New Jersey


Beware of bogus marijuana studies

Most New Jerseyans believe that pot should be legal, after nine states and Washington D.C. legalized it for recreational uses. So does our new governor.

Yet as lawmakers prepare to take this up, we need to be on our guard against bogus studies; studies with misleading statistics that are starting to contaminate the debate in New Jersey.

Much of this is coming out of Colorado, one of the first states to legalize recreational marijuana, and a ground zero for disputes over its impact.

An oft-cited source is the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (RMHIDTA) report, put out annually by a federally-funded task force established at the height of the War on Drugs in 1990.


As States legalize Marijuana, investors see an opportunity

New Jersey’s new governor, Phil Murphy, made access to medical marijuana easier in the Garden State this week. A few weeks earlier, California, with its nearly 40 million people, legalized recreational marijuana use, having cleared the way for medical marijuana in 1996.

Twenty-nine states now allow marijuana for medical purposes, while eight have legalized its recreational use. As the acceptance of marijuana is growing, so are the opportunities to invest in it.


New Jersey on Marijuana Legalization: Weed going mainstream, but faces legal, money hurdles

Marijuana is quickly going mainstream in New Jersey. 

Newly elected Gov. Phil Murphy's support of legalizing marijuana has prompted the private sector – business consultants, lawyers, developers, investors and banks – to figure out the ground rules of a potential multimillion dollar industry.

And entrepreneurs looking to get their foot in the door of the fledgling cannabis industry are planning on getting a head start Thursday at the New Jersey Cannabis Symposium, a seminar and networking event at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark.


Phil Murphy moves to expand access to medical marijuana in New Jersey

Gov. Phil Murphy on Tuesday ordered a 60-day review of New Jersey's "constrained" medical marijuana program, saying he would consider allowing home delivery, purchases beyond the 2-ounce limit and expanding the number of licensed dispensaries to improve patient access.

Murphy, however, did not mention anything about approving an expanding list of medical conditions -- including Tourette syndrome, chronic pain and anxiety -- a medical advisory panel recommended in October. 

Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican, left office last week without his health commissioner making a decision, which rules say is due no later than April.

Murphy did not take questions from reporters after signing the executive order.


New Jersey: U.S. Attorney vague on how he'd deal with legal Cannabis

In 2013, a memo came down from the U.S. Department of Justice, instructing federal prosecutors not to focus their energies on enforcing federal drug laws in states that had voted to legalize marijuana.

As long as people and businesses were abiding state law, the so-called Cole memo directed U.S. attorneys to instead try to prevent weed from getting into the hands of children and keep profits from going to drug cartels.

That policy allowed marijuana marketplaces to thrive in states like Colorado, Oregon and Washington, but earlier this month, Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded that memo, opening the door for his federal prosecutors to crack down.


Bill to legalize marijuana in NJ introduced in new session

New Jersey governor-elect Phil Murphy doesn't succeed Chris Christie until next week, but already his fellow Democrats have introduced legislation to achieve one of his campaign promises, legalizing marijuana.

Democratic state Sen. Nicholas Scutari introduced the measure allowing the recreational use of marijuana by those 21 and older on Tuesday, the same day the new session of the Democrat-led Legislature convened.

The Justice Department last week overturned Obama administration guidelines that federal prosecutors shouldn't interfere with states allowing people to legally use pot, but doesn't change anything for New Jersey, Scutari said.


Here are 5 states looking to legalize marijuana in 2018

The marijuana movement is charging ahead.

To date eight states — California, Colorado, Nevada to name a few — have legalized weed for recreational use since 2012. And the trend continues.

This year, several states all across the country are looking to legalize and, in turn, rake in millions of dollars in tax revenue.

Even with the Trump administration’s announcement last week that it would scrap an Obama-era policy offering legal shelter for state-sanctioned marijuana sales, organizers and lawmakers are forging forward with legalization efforts.

Here are some of those states:



These states could legalize recreational cannabis in 2018

As of January 1, California began allowing the sale of marijuana to anyone over the age of 21. The move is expected to give a significant boost to California’s marijuana farmers, distributors, and retailers; an industry that analysts estimate will be worth around $7 billion within the next few years.

Although California started off the year with the most buzz around bud, it’s not the only state slated to legalize pot in 2018. The following states have either already legalized and are starting to transition into the commercial sale of weed, or are poised to let citizens legally toke.

New Jersey


New Jersey marijuana legalization: When will weed be legalized?

The grass is looking greener for New Jersey marijuana users.

The idea of legal pot was once a pipe dream for those who so indulged. Not anymore. Gov.-elect Phil Murphy has pledged to sign legislation legalizing pot within 100 days of his Jan. 16 inauguration, prompting speculation on what that hazy world would look like.

Among the particulars that have been largely agreed upon: New Jerseyans would be permitted to possess up to 1 ounce of marijuana for personal use, and previous convictions for such possession would be eligible for expungement. 

Further, the drug would be taxed at the point of sale, generating an estimated $300 million in tax revenue. 


11 unanswered questions in NJ marijuana bill

With the election of Phil Murphy as New Jersey's next governor, legislators and advocates are working to get a bill legalizing marijuana on his desk within his first 100 days.

State Sen. Nicholas Scutari, D-Union, introduced the bill earlier this year, but with Chris Christie in office until January, the bill has stayed in committee, as has its twin in the Assembly.


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