Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

That’s a record high.

The Los Angeles City Council approved a dense set of recreational marijuana regulations for cultivation, sales and business licensing.

With the current federal budget set to expire Friday, speculation has swirled in Washington DC over whether Congress will once again reach a deal to keep the old budget in place temporarily and prevent the U.S. government from shutting down.  Medical marijuana businesses have good reason to pay attention: If the previous budget is not extended – as it has already been multiple times this year – it means the federal protections of the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer Amendment will also evaporate.

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Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

The expansion of California’s legal marijuana industry will bring a major cash problem.

The first cannabis dispensaries are set to open in Maryland, nearly five years after state lawmakers legalized marijuana for medical use.

The Trump administration should carefully consider how legalizing marijuana can help reduce opioid addiction and overdose deaths, Sen. Elizabeth Warren says.

And in case you needed any further proof that the Chris Christie era is over in New Jersey…

The momentum to legalize recreational cannabis in New Jersey continues to grow.

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Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

A U.S. alcohol maker’s $191 million investment in Canadian cannabis could raise difficult questions for the banks that have lent big sums of money to the company.

LeafLink, an online inventory and ordering platform for marijuana businesses, has raised $10 million in Series A funding.

A Michigan group has submitted more than 360,000 voter signatures in a bid to put legalization of recreational marijuana to a statewide vote in 2018.

In keeping with the holiday spirit, we would like to take a moment to thank you, our readers.  It’s a pleasure to provide you with this post every week, and we hope you are enjoying a lovely long weekend.

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

An Arizona attorney has filed a lawsuit asking the state’s Court of Appeals to decide whether the $150 patient card fee is legal, a move that could affect Arizona’s medical marijuana market.

A bill that would legalize marijuana in New Hampshire has been rejected by the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee.

They say the Controlled Substance Act is unconstitutional.

And finally, remember, marijuana may be legal where you live, either medically or recreationally, but it is not legal to send marijuana through the mail.  Even if you construct your own fake boulders to do it.

Police say an Oregon man shipped more than $1 million worth of marijuana to another state via UPS last week, packing the drugs inside of artificial boulders he made himself.

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On November 8, 2016, Maine voters approved “Question 1 – An Act to Legalize Marijuana” (“Act”), and joined a handful of other states, including California, to have legalized the recreational use, retail sale and taxation of marijuana. As approved, the Act would have allowed persons 21 years of age or older to use or possess up to 2½ ounces of marijuana, consume marijuana in nonpublic places (including a private residence), and grow, at the person’s residence, up to 6 flowering marijuana plants (and up to 12 immature plants). The Act also would have legalized the purchase of marijuana or marijuana seedlings or plants from retail marijuana stores and cultivation facilities. Importantly for employers, the Act was the first law of its kind in the nation establishing express anti-discrimination protections for recreational marijuana users.

The Act was to become fully effective on January 30, 2017. However, on January 27, 2017, the legislature approved a moratorium on implementing parts of the law regarding retail sales and taxation until at least February 2018, giving time to resolve issues and promulgate rules.

Continue Reading Maine Legislature Fails to Override Governor’s Veto of Recreational Marijuana Law

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

BudTrader.com, the world’s largest medical marijuana website, announced today that it has received its trademark from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office after a year and a half of legal wrangling.

Tech titan IBM is pitching blockchain technology as a supply-management tool for British Columbia’s recreational and medical cannabis industry, a possible sign that Big Blue is eyeing Canada as a way to enter the marijuana sector.

Proponents of legalizing recreational marijuana in New Jersey say Phil Murphy’s win Tuesday night will pave the way for cannabis legislation.

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Despite the dearth of approved marijuana products, the term “medical marijuana” has become commonplace, and the term’s prevalence continues to increase as more states legalize the use of the marijuana plant and its active derivatives for medical purposes, and marijuana dispensaries continue to expand throughout the United States.  As of 2017, 29 states and the District of Columbia have approved the use of marijuana for medical purposes.  (Despite state laws legalizing marijuana for medical and/or recreational use, marijuana remains a Schedule I controlled substance its distribution and use remain illegal under Federal law.)

Studies on the potential of the marijuana plant or its extracts continue to expand and include, among others, treating pain,  preventing seizures,  and treating autoimmune disorders such as Crohn’s disease.  However, despite assertions of efficacy, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not recognized or approved the marijuana plant as a medicine, and to date, the FDA has only approved three products – Marinol® and Syndrox®, which include the active ingredient, dronabinol, a synthetic delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (“THC”), to treat nausea associated with chemotherapy and loss of appetite in AIDS patients; and Cesamet®, which includes the active ingredient, nabilone, a synthetically derived compound with a structure similar to THC, to treat nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy.  These drugs are available by prescription only.

Continue Reading Is Medical Marijuana Really Medicinal?

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

Marijuana payment service PayQwick, which brands itself as the PayPal of marijuana, has secured a $2.86 million raise.

A New Jersey appeals court has ruled that the state must reconsider marijuana’s Schedule I drug classification because of the substance’s “abundant and glaringly apparent” health benefits.

Constellation Brands will take a 9.9% stake in Canadian marijuana company Canopy Growth, as alcoholic drinks firms position themselves for pot legalization.

You’ve doubtless heard the Las Vegas tagline, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.”  This is a variation on that theme – when it comes to marijuana, what you have in California needs to stay in California.

The PSA reads “Cannabis is legal, traveling with it is not. Leave it in California.”

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Transport of marijuana in states where it is legal to islands located within the state is complicated by the fact that transportation by air generally violates federal law.  Rule 91.19 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR 91.19) generally prohibits civil aircraft from knowingly transporting marijuana and other types of illicit drugs within the US.  The prohibition initially applied to flights between US and Mexico but was subsequently amended to include flights solely within the US.  However, the rule contains an exception for the transport of drugs “authorized by or under any Federal or State statute or by any Federal or State agency” and, as was recently reported by The Boston Globe (State Eyes Flight Rule to Ship Marijuana to Islands), the chairman of Massachusetts’ Cannabis Control Commission is looking at the exception as a means to potentially permit air transport of marijuana to Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket.

A former Federal Aviation Administration (“FAA”) lawyer quoted in the Globe piece raises the question of whether the exemption applies if use of the drug is authorized by the state or whether the transport of the drug must be expressly authorized by the state. The wording of the regulation does appear ambiguous in this respect and the FAA has not provided any guidance on the topic.

There are also published accounts (Weed On A Plane: How Alaska Businesses Get Pounds Of Pot On Board, With Police Blessing) of marijuana businesses in Alaska making use of the provisions of the regulation that the carrier only violates the rule if it knowingly transports the drug.  The businesses inform the airport police and TSA that they are transporting marijuana and provide documentation of their authorization to do so. Neither the business nor the police informs the airline so it is unaware that it is transporting marijuana. In the end, with cooperative police, the more viable alternative may prove to be “don’t ask don’t tell” provided that the marijuana is packaged so as to disguise the smell.

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

New Gallup Poll Finds Record Support for Marijuana Legalization.

Medical marijuana companies in Massachusetts could see a hike in business once regulators implement several improvements to the state’s MMJ program.

A St. Louis bill allowing the use and growth of marijuana aims to reduce disproportionate penalties for existing violations and free up time and resources for police.

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