June 8, 2020

Arrests for having up to 1 pound of weed would be banned in N.J. under new bill

New Jersey lawmakers have introduced a bill that would decrease punishments for marijuana possession from arrests to fines, reviving a years-long effort as the nation grapples with racial bias and brutality in policing. The new bill, S2535, introduced to the state Senate Thursday afternoon, would decriminalize possession and distribution of less than one pound of weed, but would not make marijuana legal. Violators would receive a written warning for a first offense and a face fines of $25 for second and subsequent offenses.
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June 8, 2020

Spouses of government employees could get Michigan medical marijuana licenses under bill

Michigan lawmakers want to loosen restrictions on who is able to possess a medical marijuana business license to now include the spouses of government employees. The current rules, created within the 2016 Medical Marijuana Facilities Licensing Act, forbid the spouse of any government employee or elected official from being issued a medical marijuana business license by the state Marijuana Regulatory Agency. It’s not clear how many times this has become a reason to deny an application or revoke a license.
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June 8, 2020

New Mexico Marijuana Legalization Effort Gets Boost From Ouster Of Anti-Reform Senators

Several key New Mexico state senators who have helped to block marijuana legalization legislation are on their way out after Tuesday’s primary election. The secretary of state has called at least major four races where progressive challengers in districts across the state have won their contests against conservative-leaning incumbents. The Senate president pro tem, Finance Committee chair and several other lawmakers who remain opposed to adult-use legalization were rejected by Democratic voters.
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June 8, 2020

Navajo Police Warn Against Illegal Marijuana, Hemp Farms

Authorities on the largest Native American reservation in the U.S. are warning people against illegally growing marijuana and hemp. Navajo Nation police issued the warning Wednesday after confirming that officers were investigating complaints about marijuana or hemp being grown near the northwestern New Mexico community of Shiprock. Police Chief Phillip Francisco says his department has turned over its findings to tribal prosecutors for further review.
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June 4, 2020

Congressional bill would require legal marijuana states to consider impaired driving policies

Democratic leadership in a House committee introduced a bill Wednesday that includes a provision requiring legal marijuana states — and only those states — to consider ways to promote education about the dangers of cannabis-impaired driving while curbing such behavior. The chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee filed the legislation, which is also being cosponsored by several chairs of subcommittees under the panel.
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June 4, 2020

New York Senator Pushes To Legalize Marijuana As Part Of Criminal Justice Package Amid Protests

As mass protests over police killings of black Americans continue across the U.S., there’s a renewed push in New York to pass a package of criminal justice reform legislation that includes marijuana legalization. The Safer NY Act is a collection of five bills that have been previously introduced and largely focus on policing reform, but it also contains legislation to legalize cannabis for adult use.
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June 4, 2020

State Senate passes legislation to expand medical marijuana program

In their first day back at the Iowa Capitol, the state senate passed legislation to expand Iowa’s medical marijuana program. The bill passed 32 to 17 yesterday. Currently, the limit of THC someone can get in a medical cannabidiol product is 3-percent in Iowa. The Senate bill allows people in Iowa's medical cannabis program to get up to 25 grams of THC every 90 days. Those who support the expansion say the state's program is too stringent. Opponents say more studies using CBD oil as a treatment are needed.
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June 4, 2020

Navajo police warn against illegal marijuana, hemp farms

Authorities on the largest Native American reservation in the U.S. are warning people against illegally growing marijuana and hemp. Navajo Nation police issued the warning Wednesday after confirming that officers were investigating complaints about marijuana or hemp being grown near the northwestern New Mexico community of Shiprock. Navajo Police Chief Phillip Francisco said his department has turned over its findings to tribal prosecutors for further review.
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June 4, 2020

191 farmers get permission to plant hemp plants in Ohio

After what farmers say was a lot of excitement before the hemp cultivation application process, only 191 Ohio farmers received permission to grow hemp after 207 across the state applied. Many of those farmers are preparing to plant their first crop in what will be the first growing season where hemp can be legally harvested.
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June 3, 2020

Third marijuana dispensary rises in Muskegon cannabis corridor

After coronavirus-related delays, Muskegon’s third marijuana dispensary is expected to open this summer. Redbud Roots, a Buchanan-based cannabis producer and distributor, expects its second retail location, at 237 W. Laketon Ave. in Muskegon’s marijuana overlay district, will open to the public on Saturday, June 27. The dispensary will cater to both medicinal and recreational users - and its design has been influenced by both Muskegon’s history and its recent brush with the COVID-19 outbreak, Alex Leonowicz, one of the company’s four co-founders, told MLive in a recent interview. “Curbside (pickup) is here to stay,” he said. Redbud Roots was founded in 2017 by Christopher Fanta, a real estate investor; David Murray, a hedge fund manager; Jim Finley, an entrepreneur; and Leonowicz, a corporate attorney specializing in cannabis law. They were licensed by the state in December 2018, according to Leonowicz. The company began as a cultivator and processor of cannabis, and currently produces 27 different cannabis-derived products in-house, including concentrates, edibles, waxes, tinctures and topical creams. Those products will make up half the stock at the 2,500-square-foot Muskegon store, which is still under construction, Leonowicz said. Last week, the company’s sign was installed outside its gleaming wood, metal and glass storefront. Just as the business’s first shop, in Acme, reflects northern Michigan’s vast woods, the Muskegon design is meant to reflect the city’s “grittier, more industrial feel,” Leonowicz said. Muskegon was a fit for the company because it was an “early adopter” of the cannabis industry, “and it’s also a great town,” said Leonowicz. Some of the company’s 92 employees are Muskegon natives, he added. The 14 people hired to work at the new store - security, managers, and sales associates known colloquially as “budtenders” - are all local, according to Leonowicz.
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