Washington

Tue
06
Feb

A powerful Republican Senator hints that Congress may discuss nationwide marijuana legalization this year

Sen. Thom Tillis, a powerful Republican from North Carolina, suggested in a letter shared with Business Insider that the Senate Judiciary Committee is "likely" to discuss marijuana legalization this year.

The letter was addressed to Rod Kight, a North Carolina lawyer who works with companies in the cannabis industry. 

Mon
29
Jan

Will recreational Cannabis kill medical dispensaries?

“I’m going to quit,” the budtender at the dispensary told me, “I think I’m done. I’m going to quit.” 

I’d asked her about the impending legalization of cannabis in Los Angeles, and right away she launched into a rant, gesticulating wildly. 

“I got into this to help people,” she said. “I might as well just go back to working at the bar. I think I might. I think I’m just going to quit.” 

The budtenders around her stayed silent, clearly uninterested in risking their jobs over some speculation about the future.

Fri
26
Jan

Marijuana Breathalyzer stumps scientists, thanks to weed's chemical quirks

Marijuana legalization has accelerated at a breakneck pace in the United States over the past few years. And as this green wave rolls over the country, law enforcement and public health officials are struggling to keep up.

Even if medical or recreational marijuana use is legal in your state or city, one simple fact remains: It’s still illegal to drive or operate machinery under the influence of marijuana. But how can officials test for it? This dilemma has driven a technological arms race, but it hasn’t yet yielded a reliable product, thanks to the unique nature of marijuana’s active ingredients.

Thu
18
Jan

Cannabis oversupply in Washington State drives prices to threatening lows

The State of Washington has a cannabis problem.

But it's not addiction or even the black market. It's that they've got too much weed and not enough places to legally sell it.

According to cannabis-focused research firm Straight Line Analytics founder Dr. Jim MacRae, the October 2017 outdoor harvest was the state's biggest to date and will mean a 60% larger supply from a year earlier.

Oversupply from that bumper crop would generate sufficient concern on its own. But in Washington, it's paired with a significant shortage of retail outlets for farmers to legally sell their wholesale flower.

Tue
16
Jan

Home-grown recreational pot limits considered by Washington House

Washington could follow other states that have legalized marijuana for recreational use and allow residents to grow a limited number of plants at home, but such a law might be hard to enforce, a House committee was told Monday.

The House is considering a bill that allow Washington residents to grow as many as six marijuana plants for recreational use in their home and have up to 24 ounces of the drug on hand. Current law allows medical marijuana users in some cases to grow their plants at home, but not recreational users.

Tue
16
Jan

Why Democrats don’t want to talk about legalizing Marijuana

As the Trump administration begins to crack down on states that legalized marijuana, advocates for legalization hope Democrats will take their side.

But many Democrats are still squeamish about fully embracing the drug. 

Earlier this month, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the Justice Department would reverse the policy from the Obama administration that restricted federal prosecution of marijuana offenses in states where it was legalized.

When asked, Democratic senators were cagey about how they felt about getting behind full legalization for recreational purposes, even in states that have taken the plunge.

Mon
15
Jan

Bank of Pot: Why some banks are diving into the Marijuana business

From pot producers to wholesalers, banks are largely uninterested in dealing with the legal questions and increased compliance of marijuana-related clientele. The result is that many legal growers and dispensaries have gone to extreme lengths to keep cash safe, often storing it in locked offices, one $20 bill at a time.

But a select few banks are using marijuana to their advantage, carving out a niche as banker to the marijuana trade, an industry that rakes in billions of dollars and can be needle-moving for the smallest of institutions.

Fri
12
Jan

Washington responds to fed’s Marijuana crackdown

Washington state officials responded to U.S Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ statement to roll back a President Obama-era policy that let the medical and recreational marijuana business blossom without repercussions from the federal government.

Recreational and medical marijuana, although legal under Washington state law, is still illegal under federal law. Laws set by the federal government supersede state law and therefore marijuana possession is susceptible to prosecution by federal agencies including the Drug Enforcement Agency.

Fri
12
Jan

Ex-DEA agent turned pot venture capitalist: Legalizing marijuana is good for the economy

Legalized marijuana is emerging as a huge growth sector in the U.S. economy, a former Drug Enforcement Administration agent turned venture capitalist told CNBC on Thursday.

"Regulated cannabis works," said Patrick Moen, managing director and general counsel at Seattle-based Privateer Holdings, which specializing in seed money for businesses that "lead, legitimize, and define the future of cannabis."

Explaining how an ex-DEA agent ended up in the pot business, Moen said on "Squawk Alley" in an interview: "We're taking money away from criminal enterprises. We're freeing up law enforcement resources. We're generating tax revenue and we're creating jobs. It's good policy."

Mon
08
Jan

Environmentalists alarmed at marijuana industry's massive use of carbon-based electricity

The nation’s booming marijuana sector is struggling to go green.

Analysts and state regulators say the cannabis industry — including states that have legalized recreational pot and those that offer it only for medicinal purposes — is outpacing many other areas of the economy in energy use, racking up massive electricity bills as more and more Americans light up.

“The basic issue is the lighting intensity inside these grow facilities is much, much higher than anything else. They like these facilities brighter than an operating room,” said Ron Flax, the chief building official in Boulder County, Colorado, who spearheads one of the nation’s leading programs designed to incentivize weed producers to cut their power use.

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