fully control and regulate the use should Proposition 64 pass.

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Ohio: Next Stop for Marijuana Legalization


icon  07 Oct, 2016  /  icon  2        Author: Paul

The calls for marijuana to be legalized for medical use have been growing louder and louder with each passing day. It has been proven that marijuana has numerous medicinal benefits, for both the mind and the body. Moreover, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, the chief medical correspondent of CNN, changed his opinions on marijuana and gave the use of it in medical capacities his stamp of approval. Thus, it was only natural that states would seriously consider legalizing medical marijuana. Now, it is time for medical marijuana fans based in Ohio to rejoice. Following the likes of Illinois (2014), Maryland (2014), Minnesota (2014) and Pennsylvania (2016), Ohio recently became the next state to legalize the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes, approving its use in June 2016.

Patients with qualifying medical conditions can now be prescribed medical marijuana by practitioners, starting from September 2016. Following the announcement, several agencies have already started operations in order to produce and distribute medical marijuana. All this was made possible by a group called ‘Ohioans for Medical Marijuana’, who proposed a ballot initiative, which ultimately led to medical marijuana being legalized in Ohio.

To prevent taking advantage of the legalization of medical marijuana and abusing it, patients must have some qualifying medical conditions in order to be prescribed medical marijuana by physicians. Ohio law recognizes the following medical conditions as qualifying conditions for using medical marijuana:
• AIDS
• Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
• Alzheimer’s disease
• Cancer
• Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy
• Crohn’s disease
• Epilepsy or other seizure disorders
• Fibromyalgia
• Glaucoma
• Hepatitis C
• Inflammatory bowel disease
• Multiple Sclerosis
• Chronic/Severe/Intractable Pain
• Parkinson’s disease
• Positive status for HIV
• Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
• Sickle Cell Anemia
• Spinal Cord disease or injury
• Tourette’s syndrome
• Traumatic brain injury
• Ulcerative colitis

The list doesn’t end there; the law is keeping the door open for other medical conditions to be added to the list of qualifying medical conditions. Individuals can petition the Medical Board in order to have additional conditions and/or diseases included in the list of qualifying medical conditions. Even more reason for Ohioan medical marijuana enthusiasts to rejoice.

However, measures have been taken to prevent anyone and everyone from getting access to medical marijuana. In order for an individual to get medical marijuana, the following stipulations must be checked:
• The patient must have one or more conditions enlisted under Ohio’s medical marijuana law
• The patient must have an ongoing patient-physician relationship with the doctor
• The patient must be notified of the pros and cons of using medical marijuana, and the doctor must make it clear that the benefits outweigh the risks
• The doctor must obtain a report from the drug database of Ohio, showing the other medication prescribed to the patient over that past year.

In short, patients now have renewed hope in their fight to recover from their conditions. There is every chance that the prescribed medication has little or no effect to soothe the discomfort of the patients, thus prompting cries for some new ways to relieve the inconvenience. Hopefully the introduction of medical marijuana will have a big and lasting impact, influencing even more states to follow suit and legalize medical marijuana.

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Cannabis Dispensary

Should I be in the Marijuana Business or just a supplier?


icon  14 Sep, 2016  /  icon  0        Author: Paul

With the advent of more and more states legalizing the production, delivery and dispensing of marijuana, one would think that it is a very profitable business in a free market. Sure, maybe the black market was to some degree taken out of the equation this does not remove the principles of supply and demand.

As more and more people are jumping in to grow the product and deliver it to the dispensary it will result in too much supply and not enough demand. This will force the price of the product down. So those who simply love the product and are not interested in profit, they can grow their own or enjoy the price benefits of an oversupply! This appears to be the case in Oregon and Washington State.

It should be noted that in the United States it is still a Federal Crime to grow and sell marijuana. This is true even if it is legal in your state for both recreational and medical purposes. So it would be well advised to follow the laws of your state before investing time and money in growing, delivering and dispensing marijuana.
All states that have legalized it have laws in place. Some even limit the number of licenses that will be issued every year. It is best to look at your states laws and get an attorney to help you in starting. It also includes the type of marijuana business – are you wholesaling to dispensaries or retailing?

If you take Colorado for example, if you grow more than 6 plants or produce more than 2 ounces, you have to get the license. It will require a separate city and state license with additional license depending on if it is recreational or medical operation.

As with any business, you need to do your research. Do not assume that you will get rich overnight or at all. It is still market forces. So what is the cost to open up a marijuana store? One source has it at a low end of about $43,000 to a high end of about $135,000. One has to consider the long-term return on investment.

This is similar to the gold rush in the 1800’s in America. There were a few that became wealthy by striking gold, and there were much more who became wealthy supplying picks and shovels to the want to be minors. Maybe it would be advisable to look at all aspects of this business, see what your niche is. Supplying the paraphernalia that goes with marijuana industry or even being an information source such as a marijuana membership website might be a good alternative. A good example is Medical Marijuana Business News. They have a handbook you can buy.
Whatever you decide, enjoy the product if that is your choice in life. We are just glad that governments are starting to realize it should be a choice.

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Will Marijuana users see more Freedom this Election Year?


icon  06 Sep, 2016  /  icon  0        Author: Paul

During the Regan administration, Nancy Regan announced the “War on Drugs”, but the demand for the product far outweighed the politics.  This year could turn out to be a monumental year for marijuana to be on the ballot. More states than ever before will vote on easing the restrictions on the use of marijuana. States are voting on allowing medical marijuana and other states are looking to fully legalize its recreational use.

This may seem like a blast from the past, but investors are seeing dollar signs in a new industry.  This situation may hinder more than help the movement as big companies may be looking to cash in. So what about the crime rate as some have argued? What about big business monopolizing the industry?  In Colorado, which legalized buying cannabis, the law enforcement and courts are no longer wasting the taxpayers’ money going after people for smoking pot.  Actually there has been an 80% drop in charges for marijuana related crimes and a 23% drop in all drug related charges. And arguably the issue for taxes has far outweighed expectations in Colorado with $125 million, yes, million, collected in 2015.  This was not just derived from the pot industry but also from the tourists that it brings to the state.  With the laws changing this year to allow tourists to purchase as much as a Colorado resident, that tourism industry will continue to grow.

Colorado has adopted a public approach to marijuana by funding local public schools, youth services, and behavioral health programs.  Many opponents have a hard time arguing when the money going to help schools, communities and the youth. Additionally, Colorado businesses have earmarked cannabis money for cleaning up highways and communities.

Statistics don’t lie and according to The Free Thought Project out of Colorado; teen cannabis use has declined, deaths related to painkillers has declined, prescription drug use has declined and even violent crimes have significantly decreased.

However, marijuana businesses are finding the financial world not as receptive to their line of work.  Many business owners are finding it harder to get lines of credit from local banks.  Even checking accounts are hard to come by for fear of retaliation from the federal government. Many banks are reluctant to accept the responsibilities associated with the risk of accepting or housing money from a deity whose business is still illegal under federal law.  Another major issue is the tax code that forbids businesses from taking normal business deductions.  Will this year’s federal and national elections chance this?  That is yet to be seen.

These businesses are facing tough decisions about their finances.  The Treasury Department even issued guidelines that go so far as to say that if the banks are involved with a marijuana business, the bank should monitor that customer for “suspicious activity”.  So, why are banks not going to bars to monitor the alcohol activity?  Banks and financial institutions are not willing to accept the obligations associated with the marijuana businesses.

A credit union in Denver went as far as to try to set up the first financial institution serving exclusively to the cannabis business.  However, the obstacles from regulations set up by the government has made it impossible to move ahead.  Again, we will have to wait to see if a change in elected officials will transform this awkward situation.

So, all of this leads us to the questions surrounding this election season.  According to Fortune magazine, both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump agree that they are both pro pot, to a certain extent. This has the advocates for medicinal marijuana hoping that eventually a federal bill will legalize medical use in all states.  Trump also endorses medical use and goes further to say that the recreational use of cannabis should be determined by each state.

Yes, this election season will be interesting.

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What Happens If Cannabis Is Legalized For Recreational Use?


icon  31 Aug, 2016  /  icon  0        Author: Paul

In November, Californian lawmakers are due to make a vote on Proposition 64, which calls for the complete decriminalization of marijuana for both recreational and medical use.

Whilst there is already a new system that is being put into place to regulate those who grow the plant for legitimate medical purposes including the sale and manufacturing of marijuana products, it is thought that a positive outcome for the vote will result in similar regulations for the recreational pot industry.

What Would It Mean For California?
It is likely that there won’t be much that will change when it comes to cannabis dispensaries across the state. There will probably be two separate counters for customers. Those who are purchasing the substance for recreational use would use one counter and those who have been prescribed it will need to use the other.

Similar regulations would probably come into force as are already in place for medical marijuana too. Cannabis used for recreation would need to be tested and the sales would need to be taxed.

It would be likely that California’s economy would boom. As we can see from Colorado’s figures, recreational sales in the Colorado area accounted for 60 to 70% of all customers for marijuana in 2012. The legalization of recreational cannabis in Colorado not only increased the number of people who used the drug for recreational purposes, but the figures for medical marijuana patients also saw a massive increase. It is possible that California would see a rise in the number of medical marijuana patients too. This would be great for the state’s economy.

Benefits For Patients
If you’re a medical marijuana patient in California who enjoys simply sampling a little cannabis infused chocolate before you go to bed to help you sleep, legalization could have some benefits for you. You’ll not need to wait until your doctor says you can use it before making your purchase. This will remove the hassle for those who use medical marijuana very infrequently. You will also save money as you wont need to keep visiting your doctor to get a recommendation.

Other Benefits
Those who have previously received a criminal penalty for a cannabis related offense will see their record cleared. If you’ve been struggling to find a job because of that minor drug offense lurking on your shoulders, you would be cleared with legalization.

Those who need to carry a medical ID card to prove that they are legally allowed to use a higher dose of marijuana for their medical needs will no longer be held to extortionate fees. The proposition would cap the maximum charge of ID at $100. At the moment, states can charge whatever they wish.

There are plenty of great benefits to residents of California when it comes to complete legalization. Both patients and lawmakers should look at the bigger picture and consider the benefits that could come from legalization before making their mind up about their position on the vote.

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Can Cannabis Treat Traumatic Brain Injury?


icon  11 Aug, 2016  /  icon  1        Author: Paul

When a person receives an external hit to the head, this can result in Traumatic Brain Injury. This is a serious condition that can manifest itself as behavioral problems, cognitive difficulty, mobility issues, loss of ability to speak properly and difficulties seeing properly. It can also bring about headaches, alter the patient’s mood and it can even cause stomach problems.

This is such a severe condition that it causes thousands of deaths each year, whilst thousands more are left severely disabled due to the condition. Compared to the number of car deaths across the US, the number of fatalities caused by TBI is almost double, and is around 3 times as many deaths as are caused by homicide each year. Over 5 million people across the US have to live with the effects of TBI, which is around the same number as patients who are suffering from Alzheimer’s.

Cannabis Can Slow The Effects Of TBI Damage

Although there are many therapy treatments available to attempt to combat the problems caused by TBI, nothing so far has proven to be as effective as cannabis may be when it comes to preventing TBI from having severely disabling effects. By giving the patient a dose of THC, one of the chemicals found in cannabis, shortly after the injury, it has been found that this can lessen the long-term brain damage that is usually caused. The Israel Defense Force already gives CBD or a low strength of THC to soldiers who sustain head injuries to prevent long-term damage.

By taking just a small amount of the THC that would be found in single marijuana joint up to seven days before an injury or up to three days after one, critical brain cells can actually be protected against long-term damage.

How About Those Currently Suffering From Long Term TBI Damage?

With the findings of recent studies into the effects of marijuana at preventing long-term brain damage at the point of injury, the question must be asked about how cannabis may be able to treat patients who are already living with the devastating effects of TBI.

Whilst many families of patients claim that they have seen their loved ones make big improvements after using marijuana, these are merely stories without the proof to back it up. Unfortunately to date, there have been no research projects into the effects of marijuana on long term TBI and there are no planned clinical trials either. No clinical trials that are currently underway for non-cannabis based medication have yielded positive results so far and have not shown any great improvements in patient’s existing medical states.

Whilst both anecdotal tales from family members and clinical trials have so far been effective in instilling some confidence in marijuana for helping to treat TBI, it is clear that more will need to be done in order to say for definite just how useful THC, CBD and cannabis can be for sufferers.

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Medical Marijuana

Will California Legalize Marijuana In 2016?


icon  21 Jul, 2016  /  icon  1        Author: Paul

Marijuana is hot topic in California, especially because there’s a vote on legalizing recreational marijuana due in November, 2016. Medical marijuana is already legal and was declared so in Proposition 215 in 1996 and the Senate Bill 420 in 2003. Now patients with chronic illnesses like AIDS, cancer, etc., can grow or purchase marijuana with their doctor’s prescription.

They have an identity card that allows them to legally possess the cannabis so if they’re caught in possession of marijuana, they can simply show their card to prove their legal right to it. Even possession of one ounce of marijuana isn’t a crime, but is considered to be a misdemeanor that’s similar to a traffic violation. It comes with a $100 fine; there is no requirement for a court appearance and the person won’t be saddled with a criminal record.

The regulation around medical marijuana is very loose and critics have said that it’s very easy to obtain marijuana legally for virtually any ailment in California. That’s one of the reasons why both critics and supporters have lobbied for a solid and distinctive law on the use of marijuana, both recreational and medical.

Support for Recreational Use
California has a very strong cannabis culture with many powerful and influential people lobbying to turn marijuana legal. This has been a long time coming for supporters, because several attempts to make cannabis legal for adult use have been thwarted by the smallest margins in the past. Here’s the journey towards legalization in brief:

• November 1972 state election – A bid to decriminalize marijuana was defeated by 66.5% votes.

• July 1975 Senate Bill 95 – Marijuana was decriminalized in California and the punishment was reduced to $100 fine for possession of one ounce or less. Harsher punishments were included for possession of more than one ounce of marijuana.

• November 1996 Ballot Proposition 215 – People with cancer, AIDS, anorexia, arthritis, migraines, spasticity, glaucoma, and other such chronic diseases were allowed to purchase or grow medical marijuana on the basis of a doctor’s prescription. It also offered doctors protection against persecution if they prescribed marijuana to patients.

• September 2010 State Senate Bill – This bill reduced possession of an ounce or less to a misdemeanor.

• November 2010 Proposition 19 – This was a bid to legalize recreational marijuana but was defeated by 53.5%.

As you can see, marijuana has a long, rocky journey in California but the cannabis movement has been gaining strength. There’s a new proposition in play that could finally legalize recreational use of marijuana in California.

Proposition 64
Proposition 64 is better known as Control, Regulate, and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act; it’s a voter’s initiative and it has considerable amount of support. People are enthusiastic that this bill will pass and legalize recreational marijuana because it’s quite comprehensive and covers majority of the concerns people have about marijuana use. Here are some highlights of this proposition:

• The proposition seeks to grant adults of over 21 years of age the right to possess, consume, and grow marijuana and hemp.

• Recreational marijuana will incur 15% sales tax and cultivation tax of $9.25 per ounce on the cultivation of flowers and $2.75 per ounce on the cultivation of leaves.

• These taxes won’t apply to the cultivation and sale of medical marijuana because the aim is to keep medical marijuana safe and affordable for patients.

• No license for large corporations and businesses for the cultivation and sale of marijuana for 5 years in order to avoid unreasonable restraints on competition and unlawful monopoly on power.

There are several provisions on the control and regulation of marijuana, including business locations, rights of employers, and the problem of driving under the influence. This proposal has the strongest likelihood of getting passed, though there are many in place to legalize recreational marijuana that would be voted on in 2016.

Advantages
Experts and researchers agree that this proposition is very beneficial to marijuana users, as well as the state and local governments. There are some details that would need to be ironed out in court, but it’s is the best solution currently available. There are many advantages if the proposal becomes a law and they include:

• Potentially $100 million in reduced costs because state and local governments aren’t compelled to enforce various marijuana-related actions and offences.

• Reduced burden on the local court system, which frees up room to handle other, more relevant cases.

• Potentially $1 billion annual earnings through tax on cultivation and sale of marijuana. Majority of these funds would be spent on education, prevention, and treatment for substance abuse.

Support
Currently, the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuanaproposition has collected over 600,000 signatures and this number continues to grow every day. There are many political and influential heavy-weights that back it and would like to see it succeed and they include:

• Bernie Sanders – 2016 Democratic Presidential Candidate
• Gavin Newsom – Lieutenant Governor of California
• Sean Parker – Former President of Facebook and Founder of Napster
• Marijuana Policy Project of California
• Los Angeles County Democrats
• California State NAACP
• Drug Policy Action
• Californians for Sensible Reform
• New Approach PAC
• National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws
• California Medical Association
• California Democratic Party

There are some concerns and opposition, even from people who grow and consume marijuana. Opposition is divided into two different factions because some people are against the full legalization of marijuana while others oppose certain portions of the bill.

Will California Legalize Marijuana in 2016?
The movement certainly has more traction now than ever before. Many respectable organizations and individuals have worked to spread awareness of the benefits of legalization and these benefits include:

• Better control over marijuana distribution and consumption.
• Destabilizing the illegal marijuana industry.
• Better safety for hikers and explorers who fall prey to traps set in place to protect illegal growing fields in public places.
• Denying access to individual under the legal age limit.

With increased awareness, it’s entirely possible that marijuana will be legalized in 2016 because public opinion is strongly in favor of the legislation.

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