A Pot of Money: Oregon Collects $25.5M in Marijuana Taxes
SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon has processed $25.5 million in tax payments from recreational marijuana from January through the end of July.
The state’s Department of Revenue says medical marijuana dispensaries were required to file their second-quarter returns for recreational marijuana by Aug. 1.
Oregonians legalized recreational marijuana in late 2014.
But it can only be sold by medical marijuana dispensaries until the Oregon Liquor Control Commission finalizes rules for the new industry. That’s expected to happen by next year.
Justice Department: People Cannot Be Held in Jail Because They Cannot Afford Bail
It is not unusual for a minor drug offender to be held behind bars simply because he or she does not have the financial resources to afford bail. However, last week, the Justice Department denounced this action in court, saying that it is unconstitutional to keep defendants locked up in jail because they cannot raise the money required for their release.
“Bail practices that incarcerate indigent individuals before trial solely because of their inability to pay for their release violate the Fourteenth Amendment,” the Justice Department wrote in a first-of-its-kind amicus brief filed in federal court on Friday.
The decision comes in light of a case involving a 54-year-old Georgia man by the name of Maurice Walker, who was busted by the Calhoun Police Department in 2015 for being a “pedestrian under the influence.” The filing indicates that Walker, who has a “serious mental health disability and limited income with no assets,” was told that he would have to remain in jail until his court date unless he could pay the fixed bail amount of $160—the amount set for the offense of being a pedestrian under the influence.
‘Voluntary’ Drug Testing Comes to New Jersey School District
From New Jersey comes the unwelcome news that the Lacey Township Board of Education has voted to approve a program of “voluntary” random drug-testing for middle school students.
“I’m a supporter for any intervention to give another reason for kids to say ‘no’ and that can start at any age, especially with our young teens,” district superintendent Craig Wigley told NJ Advance Media after the Aug. 15 vote. Seventh and eighth graders who participate in athletic programs or extracurricular programs will be given the “option” to participate in the testing program, with parental consent.
Don Koshmider’s Court Victory Against Prosecutor Mike Rola Indicative of Other Cases in Michigan
The DEA has just been ‘toying with us’ on legalizing marijuana
Last week, the DEA decided not to reschedule the classification of marijuana as a legal drug. According to federal drug codes, cannabis is still as deadly and addictive as heroin, with no known medical value. I was surprised to see how many articles were written about this decision without mentioning the obvious: This was going to happen. The DEA was just toying with us.
There were petitions that received enough signatures and then some senators wrote the DEA a letter, so the DEA had to give the matter "serious consideration." But as long as the DEA is in charge of both writing the law and enforcing it, they're going to keep things status quo, no matter what American taxpayers actually want.
Santa Fe Cops Still Busting Marijuana Users Despite Decriminalization
It has been two years since the city of Santa Fe moved to eliminate the criminal penalties associated with the possession of marijuana by passing an ordinance that forces law enforcement to issue tickets to those people caught holding a little weed. However, recent reports indicate that in spite of the policy change, local cops are still arresting people for this petty infraction and jamming them up in the criminal justice system.
It seems that although the city’s governmental forces have all agreed that busting tokers is a waste of time and valuable resources, the Santa Fe Police Department has been running a clever little racket in which officers are leaning on state law when it comes to how they handles incidents involving petty marijuana offenses.
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