Massachusetts: Lawmakers to Restart Talks on Compromise Marijuana Bill
BOSTON (AP) — Lawmakers are restarting negotiations over legislation that would overhaul the state’s voter-approved marijuana law.
A House-Senate conference committee has scheduled a closed-door meeting for Monday afternoon, according to the office of Democratic Sen. Patricia Jehlen (JAY’-len). The Somerville Democrat is the lead Senate negotiator on the six-member panel.
The meeting will be the first since House Speaker Robert DeLeo suspended talks earlier this month, saying he wanted the Legislature to focus on passing an overdue budget for the fiscal year starting July 1.
Lawmakers sent a $40.2 billion spending plan to Republican Gov. Charlie Baker’s desk on Friday.
In Illinois, Marijuana Laws Struggle to Keep Up With Times
Oregon Is Not Decriminalizing All Drugs, But It Should
Although a number of reports have surfaced this week suggesting that Oregon is about to “decriminalize” the possession of drugs such as meth, cocaine and heroin, it appears the overall message behind these journalistic offerings has been misconstrued.
What is true is that the Oregon legislature recently passed a bill that aims to reduce the penalties associated with the small time possession of illegal substances. However, nothing in the language of the proposal (House Bill 2355) would give law enforcement the freedom to simply handle drug possession cases with in a manner consistent with decriminalization.
In fact, under the bill, not much would change for people caught holding drugs—they would still be arrested and entered into the criminal justice system the same as they always have been. The only benefit is that once their case goes before a judge, they could be given a less severe punishment than in times past.
State Sets Tentative Timeline for Medical Pot System
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — State health officials have set a tentative timeline for establishing a medical marijuana industry in North Dakota.
The Health Department is asking those interested in being a manufacturer or a distributor to notify the agency by July 28. That will give officials a better idea about interest.
The department tentatively plans to accept actual applications in August and September. The agency would review them in October and make selections in early November.
Officials estimate it will take manufacturers about six months to set up facilities and grow the first crop of medical marijuana. If the timeline plays out, the drug would be available to patients next spring.
Government Pot Is Still Horrible—And You Can Blame This DEA Trick
Last August, the DEA managed a remarkable two-fer: in one fell swoop, the nation’s loyal federal drug police quashed while delivering new hope.
Judging by what’s happened since, the nation’s loyal drug police may also have played us all for fools, all while maintaining the mendacious game of circular logic that’s keeping marijuana federally illegal.
On August 12, 2016, the DEA formally rejected a petition that would have seen marijuana reclassified from Schedule Iof the Controlled Substances Act, the official government list of the world’s most dangerous drugs. The reason, acting DEA chief Chuck Rosenberg said at the time, was a lack of scientific evidence demonstrating marijuana had any medical value.
Placing cannabis in Schedule II, as the petition requested, would not have legalized marijuana, but it would have allowed doctors to prescribe the drug. It would also have made marijuana easier for scientists to study—and, presumably, discover the very evidence which, despite almost 50 years of federal prohibition and a DEA monopoly on research-grade cannabis, other researchers have managed to find.
Nevada Officials to Consider Pot Distribution Emergency Rule
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval on Thursday authorized state regulators to consider an emergency regulation that would allow officials to determine whether the state has enough marijuana distributors to keep its retail shops supplied.
Sandoval’s approval came after dispensaries across the state reported higher than expected demand for marijuana since recreational sales of the drug became legal in Nevada on Saturday. The Nevada Tax Commission is expected to take up the regulations Thursday.
The measure voters approved in November legalizing the sales dictates that licensed alcohol wholesalers have the exclusive rights to pot distribution licenses for 18 months. But no alcohol wholesalers have completed the licensing process.
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