States That Have Legalized Entirely

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

RENO, Nev. (Reuters) – As more and more states legalize the use of marijuana, which is banned under U.S. federal laws, banks are facing “unsustainable tension” that needs to be resolved by Congress, San Francisco Fed President John Williams said on Tuesday.

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The board regulating Alaska’s fledgling legal marijuana industry is expected to approve licenses this week for the state’s first retail marijuana outlets.

The full rollout of Oregon’s much-anticipated recreational cannabis industry next month could be delayed owing to problems with the accreditation of marijuana testing labs.


Something we missed that everyone needs to know?  Give us a shout in the comments.

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

There’s a good argument to be made that James Cole has had a bigger impact on the U.S. cannabis industry than any other single individual in modern history.


Even though Oregon voters legalized recreational marijuana in 2014, you can’t legally buy the stuff in more than 100 Oregon communities. That’s because some city and county governments have banned recreational marijuana businesses.


If signed, Illinois would be the 17th state — and third largest — to treat possession of marijuana in small amounts as a civil offense rather than a criminal one.


And finally, if you’re visiting Hugo, Colorado, feel free to drink the water.

Water in the town of Hugo is not contaminated with THC after all, state tests concluded Saturday morning.  The suspicion was first announced Thursday after county officials, using field test kits, got some positive tests results.


Anything we missed?  Let us know in the comments.

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

Microsoft is welcoming marijuana compliance company Kind Financial onto its Azure Government cloud platform, marking a legitimizing first for the legal cannabis business while positioning the technology giant at the vanguard of a potentially lucrative new industry.

Colorado and Washington may have jumped ahead in the race to become North America’s marijuana kings, but Canada is now positioned to take a lead in the booming multibillion-dollar industry.

Denver voters may consider a ballot measure this fall to make the city the most populous place in the nation to expressly allow pot clubs.

Although Sean Parker’s controversial marijuana ballot measure is considered by some to be the great green hope in terms of bringing prohibition to an end in California later this year, many advocates for the initiative, including Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom, are concerned that the cavalier attitude among the public could sabotage legalization efforts for many years to come.

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Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your every Friday look at news from the world of legalized cannabis.  The biggest news is that the Supreme Court decided not to hear a case brought by the states of Nebraska and Oklahoma against the state of Colorado, concerning Colorado’s legalization of marijuana.  There are any number of articles on this topic, but the one to which we’ve linked, from The Washington Post, focuses on how this decision will affect legalization efforts generally.

In addition, the state of Washington has promulgated new rules governing the recall of marijuana products, and as states legalize the use of marijuana to treat post-traumatic stress disorder, many veterans are already using the drug, regardless of its legality or its proven effectiveness.


Washington State marijuana businesses are now subject to new rules under which various products can be recalled and even destroyed due to pesticide use.

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — A growing number of states are weighing whether to legalize marijuana to treat post-traumatic stress disorder. But for many veterans, the debate is already over.

Marijuana legalization opponents are facing an increasingly uphill battle.


Something important that we missed?  Let us know in the comments.

One of the difficulties in researching or tracking state laws is that each jurisdiction has a slightly different process for enacting legislation.  In broad stokes, they are similar: they all have a legislature that passes bills and an executive who then signs or vetoes them, but the details of each state’s method of enacting statutes can be confusing if you don’t work in that state on a regular basis.

No where is that more true than in one of the jurisdictions that has recently legalized marijuana use for recreational purposes – the nation’s capital, Washington, DC.  The law is unusual, in that you can use marijuana and you can possess (a certain amount of) marijuana, but you can’t buy or sell marijuana.  Also, the District cannot appropriate any funds to enforce this law.

Why is DC unlike other jurisdictions that have legalized marijuana and allowed for its sale?  It’s due to the involvement of the United States Congress in DC’s affairs.

DC is a unique jurisdiction – not a state, not a territory, but a district housing the Capitol, the White House, many federal courts and a large number of government agencies.  In addition, more than 650,000 people live here.  Over the course of the country’s history, the rights of these people have been severely restricted – at one point, they were not able to vote for President.

Things are not quite so bad as that now, but any legislation passed by the DC Council and signed by the Mayor needs to be approved by Congress.  Congress doesn’t need to take any action to approve a bill, it just needs to not dis-approve it.  Most of the time, DC legislation goes to Capitol Hill and emerges intact.  Sometimes, though, Congress takes action, usually when the subject is something  controversial.  Legal marijuana falls into that category.

The use of marijuana for recreational purposes was approved by a ballot initiative, and Congress did not dis-approve it.  They did, however, add restrictions on marijuana (no sale, no enforcement) to last year’s budget bill.

For those of you not familiar with the intricacies of the DC legislative process, have a look at this page from the DC Council’s website: DC Council FAQs.  It provides a good, clear description of the way that the system works.

If you’d like something that’s a bit less detailed, but does involve singing, a 51 state flag and a video of Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC’s non-voting representative in Congress), see this clip from Last Week Tonight: John Oliver on DC Statehood.