CCMA Greenbrief July 25: Cannabis Legislation Will Be A High Priority Once The CA Legislature Returns…V.A. Denies Medicinal Cannabis To Veterans…How Community Outreach Is Helping The Cannabis Market…

CCMA Political greenBrief

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

The Department Of Veteran Affairs Is Denying Veterans The Ability To Use Cannabis To Ease Their Health Problems

“Our outdated marijuana policies have turned everyday Americans into criminals, strained our criminal justice system, cost taxpayers tremendously and torn families apart. Our federal policies should be based on actual science and fact, not misplaced stigma and outdate myths.”
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) During A House Floor
“The opportunities for V.A. to conduct marijuana research are limited because of the restrictions imposed by federal law. If Congress wants to facilitate more federal research into Schedule 1 controlled substances such as marijuana, it can always choose to eliminate these restrictions.”
Curt Cashour, Spokesman For The Department Of Veteran Affairs, On Veteran Medical Use

The Week(s) Ahead: California Legislature Reconvenes on August 6. Marijuana Legislation Is a High Priority (CA – Cannabis Legislation) (July 23, 2018) When California’s legislature reconvenes on Aug. 6, 2018, the Senate Appropriations Committee will be buzzing with legislative activity. At 10 a.m. in the John L. Burton Hearing Room in the Capitol in Sacramento, the committee will debate 17 pieces of legislation that address a wide range of issues for the state’s newest industry and set the legislative tone as California finishes out its first recreational year. Back from summer recess, all eyes will be on California’s lawmakers as they aim to create a high functioning and equitable industry in the sixth largest economy in the world.


‘Terp Town’ Fire Rips Through California’s Most Coveted Cannabis (CA – Cannabis Losses)

Leafly (July 24, 2018) The designer cannabis burned way too early. California cannabis connoisseurs are heartbroken over a massive fire that hit one of the state’s leading growing facilities in Monterey County on Monday afternoon — the farm known as “Terp Town.” Fanned by heat and high winds, a structure fire ripped through a dozen greenhouses, destroying some of the state’s most coveted cannabis grown by the likes of DNA Genetics and Loudpack. The fire broke out after 4 p.m. in the small town of Greenfield, Calif., at 900 Cherry Avenue — torching the site of Greenfield’s largest employer, Loudpack.


Outside Lands Adds A Cannabis Festival Without Any Cannabis (CA – Cannabis Education)

Easter San Francisco (July 24, 2018) The Outside Lands festival already promises barbecue, doughnuts, and dumplings along with the musical stylings of Janet Jackson, The Weeknd, Florence and the Machine, Beck, and Janelle Monae. Now it’s adding cannabis — kind of. Grass Lands, described as a “curated cannabis experience,” will be a 21-plus festival within the festival, but this is a land of education only: No cannabis products will actually be available for buying or consuming. California legalized recreational cannabis use at the beginning of the year.


Why Talk Of Removing Federal Ban On Marijuana Is Getting Louder (USA – Federal Legalization)

NJ (July 24, 2018) Talk of removing the federal ban on marijuana is getting louder on the federal level, and could pave the way for significant legislation in the next Congress. So says Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., a founder of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus. Blumenauer recently gave a midyear report to NJ Cannabis Insider on the efforts to legalize marijuana on the federal level.


V.A. Shuns Medical Marijuana, Leaving Vets To Improvise (USA – Medicinal Cannabis)

New York Times (July 25, 2018) Some of the local growers along the coast here see it as an act of medical compassion: Donating part of their crop of high-potency medical marijuana to ailing veterans, who line up by the dozens each month in the echoing auditorium of the city’s old veterans’ hall to get a ticket they can exchange for a free bag. One Vietnam veteran in the line said he was using marijuana-infused oil to treat pancreatic cancer. Another said that smoking cannabis eased the pain from a recent hip replacement better than prescription pills did. Several said that a few puffs temper the anxiety and nightmares of post-traumatic stress disorder.


A New House Bill Aims To Study The Impact Of Legal Cannabis (USA – Cannabis Research)

The Stranger (July 24, 2018) Now that the US has a number of recreational cannabis programs to complement existing medical cannabis programs (or replace them, in which case boooo), there are unanswered questions surrounding the impact of these programs. Are people smoking more or less? How many jobs are being created? Are people using vape pens the size of light sabers suffering from higher rates of carpal tunnel syndrome than the general public? To help answer (some of) these questions, yesterday Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) introduced the Marijuana Data Collection Act.


Community Outreach Helping Cannabis Companies Gain Edge On Rivals, Attract Customers (USA – Community Service)

Marijuana Business Daily (July 25, 2018) Marijuana businesses nationwide are finding they can reap generous rewards from giving to their local communities. Being a good corporate citizen can make it easier for marijuana businesses to work with regulators and local officials, stand out from competitors and attract new customers and high-quality employees, according to industry executives and experts on corporate giving. There are a variety of ways cannabis companies can give back to their communities, ranging from providing volunteer time for events and projects to collecting food donations.


The World’s Weed Market Is Rapidly Changing. Most People Have No Idea What They’re Buying (USA – Cannabis Market)

Vox (July 25, 2018) For thousands of years, cannabis was seen as a mysterious, sacred, even demonic plant. Today, weed is hugely popular. You can buy hundreds of strains, specially cultivated to produce different flavors and highs. You can buy it in vape cartridges and gummies and brownies. And it’s a lot stronger than it used to be: more than three times as potent as it was in the mid-’90s. But, since it’s still illegal in most places, it’s also almost entirely unregulated. There is no “standard unit of weed.” Strain names like “Pineapple Express” or “Candy Cane” don’t tell you much about the product you’re buying.


Pot Smokers Are Setting Aside Their Joints In Favor Of Edibles, Pills And Extracts (USA – Cannabis Uses)

USA Today (July 24, 2018) Marijuana users across the country are setting down their bongs, putting away their joints and moving away from smoking pot. It’s not that people are giving up on cannabis – far from it. But retailers across the country report that consumers are increasingly switching from smokable marijuana to other forms, including pot-infused foods known as edibles and vaporizer cartridges. Marijuana enthusiasts say the trend reflects a desire by consumers for stronger, healthier or more discreet ways to consume cannabis.


Cannabis-Like Drug May Ease Agitation In Alzheimer’s Patients (USA – Cannabis Benefits)

NBC News (July 24, 2018) A synthetic cannabis drug used to treat nausea in cancer patients may also help calm agitation in patients with Alzheimer’s disease, researchers reported Tuesday. Agitation is one of the most troubling symptoms of Alzheimer’s, and can be difficult to manage. It’s the reason some dementia patients are given antipsychotic drugs or even physically restrained, steps that go against medical advice. Sedatives, anxiety drugs and other medications are also often given to patients.


Why More College Students Are Calming Anxiety With Medical Cannabis (USA – College Consumption)

Leafly (July 24, 2018) Bianna is a model of academic excellence. Not only is she about to graduate from college, she’s already working for a women-owned engineering firm. She’s outgoing and social, and comes from a close-knit family. Despite what appears to be a charmed life, though, Brianna was recently diagnosed with anxiety disorder, and prescribed an antidepressant. The medication is helping, she says, “but not nearly as much as cannabis and CBD. Indica to accept the things I cannot change, sativa to change the things I cannot accept.”


New Jersey Suspends All Marijuana Prosecutions Until September (NJ – Cannabis Convictions)

Politico (July 24, 2018) The debate over legalizing recreational marijuana in New Jersey took a sudden and dramatic turn on Tuesday when Attorney General Gurbir Grewal ordered county and municipal prosecutors to suspend marijuana-related cases until early September. The surprising announcement, which will affect thousands of defendants, comes in the midst of an ongoing battle between Grewal’s office and Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, who tried to unilaterally decriminalize marijuana in his city last week. It also comes as lawmakers in Trenton are wrestling over whether to expand the state‘s medical marijuana program and legalize recreational weed.


Cannabis Cultivation Comes With Environmental Complications (OH – Medicinal Marijuana)

Columbus Underground (July 24, 2018) As long as the complex licensing process works itself out, Ohio’s medical marijuana program should still be launching at some point, and growers will be allowed to cultivate the newly legal plant for market. However, as has been noted by some news outlets for years, whether society treats marijuana like a medicine or a drug, it’s still a crop that needs to be grown with light, soil and water — and it comes with its own environmental impacts.