Alaska

Mon
21
Aug

A trim from Big Leaf

John Banister had a crew of workers packaging cannabis at a marijuana manufacturing business. Another crew was helping with a harvest at a cultivator’s site. Banister also had workers trimming and making joints at another cannabis facility.

It was a typical Thursday for Big Leaf, a 6-month-old company that provides skilled labor and consulting to marijuana growers and manufacturers preparing to get their product to market.

“The one thing we do best is trimming weed,” Banister said. “Trimming weed is the foundation of the company.”

The business started as a side gig for Banister, a carpenter with nine years of experience working in the marijuana industries in Colorado and California.

Mon
31
Jul

States forge path through uncharted territory to legal pot

Legal weed has unleashed an entrepreneurial spirit across the USA and holds the potential to reshape communities, but voter-approved relaxation of drug laws may bring consequences we don't yet understand as we soften the war on drugs.

A USA TODAY Network investigation into marijuana legalization reveals increases in marijuana-related car crashes and in hospitalization of kids who steal their parents' pot, of black-market smuggling rings and the challenges of running cash-based businesses that can’t use traditional banks because of federal regulations.

Mon
24
Jul

The Weeds on weed: what a Dutch study tells us about legalization

The Weeds crew have finally discussed weed — specifically, marijuana use and policy. On the July 19 episode of the podcast, Vox’s Sarah Kliff, Matt Yglesias, and Ezra Klein talk about a paper — aptly titled “High Achievers” — out of the Netherlands that found marijuana use correlates to worse academic performance.

The 2015 Maastricht University study followed university students and tracked their academic achievement, with the intent to measure a temporary policy change in the city of Maastricht that restricted legal access to cannabis based on nationality.

Tue
11
Jul

Pot and Lots of Money: Six Things About Tuesday's Anchorage Assembly Agenda

The Anchorage Assembly meets at 5 p.m. Tuesday on the bottom floor of the Loussac Library.

The two big topics? Marijuana and money. A resolution from the downtown assemblyman points to a brewing storm over public consumption and the number of pot shops downtown.

Meanwhile, the city wants a few more million dollars to finish its long-suffering SAP software upgrade project, and another half-million to backfill revenue losses posted by the Sullivan Arena in 2016.

Here's a rundown of six key issues on this week's agenda. The full agenda is available on the city website.

Tue
04
Jul

Alaska marijuana taxes top $1 million

Last Wednesday, Ben Wilcox ended his workday late: He had to. With the rain having let up in Juneau for one brief day, he took the opportunity to repaint the Franklin Street facade of what will be Juneau’s fourth marijuana shop.

That shop, which has yet to be named and is scheduled to open this fall, is a sign of the marijuana industry’s continued growth in Alaska. On Friday, the Alaska Department of Revenue offered some other signs.

The state of Alaska has now collected more than $1 million in marijuana tax revenue, and the pace of sales appears to be picking up.

Thu
20
Apr

American High: State-by-State Guide to Legal Pot

While Congress has largely refused to roll back, or even debate, the federal prohibition on pot, local voters across the U.S. have cast ballots to end the war on marijuana. But the nation's patchwork of pot laws can be confusing – even in the states where it's allowed – so here's a blueprint of what you can and can't do in the eight states (plus D.C.) where weed's been legalized for recreational use.

Mon
17
Apr

Alaska city officials seek to ban marijuana businesses

Officials in one Alaska city have taken steps to keep commercial marijuana out of Soldotna.

Soldotna City Council voted 4-2 Wednesday to direct city administrators to draft legislation that would ban marijuana establishments from operating within city limits, the Peninsula Clarion reported (http://bit.ly/2oH3qvt).

The council had previously placed a two-year suspension on pot businesses, which temporarily prohibited them until Jan. 1, 2018. With this vote, city administrators will start to draft legislation to ban them, present it to the Planning and Zoning Commission and have it go through the public process, Mayor Pete Sprague said.

Council members Lisa Parker and Tyson Cox voted against the measure.

Wed
05
Apr

Alaska Pot Regulators Poised to Resume Onsite Marijuana Use Debate

Alaska marijuana regulators will resume the on-again, off-again debate over onsite pot consumption in retail stores Wednesday amid a rejection of the concept from the state's top medical officer.

The Alaska Marijuana Control Board began mulling — and preparing for — onsite use of marijuana in 2015, following voter approval of recreational use of pot by those 21 and older.

Members peppered regulations with references to onsite use and worked on rules for how that would be carried out. The board veered away from the visions some had of Amsterdam-style cannabis cafes, instead proposing that retail stores cordon off separate rooms for onsite use.

Tue
04
Apr

4 Governors Ask Trump Admin to Chill out on Marijuana Enforcement

Governors in four states that have legalized marijuana in some form have written a letter to two Trump administration officials requesting they consult with states before making any changes to regulatory and enforcement systems for the drug.

The independent governor of Alaska joined the Democratic governors of Colorado, Oregon and Washington to write a letter to US Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin on Monday, asking them to continue the Obama administration’s hands-off policy towards enforcing federal marijuana laws in states that have okayed medicinal or recreational use.

Thu
02
Mar

Alaska Cannabis Shops Can't Meet Demand

A second marijuana retailer has opened for business in the southeast Alaska city of Sitka.

The Northern Lights Indoor Gardens began selling its products February 16. The business is located in the same strip mall as the city’s first marijuana business, Weed Dudes, The Sitka Sentinel reported Tuesday.

Northern Lights owner Micah Miller said he’s been selling about a pound of pot each day and likely won’t have enough to keep up with demand before his next crop is ready in late March.

He expects sales to pick up in March when commercial fishermen come into town for herring season.

“My doors will be closed at some moment for a minute,” said shop owner Micah Miller. “Really, I wish we had twice the operation.”

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