CCMA Political greenBrief
Friday, January 4, 2019
The 116th Congress Introduced 2 Cannabis Reform Bills on Day One of Session: The Compassionate Access, Research Expansion & Respect States (CARERS) Act Would Allow States To Have Medical Cannabis Programs Without Interference From The Federal Government; While The Other Would Move Cannabis From A Schedule I Classification To A Schedule II.
“The national consensus on medical marijuana is solid and bipartisan, but our federal drug laws continue to treat patients and their doctors like criminals. Our bill would bring federal medical marijuana policy in line with the views of the overwhelming majority of Americans by allowing states to set their own marijuana laws, allowing patients, including veterans, to receive the treatments they need from their doctors and improving opportunities for research on marijuana.”Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) On The Compassionate Access, Research Expansion & Respect States (CARERS) Act
“The cannabis industry is being choked by California’s penchant for over-regulation. It’s impossible to solve all of the problems without a drastic rewrite of the law, which is not in the cards for the foreseeable future.”Dale Gieringer, Director Of California NORML, On Cannabis Businesses Struggling With State Regulations
EVENT: Malibu Fire Fundraiser On January 18th (Los Angeles – Cannabis Events)
On Friday January 18th, help the CCMA and Future Cannabis Project bring the cannabis community together for a fundraiser to benefit victims of the Woolsey Fire in Malibu. The evening kicks off with a four course dinner by cannabis Chef Holden Jagger followed by a party with music and DJs in a beautiful venue in downtown Los Angeles. Tax deductible proceeds will go directly to the Malibu Foundation, a non-profit working to assist in recovery for victims of the Woolsey Fire.
End Of An Era: After Jan. 9, California’s Unlicensed Medical Cannabis Collectives/Co-Ops Illegal (CA – Illicit Market)
Marijuana Business Daily (January 3, 2018) On Jan. 10, California’s legal cannabis industry is expected to get even smaller. Medical marijuana collectives and cooperatives will become illegal without a state license that day, per guidance that the Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC) issued in January 2018. Cannabis industry experts have suggested the impact of the deadline has already made its mark on the California marijuana industry by forcing nonprofits to either get licenses or close up shop.
Now For The Hard Part: Getting Californians To Buy Legal Weed (CA – Illicit Market)
The New York Times (January 2, 2018) A billion dollars of tax revenue, the taming of the black market, the convenience of retail cannabis stores throughout the state — these were some of the promises made by proponents of marijuana legalization in California. The easy part of legalization was persuading people to vote for it, industry analysts say. The hard part, now that it’s legal, is persuading people to stop buying from the illicit market.
Need For Marijuana Taxes Sets California On A Bad Course (CA – Cannabis Taxation)
The San Diego Union-Tribune (January 2, 2018) Illicit market marijuana has transmogrified over a handful of years from a public health menace to a threat to government revenue. Other than pricing government-sanctioned cannabis to compete with the decades-old underground economy, incoming Gov. Gavin Newsom’s only routes to realizing his anticipated windfall will be focusing police priorities on tax code enforcement or running pro-pot ad campaigns.
Federal Judge Throws Out Racketeering Claim Against California Cannabis Grower (CA – Cannabis Lawsuits)
Marijuana Business Daily (January 3, 2018) A federal judge dismissed a federal racketeering claim against an allegedly illegal marijuana cultivator in Northern California, saying the plaintiffs failed to prove a business or property loss as required by the statute. The suit made the same general nuisance claims to ones that have recently been leveled against licensed cannabis operations across the country.
Legal Pot Sales Fall Short Of Expectations In California (CA – Cannabis Sales)
Governing (January 3, 2018) As the first year of licensed sales comes to a close, California’s legal market hasn’t performed as state officials and the cannabis industry had hoped. Retailers and growers say they’ve been stunted by complex regulations, high taxes and decisions by most cities to ban cannabis shops. At the same time, many residents are going to city halls and courts to fight pot businesses they see as nuisances, and police chiefs are raising concerns about crime triggered by the marijuana trade.
Pot Tourism Takes Visitors Behind The Scenes Of California’s Cannabis Industry (CA – Cannabis Tourism)
Los Angeles Times (January 4, 2018) In Napa and Sonoma, tour bus operators ferry oenophiles between tasting rooms and vineyards. In Hollywood and environs, they shepherd the starstruck past the homes of the rich and famous. Now they’re giving customers a mind-expanding look at one of Los Angeles’ burgeoning industries: pot. Each pot tour company has its own points of interest, generally including a grow facility, a bong maker or accessory retailers and a marijuana dispensary, where visitors can get joint-rolling lessons.
The New Congress Just Started And There’s Already A Bipartisan Marijuana Bill (USA – Cannabis Legislation)
Marijuana Moment (January 3, 2018) The 116th Congress went into session just hours ago and a bipartisan marijuana reform bill has already been introduced in the House. Reps. Steve Cohen (D-TN) and Don Young (R-AK) re-introduced the Compassionate Access, Research Expansion and Respect States (CARERS) Act on Thursday as one of their first acts in the new session. The legislation would let states establish their own medical cannabis programs free of federal intervention and also allow physicians at the Department of Veterans Affairs to issue medical cannabis recommendations for veterans.
Another GOP Congressman Introduced A Marijuana Bill On The First Day Of The New Congress (USA – Cannabis Legislation)
Marijuana Moment (January 4, 2018) Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA) introduced a bill on Thursday that would reschedule marijuana and clarify that the federal government cannot “prohibit or otherwise restrict” state-legal use, possession, transportation, production and distribution of medical cannabis. It is at least the second marijuana bill already filed in the new Congress, which began the same day. The bill as previously written would also reschedule marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act, from Schedule I to Schedule II.
One Year After Jeff Sessions Rescinded A Federal Marijuana Memo, The Sky Hasn’t Fallen (USA – Cannabis Politics)
Marijuana Moment (January 4, 2018) Exactly one year ago, then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions stoked fears in the marijuana industry by rescinding an Obama-era Justice Department memo that encouraged federal prosecutors to generally not interfere with state cannabis legalization laws. There seems to be a consensus among leading marijuana policy reform advocates that Sessions’s move, even if it had negative short-term financial implications for some businesses, ended up inadvertently helping to advance the legalization agenda in the long term.
The Possibility Of An Interstate Cannabis Market (USA – Cannabis Exports)
KTVL News 10 (January 2, 2018) The state of Oregon is looking into the legal transportation of marijuana across state lines. The 2019 harvest proved that Oregon was overproducing cannabis to a point that impacted the sale of outdoor grown marijuana by a 40% price reduction. The issue is that several states, in which recreational and medical cannabis use is legal, fall short of meeting the demand for cannabis products. While still illegal at a federal level, people involved in the Oregon cannabis industry are open to the idea of interstate weed commerce.
Why 2019 Will Be The Year Of Weed (USA – Cannabis Industry)
Rolling Stone (January 2. 2018) In 2018, pot reached a tipping point. A clear majority of Americans now wants to see the drug made fully legal. California and Canada began selling marijuana to anyone over 21. Corporate behemoths like Altria and Constellation Brands ) made multi-billion dollar weed investments. And Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) managed to include hemp legalization in the 2018 Farm Bill — de facto legalizing every part of the cannabis plant except THC.
Boxing Champ Mike Tyson Launches ‘Kind’ Cannabis Music Festival (USA – Cannabis Events)
Live Kindly (January 3, 2018) Former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson announced he will host a cannabis-themed “Kind” music festival. He will hold the event on his property in Desert Hot Springs, California. Called Kind Music Festival, the event will take the form of an all-ages pop-up that welcomes the state’s newly updated cannabis laws. California legalized licensed medical marijuana years ago but on January 1st, it also legalized recreational weed.