Austin, Texas cannabis decriminalization initiative set for ballot in May


The Austin Freedom Act of 2021 also aims to ban dangerous ‘no knock’ warrants.

Officials in Austin, Texas have officially given the green light to a cannabis decriminalization initiative now set to appear in an upcoming ballot. On January 18, the Austin City Council in Texas voted to allow the ballot initiative known as the “Austin Freedom Act of 2021” on the upcoming special election on May 7. The Act will stop local law enforcement from convicting residents of low-level cannabis offenses, and will prohibit “no knock” warrants by police as well.

The initiative is supported by an organization called Ground Game Texas (GGT).


Austin voters could decriminalize small amounts of pot in November


“Small possession of marijuana is not the type of violation that we want to stockpile jails with,” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said Monday.

As greater numbers of Texas voters sour on harsh punishment for marijuana offenses, Austin voters will likely decide in November whether to effectively decriminalize the drug.

The ballot measure, pushed by the group Ground Game Texas, would forbid Austin police officers in most cases from ticketing or arresting people on low-level pot charges like possessing small amounts of the drug or related paraphernalia — unless the offenses are tied to more severe crimes. The city also would not pay to test substances suspected to be marijuana — a key step in substantiating drug charges.


Bayou City Hemp Company Launches Cannabis-Infused, Ranch Water-Flavored CBD Seltzer in Texas



Canned Soft Seltzer Inspired by the Iconic Texas Cocktail is Crafted with Nanoemulsion Technology to Emphasize Absorption and Taste

 Bayou City Hemp Co., Texas' first and leading hemp processing and extraction company, has released its first CBD seltzer under its flagship brand, Mixer Elixir. Handcrafted in Houston, the Mixer Elixir Ranch Water seltzer is a zero-proof (non-alcoholic), zero-calorie, and zero-sugar sparkling water. Ranch Water contains 25mg of hemp-derived CBD and is designed as a ready-to-drink beverage or cocktail mixer.


Beto O'Rourke's blunt support of marijuana legalization gives advocates hope for policy change

Texas flag

A race starting in Houstonians' livings rooms could set the stage for one of the state's most expensive gubernatorial races ever.

At a crowded rally in downtown Austin, Beto O'Rourke ticked off his usual laundry list of campaign promises: stabilizing the power grid, rolling back the state's new permitless carry law and expanding health care access.
But the El Paso Democrat got some of the loudest cheers of the night when he promised to legalize marijuana in Texas, something he said "most of us, regardless of party, actually agree on."

Texas CBD retailers face employee overtime lawsuit

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Two Texas CBD stores are being sued by a former employee who says they illegally scammed workers of overtime pay.

The lawsuit filed Monday accuses two CBD USA Plus franchises managed by Jay Ashley and Jamie Ashley of having workers shuffle between stores in Sherman and Denton, both in North Texas, to avoid paying overtime.


Nonprofit for pregnant women & young parents used funds on smoke shop and to buy land for hemp production, records show

pregnant belly

Long list of questionable purchases by state-funded organization called ‘an egregious misuse of tax dollars’ by lawmaker

A San Antonio nonprofit that provides assistance to pregnant women and young parents spent $25,000 this year to purchase land that was later registered to produce industrial hemp, records obtained by the KSAT 12 Defenders show.

The land purchase was finalized in August, according to Bexar County Clerk records, and is one of a long list of questionable expenditures made by A New Life for a New Generation, a nonprofit founded in 2016 with locations on the city’s West Side and East Side.


Mission hemp farm opens, growth in industry expected

hemp farm

On Tuesday afternoon, hundreds of hemp trees swayed their fragrant leaves in the wind in the greenhouse of a Mission hemp farm.

“We are not aware of anybody doing this type of volume actually south of Houston,” said Roberto Morales, owner of Healing Bloom Farm.

Healing Bloom handles all parts of production in-house with the main product being CBD oil, according to Morales.

“We are not aware of a facility this size going from seed to shelf, and my goal is to produce oil, a lot of CBD oil, to make a difference in people’s lives,” said Morales.

Morales said he has a family member who has suffered from seizures and was prescribed CBD oil, but at the time a 30-milliliter bottle would cost around $300.


Reefer Madness: Compassionate Use Laws Leave Some Texans Out

silhouette of cowboy

Peggy had just left the hospital when she went to visit her cannabis dealer in Denton. A retail cashier in her mid-60s, she was struggling to pay her bills and buy the drugs prescribed to treat an inoperable brain tumor. She needed the cannabis to give her an appetite when she began chemotherapy. The neutered, expensive but legal product then allowed under Texas’ highly restricted medical marijuana program would do little to help her.


For the Dread Head Chef, quality is key in making CBD products

cannabis edibles

The cannabis business in Texas is ironically stressful.

Legal cannabis is highly regulated. Products require third-party testing and lab reports. On the other hand, it’s difficult to find a banker and impossible to get a business loan. Cannabis can’t be advertised through social media, and building a website is more complicated because it requires a landing page with no mention of CBD or cannabis.

But the opportunity to get in on a newly opened market appealed to Michael Weinstein, aka the Dread Head Chef, and his fiancee, Robin Riddle. They went into business this year with their longtime friend — the Dallas public relations maven — Lisa Oldham.


What Is Delta-8? The Cannabis Extract Temporarily Legalized in Texas

a portion of a cannabis leaf

A cannabis substance known as Delta-8 has become temporarily legal in Texas after retailers challenged a ban in court.

Delta-8, short for Delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol, is a compound found in the Cannabis sativa plant that is known to have psychoactive effects.

Cannabis producers can concentrate Delta-8 and sell it in various forms, including as Delta-8-infused gummy sweets.


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