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Nebraska And Oklahoma Create Problems For Marijuana Reform

Category: News | Posted on Mon, January, 12th 2015 by THCFinder
issues-for-mj-reformNo one can deny that 2014 was a good year for marijuana reform. There were the two leading legal states, Colorado and Washington, that blazed a trail for Alaska, Washington DC, and Oregon to legalize as well. But now, there seems to be waves coming from the Colorado area, as Nebraska and Oklahoma feel compelled to create an issue with their neighboring state.
 
 
The two states have approached the US Supreme Court, asking the government to force the state to comply with federal law, rather than the law of the voters in Colorado. Allegedly, the weed from Colorado is creating problems in Nebraska and Oklahoma, with people buying the plant in bulk and then carrying it across state lines to resell it in the illegal states. Since the US Constitution allows states to go directly to the Supreme Court to settle these arguments, there may be a roadblock for marijuana legalization in the near future. 
 
 
If the ruling of the Supreme Court says that Colorado must shut down their legal marijuana industry because of the “damage” that’s being done in Nebraska and Oklahoma, it may potentially shut down the legalization movement as we know it. Even though the legal marijuana business in Colorado hasn’t seemed to put forth any severe negative consequences, the neighboring states are pushing forward with their idea to sue the entire state. Even though the rocky mountain state is basking in the tax revenue of their choice to legalize, there are constantly going to be obstacles with the illegal states surrounding.
 
 
As long as federal and state laws butt heads, there will continue to be problems like this. If the US Supreme Court decides to side with Nebraska and Oklahoma, then the will of the voters will be overturned and there will be severe backlash on the government for making such a decision. With so many grey areas at the moment, it’s difficult to see where the marijuana movement will go from here. 

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Anti-DC Marijuana Legalization Advocates Violated Campaign Finance Laws

Category: News | Posted on Fri, January, 9th 2015 by THCFinder
anti-dc-marijuana-violationsMarijuana opponents are a crafty, shifty bunch. They will do just about whatever it takes to keep marijuana prohibition in place, even if that means sometimes bending or even breaking the rules. That appears to be the case in Washington D.C., where it is being alleged that marijuana opponents violated campaign finance laws. In August leading up to Election Day, a group called ‘TIE D.C.’, formally launched a campaign to oppose the marijuana legalization initiative in D.C. (Initiative 71). However, the campaign didn’t play by the rules according to officials. Per the DCist:
 
According to documents from the Office of Campaign Finance obtained by DCist, TIE. D.C. was in violation of several campaign finance laws, including failure to officially register as a political committee, failure to file a financial report, and failure to include proper language on its campaign literature.
 
In response to the allegations against TIE D.C., head William Jones testified in a recent hearing with the OCF that “TIE D.C. was nothing more than a blog that he started to inform the public about the proposed initiative by voting against it.” Jones also stated that he was the chairperson for the “No On 71″ initiative, which he argued was the political committee he started to officially campaign against marijuana legalization.
 
But on September 17, 2014, TIE D.C. officially launched what was perceived to be a bona fide campaign. They even held a press conference outside of the Bible Way Church to announce their campaign. “T.I.E. D.C. is committed to protecting these communities and the rest of the city from the consequences of legalizing a third recreational drug,” Jones said at the presser in September.
 
According to the OCF’s allegations, TIE D.C. “may have begun as a blog, but it eventually became a full scale political movement, which was required to register with the OCF,” but it never did. Moreover, the OCF says that TIE D.C. never filed a receipt and expenditure report, which any organization or committee raising funds for campaigning are supposed to do.
 
The Office of Campaign Finance has recommended a $2,000 fine for the violations, which is a slap on the wrist in the world of politics. It will likely not dissuade others from trying the same tactic. However, it’s still significant to get the violation on record because it discredits the marijuana opponents, and can be something that can be pointed to in future elections where marijuana opponents will no doubt be active.
 

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Marijuana Use In Colorado Increases

Category: News | Posted on Thu, January, 1st 2015 by THCFinder
mj-use-in-co-increasesRecently, the Denver Post reported on a study done by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that 1 out of 8 Colorado residents older than twelve had used marijuana in the last month. The only state that reported a higher ratio was the tiny state of Rhode Island, located on the east coast. Done over two year periods, the study found that for the 2011-2012 period, 10.4% of Colorado residents 12 and older said they had used pot in the month prior to being surveyed. In 2012-2013, that number jumped to 12.7%, meaning that about 530,000 people in Colorado use marijuana at least once a month.
 
 
Since the survey is one of the first that has recorded the pot use in Colorado since later in 2012, it’s definitely something that people are paying attention to. But the survey didn’t analyze data from 2014, which is when the recreational shops began to open in the state. This means that the survey isn’t the best indication of the effects of legal marijuana in Colorado. “I don’t think this tells us about the long term impacts of legalization,” said University of California professor Mark Kleiman. Additionally, the number of medical marijuana patients in Colorado rose over the same time period so the results of the survey aren’t surprising. 
 
 
Even though the survey says that people have been using marijuana more since the laws in Colorado loosened, there are other surveys that point to the teen use of marijuana declining. It would seem that more adults are just using the plant, rather than everyone going crazy and getting stoned. Besides a few scattered reports of negative events, it would seem that Colorado isn’t suffering from the legalization in their state. Rather, they are benefiting from the immense profits that the taxes have been bringing in, along with the increased revenue from other businesses due to marijuana tourism. 

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Colorado Initiative Would Allow Marijuana Users To Carry A Concealed Gun

Category: News | Posted on Tue, December, 30th 2014 by THCFinder
colorado-carry-concealedWhen it comes to gun rights and marijuana, the two haven’t mixed from a public policy perspective. I remember when the issue first came up in Oregon, which was the first case I ever read about nationwide. Medical marijuana patients in Jackson County and Washington County in Oregon were denied concealed carry permits by the County Sheriffs. There were legal challenges, and the cases went back and forth. Ultimately the court cases were moot because the federal government came out with guidelines forbidding permits for people who consume marijuana. The guidelines have led to outcry from gun owners across the nation who happen to be marijuana consumers (usually medical marijuana consumers).
 
One state where there have been issues is Colorado. Activists are hoping to change that with an initiative. Per The Cannabist:
 
The “Colorado Campaign for Equal Gun Rights” is working to put a question on the November 2016 ballot to have Colorado ignore guidelines from the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives about firearms and pot.
 
The measure would change state law to prevent sheriffs from denying concealed carry permits because of marijuana use. It’s a new frontier in the marijuana wars, and one that has divided gun-rights activists.
 
“It’s just ridiculous,” said Edgar Antillon, one of the campaign organizers, who argues that firearms aren’t kept from alcohol drinkers. “Somebody can get extremely drunk — Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and all week if they want — and they can still get a concealed carry permit.”
 
It would be interesting to see if a federal challenge to the initiative, assuming it succeeded, would overturn it. After all, it’s mainly federal policy that has prevented concealed carry permits to be issued to marijuana consumers. This is absolutely a situation worth monitoring.
 

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Dabs Are Becoming More And More Popular In Maine

Category: News | Posted on Mon, December, 29th 2014 by THCFinder
dabs-in-maineIf you don’t know what dabs are, you really need to do some research, because you are missing out. Dabs are growing in popularity across America, and Maine is no exception. A big reason for an increase in popularity for dabs is the rise of vape pens. I used to only consume dabs on a weekly basis because getting out the torch and rig and buying more butane for the torch was an inconvenience. If I wanted to get really high I would break out the gear, but for the most part it just didn’t sound as appealing as taking a quick waterfall or bong hit.
 
That all changed when I got my vape pen. Now I can hit concentrates almost anywhere and anytime in a quick, efficient, discreet way. When you combine the fact that vape pens are sweeping the nation with a change in Maine’s law, it has created the perfect storm for a dab invasion. Per Sun Journal:
 
An amendment to the Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Act that allows the use and sale of concentrated marijuana went into effect in August.
 
Maine voters first approved medical marijuana in 1999, which allowed patients to grow their own supply or select a caregiver to grow it for them. In 2009, the law was expanded to include more permitted medical conditions and to allow patients to buy from eight nonprofit, government-sanctioned clinics and marijuana cultivation centers.
 
Maine’s medical marijuana law was amended again in 2011, eliminating the need for patients to register with the state, and again in 2013, adding post-traumatic stress disorder, inflammatory bowel disease and other illnesses to the list of conditions for which a physician may prescribe medical marijuana.
 

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California Court: Concentrated Marijuana Qualifies As Medical Marijuana

Category: News | Posted on Tue, December, 23rd 2014 by THCFinder
concentrates-mmjTo most people, marijuana is marijuana, regardless if it’s flower, edibles, or concentrates. After all, it all contains marijuana, just in a different form and/or infused into other products such as brownies. However, public policy does not always reflect that fact. In a lot of states concentrates are treated differently than flower, carrying a separate penalty and/or fine than flower. There was a court case in California that was decided this week that determined the obvious – concentrated marijuana is in fact medical marijuana. Per SacBee:
 
A state appellate court in Sacramento has ruled that “concentrated cannabis” qualifies as marijuana for purposes of medical use.
 
A unanimous three-justice panel of the 3rd District Court of Appeal disagreed this week with an earlier ruling by El Dorado Superior Court Judge James R. Wagoner and reversed the judge’s decision that a medical marijuana patient violated probation by possessing concentrated cannabis.
 
While this decision seems very logical and inconsequential at first glance, it’s very significant. Concentrated marijuana is becoming more and more popular everyday in California. More and more people are no doubt being caught with it, and if law enforcement considers it to not to be protected under California’s medical marijuana law, it could result in a bad situation for the patient. Fortunately that’s not the case, as this court case will hopefully be followed by all California law enforcement.
 

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