The first medical marijuana dispensary in Florida opened this week in Tallahassee with more locations not far behind. Trulieve has picked a location and received zoning verification for a place in Pensacola, and the website also suggests more locations coming in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater and Bradenton. The Pensacola location is currently awaiting word back from the Department of Health and further security renovations to meet dispensary requirements and plan to open the store as quickly as possible. With the ability to deliver around the state, Trulieve currently offers only low-THC dose treatments, but expects high-strength THC meds in August. Floridans will also have a chance to pass an amendmend on this November's ballot that would expand the medical marijuana program to more ailments. "I'm sure it will be a well-run organization, so I've got no problem with it," Armour said. "It's something that's coming around so we need it in Pensacola like they do anywhere else. Quite frankly, I welcome a good business to the area." "These dispensaries are for medical purposes only, so I see no reason to be opposed," Spencer said. With an amendment on the November ballot that would open up medical marijuana treatments to a much wider range of patients, the dispensary that can grab the biggest market early stands to make a considerable profit. Trulieve already offers statewide delivery and, in addition to Pensacola, its website lists "coming soon" locations in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater and Bradenton.
Speaking at the Democratic National Convention this week, Gavin Newsom exclaims his support for legalizing recreational marijuana and why other lawmakers should be joining him. Newsom points out the issues with prohibition today and how young people have far more access to marijuana than alcohol due to lack of regulation. He follows by saying, “you don’t have to be pro-marijuana to be anti-prohibition,” citing his wife as someone who does not support legalization. The future of legal marijuana is inevitable as over half have access to medical marijuana, 4 states have recreational marijuana, and several more, including california, will be voting to legalize marijuana in November. Newsom wants other legislators to join him in standing up for legal marijuana as a proper solution to revoke power from cartels, keep drugs away from young people, and lessen the unnecessary hardships prohibition has brought to communities of color. “How do you justify the current conditions?” Newsom asked. “For me, you can’t be neutral here. This is a social justice issue. It’s an economic justice issue. It’s a racial justice issue. People need to step up, either come out vehemently against it with a better alternative, explain away the status quo because you’re complicit in it ― society becomes how we behave ― or come on board.” The benefits to legalization, Newsom argued, are manifold: reducing the influence of drug cartels, creating stronger regulations to prevent underage kids from easily buying weed, mitigating the harmful effects of prohibition on communities of color.
Are you a master grower, or maybe an amatuer looking to test your skills, well it's finally your chance to show off your green thumb at this year's Oregon State Fair where they will feature award winning cannabis plants as a competition similar to the onions and pumpkins. From August 26 - September 5, the state's 9 biggest and best cannabis plants will feature blue, purple, and yellow ribbons in a private greenhouse only for those 21 and up. Samples will not be provided as the fair is not promoting the use of the marijuana, but the fair is moving in the same direction as the state, towards cannabis acceptance. Don Morse, chairman of the Oregon Cannabis Business Council, the sponsor of the marijuana exhibit, said nine plants will be displayed in a greenhouse that will have its own entrance and exit. The area will be monitored by a security guard. Only people 21 and older will be allowed in. "We are doing it 4H style," he said. "You get a blue, purple or yellow ribbon. We are celebrating the plant as a farm crop from Oregon." Fairgoers hoping for a sample will be disappointed, Morse said. "We are not promoting the use of cannabis," he said. "We are there to show plants to people over 21 what award-winning cannabis plants look like."
Since the full legalization of marijuana in Colorado, many opponents have tried to skew the statistics to make it seem like marijuana is evil and ruining our kid's lives, when the reality is much less dramatic. A recenty study published that since legalization there has been a major increase in emergency room visits and poison control calls for children ingesting marjijuana, but no one mentions the mortality rate for cannabis remains at 0. In fact, the slight increase in children ingesting cannabis products is common sense when considering the availability of a newly legal product, but no one is comparing it to the number of cases involving alcohol, which is the same number as cannabis, or even tobacco, which is drastically higher than both others. No one is calling for the deregulation of alcohol or tobacco, yet the damage remains much worse from both. There were even 1,683 calls to poison control over crayons in 2014, but no one is concerned about that. Beyond that, the raw numbers on marijuana exposure are extremely low. Marijuana accounts for only 2.3 of every 1,000 poison control cases for kids 10 and younger in Colorado, according to the JAMA study. At the national level, kids are much more likely to be poisoned by any number of common household products, like diaper cream, toothpaste, or energy drinks, than they are to be poisoned by marijuana. The interesting number is marijuana, which has the exact same exposure rate for children as alcohol. But politicians generally aren't calling for alcohol to be outlawed in order to protect children. This is at least partly because legal alcohol has been around for forever. We’re comfortable with it. But legal marijuana is new, and new things are scary.
At long last, the advocates of The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol have achieved their goal of putting their recreational marijuana initiatve on this November's ballot. The Massachusetts Secretary of State's office confirmed this week that the group gathered enough valid signatures and voter's will have their fair chance pass it into law. Massachusetts must remember to vote YES on Question 4, The Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act, which if passed will allow adults to carry up to 10 ounces and grow up to 6 plants at home, and also establish a licensed commercial and taxed retail market. In the past, voters have approved decriminalizing possession penalties and even a medical marijuana system within the state. Full recreational legalization is the next step to bring Massachusetts into the future. Question 4, The Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act, permits adults to possess (up to ten ounces) and to cultivate (up to six plants) personal use quantities of cannabis and establishes licensing for its commercial production and retail sale. Commercial for-profit sales of cannabis will be subject to taxation, while non-commercial exchanges of marijuana will not be taxed. State voters have previously approved ballot measures decriminalizing marijuana possession penalties and legalizing the use and dispensing of medicinal cannabis.
L.A. County Supervisors voted last month to place an additional tax on marijuana sales to raise money for the homeless only to scrap the tax this week. The county first tried other taxes but could not lobby enough support on a 'millionaires tax' or a quarter-cent tax and property tax as they would compete with other initiatives on this November's ballot. While some are still concerned about the homeless problem, others believe that the marijuana industry should not be paying for it. Too many taxes on marijuana sales can keep people hiding in the black market instead of becoming part of the legal market. Supervisor Kuehl, who proposed the marijuana tax, has shown further support for a quarter-cent tax which could bring in an estimated $355 million a year, while the marijuana tax would be limited to around $100 million in 2018, and only if the recreational law passes. The county will have another chance to tackled the homeless problem in March 2017. Kuehl said there had been pushback from some homeless service and drug treatment providers who thought the county should not be seen as promoting marijuana legalization. Kuehl said she was worried that without their support, the measure would not get the two-thirds voter support needed to pass. Tomer Grassiany, a medical marijuana business owner and member of the Los Angeles Cannabis Task Force, said he wants to see the ban lifted and pointed out that if that occurred, the county would be able to share in taxes collected by the state. But he was skeptical of a special tax for homeless services. “While I do think that homelessness is a big problem, I don’t necessarily agree that cannabis is the one that should be paying for it,” he said. Others questioned whether placing too many taxes on marijuana would discourage black-market operations from crossing into the legal economy.
Ohio was the 26th state to legalize marijuana for medical use, but yet so many still avoid using their only medicine for fear of testing positive during a workplace drugtest. It is well known and scientifically proven that THC, the primary compound in marijuana, stays in the user's body far after the drug's effects have worn off. So why are patients still being fired from their jobs for using their state legalized medicine? While marijuana remains under Schedule I, the federal government doesn't condone it's use medically, no matter how many patients use it for treatment, and this allows employers to continue testing and firing employees despite prior work ethic. Until the DEA pushes to reschedule from Schedule I, it will take state government's interference to protect it's patients similar to other states like, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, and Rhode Island. With these state governments refusing to take action, it may be up to the federal government to establish protection for employed patients. Marijuana is currently listed as a Schedule I controlled substance, which means it is federally illegal and considered to have no medicinal value. As a result, federal laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act, which are ideally situated for protecting patients, do not apply to medical marijuana.
Nevada County turned down a cannabis growing ban in June only to have the County Board of Supervisors replace it with a growing restriction this week. The temporary ordinance allows up to 25 plants to be grown, but only for those with 20 or more acres. Residential grow restrictions will make it difficult for those who need it to supply their medicine. County staffers claim enviormental impact laws are forcing them to restrict grows and push to agricultural areas. Some families are concerned now they have to break the law to ensure their children recieve the necessary medicine. More public input will be taken before a permanent ordinance is put in place. The ordinance allows growing 25 plants but only if the property is 20 acres or more. Residential grows are allowed but only if your house is on at least 2 acres. Protesters say the restrictions make it impossible for most people to grow their needed medicine. Forrest Hurd says his young son's life depends on medical marijuana treatments. "Families have to break the law in order to save their child's life," said Hurd.
Alaskans voted to legalize recreational marijuana back in 2014. This Tuesday the Assembly held the state's first public hearing proposing marijuana cultivation facilities and approving the first commercial marijuana grow, Dream Green Farms. Major construction is expected to begin in a vacant warehouse as soon as possible. Dream Green Farms hopes to have it's first products available by December, but will only be able to sell to cultivators and retail stores, not directly to consumers. As of yet, no retail licenses have been approved, but the first will likely be considered this fall. In a 10-0 vote, Assembly members approved the local license and permit for Dream Green Farms, at 2939 Porcupine Drive in Mountain View. Dream Green Farms co-owner Justin Roland said in an interview before the vote that a lot of work had gone into the application and if the business received municipal approval, major construction on a vacant warehouse would start immediately. "It's going to be as fast as we possibly can," Roland said.
The FDA has done little to advance the legality of marijuana, but yet again has approved a synthetic THC, syndros, which is only a single cannabinoid compared to marijuana's 70+ naturally occurring cannabinoids. Syndros is the liquid form of dronabinol, which has existed since the 1980's, and while it has the potential to help treat those with pain, nausea, epileptic seizures, Alzheimer's, and much more, many believe that natural marijuana's many cannabinoid's are more effective when working cohesively. The liquid drug was approved as Schedule III meaning it is safe and non-addictive, while marijuana remains Schedule I next to heroin. Dronabinol has been around since the 1980s. It's generally regarded as less effective for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that it lacks other compounds from natural marijuana that, when mixed with THC, create the effects everyone seems to be willing to break the law to get. The liquid form may be easier for the body to absorb than dronabinol in pill form.
Florida lawmakers gave approval for a limited medical marijuana program back in 2014, but experienced many delays throughout 2015. Finally, this weekend in 2016 held the first home delivery of medical marijuana in Florida to a patient with dystonia, a muscle spasm and seizure condition. Trulieve was happy to deliver one of the many low THC, high CBD products they have in stock, and they expect to have high THC cannabis soon for patients with terminal conditions. The store located in Tallahassee will be opening it's doors for the first time in a few days. Patients with cancer, epilepsy, chronic seizures, and chronic muscle spasms can get medical marijuana relief through their doctor, but at the moment only 15 doctors are in the state's registry. Patients suffering from cancer, epilepsy, chronic seizures and chronic muscle spasms can order medical marijuana by contacting their physician, as long as both are listed in a state registry. Department of Health spokeswoman Mara Gambineri said only 15 doctors are currently in the state's registry. Trulieve will have medical marijuana initially available in a concentrated oil, tinctures, gel capsules and vape cartridges. By law, the marijuana must be low in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which produces the euphoric state for users, but is high in cannabidiol (CBD) which has been effective in preventing seizures.
If you've ever wanted to get away on a relaxing weekend in Colorado's Rocky Mountains, there's no better time than this fall during the 420 Yoga Retreat. America's first cannabis resort was organized by Yogi D, who has been using cannabis to compliment his yoga for 20+ years and decided now is the time to share. Visitors of the mountain ranch will be able to smoke openly in the walking trails, hot tubs, bonfires, and even the restaurant. Smoking in public remains illegal in Colorado, but the secluded ranch will be an exception. The combination of yoga, massage, and the natural stress relieving effects of cannabis will help you unwind in the relaxing environment of the ranch. Sounds like the right place for the 420 Yoga Retreats, which aim to provide "a creative mix of yoga, movement, meditation, massage & marijuana.... Yogi D & his crew will lead you on a relaxing journey thru five sessions with a mindful, pot-friendly crowd." He may be right. Marijuana is gaining widespread acceptance, and medical science has been able to show that it does offer stress relief. Cannabis gets the brain to produce endocannabinoids, mood-related chemicals that decrease in supply under chronic stress, PositiveMed reports. When taken at the proper doses, cannabis not only relaxes you but induces a feeling of euphoria.