Congressional Research Service says states can legalize cannabis
Category: News | Posted on Thu, April, 18th 2013 by THCFinder
The Congressional Research Service (CRS) is part of the Library of Congress, and it provides "policy and legal analysis to committees and Members of both the House and Senate, regardless of party affiliation." This month the CRS issued a report that says Colorado and Washington (where cannabis is legal, according to state laws) can't be coerced to enforcing federal cannabis laws.
"While the federal government can ban what it wants," reports Reason, "the Tenth Amendment allows the states to opt out of participating in the law or assisting in enforcement in any way, leaving federal officials to do the heavy lifting themselves." From the report, State Legalization of Recreational Marijuana: Selected Legal Issues:
Although the federal government may use its power of the purse to encourage states to adopt certain criminal laws, the federal government is limited in its ability to directly influence state policy by the Tenth Amendment, which prevents the federal government from directing states to enact specific legislation, or requiring state officials to enforce federal law. As such, the fact that the federal government has criminalized conduct does not mean that the state, in turn, must also criminalize or prosecute that same conduct.
U.S. Supreme Court Rules Warrant Needed To Take Blood In Marijuana DUI Cases
Category: News | Posted on Thu, April, 18th 2013 by THCFinder
In a case that will have a deep and long-lasting impact on marijuana DUIs throughout the nation, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that a cop can not legally take an individuals blood in order to determine a DUI, without first obtaining a warrant. This is extremely relevant to marijuana consumers, especially as states like Washington (implemented through Initiative 502) now have a DUID clause that finds someone instantly guilty if they have a certain amount of THC in their blood – the U.S. government is working to implement this type of policy throughout the country.
Despite the Obama Administration and the State of Missouri lobbying otherwise, the court ruled 8-1 in favor of requiring a warrant. Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote the court’s majority opinion, stating that the natural dissipation of alcohol in the blood isn’t sufficient reason to remove the legal requirement of obtaining a warrant before taking the blood. Justice Clarence Thomas was the only judge that ruled in favor of warrantless blood testing.
Read more: http://www.theweedblog.com
Scratch and sniff detectives wanted to hunt down cannabis farms
The game is afoot! UK charity Crimestoppers is enlisting the help of the Great British public to sniff out cannabis farms. To aid the public in their undercover work they’ve been handing out scratch and sniff panels.
These give people an idea of what living, growing cannabis smells like – Crimestoppers describes it as a sickly, sweet smell as opposed to the more acrid aroma when it’s smoked (we at Chemistry World are relying on testimony from local a Cambridge councillor here!).
Tests indicate that fresh cannabis has an aroma like freshly cut vegetation and grass with a slightly sickly sweet undertone!
Crimestoppers is warning that cannabis cultivation is a growing trend in the UK with the number of farms uncovered in 2012 up 15% on the previous year. The charity is working with the police to try to tackle the increase in residential farms, where people often grow the plants hydroponically in attics using heat lamps and high intensity lighting. The police has said that cannabis cultivation is fuelling organised crime, while the UK’s energy regulator says that the cost of electricity stolen by these farms may be costing the economy as much as £400 million each year.
Read more: http://prospect.rsc.org
Backers of legalizing recreational marijuana use in Alaska want 2014 vote
Alaska voters may get the chance next year to make their state the third in the country to approve the recreational use of marijuana by adults 21 and older.
Backers of the move on Tuesday took the first step toward getting the measure on the August 2014 primary ballot. Three prime sponsors of the effort filed their application for an initiative petition along with signatures from what they say are at least 100 other supporters with the state lieutenant governor's office.
The group is led by Tim Hinterberger, an associate professor at the University of Alaska Anchorage. The other two prime sponsors are Bill Parker and Mary Reff, according to Gail Fenumiai, state elections director.
The measure would tax and regulate marijuana sales and allow Alaskans to cultivate marijuana for personal use. Among other things, it would allow the Legislature to create a Marijuana Control Board, though until then, the Alcohol Beverage Control Board would regulate marijuana sales. Alaskans age 21 and older could legally possess up to one ounce of marijuana under the proposal, or six marijuana plants, three of which could be mature.
Read more: http://www.adn.com
Poll: D.C. wants marijuana decriminalized
Three-quarters of D.C. voters support decriminalizing marijuana and nearly two-thirds support fully legalizing the drug, according to poll released Wednesday by legalization advocates.
The Public Policy Polling survey found 63 percent of District residents would back legalizing marijuana by giving it the same legal treatment of alcohol, similar to what passed in Colorado and Washington state last November. Only 30 percent would oppose such a proposal. Support for decriminalizing the drug and making possession punishable by only a fine of up to $100 was higher, at 75 percent.
Majorities also supported allowing D.C. residents to own up to three marijuana plants for personal use without the threat of jail time and a maximum fine of $300 and changing the city’s existing medical marijuana laws to allow doctors to be prescribe the drug for any affliction. The law currently limits the prescriptions to cancer, AIDS, glaucoma and multiple sclerosis patients.
Mason Tvert, the communications director for the Marijuana Policy Project, told POLITICO the group and others were considering putting legalization or decriminalization on the ballot in 2014.
“It’s clear that voters in the District are looking for a new approach to the marijuana policy and we are committed to bringing that about.”
Read more: http://www.politico.com
Legal marijuana draws tourists to Colorado, Washington for 4/20
Category: News | Posted on Tue, April, 16th 2013 by THCFinder
DENVER — Thousands of people are expected to join an unofficial counterculture holiday celebrating marijuana in Colorado and Washington this coming weekend, including out-of-staters and even packaged tours. The events and crowds will test the limits of new laws permitting pot use by adults.
More than 50,000 are expected to light up outdoors in Denver’s Civic Center Park on April 20 to celebrate marijuana legalization. Thousands more are headed here for the nation’s first open-to-all Cannabis Cup, April 20-21, a domestic version of an annual marijuana contest and celebration in Amsterdam. Expected guests at the Cannabis Cup, a ticketed event taking place inside the Denver Convention Center, include Snoop Lion, the new reggae- and marijuana-loving persona for the rapper better known as Snoop Dogg.
Marijuana activists from New York to San Francisco consider April 20 a day to celebrate the drug and push for broader legalization. The origins of the number “420” as a code for pot are murky, but the drug’s users have for decades marked the date 4/20 as a day to use pot together.
Read more: http://www.santafenewmexican.com
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