New Report Predicts Which States Are Most and Least Likely to Legalize Pot By 2017

Category: Legalization | Posted on Thu, November, 19th 2015 by THCFinder

As the 2016 election looms in the distance, with a number of states working to put initiatives aimed at legalizing marijuana on their respective ballots, everyone from the studied cannabis activist to the average stoner has come crawling out of the woodwork in an attempt to pinpoint which state will embrace the herb next. 

Some publications, including Rolling Stone, have already made some seemingly safe predictions for which states they believe are next in line to legalize weed. Yet, other rags and click-bait sites appear to be making their selections by simply throwing darts at a map of Northern America. After all, the highly cited 24/7 Wall St. actually had the nerve to put Minnesota on their list of “The Next 11 States to Legalize Marijuana” this past summer. 

But a team of market analysts at the Anderson Economic Group recently published a relatively spot-on tip sheet for those who wish to wager on which states are most likely to legalize the leaf by 2017 and which are on course to go down with the prohibitionary ship.

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Pittsburgh City Council To Introduce Marijuana Decriminalization Ordinance

Category: Legalization | Posted on Tue, November, 17th 2015 by THCFinder

pittsburgh marijuanaI received the following press release from Pittsburgh NORML:

On November 17, 2015, Public Safety Chair Councilman Daniel Lavelle will introduce an ordinance that will permit City of Pittsburgh Police to cite individuals found in possession of a “small amount” of marijuana under a local ordinance as opposed to charging them with misdemeanor level criminal offense. The Ordinance will create a civil fine of up to $100.00 for open possession of under 30 grams of marijuana or 8 grams of hashish. Officers are authorized to seize the suspected contraband and issue a civil fine similar to a parking ticket to individuals who are not engaged in any other criminal conduct.

Approximately 1000 individuals are charged with a misdemeanor level marijuana possessory offense in Pittsburgh annually. Almost all have the criminal charge reduced to a non-traffic summary citation at the first stage of criminal proceedings. Individuals charged with misdemeanor possession must be fingerprinted and risk loss of employment and housing, especially public housing. Despite similar usage between caucasians and African Americans, African American Pittsburghers are charged with minor marijuana possession offenses at a rate of 5 – 1 compared to their white counterparts.

Nationally, Pittsburgh joins a growing trend of local municipalities enacting similar laws to protect its citizens. In 2012 the City of Chicago moved to decriminalize small amounts allowing police to issue tickets instead of making an arrest. In 2014 Washington D.C. passed a similar ordinance providing for a $25.00 fine for possession of a small amount. Philadelphia’s decriminalization ordinance has resulted in an 80% reduction in custodial arrests for small amounts of marijuana.

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Prime Minister Of Canada Justin Trudeau Mandates That Marijuana Be Legalized

Category: Legalization | Posted on Mon, November, 16th 2015 by THCFinder
Justin Trudeau canada liberal party marijuana cannabis

(image via wikipedia)

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made international headlines when he campaigned on a pro-marijuana platform. He continued to make headlines when he won running on the platform, and all eyes in the marijuana world have been on Canada ever since. I have heard the question, ‘when will marijuana be legalized in Canada?’ asked a lot lately. Justin Trudeau recently issued aletter giving mandates to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada. Among many mandates was the following in regards to marijuana:

Working with the Ministers of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness and Health, create a federal-provincial-territorial process that will lead to the legalization and regulation of marijuana.

I have to pinch myself every time I read it. I can’t even imagine how excited Canadian cannabis supporters are right now. Here you have a sitting Prime Minister mandating marijuana legalization as one of his first acts after taking over the job. I wish that more leaders were so sensible!

To the South, I know that many marijuana reform supporters are hoping that Bernie Sanders will follow in the same footsteps. I would say that Justin Trudeau’s mandate is actually even more progressive than Bernie Sanders’ stance, in that it mandates regulation in addition to ending prohibition. Bernie Sanders’ plan would just end federal prohibition, leaving it up to the states to decide their own marijuana policies, which is still a fantastic political position.



Colombia to Legalize Commercial Sale of Medical Marijuana

Category: Legalization | Posted on Fri, November, 13th 2015 by THCFinder

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Colombia's justice minister says the country plans to legalize the cultivation and sale of marijuana for medicinal purposes.

Yesid Reyes made the announcement Thursday in an interview with Caracol Radio. Reyes says the new regulations will apply only to medical and scientific uses of the drug.

The news was a surprise in a country long identified with U.S.-backed policies aimed at fighting the production of illicit drugs. The new policy would include Colombia in a wave of changing attitudes toward marijuana that has sparked recent legalization efforts from Mexico to Chile.

Colombian courts had already decriminalized the possession of small amounts of marijuana for personal use. The new rules will allow for commercial production.

Health Minister Alejandro Gaviria told Blu Radio that the country someday could export marijuana products.



North Carolina Legalizes Industrial Hemp

Category: Legalization | Posted on Wed, November, 11th 2015 by THCFinder

Industrial hemp became legal in North Carolina on Oct. 31 as Gov. Pat McCrory failed to either sign or veto Senate Bill 313 after allowing it to sit on his desk for nearly a month. The bill mandates creation of a state Industrial Hemp Commission to oversee research in industrial hemp under terms of the new federal Farm Bill. The ultimate aim is to "provide opportunities to small farmers for an environmentally sustainable and profitable use of crop lands that might otherwise be lost to agricultural production," according to the text of the new law. A hemp cultivation pilot program is to be established by North Carolina State University

McCrory issued a statement announcing his intention to allow the Industrial Hemp Bill to become law without his signature, saying: "Despite the bill’s good intentions, there are legitimate concerns I would like to address... Although there is a clear intent to ensure this program supports agriculture and research goals, a strong regulatory framework to safeguard against abuse is critical to its success and the safety of North Carolinians."

Senate Bill 313 originally pertained to license plates and registers of deeds until a subsequent addition by sponsor Rep. Jeff Collins (R-Nash County). The measure won broad support from the state's farmers, and the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Nation has announced it will soon begin a feasibility study to look at the possible legalization of cannabis on the reservation for industrial hemp uses, medicine and recreational uses. 



Massachusetts Marijuana Legalization Campaign Collects 100K Signatures

Category: Legalization | Posted on Tue, November, 10th 2015 by THCFinder

massachusetts marijuana campaign 2016The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol announced Monday it has collected more than 100,000 signatures in support of a ballot initiative to end marijuana prohibition in Massachusetts. The signatures must be reviewed and certified by town and city clerks before being submitted to the secretary of the commonwealth by December 2.

64,750 valid signatures of registered state voters are required to qualify for the November 2016 ballot. After the secretary of the commonwealth’s office tallies and confirms the signatures, the petition will be transmitted to the Massachusetts Legislature. If the legislature does not adopt the measure, initiative backers must collect 10,792 additional signatures in June 2016 to place the initiative on the November 2016 ballot.

“Massachusetts voters want the opportunity to end the failed policy of marijuana prohibition in 2016,” said campaign manager Will Luzier. “This initiative will replace the underground marijuana market with a tightly regulated system of licensed businesses that pay taxes and create good jobs.

“It should not be a crime for adults to engage in the responsible consumption of a substance that is objectively less harmful than alcohol,” Luzier said. “Police have far more pressing things to worry about than issuing citations to every adult they find in possession of a small amount of marijuana.”

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