Marijuana Politics

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Mon
23
Nov

Wyoming holding out as other states legalize marijuana

Marijuana plant

 

In the eight years since Colorado legalized marijuana, it's been an open question whether Wyoming would someday follow the lead of its southerly neighbor.

So far, that hasn't happened.

Lawmakers did legalize hemp and CBD products in 2019. Both lack marijuana's psychoactive properties, but remain taboo among some state lawmakers. And Wyoming's criminal penalties for marijuana possession remain among the nation's harshest.

Fri
20
Nov

Rhode Island Considers Legalization to Solve Budget Crisis

marijuana leaf on money

 

Will Rhode Island be the next state to legalize cannabis?

Many liberal, New England states have turned to recreational or medical cannabis to bring in some extra revenue, and now, in light of the budget deficit in the state, Rhode Island is talking about legalization as well.  

Currently, the state is projecting a possible $114.4 million deficit in the state’s economy, and analysts are getting worried. In response to that, a Senate Finance Committee in the state is considering Democrat Gina Raimondo’s proposal to allow the sale of cannabis legally within state borders. 

Fri
20
Nov

State panel calls for not prosecuting possession of small amounts of marijuana

 

RALEIGH, N.C. — A panel appointed by Gov. Roy Cooper called Wednesday for decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana, saying arrests for such crimes disproportionately affect Black residents.

The North Carolina Task Force for Racial Equity in Criminal Justice, which is chaired by Attorney General Josh Stein and Supreme Court Justice Anita Earls, also called for studying the prospect of further legalizing the cultivation, sale and possession of marijuana in the state.

"You cannot talk about improving racial equity in our criminal justice system without talking about marijuana," Stein said in a statement. "White and Black North Carolinians use marijuana at similar rates, yet Black people are disproportionately arrested and sentenced."

Fri
20
Nov

Penn State students from New Jersey share thoughts on legalization of marijuana

hands holding cannabis buds

 

 

On Nov. 3, New Jersey legalized the use of recreational marijuana after a majority of citizens voted in favor of the legislation.

The legislation allows people over 21 to smoke and purchase marijuana without medical reasoning. Additionally, the legislation also voted in favor of a 6.625% tax on marijuana, which is expected to significantly help the economy of New Jersey.

Sarah White believes the legalization of marijuana is a good thing, if the state can regulate who has access to it.

“I do think it is a good idea in [regard] for the people that have mental conditions or people who would use it in a healthy manner,” White (freshman-hospitality management) said.

Fri
20
Nov

After 25 years in prison for selling three pounds of pot, Michael Thompson receives parole hearing

 

 

 

The Michigan Parole Board will submit its decision to Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who can grant Thompson clemency.

Michael Thompson, who was caught selling three pounds of pot to an undercover police informant in 1994, has been incarcerated since 1996. Under the terms of his sentence, he is eligible for parole in April, 2038.

But earlier this week, Thompson was granted a public hearing with the Michigan Parole Board, something that Sarah Gersten, executive director and general counsel for the Last Prisoner Project, called “the last procedural hurdle before the Governor can grant clemency.”

Fri
20
Nov

Mexico Takes a Step Toward Legalizing Marijuana

tall marijuana plants

 

 

Mexico is a step closer to becoming one of the world’s largest legal marijuana markets. Senators voted overwhelmingly Thursday to approve a marijuana legalization bill.

The bill’s next challenge is clearing the lower house of Congress. The legislation is supported by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s Morena party, which holds a majority in both chambers of Congress.

The legislation would become law only if it’s signed by Lopez Obrador, who has not spoken openly about his position on legalizing marijuana.

The movement to decriminalize marijuana in Mexico comes after lawmakers approved its use for medicinal purposes last year, and the Supreme Court ruled in 2018 recreational marijuana should be allowed.

Fri
20
Nov

New York Might Be Late To Legalization, But It Can Still Lead

 

If New York wants to try to retain its national reputation as a progressive leader, it should pass a law centered around promoting social justice.

Although New York led the country on cannabis decriminalization in the 1970s and the repeal of alcohol prohibition in the 1930s, the Empire State has been embarrassingly slow to fully legalize cannabis this century. This is despite having overwhelming public support, a thriving illicit market, and a large cannabis delivery infrastructure already built. Now, with New Jersey voters amending the state constitution to legalize recreational cannabis, neighboring states like New York and Pennsylvania will have no choice but to look closely at regulation themselves if they want to avoid falling behind.  

Thu
19
Nov

Cannabis Legalization in New York: Déjà vu All Over Again?

Marijuana Leaf held in air

 

They say three times is a charm.

There are signs that the state legislature and Governor Cuomo will try, for a third time, to pass legislation approving recreational marijuana in the next session, which begins in January.

Four new states, including New Jersey, passed legalization measures on Election Day, which means New York is surrounded on three sides by states that have opened new markets, or will be opening one soon. Plus, a glance at the state’s enormous out-year budget gaps would make even faithful followers of Nancy Reagan’s "Just Say No" campaign reconsider their position.

There are estimates that legalizing recreational cannabis in New York could bring in $300 million in revenue, annually.

But don’t hold your breath.

Thu
19
Nov

Utah Lawmakers Considering Medical Cannabis Program Expansion

Cannabis Joint

 

Utah’s medical marijuana law may soon undergo another expansion if a bill that is being introduced in the legislature gets approved.

Salt Lake City-based television station FOX13 reports that a bill offered up by a pair of Republican lawmakers seeks to allow more Utah physicians to recommend medical cannabis to qualifying patients.

Thu
19
Nov

Fly with Cannabis – Which Countries Let You Do It

Sunglasses on a beach

 

Different ways to be legal

Not only does every country have its own laws regarding the use, possession, sale, cultivation, and import/export of cannabis, but often these categories too can be broken down further into medical legalizations, recreational legalizations, and even religious legalizations, each with its own set of laws concerning use, possession, sale, cultivation, and import/export.

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