Plans to grow medical marijuana discussed in Louisiana House committee

The lucrative nature of marijuana sales was at the center of a House Committee on Agriculture, Forestry, Aquaculture, and Rural Development discussion today about a law that puts the state into the marijuana distribution business.

Louisiana State University and Southern University are the two schools that plan to grow marijuana at separate facilities for use as medical treatments authorized under legislation approved last spring that legalizes and regulates such distribution. LSU’s operation alone is estimated to cost between $10 million and $15 million, and lawmakers were warned it will take seven to eight years for the operation to become lucrative.


Cannabis Users More Prone to Rare Broken Heart Syndrome—Study

Smoking cannabis has been known to treat certain forms of cancer, but a recent study has found a link between use of the controversial herb and a heart-weakening condition.

Stress cardiomyopathy, popularly known as broken heart syndrome, shows symptoms eerily similar to a heart attack, including chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness and fainting.

The effects of the rare illness, which is often caused by the heart’s inability to pump blood, are usually short-lived but could indicate a more serious condition, according to a report by The Telegraph.


Plans to grow and produce Louisiana medical marijuana

The LSU AgCenter is continuing with plans to grow medical marijuana and hope to have seeds in the ground early next year. AgCenter President Dr. Bill Richardson says they should have a business plan in place this month and they are working closely with law enforcement to ensure they are comfortable with every aspect.

“We’re meeting, have a series of meetings with the Dept. of Agriculture and Forestry, who is writing the rules for the project, the Board of Pharmacy, the Board of Medical Examiners, making sure we do this exactly right.”

Richardson says they hope to get started in 2017 at an off campus location in East Baton Rouge Parish. He says legislation passed this year helped them move forward with the process and gave them exclusive rights to produce the drug.


Two Louisiana Universities Decided to Move Forward with Medical Marijuana

The Department of Agriculture and Forestry gave the necessary opportunity for Louisiana State University and Southern University first right of withholding and both institutions have expressed their interest in moving forward.

After their Friday meeting, Dr. Adell Brown, Southern's Interim Chancellor, stated that the institution has come up to a decision to submit a letter stating they will accept becoming the cultivator of Louisiana state, The Times reported.


New Orleans Softens Marijuana Possession Laws Starting This Week

Starting Wednesday (June 22), simple possession of marijuana in New Orleans will carry far fewer consequences for repeat offenders. Police have been able since 2010 to issue a court summons to someone caught for the first time with weed. Now that option will extend to subsequent offenses.

The City Council approved an ordinance in March that gives New Orleans police greater latitude on pot possession. They are attempting to help police spend less time on minor crimes and keep low-level offenders out of the city's jail.


Louisiana Gearing up for Marijuana Business: How Much Might LSU, southern, Companies Profit? How Will It Be Distributed?

Growing up on a cotton farm in Missouri in the 1950s, Bill Richardson didn’t know a thing about marijuana. Nobody talked about it, he never saw it and he certainly never smoked it.

“I didn’t inhale,” Richardson, LSU’s 71-year-old vice president for agriculture and dean of the College of Agriculture, said with a smile in a recent interview.

Richardson has become the unlikely leader of an effort to get LSU into the pot business.


Louisiana Will Remain Just Shy Of A Workable Medical Marijuana Program For Another Year

I received the following alert out of Louisiana:

I am sorry to report that the Louisiana Legislature continues to repeat its mistakes. For nearly 40 years, flawed legislative drafting has prevented the establishment of a workable medical marijuana program. Yesterday, the House took another step forward by passing S.B. 180, but it failed to fix a key omission.


Marijuana tax in Louisiana could add $128 million in revenue, report says

Louisiana could earn as much as $128 million in annual revenue if it were to legalize and tax marijuana, according to a Washington, D.C., think tank's new report.

The Tax Foundation, a nonprofit research organization most often described as conservative and pro-business, based its calculations on current demand for pot in Colorado and Washington, states that have authorized recreational use along with Oregon and Alaska. Ten more states have proposed ballot measures to legalize pot commerce, and Vermont's legislature is considering one.


Louisiana medical marijuana expansion bill signed into law


Katie Corkern couldn’t stop smiling Thursday, confident that relief for her son’s uncontrollable seizures may finally be near.

Corkern, her son Connor and the rest of her family stood near Gov. John Bel Edwards as he signed a bill to kick-start and expand the Louisiana medical marijuana program, which has been slow to begin because of regulatory hurdles.

“I’m very excited for the future. And I’m very excited for all the people this medicine can help,” the mother and advocate said after the bill signing.

The governor said the program will have a dramatic effect on Louisiana’s families.


The First State To Legalize Medical Marijuana Is Finally About To Get It Right

Louisiana is poised to officially become the 25th state to legalize medical marijuana. On May 16, the state senators approved the House's revisions to a bill that would officially allow patients to access marijuana for medicinal uses. The bill is now headed to the desk of Governor John Bel Edwards (D), who has said he would sign it and thereby make medical marijuana officially legal in Louisiana.


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