WeedVoice

An online media news aggregator and blog for the cannabis and hemp industry world-wide.

New York to look at legalizing recreational pot - Cannabis News

New York will study whether it's plausible to legalize marijuana for recreational use as neighboring states move ahead with it, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday.

Cuomo called on lawmakers to approve funding for a feasibility study as part of his annual state budget address, in which he laid out his spending proposal for the coming year.

The study would examine the effect legalization in Massachusetts, Vermont and possibly New Jersey would have on New York and what types of potential roadblocks could exist if the state were to relax its marijuana laws, particularly as the Trump administration has given prosecutors more leeway to prosecute federal-level marijuana laws.

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Jon Campbell ~ USAToday.com ~ 

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Vermont Gov. Scott Will Sign Cannabis Bill in Private - Cannabis News

Gov. Phil Scott confirmed Thursday that he will sign a bill legalizing personal cultivation and possession of marijuana — but he will not hold a signing ceremony.

The governor's chief counsel, Jaye Pershing Johnson, is currently reviewing the bill.

Scott said that is the only remaining step in the process, and he expects to sign it in short order.

"It won't be a public signing, but I'll sign it," he said.

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How to cook with cannabis and not bake your dinner guests - Cannabis News

Guests at a Vancouver trade show got an up-close look at a new frontier of the legal marijuana business: weed cuisine.

Diandra Phipps is on stage at the Vancouver Convention Centre demonstrating a vegan poached pear recipe that packs an extra zing.

Along side the star anise, sweet Muscato wine and caramel date sauce is small jar of coconut oil infused with White Widow, a high-THC cannabis strain sold by Tilray, one of Canada’s licensed medical marijuana producers.

Phipps, a young raven-haired chef from Halifax, apologizes for not being able to share the finished product.

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Bill to Legalize Medical Marijuana Introduced in Kentucky - Cannabis News

Supporters of legalizing medical marijuana in Kentucky touted its potential as a viable alternative to ease the state’s addiction woes from opioid painkillers.

Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes joined other advocates at a state Capitol event last week to promote a medical marijuana legalization bill introduced in the state House.

Advocates included Eric Crawford, who had a plastic bag filled with prescription bottles in his lap as he sat in a wheelchair. 

He suffered spinal cord injuries in a vehicle crash 24 years ago, and many of the prescriptions were to combat pain and relax muscles. Crawford, who lives in Mason County, said Kentuckians who want to use medical marijuana should not have to fear being treated as criminals.

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Rep. Barbara Lee introduces companion House bill to Marijuana Justice Act - Cannabis News

California Congresswoman Barbara Lee is championing Sen. Cory Booker’s Marijuana Justice Act in the House of Representatives.

Lee on Wednesday introduced a companion House bill to Booker’s legislative effort to end federal marijuana prohibition introduced in the Senate last August.

Congresswoman Barbara Lee is championing Sen. Cory Booker’s Marijuana Justice Act in the House of Representatives. Lee on Wednesday introduced a companion House bill to Booker’s legislative effort to end federal marijuana prohibition introduced in the Senate last August.

The House version has 12 co-sponsors, including Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., and marks the first time that companion legislation has been introduced in both chambers of Congress to remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act, according to Lee. 

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Cannabis Could Be The Most Profitable Ingredient In Skincare, If The U.S. Government Allows It - Cannabis News

Whether looking at the research from scientific studies or customer feedback, CBD is clearly a powerful skincare ingredient that can help hydrate, heal, and treat a myriad of skin conditions.

Lord Jones co-founder Cindy Capobianco describes her luxury cannabis-infused product business in much the same manner as any maker of a prestige natural skincare brand: it's made in small batches, organic ingredients, medicinal value of said ingredients.

With a body lotion and face products slated for release later this year, Lord Jones is trying to be a prestige natural skincare brand. One major difference: Lord Jones employs a team of lawyers to ensure they don’t have to tussle with the DEA over a moisturizer.

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Janna Mandell ~ Forbes.com ~ 

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19 state attorneys general back Colo. Rep. Ed Perlmutter’s marijuana banking bill - Cannabis News

A bill introduced by Colorado Rep. Ed Perlmutter that would allow banks to serve marijuana-related businesses without fear of penalties from the federal government got a boost Tuesday from a bipartisan coalition of state attorneys general.

A letter sent to leaders in Congress Tuesday by 19 state attorneys general requests advancement of legislation such as the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act to “provide a safe harbor” for banks that provide financial products or services to state-legal marijuana businesses.

The recent rescission by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Session of Obama-era guidance for the U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) regarding banks doing business with marijuana firms has made the need for Congressional action more urgent, the attorneys general said.

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Alex Pasquariello ~ TheCannabist.co ~ 

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New York Considers Expanding Its Medical Marijuana Program to All - Cannabis News

Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, father of the Compassionate Care Act, wants doctors to be able to recommend cannabis for any condition.

Nevermind Jeff Sessions' latest announcement to rescind the Cole memorandum — state legislators are going ahead with cannabis law reform, nonetheless.

In New York, Assemblyman Richard Gottfried recently introduced Assembly Bill 8904, which would allow doctors to recommend medical marijuana for any serious condition.

Currently, New York's medical marijuana program allows doctors to recommend cannabis for a limited number of conditions, such as cancer, epilepsy, or AIDS.

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What’s Next for New England Cannabis Legislation After Vermont? - Cannabis News

Trends are becoming clear in New England, where three states have now legalized recreational marijuana.

Once Gov. Phil Scott signs H.511 into law in Vermont, as he’s pledged to do, his state will become the ninth in the U.S. to have legalized adult-use marijuana.

The bill legalizes the possession of up to one ounce for adults 21 and older. Vermont residents may grow plants, as well: Two mature plants or four immature plants are allowed at any given time.

The law will take effect on July 1. As 2018 gets under way, it doesn’t seem like Vermont will be alone this year. 

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Nearly 70 Congress members push spending bill amendment to protect state-legal marijuana - Cannabis News

"In the last week there's been a groundswell of support to include this amendment in appropriations legislation," Rep. Jared Polis said.

Members of Congress have proposed a spending bill amendment that would ensure protections for states that have legalized marijuana.

Nearly 70 U.S. representatives signed onto a letter sent Friday to U.S. House of Representatives leadership asking for the inclusion of the provision, known as the McClintock-Polis Amendment, that ensures U.S. Department of Justice funds cannot be used to interfere with states that have authorized some form of marijuana legalization.

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Alicia Wallace and Alex Pasquariello ~ TheCannabist.co ~ 

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A New Generation Opens Up About the 'Grass' in Bluegrass - Cannabis News

Billy Strings: Cannabis 'has been a part of the process of writing every song I’ve written.'

Bluegrass music and cannabis go way back, but their relationship is rarely acknowledged in public.

“I didn’t know Bill Monroe,” says bluegrass guitarist Billy Strings. “But I wouldn’t take him for a pot smoker.”

Fair enough. But after Monroe came generations of musicians for whom cannabis has been a creative tool, a friendly way to relax, and sometimes a helpful way to find sleep during a hectic performing schedule. 

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Gov. Phil Scott Says He'll Sign Bill Legalizing Marijuana in Vermont - Cannabis News

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott said Thursday that, barring unforeseen technicalities, he will sign the bill legalizing personal cultivation and possession of marijuana.

Scott indicated previously that he'd sign, but this was the first time the governor said so publicly since the Vermont Senate passed the legislation on Wednesday.

"We'll take a look at it to make sure it's technically correct, and then I'll sign the bill," Scott said during an unrelated Statehouse press conference about the first report of the governor's Opioid Coordination Council.

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John Walters ~ SevenDaysVT.com ~ 

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Connecticut: Cannabis Basic Training Embraces Future Business Opportunities - Cannabis News

Connecticut cannabis activists believe that legalization of recreational cannabis isn’t a matter of if, it’s a matter of when.

They’re anticipating the time when the Nutmeg State emulates neighboring Massachusetts.

These activists aren’t looking forward to getting high. They’re looking forward to helping entrepreneurs embrace the possibilities of the cannabis industry.

Kebra Smith-Bolden of New Haven is ready. As a registered nurse, Smith-Bolden is also director of two organizations that promote cannabis business ventures: Women Grow Connecticut (facebook.com/womengrowct) and Cannabis Consultants of Connecticut (ctcannsonsulting.com). She also is CEO of CannaHealth (cannahealthct.org), a cannabis health and wellness center in New Haven.

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Study: Legal marijuana could generate more than $132 billion in federal tax revenue and 1 million jobs - Cannabis News

Legalizing marijuana nationwide would create at least $132 billion in tax revenue and more than a million new jobs across the United States in the next decade, according to a new study.

New Frontier Data, a data analytics firm focused on the cannabis industry, forecasts that if legalized on the federal level, the marijuana industry could create an entirely new tax revenue stream for the government, generating millions of dollars in sales tax and payroll deductions.

“When there are budget deficits and the like, everybody wants to know where is there an additional revenue stream, and one of the most logical places is to go after cannabis and cannabis taxes,” said Beau Whitney, a senior economist at New Frontier Data.

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Katie Zezima ~ WashingtonPost.com ~ 

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Nevada lawmakers urge Congress to change federal marijuana laws - Cannabis News

Nevada lawmakers said Tuesday that Congress must address federal marijuana laws following a decision by the Trump administration to lower the barrier on federal prosecutions in states that have decriminalized use for medical and recreational purposes.

Rep. Dina Titus, D-Nev., and Rep. Mark Amodei, R-Nev., are working on legislation filed by Republicans and Democrats to amend the Controlled Substances Act and allow marijuana to be made available for medical research and use, and another bill allowing states to regulate marijuana as they do alcohol.

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Gary Martin ~ ReviewJournal.com ~

 

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Nuuvera breaks ground on medical cannabis packaging facility in Germany

Nuuvera Deutschland has broken ground on a new facility in Germany for storage and packaging of medical cannabis products.

Located in Bad Bramstedt, in northern Germany, the 11,300ft² facility features security and related technology and will be built in compliance with the most stringent requirements for the storage of controlled substances in Germany and the EU.

Planned to be built in two phases, the storage and packaging facility will help meet the increasing demand for medical cannabis products.

Nuuvera CEO Lorne Abony said that the new facility will help the company in continuing to develop into a major supplier of medical cannabis products to German consumers.

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Cannabis Insiders Share 2018 Industry Wishes - Cannabis News

With 2018 just beginning to unfold, cannabis pioneers weigh in and share their hopes for the year ahead.

2018 is shaping up to be a wild year for cannabis and it's only January.

As California rolled out recreational sales last week, the Justice Department reversed rules that protect legal pot businesses from federal intervention.

Weed, both recreational and medicinal, is now legal up and down the entire west coast of the United States. Massachusetts and possibly, Maine are on course to follow suit later this year.

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‘Breeding Is an Art Form’: An Interview with Cannabis Cup Champion, Exotic Genetix - Cannabis News

When it comes to quality cannabis, it all begins with a quality seed created by a breeder.

In the last decade, Washington State’s Exotic Genetix has taken a strong hold on the cannabis breeding community.

Most recently, Exotic Genetix won Best Indica for their strain Tina in addition to Best Hybrid for Cookies & Cream at the 2017 High Times SoCal Harvest Cannabis Cup.

Having claimed numerous awards since their beginning in 2008, Exotic Genetix is widely recognized for their consistent quality.

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Federal marijuana bills boosted by new supporters as Congress gets back to work - Cannabis News

The fresh pledges of support come amid calls from congressional members to shore up protections for states that have legalized marijuana.

Lawmakers lined up behind several cannabis-related House bills in the wake of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ policy shift last week rescinding the Obama-era Cole Memo that had protected states with marijuana laws.

The U.S. House of Representatives officially returned from recess Tuesday morning, but a slew of Democrats got to work Monday by adding their names as co-sponsors on four marijuana-related bills: The Respect State Marijuana Laws Act of 2017 (House Bill 975), The Ending Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2017 (House Bill 1227), Marijuana Revenue and Regulation Act (House Bill 1823), and Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Act (House Bill 1841).

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Alicia Wallace ~ TheCannabist.co ~ 

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Marijuana insurance biz finding 'niche' - Cannabis News

Eight years into running Cannasure, one of the only insurance businesses in the country specializing in the cannabis industry, Patrick McManamon is now in position for explosive growth.

When a friend in San Diego asked Patrick McManamon about securing general liability insurance for a marijuana dispensary in 2009 at the behest of his landlord, McManamon was incredulous.

The industry for growing, processing and selling marijuana sales was young and quasi-legal (it still is as far as the federal government is concerned), especially in the unregulated California landscape at the time.

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Jeremy Nobile ~ CrainsCleveland.com ~ 

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Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin sets vote for medical marijuana ballot measure - Cannabis News

Oklahoma voters will get to decide on June 26 whether to legalize medical marijuana.

Gov. Mary Fallin’s announcement Thursday came on the same day U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions revoked an Obama-era policy that was deferential to states’ permissive marijuana laws.

Oklahoma’s vote will come during the primary election. Fallin’s other option would have been to set it during the November general election.

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Barbara Hoberock ~ TulsaWorld.com ~ 

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San Francisco cannabis dispensaries draw large crowds as recreational sales begin - Cannabis News

At least two cannabis dispensaries in San Francisco may have seen more customers than ever before on Saturday, when it became legal for authorized dispensaries to sell weed to any adult over the age of 21 without a medical marijuana card.

Beginning Saturday morning and continuing through Sunday, crowds of people lined up outside the Apothecarium in the Castro neighborhood to purchase weed.

On Sunday, Medithrive in the Mission District had a revolving door of customers purchasing cannabis joints, drinks and flower. The dispensaries were two of just six retailers in San Francisco with state authorization to sell cannabis for recreational use over the weekend. 

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Michael Barba ~ SFExaminer.com ~ 

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Did Jeff Sessions Just Increase the Odds Congress Will Make Marijuana Legal? - Cannabis News

The attorney general has created intolerable uncertainty for a growing industry that is now demanding legal protections from Congress. And lawmakers are listening.

When Jeff Sessions announced Thursday morning he had removed the barrier that had held back federal prosecutors from pursuing marijuana cases in states that had made pot legal, he delivered on something he had all but promised when he was nominated as attorney general.

Most of the marijuana world saw it coming, but they freaked out anyway.

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James Higdon ~ Politico.com ~ 

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It’s High Time: Korean-American Designers Inject Stoner Culture in K-Fashion - Cannabis News

From caps with stitched cigarette-holders to durumagi coats with spliff pockets, Sundae School’s clothes combines counter-cultural elements with traditional Korean and Western culture.

South Korea, education, religion, and marijuana. See the odd one out?

Sundae School, a Seoul-based streetwear brand inspired by stoner culture, brings together these four seemingly-dissimilar elements into fashion.

The young Korean-American siblings who founded the company have garnered attention in the U.S. since they launched the brand in New York on April 20, widely known in the U.S. as ‘weed day.’

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New federal pot policy unlikely to affect Illinois medical marijuana; legalization push continues - Cannabis News

Members of Illinois’ medical marijuana industry say they’re disappointed by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ move to allow more aggressive enforcement of marijuana laws — but business operators maintain existing laws will protect them.

And one of the sponsors of a proposal to legalize recreational pot in Illinois says the federal shift won’t derail the bill’s chances.

“They’re trying to put the genie back in the bottle, and it’s going to be a challenge for them to accomplish,” said state Sen. Heather Steans, a Chicago Democrat.

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Robert McCoppin and Ally Marotti ~ ChicagoTribune.com ~

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California's pot world sees 'reefer madness' in Sessions' assault on legal marijuana - Cannabis News

“Jeff Sessions is an old dinosaur with old ideas,” said one dispensary customer. “We have a younger, newer, more educated population who will vote that out. It won’t last."

For the steady stream of customers waiting to see a “budtender” Thursday at a Santa Ana pot store, U.S. Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions’ broadside against recreational pot was more a bummer than a buzzkill.

People were annoyed — but not terribly surprised that California, once again, would be going to battle in the cultural wars with the Trump administration.

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Emily Alpert Reyes, Angel Jennings and Hailey Branson-Potts ~ LATimes.com ~ 

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Vermont House declines to delay marijuana vote amid federal uncertainty - Cannabis News

The Vermont House of Representatives has rejected two attempts to slow marijuana legalization, first by refusing to delay a vote and then by rejecting an amendment that would have delayed legalization to July 2019.

The legalization proposal would allow adults over 21 to possess small amounts of marijuana and grow their own plants beginning in July.

Vermont House members first rejected a Republican-led effort to delay the vote until Gov. Phil Scott's Marijuana Advisory Commission issues its next report on Jan. 15 about preventing youth drug use, detecting impaired drivers and other issues.

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April McCullum ~ BurllingtonFreePress.com ~

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New Hampshire Lawmakers Could OK Legal Marijuana This Week - Cannabis News

Much attention has been paid to the prospects for ending marijuana prohibition this year in Vermont and New Jersey. But another state has a shot to advance a cannabis legalization bill through its legislature — and it could happen this week.

The New Hampshire House of Representatives is expected to consider the issue after the legislature reconvenes for the year on Wednesday.

The 400-member body’s calendar for that day includes HB 656, a marijuana legalization bill that was rejected by a divided Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee in November.

But supportive members of that panel are planning to amend the bill on the floor in a way they believe gives it a chance of passing and advancing to the Senate.

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A $1 billion marijuana windfall for New Jersey? Some say it's possible - Cannabis News

New Jersey could reap as much as $1 billion a year from legal marijuana — the equivalent of more than a half-cent boost in the sales tax — if the state taxes the industry aggressively and imposes fees on growers, distributors, testing labs, retailers and delivery services, according to projections by a law firm.

The conclusion illustrates the stakes faced by Phil Murphy, who campaigned for legal recreational use in his bid for governor.

The incoming governor is seeking a windfall to pay for big-ticket items like free community college for residents. However, representatives of the nascent industry caution that a heavy-handed approach from Trenton could stifle business, keeping much of marijuana production and distribution underground and untaxed.

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James Nash ~ NorthJersey.com ~ 

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Marijuana Legalization 2018: Which States Might Consider Cannabis Laws This Year? – Cannabis News

The legal marijuana market could blaze across the United States in 2018.

At least 12 states are poised to consider marijuana legalization this year, with more possibly joining as legislative sessions continue, making 2018 a potentially pivotal year in the burgeoning bud movement.

Some states are even preparing to take unprecedented legislative steps to make marijuana—either recreational or medical—legal and more easily accessible.

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Linley Sanders ~ Newsweek.com ~ 

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15 Biggest U.S. Cities That Will Have Legalized Marijuana in 2018 - Cannabis News

2018 is only a few short days away, which means several states will be instituting new marijuana laws.

If you’re looking to make a move some time in the new year, here are the 15 largest cities in America that will have legalized marijuana at some point in 2018.

Unsurprisingly, most of these cities are in California.

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Joseph Misulonas ~ Civilized.Life ~

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American Pot: 5 Best Strains of 2017 - Cannabis News

From a CBD-heavy hybrid to the best kind of weed for a party joint, our picks for this year's best cannabis.

Cannabis has had quite the year. Namely, companies learned the industry is hella lucrative – it's a multi-billion dollar industry – and politicians gleaned supporting legalization can earn them some political sway.

This year also ushered in a massive wave of luxe cannabis products and accessories.

It's safe to say what might have been considered the plant's edge is now officially sanded and shellacked smooth.

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Maine lawmakers optimistic that disagreements on marijuana bill can be resolved - Cannabis News

Key legislators will meet later this week with Gov. LePage, hoping to address his objections to a proposed regulatory framework for the sale, production and taxation of pot for adult recreational use.

Key lawmakers will meet with Gov. Paul LePage on Friday to try to reach agreement on how to change an adult-use marijuana bill so it would gain his support.

Members of a special committee that drafted the bill after state voters approved legalization in 2016 said they were optimistic that they could reach a compromise on issues that led LePage to veto the measure in November.

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Scott Thistle ~ Portland Press Herald ~ 

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Veterans and access to cannabis: 2017 in review - Cannabis News

2017 was a year of both setbacks and progress for veterans and their supporters, seeking greater access to legal medical marijuana.

2017 was a year of frustration but also incremental progress for military veterans, veterans’ organizations and supporters, as they continued to lobby federal and state politicians to expand legalized medical marijuana research — as well as greater veteran access to legal pot for treatment of a variety of ailments, including chronic pain and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Despite concerns about crackdowns, as well as some setbacks, steady pressure was applied to politicians to at least consider an evolution of current policies. Here’s a roundup of how some of those efforts have played out over the course of this year.

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Bruce Kennedy ~ TheCannabist.co ~ 

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Three Politicians Who Came Out of the Marijuana Closet in 2017 - Cannabis News

As it becomes clear that the American public is overwhelmingly in favor of legalizing cannabis, more politicians than ever began coming out in support of the marijuana movement over the past year.

In celebration of these compassionate, forward-thinking public servants, here highlight three politicians in the United States Senate who came out of the marijuana closet in 2017 to give their support for the legalization of cannabis, either by attaching their name to new, less restrictive legislation or speaking out in favor of decriminalizing marijuana in some way.

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Melissa Sherrard ~ Civilized.Life ~

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Jack in the Box flirts with cannabis culture, but don't expect other big names to follow just yet - Cannabis News

Jack in the Box is teaming up with weed-centric online site called Merry Jane to launch late night munchie kits.

Jack in the Box is flirting with marijuana culture in its latest venture. The fast-food chain is teaming up with Merry Jane, a weed-focused online publication, to launch the Merry Munchie Meal in celebration of recreational pot becoming legal in California come the new year.

The bundle includes a curated selection of what the restaurant says are its "most craveable and snackable" products.

Jack in the Box already offers Munchie Meals on its late-night menu.

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Kentucky Secretary of State: Let's get medical marijuana bill on Gov. Matt Bevin's desk - Cannabis News

Secretary of State Alison Grimes' New Year's resolution is a bit blunt: Medical marijuana must be legalized in Kentucky to help veterans suffering from PTSD and others who are painfully ill.

“This is an issue of which I hoped the commonwealth would have already addressed,” Grimes told Courier Journal.

“Many of Kentucky’s neighbors have already legalized medical cannabis to aid and help their citizens with pain. Kentucky is behind.”

But given Gov. Matt Bevin and law enforcement organizations' concerns over the issue, there are questions over whether a bill could pass.

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California’s top marijuana regulator talks legalization - Cannabis News

LOS ANGELES (AP) — California’s legal pot market opens for business on Jan. 1.

The day will be a milestone, but what exactly will happen then and, especially, in the weeks and months to come is unclear.

Lori Ajax is the state’s top pot regulator and has been at the center of the effort to establish rules for a legal pot economy valued at $7 billion.

Here’s her thoughts on what to expect.

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Inside the first-ever Aspen High Summit, a meeting of music and marijuana masterminds - Cannabis News

Good music and good cannabis can really make me feel the same way," said keynote speaker Steve DeAngelo, "they both activate the brain-heart connection, they stimulate each other and put one in touch with the other.”

“Connection, connection, connection,” Steve DeAngelo stressed to the collection of 150 cannabis and music industry insiders gathered in the Colorado mountains for the inaugural Aspen High Summit.

The first-of-its-kind conference held last week at Aspen’s Limelight Hotel connected two of the legendary cannabis activist and entrepreneur’s biggest passions in life: music and cannabis.

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Katie Shapiro ~ TheCannabist.co ~ 

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Canada: MedReleaf partners with Shoppers Drug Mart to sell medical marijuana online

Canadian cannabis producer MedReleaf Corp on Thursday signed an agreement with retailer Loblaw Companies’ unit Shoppers Drug Mart to sell medical cannabis online.

Shares of MedReleaf jumped more than 4 per cent when trading resumed after they were halted pending news.

Shares of MedReleaf were halted ahead of the announcement and will resume trading at 13:15 ET.

Canadian cannabis producers are scrambling to sign up distributors as the country is on track to legalize recreational marijuana by July.

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104 businesses seek 40 licenses to process medical marijuana in Ohio - Cannabis News

Ohio’s new medical marijuana program received 104 applications for up to 40 processor licenses, the state announced Wednesday.

The list of applicants discloses only the company and contact names — not the full application details.

But there are familiar players listed, including 19 of 24 companies that were awarded cultivator licenses earlier this year. Cresco Labs LLC, which landed a Level 1 cultivator license for a growing factory in Yellow Springs, also applied for a processor license.

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Laura A. Bischoff ~ DaytonDailyNews.com ~

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Veterans groups react to VA’s shift in medical marijuana policy - Cannabis News

Advocates seeking increased medical marijuana access for vets aren't convinced the Department of Veterans Affairs' new directive moves the needle for patients.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs earlier this month issued a new directive for clinical programs that frees its doctors and pharmacists to discuss marijuana with military vets taking part in state-approved medical marijuana programs.

The directive, dated Dec. 8 and first reported by Forbes, changes policy to support “the Veteran – (health) provider relationship when discussing the use of marijuana and its impact on health, including Veteran-specific treatment plans.”

Doctors and pharmacists may discuss marijuana use with vets requesting information, according to the directive. 

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Bill Nye: Marijuana’s Federal Status ‘Not Based In Science’ - Cannabis News

One of the world’s most famous scientists says that the U.S. government’s classification of marijuana has absolutely nothing to do with science.

“Nobody’s really sure how it works, marijuana. Nobody’s exactly sure what it does,” he said in a new interview released on Tuesday.

“And so there’s a very strong argument that keeping it as a Schedule I drug is not based in any science.”

Schedule I — most restrictive category under federal law — is supposed to be reserved for drugs with a high potential for abuse and no medical value. “But people use marijuana and marijuana extracts for all sorts of medical applications, so you’ve got to think there’s something to it,” Nye said.

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Philly hospitals, medical schools jockey for marijuana partners - Cannabis News

The University of the Sciences in Philadelphia this week became the latest academic player to announce it was getting into marijuana research.

The school is pairing with Franklin BioScience, a large grower out of Denver, to create more consistent marijuana products and develop a cannabis education program for pharmacists, physicians, and students planning on entering the health professions.

Big marijuana is banking on Pennsylvania to become a major hub of the burgeoning legal cannabis sector, which last year was valued at $6.7 billion nationwide and is expected to balloon to over $21 billion by 2021, according to estimates by the Arcview Group.

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Sam Wood ~ Philly.com ~ 

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The Holiday Gift Guide For The Cannabis Newbie - Cannabis News

With the holiday season upon us, you might be wondering what type of gifts to get your friends and family who are new to cannabis.

To help you come up with the perfect present for the marijuana novice in your life, here's the Civilized gift guide for the cannabis newbie.

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Melissa Sherrard ~ Civilized.Life ~ 

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Big business invests $2.7bn in cannabis in 2017, 3 times more than last year - Cannabis News

Legal cannabis producers and sellers have raised at least $2.696 billion so far in 2017, several times more than at the same point last year, with more than half of the money pumped into Canadian companies, ahead of an expected full legalization in the country next year.

“While the medical market is expected to continue to grow over the next several years, the size of the coming adult-use market is expected to far exceed that of the medical side,” said Harrison Phillips, vice-president at Viridian Capital Advisors, which closely tracks the booming market.

“Companies have been raising significant amounts of capital, primarily to increase capacity to satisfy the coming surge in expected demand.”

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MirageNews.com ~

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10 States Most Likely to Flip-Flop on Marijuana in 2018 - Cannabis News

2017 is coming to a close, and unfortunately it didn’t offer up as many highlights when it comes to marijuana as 2016. But that trend may change next year.

Last year, we saw three states legalize cannabis recreationally (California, Maine and Massachusetts), and a fourth came up just short (Arizona).

This year, the biggest story was that New Jersey elected someone who’s promised to legalize marijuana soon. Not nearly as satisfying.

But as 2017 draws to a close, here are 10 states that could flip-flop on marijuana in 2018.

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Mainstream alert: You can buy a weed-leaf Christmas tree from Walmart - Cannabis News

In a sign of the mainstreaming of marijuana in the United States, consumers can purchase “the original Weed Christmas Tree” at walmart.com.

The tree is seven feet tall, and according to the description, comes with “realistic marijuana leaves” — but sadly not the ornaments and bow pictured here.

The description on walmart.com says:

This Pot Leaf Christmas tree will “light up” the room and put your mind in the right head-space for holiday cheer. You’ll be able to relax and giggle at the marijuana leaves and decorate it as you please. This alternative Christmas tree is perfect for personal top shelf life at home or as a medical dispensary decoration. Green Wishes and Happy Holidhaze!

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Cleveland School of Cannabis gets state approval - Cannabis News

The Cleveland School of Cannabis says it received approval from the Ohio State Board of Career Colleges and Schools this week.

That means it’s the first cannabis career school east of Colorado with state-approved programs, according to the Cleveland School of Cannabis.

“As an educational facility that is working to advance the study and understanding of cannabis in our country today, we are incredibly honored to be the second State approved institution in the country right now,” said Richard Pine, dean of recruitment, in a news release on Wednesday.

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Jen Steer ~ Fox8.com ~

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Poll shows strong support for medical marijuana in Georgia - Cannabis News

A solid majority of Republican voters in Georgia support the use of cannabis oil to treat medical conditions, according to a new poll.

The telephone survey of 511 respondents who identified themselves as likely Republican primary voters found 77 percent approval of legalizing the medical use of cannabis oil.

Almost that many respondents – 71 percent – supported the controlled cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes.

"The data shows that Georgians are compassionate people who do not want to see sick people suffer needlessly when a safe and effective treatment is available," said Georgia Rep. Allen Peake, R-Macon, who sponsored legislation the General Assembly passed two years ago that allows use of cannabis oil to treat certain medical conditions.

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