When Will Illinois Issue Medical Marijuana Business Licenses?
Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Tue, January, 13th 2015 by THCFinder
Illinois has had a medical marijuana law on the books for about a year now. Thousands of people have applied to become patients, and numerous entities and individuals have applied for a cultivation and/or distribution license. Illinois does not allow patients to grow marijuana for themselves, so the only way a patient can legally obtain medical marijuana is buy purchasing some at a licensed dispensary who obtained it from a licensed grower. The problem with that process is that there are no business licenses issued yet, and it doesn’t sound like there will be any issued anytime soon, as outgoing Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has refused to issue any and has apparently left that task to his predecessor.
Rather than work on issuing business licenses, Governor Quinn instead passed a bill yesterday making changes to Illinois’ medical marijuana program. Those changes are detailed below, via Illinois Senate President John Cullerton’s site:
A series of updates to Illinois’ medical marijuana program were signed into law Monday. State Senator Bill Haine (D-Alton) sponsored this follow-up law and the 2013 law that created the program.
“A program as big and new as medical marijuana needs to be fine-tuned to ensure that it is safe, effective and free of any kind of abuses. As the program is being implemented, we are learning what adjustments are needed,” Haine said.
The new law allows the state regulators to impose additional penalties, including fines, for violation of the existing law. Originally, agencies could only revoke a violator’s license.
The law also revises criminal background checks for patients, caregivers and anyone involved in cultivation centers and dispensaries: owners, investors and employees. It ensures that applicants’ fingerprints are checked against both state and federal databases.
The updates also included a guarantee that patients charged with driving under the influence of medical cannabis will have their patient card revoked and their license suspended just as if they were charged with a DUI.
The Illinois State Police, Secretary of State, Department of Agriculture, Department of Public Health and the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation developed and supported these updates based on their work implementing the program.
The delay in issuing medical marijuana business licenses drew swift criticism from the original bill’s sponsor Representative Lou Lang. Per Chicago Sun Times:
“The failure is not from the state agencies. State agencies worked their butts off to make this happen. The failure needs to go where the buck stops, at the governor’s office,” Lang said. “I have been a big supporter of Gov. Quinn and this is a failure.”
Lang said he plans to work with the Bruce Rauner administration to move the issue forward.
“This is a real bad blow for patients and very sick people who have waited a long time through a lot of legislation, rule-making, applications, waiting on these licenses to be issues and the product to be grown. For their health care purposes,” he said.
Incoming Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner has criticized the selection process for medical marijuana business licences. Applications for business licenses have been sitting since last September. Incoming Governor Rauner has stated publicly that the selection process is secretive, and has even gone as far as suggesting that licenses are being auctioned off to the highest bidders behind closed doors. So far, Illinois has collected millions of dollars in nonrefundable fees from applicants, which will no doubt lead to lawsuits regardless of who is awarded licenses.
So when will medical marijuana business licenses be issued in Illinois? There’s simply no way to know at this point. I think we will see them issued in 2015, but likely towards the middle or end of the year. Even after licenses are issued, companies will have to construct grow facilities, grow a crop, harvest it, and get it to stores. That process will obviously take several months, meaning that it may be until 2016 before medical marijuana hits shelves. Meanwhile patients are left without any safe, legal way to get medicine. Shame on Illinois Governor Pat Quinn. Patients shouldn’t have to suffer because of his politically motivated cowardice.
UK Cheese - Hybrid
Category: Nugs | Posted on Tue, January, 13th 2015 by THCFinder
Can medical marijuana curb the heroin epidemic?
Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Tue, January, 13th 2015 by THCFinder
In the 1930s, Harry J. Anslinger, the first head of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, embarked on a fierce anti-marijuana campaign. Highlighted by the 1936 anti-marijuana film Reefer Madness – where marijuana is depicted as a dangerous narcotic that makes good kids become sex-crazed killers – his propaganda efforts also maliciously linked marijuana use to African Americans and ethnic minorities.
By 1970, legislation codified cannabis as one of the nation’s most dangerous drugs: the Controlled Substance Act classified marijuana as a Schedule 1 drug, meaning it possessed high potential for abuse and had no acceptable medical use. Over 40 years later, the classification remains.
But research has shown that marijuana, while still criminalized at the federal level, can be effective as a substitute for treating opioid addicts and preventing overdoses. Massachusetts, which recently legalized medical marijuana – and where heroin overdoses have soared – could be a fertile testing ground for this potentially controversial treatment.
The medical case for marijuana
Before being criminalized, marijuana was used in the US to cure depression and a variety of other mental health ailments. Many studies have supported the therapeutic benefits of cannabinoids, along with the ability of marijuana’s psychoactive ingredients to treat nausea, help with weight loss, alleviate chronic pain, and mitigate symptoms of neurological diseases.
Other research, however, contradicts claims regarding the benefits of cannabidiol treatment. Some say marijuana actually poses a risk for psychosis and schizophrenia. Although the FDA has approved some synthetic cannabinoids for medical treatment, federal agencies do not support marijuana as a legitimate medicine until more clinical studies have been conducted.
The scientific debate over the harms and benefits of marijuana has impeded federal lawmakers from moving forward on marijuana legislation reform. As a result, in 23 states, medical marijuana has become legalized by popular vote.
Marijuana policy dilemma
With each state crafting unique medical marijuana regulations, we find ourselves at a crucial turning point in drug policy. Public health professionals claim the road map used by “big tobacco” will be copied with legal marijuana, and addiction rates for marijuana will increase to those we see for tobacco. Others warn that if medical marijuana is used indiscriminately and without focused education on the uses and forms of medical marijuana, a prescription pain pill-like crisis could occur.
Among drug treatment specialists, marijuana remains controversial. Although some research has shown marijuana to be an alternative treatment for more serious drug addiction, addiction treatment specialists still view marijuana as highly addictive and dangerous. These views handicap policy reform, but despite its status as a Schedule 1 drug, recent research shows marijuana could be part of the solution to the most deadly drug epidemic our country has seen in decades.
Read more: http://www.rawstory.com
The race is on to legalize marijuana in Arizona
Category: Legalization | Posted on Mon, January, 12th 2015 by THCFinder
PHOENIX -- Arizona legislators should legalize recreational marijuana before voters do according to State Rep. Mark Cardenas. The lawmaker recently began working on a bill to legalize the personal use of marijuana.
Cardenas said he believes the legislature needs to be proactive when it comes to legalizing pot because it is easier to change a legislative bill than it is a ballot initiative passed by voters.
"In order to change (a voter referendum or initiative) we have to have 75 percent of the legislature agree to that change and so with something that is as controversial as marijuana you are not going to get 75 percent of the legislature to fix it," Cardenas said.
Arizona's Voter Protection Act prevents the legislature or governor from tampering with a ballot initiative or referendum passed by voters.
Being unable to change voter-passed marijuana laws could lead to some unintended consequences like a poorly regulated and taxed system according to Cardenas.
"It is time to be a little bit smarter about marijuana use and a system of taxation and regulation and say ‘you know what, this is going to happen, we are a group of 90 smart people so let's get together and see how we can best implement this system,'" he said.
State legislators have an obligation to listen to the will of the voters according to Cardenas and he believes the majority of Arizonans want marijuana prohibition to end.
"As of right now over 50 percent of the population in Arizona wants it and so this is one of those things that we have to put our egos aside and come to the table and … come up with the best method to make this happen and deploy it in Arizona," he said.
Despite Cardenas push within the legislature to legalize recreational pot in 2015, marijuana advocates are taking matters into their own hands.
Members of the Marijuana Policy Project (MMP) do not believe the state legislature will pass Cardenas' bill so they are currently drafting a voter initiative to legalize marijuana in 2016.
"State officials are elected by voters and if they are not going to get this measure passed in the legislature than the voters can do it directly and that is why there is a voter initiative process," Mason Tvert, Director of Communications for the Marijuana Policy Project, said.
Though MMP would support a legislative bill legalizing marijuana, Tvert said ending marijuana prohibition in Arizona will likely only happen through a voter-passed initiative.
"Voters tend to be a little out front of elected officials when it comes to issues like this and we want to see this change made as soon as possible," he said.
Due to Arizona's Voter Protection Act, a voter initiative legalizing recreational pot use would put power in the public's hands instead of a handful of lawmakers according to Tvert.
Presidential OG - Hybrid
Category: Nugs | Posted on Mon, January, 12th 2015 by THCFinder
Presidential OG is of the Kush variety, primarily indica and has a balanced cerebral and body high. This strain is known to have a sweet aroma and a slight earthy flavor. Works well for anxiety and migraines.
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