Medical Marijuana

Recreational Marijuana Prices Plunge In Washington State

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Thu, April, 23rd 2015 by THCFinder

marijuana washington state felony drug possessionWhen legal marijuana went on sale in Washington last summer, the prices were astronomically high. There was not enough supply to go around, there was a lot of hype in the air because marijuana was going to be sold legally for recreational purposes for the first time on the West Coast, and marijuana stores took advantage of the situation. People were paying $100+ for an eighth of marijuana. My how things have changed since then.

The average price for recreational marijuana in Washington has fallen to $12 per gram. With reports that there is a surplus of over 46,000 pounds of recreational marijuana in Washington State right now, I’d expect that number to stay the same, or drop even further. Per The Joint Blog:

The price of legal recreational cannabis has dropped significantly in recent months in Washington, according to new data released by the state’s Liquor Control Board.

According to the Board, the average price of recreational cannabis throughout the state is $12 a gram. When sales began in July, average prices were near $30 a gram.

The prices in Washington State are still too high. Even with prices falling over 50%, the prices are still more than twice as high as they are on the black market. The black market will never be eliminated at that rate. With that being said, a lot of stores in Washington are barely scrapping by because they have lowered their prices as much as they can, but due to Washington State taxes and federal 280e provisions, there’s not much left for store owners after all is said and done. Washington needs to revamp the marijuana tax structure, and the feds need to reform 280e provisions, if the marijuana industry is ever going to reach its full potential in Washington.



Cook County state's attorney to announce loosening of marijuana penalties

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Mon, April, 20th 2015 by THCFinder

Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez will hold a news conference Monday to announce reforms to low-level drug offenses, including dismissal of all future misdemeanor marijuana cases, a spokeswoman said Sunday.
"If someone is caught with a misdemeanor amount of marijuana, the state's attorney's office will no longer prosecute that case," Alvarez spokeswoman Sally Daly said. This program will be for people with less than three arrests or citations, she said.
The announcement, scheduled for 10:15 a.m. at the state's attorney's office, is part of the sweeping overhaul that will also address how the office prosecutes small amounts of recreational drugs including Ecstasy, cocaine and heroin.
Alvarez is expected to detail the creation of an alternative prosecution program aimed at diverting nonviolent, repeat drug offenders out of the criminal justice system, her office said in a news release Sunday afternoon. The program, designed for those charged with Class 4 felony possession — currently punishable by up to a $25,000 fine or one to three years in prison, or both — will attempt to address chronic drug use and addiction as a public health issue. Repeat offenders are expected to be linked with social service agencies for treatment rather than face criminal penalties.
The proposed changes will not affect pending cases, Daly said.
Last year, Class 4 felony drug possession cases made up about a quarter of all felony cases in Cook County. Prosecutors also saw more than 15,000 misdemeanor cases for small amounts of marijuana, according to Alvarez's office.


Marijuana Extract May Help Reduce Epilepsy Seizures

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Tue, April, 14th 2015 by THCFinder

A medicine made from marijuana may provide some relief to people with severe epilepsy who don't get better after trying other treatments, according to a new study.


In the study, researchers examined 137 people, ranging in age from toddlers to adults, who all had severe epilepsy, a condition that causes seizures. The participants took an extract made from cannabis plants daily for 12 weeks, and during that time, the number of seizures they experienced fell by an average of 54 percent.


The researchers noted that the participants knew they were receiving the extract, and that the study did not include a comparison group of people with severe epilepsy who were not given the marijuana drug or who were given a placebo instead.


"While the findings are promising, more research is needed, such as randomized-controlled trials to help eliminate the possibility of a placebo effect," said study author Dr. Orrin Devinsky, director of New York University Langone Comprehensive Epilepsy Center.


The main ingredient in the drug the participants took was cannabidiol, a marijuana compound that does not have psychoactive properties. (The "high" feeling that marijuana produces comes from another compound in the plant, called THC.)


The people in the study had previously tried other treatments for their epilepsy, such as anti-epileptic drugs, diet changes, surgery and neurostimulation therapies, Devinsky said. In fact, "about one-third of patients with epilepsy do not respond to medications," he told Live Science. [11 Odd Facts About Marijuana]


There were 213 participants at the beginning of the study, but some dropped out of the study before reaching the 12-week mark, including 6 percent (12 people) who stopped taking the marijuana extract because of the drug's side effects. Overall, more than 10 percent of people in the study experienced side effects. Sleepiness occurred in 21 percent of the people, 17 percent experienced diarrhea and fatigue and 16 percent said their appetites decreased.


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Feds Want to Grow More Pot In 2015

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Fri, April, 10th 2015 by THCFinder

For the second year in a row, federal officials are seeking permission to grow more weed. Yes, you read that correctly. On Wednesday, the administrator of the US Drug Enforcement Administration, Michele Leonhart, posted a proposal in the US Federal Register that seeks to allow the agency to increase its marijuana production quota for the year 2015 three-fold. Interested parties have 30-days to file public comments before federal officials can act on the DEA’s request.

Specifically, the DEA wants to permit the only federally licensed pot farm, which is located at the University of Mississippi -- and was recently retained as Uncle Sam's marijuana grow op -- to grow a whole lot more weed before year’s end.

For decades, U-Miss has cultivated set quantities of cannabis for use in federally approved clinical trials (regulators at the DEA, the FDA, Public Health Service and the National Institute on Drug Abuse must approve any clinical protocol seeking to study the plant’s effects in human subjects). But for most of this time there has been little demand for federally grown herb, largely because government officials had strongly discouraged any research into the discovery of the plant’s potential benefits.

However, according to the DEA’s latest public notice, the Feds are having a sudden change of heart. The agency says that the increased production is necessary because “research and product development involving cannabidiol is increasing beyond that previously anticipated for 2015.” In 2014, eleven states enacted laws pertaining to the use or study of CBD and several more are poised to enact similar measures this year.

The agency further acknowledges having received increased requests from NIDA “to provide for ongoing and anticipated research efforts involving marijuana.” These would include a series of Colorado state funded studies assessing the use of cannabis in patients with post-traumatic stress, inflammatory bowel disorders, cancer and chronic pain.

In 2014, the DEA similarly requested permission to increase its marijuana production quota. The Feds current menu of available pot strains and prices is now online here.



Marijuana Harvested for Medical Use in Chile

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Thu, April, 9th 2015 by THCFinder

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) -- A Chilean municipality harvested legal medical marijuana Tuesday as part of a government-approved pilot project aimed at helping ease pain in cancer patients.

The harvest comes after Chile's first planting of pot for medical uses in October 2014. It is the work of a municipality in the capital of Santiago and the Daya Foundation, a nonprofit group that sponsors pain-relieving therapies.

"We're laying the foundations for what will be the national production of medical cannabis," Daya's president, Ana Maria Gazmuri, said after cutting branches from cannabis plants.

Oil extracted from about half of some 850 plants imported from the Netherlands will be given to 200 patients in the coming months.

Planting, selling and transporting marijuana is usually illegal in Chile and carries prison terms of up to 15 years. But the law allows medical use of marijuana with the authorization of several ministries.

The Chilean experiment adds to an international trend of easing restrictions on marijuana for medical or personal use. More than 20 U.S. states allow some form of medical marijuana and Colorado and Washington have legalized personal use. In the Americas, Uruguay became the first nation to create a legal marijuana market in 2013.

"It's a huge achievement," said Cecilia Heyder, who suffers from systemic lupus and was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011. "I just wish all of Chile's municipalities could achieve this as well."

Chilean lawmakers in a health commission approved a plan to legalize the planting of marijuana. The measure would allow planting of up to six plants for recreation use, but it still needs to be approved by both houses of Congress.



New York Issues Final Rules for Doomed Medical Marijuana Program

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Sat, April, 4th 2015 by THCFinder

Ever since New York Governor Andrew Cuomo put his signature on the Compassionate Care Act last year supporters have been waiting for their biggest fears to come true – the launch of a highly restrictive program that leaves countless patients unable to gain access to effective medicine. Now,the wait is over

On Wednesday, the New York State Department of Health issued its definitive rules for the state’s medical marijuana program and it appears that none of the concerns expressed over the past several months were even taken into consideration. Earlier this week, The New York Times pointed out the ultra-restrictive nature of the rules outlined in the agency’s meticulous 100-page draft, but concluded that some amendments were likely to occur before they published the final version.

Unfortunately, after receiving hundreds of concerned comments from patients, physicians and lawmakers, no significant changes were made; only corrections to formatting issues, but nothing for the betterment of the program. It remains simply a blueprint to one of the most cut-rate medical marijuana programs in the United States.

“No changes to the proposed regulation were made as a result of these comments,” is the most common line in the health department’s assessment of public comment. Among the concerns includes the fact that the program only allows 10 qualified conditions, as well as a limited number of dispensaries to service the needs of the entire state – posing difficulties for patients with transportation issues. There are also stipulations that will limit the types of edibles and oils that can be cultivated and sold as well as a laundry list of other senseless provisions that will force New Yorkers, young and old, to continue enduring debilitating ailments without the proper treatment.

Although there was hope the health commissioner would pull it together in the end, which the law authorized him to do, most supporters are not surprised by the agency’s decision to maintain the program’s restrictiveness out of what they suggest was needed to “strike the required balance.”

Last year, there was extensive demand on the part of the Cuomo Administration to amend the language of the Compassionate Care Act to purposely set New York’s medical marijuana program up for failure. In the weeks following its passage, key legislative forces, who supported the program, went on record to say that Governor Cuomo never backed medical marijuana and was never compassionate for the hardships of the potentially hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers in desperate need of the program.

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