CCMA Political greenBrief
Friday, September 14, 2018
“We need leadership in Washington that will push for real marijuana reform like Proposition 64, instead of fomenting unfounded fears about cartels and our kids. Marijuana should no longer be a Schedule 1 drug.”
CA Senator Kevin de Leon On Senator Diane Feinstein Signing Onto The STATES Act
“This industry has grown out of nowhere, based on word of mouth marketing. There’s no real mass market retailers that are covering it.”Bethany Gomez, Director of Research for The Brightfield Group, On The Expansion Of The CBD Market
Sen. Dianne Feinstein Signs Onto Marijuana Bill After Decades Of Drug War Advocacy (CA – Cannabis Legislation)
Marijuana Moment (September 13, 2018) A bill that would amend federal law to give states the autonomy to set their own marijuana policies gained a tenth cosponsor on Thursday, and a somewhat surprising one at that. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) has long been one of Congress’s most vocal opponents of legalizing cannabis. But now she’s backing legislation to end federal prohibition so that states like hers can implement legalization without interference. The bill, nicknamed the STATES Act, was introduced by Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Cory Gardner (R-CO) in June. The senators have made clear they wanted to demonstrate bipartisan support for the legislation, and so part of the rollout plan has been to bring on two cosponsors at a time—one from each party—following a “Noah’s Ark” strategy, as Warren described it.
PODCAST: Knock, Knock: Pot Delivery. Should Cannabis Be Deliverable In Cities That Have Banned It? (CA – Cannabis Accessibility)
89.3 KPCC (August 17, 2018) The Bureau of Cannabis Control is considering clarifying Prop 64 rules to allow for the delivery of cannabis in cities where storefront sales are banned — but cities are pushing back, saying the move would undermine local control. Advocates say that since cannabis is now legal in California, it should be accessible to all residents. Plus, delivery services already exist and many of them are operating in a legally grey market, though often their users assume that they’re above board. In a letter sent to the Bureau Monday, cities said that their ability to regulate weed is being undermined by delivery services and that the Bureau is stepping outside its jurisdiction. They also push back on other considered rule changes, such as a speeding up of the mandated time during which cities should verify local licenses, saying they’d be a threat to public safety.
Tough Cannabis Testing Standards Are Straining Sales, Dispensaries Say (CA – Cannabis Market)
Enterprise-Record (September 14, 2018) In the era of legal cannabis, regulations are the name of the game, but stringent potency and purity tests across the state are keeping nearly 18 percent of cannabis products from hitting the dispensary shelves, according to state-provided data. A little more than 1,900 marijuana samples failed tests through Aug. 29. While small numbers of failed products came from pesticide contamination or E. coli, the vast majority were found to have a different amount of THC than what was listed on the label. Some dispensary representatives say the testing policies are holding products to a tight standard and leaving a small margin for error. The products must test within 10 percent of the product’s claimed potency, according to the state’s rules.
2,500-Plus Pot Plants Seized At Illegal Marijuana Grow In Sacramento (CA – Illicit Market)
KCRA 3 (September 13, 2018) Two people are in custody after sheriff’s deputies discovered more than 2,500 marijuana plants at in illegal indoor grow operation in south Sacramento. Deputies served a search warrant Aug. 23 at a home in the 6300 block of Requa Way for a potential illegal indoor marijuana grow, the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department said Thursday. There, deputies discovered cash, packaging, more than 4 pounds of processed marijuana and over 2,500 marijuana plants at the two-story home. Both floors were being used for the grow operation. There was also exposed wiring in the house, which can pose a fire hazard, Sgt. Shaun Hampton said.
Criminal Justice Reformers Slam Marijuana Bill’s Drug Conviction Ban (USA – Cannabis Legislation)
Marijuana Moment (September 12, 2018) A coalition of organizations working to reform criminal justice policy is raising concerns about a provision of a marijuana research bill that is scheduled to get a congressional vote this week. Under the Medical Cannabis Research Act, which is slated to be considered by the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday, the Department of Justice would be forced to issue more licenses to grow cannabis to be used in scientific research. That’s long been an aim of many legalization groups, but they and their allies strongly oppose a section of the legislation that would prevent anyone with a “conviction for a felony or drug-related misdemeanor” from being affiliated with cannabis research cultivation operations.
VIDEO: This Organization Is Fighting A Medical Marijuana War For Veterans (USA – Medicinal Cannabis)
ABC 7 (September 12, 2018) After four years in the Marine Corps, Jimmy Johnston gained a family in the service, life perspective and a bad back. “They gave me an option to choose cannabis or prescription drugs, and I had to tell them no,” explains Johnston. He said using opioids in recovery would have led him down a dangerous path. “I’m able to live a productive life after taking a hit or two off a joint. I can’t function after I take a prescription painkiller,” said Johnston. Johnston is part of the Weed for Warriors Project, a nationwide organization with three chapters in Florida, fighting for veteran rights and education.
Analysts Expect CBD Market To Reach $22 Billion By 2022 (USA – CBD Market)
Ganjapreneur (September 13, 2018) An analysis completed by The Brightfield Group has determined that the non-psychoactive, hemp-based CBD market will hit $22 billion by 2022, according to a Rolling Stone report. The CBD market is already expected to top $591 million in 2018. While the early CBD market was often written off as businesses trying to capitalize on the cannabis hype, an uptick of states with required cannabis testing and other regulations have caused a boom in veritably potent and effective CBD products. CBD is one of the most medicinal compounds in the cannabis plant, helping with everything from arthritis and bug bites to epilepsy and cancer.
Week In Review: MJardin’s Reverse Takeover, California’s Marijuana Testing Woes & Alaskans’ Taste For High-THC Goods (USA – Cannabis Updates)
Marijuana Business Daily (September 14, 2018) MJardin becomes the latest U.S. marijuana company to go public in Canada through a reverse takeover, nearly 20% of marijuana products in California fail tests for potency and purity, and Alaskans’ preference for high-THC products could bankrupt some growers. Here’s a closer look at some notable developments in the cannabis industry this week. When MJardin entered into a reverse takeover (RTO) deal with a publicly traded Canadian company – one that no longer has significant operations – the Denver-based firm joined several other private marijuana businesses that have taken that route. There’s no straightforward explanation for the rash of cannabis product testing failures in California over the past few months. Similarly, there’s no simple answer. Industry experts agreed with an Anchorage Daily News report: Alaskans are obsessed with high-THC products, and, as a result, small growers whose marijuana tests below 20% are struggling financially.
Most Doctors, Nurses And Pharmacists Support Legalizing Marijuana, Poll Finds (USA – Medicinal Cannabis)
Marijuana Moment (September 13, 2018) A majority of physicians are in favor of legalizing marijuana nationwide, according to a newly published survey, and an even bigger supermajority back allowing medical cannabis. The results of the poll, which was conducted by Medscape Medical News, also show strong support for marijuana reforms from other medical professionals like nurses, pharmacists and psychologists, as well as those working in health business and administration. The survey, which MedScape launched in May and published on Wednesday, also asked respondents in states with legal medical cannabis whether they recommend it to patients. Fifty-nine percent of physicians said they have recommended medical marijuana, while 59 percent of nurses and 52 percent of pharmacists said the same.
Here’s Why Marijuana Use Is On The Rise Among Older Adults, Study Finds (USA – Cannabis Use)
AJC (September 13, 2018) Previous studies have shown marijuana use is on the rise among young adults, but it’s also becoming more prevalent with a group on the other end of the age spectrum, according to a new report. Researchers from New York University recently conducted a study, published in the Drug and Alcohol Dependence journal, to explore the trends of recreational drug use among baby boomers. To do so, they used data from the 2015-2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, which gathered responses about marijuana use from more than 17,000 adults aged 50 and older. The participants were asked when they first used it and whether they used it in the past year, among other questions.
Massachusetts Credit Union Says It Will Serve Recreational Marijuana Businesses (MA – Cannabis Banking)
Marijuana Business Daily (September 14, 2018) Recreational and medical marijuana businesses in Massachusetts can look forward to having access to banking services after a credit union announced it is willing to serve them. The GFA Federal Credit Union, a state-chartered credit union with $500 million in assets, will begin accepting marijuana clients by Oct. 1, offering basic services that include cash management, checking accounts, payroll, wire transfers and bill payments, The Boston Globe reported. As of February 2018, less than 4% of the nation’s banks and credit unions served state-legal marijuana businesses because of fears federal regulators could potentially take away financial institutions’ licenses for serving businesses that work in a federally prohibited substance.
“It Is Not A One-And-Done Effort,” Lawmakers Discuss Testing Standards, Regulations For Medical Marijuana (OK – State Regulations)
Oklahoma News 4 (September 12, 2018) A legislative working group on medical marijuana focused heavily on testing regulations this week at their meeting. Two out-of-state experts were invited to speak with the group on Wednesday. Karmen Hanson is a program director with the National Conference of State Legislatures. The organization has offices in Denver, Colorado and Washington, D.C. and is considered a resource for all state legislative bodies across the country. Without making a formal recommendation Wednesday, Hansen shared an overview of what other states do in terms of testing standards for cannabis products and what Oklahoma can consider. One of the biggest takeaways, she said, is no two states’ programs are alike.