Here Are The 5 States With The Harshest Marijuana Possession Laws

Last week, state legislators put Illinois on track to become the 21st state to decriminalize cannabis.

If Governor Bruce Rauner signs the bill – and he’s said he likely will – residents would no longer face up to 6 months in jail and a fine up to $1,500 or getting caught with between 2.5-10 grams of marijuana.

Instead, They’ll be ticketed between $100-$200 per offense.

But other Americans aren’t so lucky. Some states impose hefty fines for small amounts of cannabis – even for personal use. Here are the 5 harshest state lawscurrently on the books for simple cannabis possession (based on data from NORML.)


Judge Dismisses Menominee Hemp Lawsuit

A federal judge on Monday dismissed the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin's lawsuit against the Drug Enforcement Administration over raids that destroyed industrial hemp crop on tribal land.


How Cannabis-Friendly Is Your State?

Ever wonder how your state stands up to the others in terms of marijuana tolerance? We don't mean how much your state can smoke, but how tolerant the locals are toward cannabis. The real-estate website Estately has the answer. 

Using specialized metrics, they put together rankings for all 50 states in their "Marijuana Enthusiasm Index." The criteria are: the percentage of monthly marijuana users, the average price of cannabis, the average number of marijuana-related Google searches, the legal status of marijuana and expressions of public interest (based on Facebook user data). 

Here are five interesting findings.


Some Wisconsin businesses cash in on opportunities created by marijuana legalization elsewhere

MILWAUKEE — Some Wisconsin companies are cashing in on new opportunities created by the legalization of marijuana in other states.

A few Wisconsin firms have actively positioned themselves as suppliers to marijuana growers and processors, seeing the industry as an extension of markets they already serve, the Journal Sentinel (http://bit.ly/1O0D8ZL ) reported.

Wausau-based Roastar made a calculated move into enter into the marijuana supply field. Mike Mead, the company's vice president of sales and marketing, said Roastar saw it "as a big, significant opportunity."

The company makes plastic bags for coffee that are often imprinted with designs. Now, it's making flexible pouches for items such as marijuana-infused chocolates.


Menominee tribe files suit for right to cultivate hemp

A northern Wisconsin tribe has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Justice for the right to cultivate industrial hemp.

The Menominee Nation argued in the case it “should have the right under the Farm Bill to cultivate industrial hemp in the same manner as Kentucky, Colorado and other states.”

The tribe has been in negotiations with the DOJ and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency regarding the cultivation of industrial hemp. In October, the officials from the two institutions raided the Menominee Reservation and destroyed its industrial hemp crop.

Brendan Johnson, an attorney representing the Menominee Nation, argued the provisions of the Farm Bill apply to the Menominee tribe.


Wisconsin: Lawmakers To Consider New Rules For Accessing Marijuana-Based Medication

CBD oil is derived from cannabis, making it difficult to obtain legally in Wisconsin.

State legislators are trying again to pass a law addressing access to a marijuana-based medication for families with children who suffer from a rare seizure disorder.

A state law passed last year legalized cannabidiol, or CBD oil, for medical purposes, as long as the liquid doesn't contain the THC that gives pot users a high. The bill that will get a hearing on Tuesday removes a requirement that families must get a prescription to obtain the cannabidiol, along with rules for who may legally dispense it, in an effort to improve access to CBD.


Double Standard? Marijuana Or Hemp? DEA Indian Tribe Raid Raises Questions

Taking advantage of a 2014 Justice Department memo giving Indian tribes a green light to participate in marijuana commerce, as well as a 2014 congressional vote allowing for industrial hemp pilot programs, Wisconsin’s Menominee Tribe earlier this year planted some 30,000 cannabis plants as part of a pilot project with the College of the Menominee Nation.

Last Friday, the DEA came and cut them all down.


A look at medical marijuana in Illinois' neighbor states

Illinois isn’t the first state in the Midwest to allow medical marijuana. Minnesota and Michigan have active cannabis programs for patients, while other nearby states are considering legislation. Some states allow children with seizures to be treated with cannabidiol oil, or CBD, a marijuana extract.

Here’s a look at where Illinois’ neighbor states stand:

- Wisconsin: Allows possession of non-psychoactive CBD oil to treat seizure disorder. Legislation to allow adults to use marijuana for recreational or medical reasons has been introduced, but it is unlikely to pass the Republican-controlled Legislature.


New documents detail marijuana found on Menominee Tribal land

Federal documents released Monday outline what authorities found on Menominee Tribal land before a search warrant was done last Friday.

On Friday near Suring, federal and local authorities say they seized 30,000 marijuana plants from the land. No one has been arrested.

Now they say someone from Colorado was growing it.

Throughout the allegations, the Tribe maintains it was growing hemp for research, not marijuana.

Days before the thousands of plants were loaded into dump trucks, Menominee Police officers and a Bureau of Indian Affairs agent toured the land.

The affidavits show inside this barn authorities found more than eleven-hundred plants drying, restricted ventilation and workers with no protective gear.


DEA Raid on Tribe's Cannabis Crop Infuriates and Confuses Reformers

Authorities claim the plants were marijuana, not hemp – but evidence is lacking.

Federal agents swarmed the Menominee Indian tribe's Wisconsin reservation Friday and eradicated 30,000 cannabis plants, confusing and alarming tribal leaders, policy reformers and attorneys who work with other American Indian tribes considering growing marijuana or hemp.

Menominee leaders say the plants were intended for lawful research into growing industrial hemp, which is processed and utilized for fiber, food and oil and is distinguishable from marijuana by its lower levels of the high-inducing compound tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).


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