Wild Wild West of Marijuana Businesses Coming to an End

A major part of the work our legal team is involved with includes helping marijuana businesses establish themselvescannabis business while remaining in compliance with local and state regulations and laws. What happens, though, when a company is found to be in violation of one of those rules? Many businesses are beginning to find out as authorities ramp up efforts to wrangle illegal, unlicensed, and non-compliant marijuana operations in California. Recently more than 500 people were charged with misdemeanors in Los Angeles for their participation in illegal activity at 105 marijuana businesses in the city.

Those charged could face up to six months in jail and a $1,000 in fines for operating marijuana businesses without a license. The crackdown included not only dispensaries, but also extraction labs, cultivation sites, and delivery services, according to Los Angeles Times. Judges have been hearing cases associated with this series of investigations since May, and arraignments will carry into the end of October. So far, 21 have pleaded no contest or guilty and 11 have been dismissed. Other violations included not following security locations or not following rules regarding the business’s location, such as being too close to a school. With the proper future licensing and guidance, some of these businesses could still have a future, but major infractions like location will mean some will have to practically start over from scratch if they hope to continue in the industry.
Many have argued excess regulation, monstrously high taxes, and difficulty acquiring licensing have driven marijuana business owners to operate …

“Think About the Children” Goes Both Ways When It Comes to Marijuana

The issue of children and marijuana protections arose once again in the form of a proposed bill from Californiamedical marijuana Senator Jean Fuller (R-Bakersfield). The senator wanted to get on the books more concrete ramifications for dispensaries who sold marijuana to underage clients. The bill proposed a tiered system in which first offenders would receive a 15-day license suspension, second-time offenders within a three-year period would receive a 25-day suspension, and a third offense in three years would lead to a full license revocation. SB-1451, however, was vetoed by Gov. Jerry Brown, who called the bill “not necessary,” according tot a report from High Times. Gov. Brown pointed to the Bureau of Cannabis Control and cited their power to suspend or revoke licenses based on these exact kinds of violations and said he would rather the bureau be able to use their own discretion in determining punishment.

In the numerous discussions surrounding the issue of cannabis laws in California and other states across the country, there has been an extraordinary amount of focus on children. Can they be recommended marijuana by a doctor? What is the punishment for selling to a minor? How can marijuana businesses advertise in a way that would not be seen by or not be appealing to children? How do we make the packaging child safe? How does cannabis affect developing brains and bodies? How far should a business be located from schools? The list goes on and on, and many of these issues can be addressed simply with …

Workplace Deaths Go Down with Access to Medical Marijuana … By a Lot

Recent research out of American University, Colorado State University, and Montana State University delved into a medical marijuanacorrelation between workplace fatalities and the legalization of medical marijuana, and the discoveries could be surprising to many. The data points compiled fly in the face of anti-marijuana rhetoric that has been peddled as “common sense” for decades and show, in fact, a sharp decline in fatal workplace accidents as access to medical marijuana increases. The research is set to be published in The International Journal of Drug Policy, and according to a report from Colorado Springs Independent, the connection the research demonstrated between continuous decreases in fatalities in the workplace and medical marijuana is compelling.

Researchers compiled data from 1992 to 2015, providing a set that included the several years leading up to the passage of the Compassionate Use Act of 1996, which legalized medical marijuana in California, making it the first state to do so. The study followed other states as well and found that deaths from workplace accidents would drop about 34 percent after medical marijuana had been legal in that state for five years. The connection was most notable in the age group of 25- to 44-year-olds, which demonstrated a 19.8 percent reduction.
It was unclear what researchers would uncover going into the study given that there had never been an opportunity to collect this kind of data before. Additionally, it would seem reasonable that introducing a drug into society that had the potential for impairment could lead to an increase …

State Lawmakers: Medical Marijuana Should Get a Pass in Schools

It seems parents and schools are finally giving more thought to children and the ailments that can be treated withmedical marijuana medical marijuana. Delaware News Journal reported an increasing number of parents are turning to cannabis for their children with especially serious or rare conditions. It’s no wonder then that California lawmakers recently passed a bill to allow medical marijuana on school premises.

SB-1127 was introduced by Calif. Sen. Jerry Hill (D-San Mateo) and has passed both houses of the state legislature. Ultimately, the bill would leave it up to school districts and boards of education to decide whether or not to allow medical marijuana on school grounds. While it’s noble to allow school district to have some autonomy, this decision could lead to much confusion and unnecessary distress. Prop 64 allowed cities in California to maintain a ban on sales and cultivation at their own discretion, and it has led to a great deal of Californians not being able to full participate in the cannabis economies they voted to legalize. Similarly, the most vulnerable students and their parents could very well be pigeon-holed by rigid district officials and judgmental peers who can’t understand the complex decisions a parent must make to ensure their child has the best care possible. After all, cannabis generally isn’t recommended by physicians for children except in severe cases.
Parents would still be required to administer the medication as needed, and it cannot be smoked or vaped, nor can it be stored at the school. The new bill, if signed

Free Weed Comes With a Hefty Price Tag

A recent bill out of the California state house would make marijuana compassionate-care programs exempt from themedical cannabis substantial state taxes on the medical cannabis that they supply to patients in need. SB 829 corrects a hole in Proposition 64, which saddled these not-for-profit organizations with taxes. The Compassionate Use Act of 1996 made medical marijuana legal in California, which spurred the birth of compassionate-care programs for patients with serious health issues and financial restraints. According to NORML, these organizations have been able to donate product and function tax-free up until this year when recreational marijuana became legal.

What did recreational legalization have to do with medical marijuana patients and associated care programs? As our marijuana attorneys can explain, after voters approved Proposition 64, government representatives and officials began ironing out how the recreational program would work. It was determined a set of guidelines was needed that could pull together the medical marijuana industry (which had been active for 20 years) with the new recreational cannabis law. That is when MAUCRSA (Medicinal And Adult-Use Cannabis Regulatory Safety Act) was born. What was intended to streamline rules and make things easier for business owners, customers, and law enforcement officials ended up strapping medical marijuana institutions with a significant number of regulations they previously did not have to follow.Among those regulations was a stipulation that cannabis businesses must pay taxes on all marijuana products, which were already collecting a new level of taxes along each step of the supply chain. This rule applied even …

Report: California Recreational Marijuana Stores Lacking

Economics 101 teaches us about supply and demand, but you don’t need a business degree to see that the supply ofmarijuana business lawyers recreational marijuana retailers is way lower than the demand in California. For every 100,000 residents, there is less than one store available that sells adult-use product, according to recent data released by Marijuana Business Daily. Furthermore, most of those stores are crammed into a few select areas, due to the fact that Prop 64 allows local governments to opt out of allowing sales or cultivation, though they are not allowed to ban personal use. To be more precise, there are 482 cities in California, and to date, only 70 of those cities allow retailers to sell recreational marijuana.

Comparatively speaking, this puts California not only behind its own estimates for store fronts and sales figures, but also behind its peers. It’s been nine months since recreational marijuana sales began in the state. At the nine-month mark in Colorado, the state had awarded 242 licenses. Considering the state has a smaller population than California, this put the total at 4.3 stores per 100,000 residents. Now, Colorado has 10 times the amount of stores per capita, while Oregon currently has 15 times more recreational marijuana stores per person.There also is a disparity in shops readily available to each person, an imbalance created by areas like Bakersfield and Fresno. Each is a densely packed city that has banned cannabis sales. The combined 900,000 residents have to travel more than an hour to get access …

Does Your Cannabis Business Have the Right Security?

When starting a cannabis business, there are obvious considerations, such as product, employees, and location. Anmarijuana business equally important, but less discussed, element is security. Considering some security measures are actually built into the regulations for marijuana businesses, this is certainly not something to be taken lightly. Cannabis Business Times recently broke down security recommendations and requirements for marijuana cultivators, and our experienced legal team can expand on these tips and explain the rules other types of businesses must also understand.

It may seem basic, but one of the most important steps the report outlined was assessing risk. You don’t want to be reactive to your security needs, only putting measures in place after a problem presents itself. It’s important to be proactive, and identify all the risk areas, particularly any touchpoints where product could be removed from your facility without your knowledge.

Video surveillance is one of the top methods of security in any type of marijuana business, but there are many aspects that must be taken into consideration before choosing the system that’s right for you. Is the video quality high resolution enough? CA Code of Regulations Div. 42, Ch. 1, Sec. 5044 states that minimum camera resolution must be 1280 x 720 pixels. The ability to identify any person recorded must be clear and certain. Your system cannot be in-house only; it must be accessible through the Internet. State guidelines also very specifically outline camera location protocol. The fixed and permanently mounted cameras need to have a view of 20 feet around …

Candidate Targeted by Bank for Support of Marijuana

It is common knowledge among our marijuana business attorneys and our clients that banks are highly restricted inmarijuana business how they can interact with the cannabis industry. Wells Fargo, however, recently took those restrictions too far when the bank closed the account of a candidate in Florida who made cannabis legalization a tenant of her campaign platform. According to New York Times, Nikki Fried is running for Florida agricultural commissioner and said expansion of the state’s current program is her highest priority.

The candidate runs her campaign finances through Wells Fargo, who questioned her support of marijuana and whether or not she also was planning to take donations from marijuana businesses to fund her campaign. When her campaign workers confirmed she would take such donations, Wells Fargo made an unprecedented move in shutting down her account. Our skilled Los Angeles marijuana business attorneys know it is true under Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. Section 812 that the consumption and sales of marijuana in any form or for any purpose is still prohibited in the eyes of the federal government. Therefore, running a marijuana business would still, on paper, be considered illicit drug trafficking. Congress has intervened with the Rohrebacher-Blumenauer Amendment, which has freed cannabis businesses to function under the supervision of individual state laws without the interference of the U.S. Department of Justice, Banks, meanwhile, still largely have their hands tied, unable to allow those businesses to knowingly house money being used to commit a federal crime due to their own federal regulations …

Regional Cannabis Producers Seek Protection for Brands

To assist California cannabis growers establish their regions as brands, the California Department of Food and cannabis businessAgriculture is working on a system of regulations for naming craft cannabis strains. According to a report from Ganjapreneur, this is similar to the way the system of naming works for wines, in which a wine must actually be from the Napa region in order to carry that moniker on its label. CalCannabis Cultivation Licensing, the arm of CDFA that controls marijuana growers, is planning workshops in September to gather feedback and provide more information to cultivators.

The area known as the Emerald Triangle in Northern California has earned its name due to its high rate of cannabis cultivation. In fact, it’s the largest marijuana-producing area in the country. Growers in the region would like to capitalize on their world-renowned status to help give their product recognition and increase its desirability. They pride themselves on creating interesting, high-quality strains and growing in top-notch environments, and they want to make sure that random grow operations from some other region can’t use their regional names on their own labels.
As anyone in business knows, sometimes a remarkable product isn’t enough. When a market is saturated with a great deal of product that all appears to be the same, at least on the surface, branding becomes essential to help certain products stand out. Cannabis businesses are no different. This is especially true when you consider the average cannabis consumer is accustomed to just accepting whatever was available to them. In …

What Marijuana Businesses Need to Know About Recalls

Two recent cannabis product recalls have some marijuana businesses concerned about such scenarios becoming amarijuana business widespread issue, particularly with more stringent testing regulations recently becoming mandatory. According to a report from Marijuana Business Daily, though, several testing labs have said there is little to be concerned about, especially as these regulations continue to balance out and become more integrated.

The testing labs noted first of all that the two instances of recalls, both in late July, were self-imposed by the companies who manufacture the product. Thousands of marijuana products have passed lab tests and have moved along to retailer shelves. The data from these tests is double checked by the Bureau of Cannabis Control to help ensure product that should have failed the tests does not make it into stores. For the most part, companies have been able to keep up with the new regulations, and the recalls were reportedly a precautionary move by those particular businesses. As understanding of all regulations continues to grow stronger, incidents of product testing failures will continue to decline.As our Riverside marijuana business lawyers can explain, new regulations came into play July 1 of this year which enforced more strict rules about childproof packaging, labeling of THC and CBD levels, and testing for pesticides. For the first half of the year, businesses were operating under a grace period allowed by Proposition 64 in which products simply had to disclose that they had not been tested or that levels were unknown. As it stands, the system requires

The Numbers Are In: Marijuana Businesses Still Winning in Colorado

More than four years after recreational marijuana became legal in Colorado, the state is continuing to post bigmarijuana business numbers as a result of the blossoming cannabis economy. According to The Denver Post, Denver’s dispensaries recorded $587 million in sales in 2017, a record high, with sales continuing to rise into 2018. This was an increase of 16 percent over 2016. Sales throughout the state totaled $150.8 billion during the same time period, a 15 percent increase over 2016.

When broken down by recreational and medical marijuana, both the city of Denver and Colorado as a whole actually saw a decrease in medical cannabis sales, but the increase in recreational sales made up for the losses and then some. In Denver, medical sales dropped from $212 million to $206.4 million, while recreational retail sales spiked from $291.5 million to $377.5 million. Statewide, medical sales were $445 million in 2016 and $416.5 million in 2017, while recreational sales jumped from $861.6 million to $1.09 billion. When examined by location, while sales in Denver continue to climb, other regions in the state are starting to take a bigger percentage of the overall pie, which good news for those who live outside the big city.It is of no surprise to our experienced L.A. marijuana business attorneys that medical sales would lose ground to retail sales over time. Some people were using the medical marketplace for years to supplement their interest in marijuana for recreational purposes. Others find the process of obtaining a medical marijuana card and …

$32,500 for Medical Cannabis? Are You High?

The company that produced the first ever cannabis-derived medicine to be approved for use by the U.S. Food & Drug medical cannabisAdministration has revealed to investors the cost of the drug: $32,500 per year. This is reportedly on the low-end of original estimates between $30,000 and $60,000. Epidiolex, made with CBD and used to treat rare forms of childhood epilepsy, is said to be priced competitively with other epilepsy drugs on the market. This, however, is not other epilepsy drugs.

One of the reasons, among many, that marijuana has become so popular for medicinal use is that it is relatively inexpensive compared to other treatments, even without the help of insurance companies to cover the costs. Some markup by pharmaceutical companies is to be expected to cover testing, research, and ensure consistency and purity of the product. The disparity between cost and price in this instance seems specifically designed to prey on desperate families already prepared to pay top dollar to help their children. In fact, the price was set with the consultation of insurance companies, according to a Business Insider report.

Certainly this is not outside the realm of reason in the pharmaceutical industry. Marking up the price of medicine is business as usual. It is dubious, however, that pharmaceutical companies have been lobbying so strongly against marijuana legalization until they figured out how to personally benefit. The final cost of the drug after insurance will be far less, with estimates of less than $200 a month for patients. Many do not have the …

When Will Marijuana Be Legal Nationwide? It Could Be Sooner Than You Think

In late June, the Food & Drug Administration for the first time approved a cannabis-derived drug, and it could marijuana lawchange the landscape of marijuana in the United States, possibly within the next month. Epidiolex contains an active ingredient of CBD found in marijuana, and was approved to treat severe forms of epilepsy in children. 

According to a report from The Philadelphia Inquirer, the CEO of the company responsible for Epidiolex said before the drug can be prescribed, it must be reclassified to be lower than it’s current Schedule I status, Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. Section 812. He said he expects this to happen within 90 days of the FDA approval. This means marijuana could very well be reclassified by late September. It doesn’t mean that there will be a total free-for-all on cannabis use, but a lower scheduling will mean that the federal government will finally acknowledge the plant has medicinal benefits, and medical marijuana programs across the country can be released from the grips of the federal ban. 

As our trusted Orange County marijuana attorneys can explain, there are several reasons it has taken federal leaders so long to release their grip on cannabis prohibition. First of all, anti-marijuana propaganda has been deeply ingrained in the American psyche for decades through drug prevention programs and public service campaigns. The campaigns themselves have their own nefarious roots, as marijuana has a history of being used as a tool to target minority groups and political activists. Law enforcement agencies have legitimized their …

Marijuana Businesses Feeling Heat from California Wildfires

Wildfires raging in California are devastating lives and promise to have major effects on marijuana businesses marijuana businessthroughout the state. Many are saying the rampant fires are some of the worst in the state’s history, and are particularly devastating considering it was just last year that 1.3 million acres were annihilated by fires. An article from Rolling Stone is reporting so far there are 16 major fires tearing mostly through Northern California, with more than 14,000 firefighters battling the blazes. Northern California, of course, is a region replete with cannabis farms, making these fires particularly devastating to the state’s recreational marijuana industry, still in its first year.

Two of the blazes, which combined are dubbed the Mendocino Complex Fire, are at the heart of cannabis country. The Mendocino Complex Fire has already been declared the largest in California’s history. The previous record was set just last year, and at that time it was estimated 30 to 40 percent of the cannabis growers in the state were affected by the wildfires. It is unknown how a second round of fires will impact the industry, but it certainly is not positive. Within the last few weeks, More than 283,000 acres have been destroyed, including at least five greenhouses and countless outdoor crops. To the northwest the Carr Fire has taken out more than 173,000 acres, including several buildings belonging to one of the leading growers in the state.The fires come on the heels of stringent regulations under Proposition 64 going into effect July 1. The new …

Taking the High Road: Drivers Paid to Participate in Marijuana DUI Study

University of California-San Diego is conducting a study out of its Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research to bettercannabis DUI understand how marijuana use impairs driving. The study is the largest of its kind and seeks to gather some hard data on levels of cannabis and impacts on common driving scenarios, according to High Times. Participants will be paid for a full-day driving assessment in which they will smoke a joint before completing a variety of simulated driving scenarios. The joints are rolled on site, and each has a varying level of THC concentrations carefully monitored by the researchers.

The study has two aims: to gather data on how different cannabis concentrations affect different drivers and to examine how long the high from THC will continue to affect the driver to the point of impairment, if at all. These answers are so crucial in the on-going efforts to legalize marijuana nationwide. A huge roadblock for many politicians, even the ones who do not fall for weak anti-marijuana propaganda, is the uncertainty about how to regulate marijuana usage on the roads. Methods that commonly are used to test for marijuana can detect it in a person’s system for up to two weeks. Clearly a person would not be too impaired to drive for 14 days after consuming marijuana. Therefore, law enforcement officers must rely on field sobriety tests to determine cannabis-related impairment. Their current tests, however, are largely geared toward alcohol or drugs that create a deep level of impairment. The effects of cannabis are often …

Country of Georgia Makes Marijuana Use Legal; Is U.S. Next?

The country of Georgia has made it legal to consume marijuana, though it is still illegal to cultivate or sell. Georgia is marijuana lawyersnow officially the first former-Soviet Union nation to lift such a ban, according to a report from Newsweek. The change came down from a decision from the country’s constitutional court, which determined punishment for consuming marijuana is only applicable if a third party is at risk. By revoking the right of officials to punish individuals for consumption of marijuana, the court in essence made it legal.

The court did not appear to take a stance one way or another as to whether marijuana was dangerous or not. At the heart of the ruling, in fact, is the idea that it is not up to the law to punish people who are not hurting others. If the only person potentially experiencing harm by the use of cannabis is the user, then the government has no business interfering. The court deemed this to be a restriction of individual freedom. While this ruling still implies that there is harm that one could do to oneself by using marijuana, it does get to the heart of one of the many arguments in favor of legalization: Shouldn’t people be able to make personal decisions so long as they are not harming others?

This is the same thought process behind why we allow people to make bad food choices, even though heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the U.S. …

Federal Employees Deserve to Use Marijuana, Too

A new bill was introduced in the House of Representatives in hopes of easing up burdens on federal employees whomarijuana lawyers work in states where marijuana has been legalized by allowing them to benefit from their state’s laws without fear of losing their job. HR-6589, the Fairness in Federal Drug Testing Under States Laws Act, would protect the employment of anyone working for or applying to work for a local office serving the federal government who is caught using cannabis so long as the person is abiding by proper state laws, according to a report from Washington Times.

The bill was introduced by Reps. Charlie Crist (D-Florida) and Drew Ferguson (R-Georgia) once again proving cannabis is an issue that truly brings people together across the aisle.

In many ways, one would not know that marijuana is prohibited by federal law in the United States. In 30 states and Washington, D.C., cannabis has been legalized for medical use, with about a third of those permitting recreational use. While more than half of the states in the U.S. have legalized some form of marijuana, many Americans still have to make careful decisions about whether or not to consume for the sake of their careers. Even where cannabis is legal, employers are perfectly within their rights to drug test and to hold employees accountable for marijuana found in their systems. This includes employees who have a recommendation from their doctor. It becomes even more complicated when the employer serves the federal government. Federal employers must

Northern and Southern California Join Forces for Cannabis Businesses

Two monoliths of cannabis advocacy have joined forces in California, aiming to protect what many estimate to be thecannabis lawyers world’s largest marijuana market. California Growers Association, based in Northern California, is merging with Southern California Coalition out of Los Angeles to leverage their combined strength when voicing needs of the cannabis industry to political representatives, according to Los Angeles Business Journal. A headquarters location for the far-flung group has not yet been selected.

Anyone who is familiar with the cannabis industry knows there are major cultural differences across the board — from the numerous farmers working the fertile lands of the “Emerald Triangle” in Northern California to posh dispensaries in L.A, and all of the laboratory testers, drivers, and processors in between. Each faction of the industry has different priorities, which has often kept the groups and their interests separate. Many in the state, however, are learning that more can be accomplished when we work together. The new CalGrowers-SoCal Coalition Collaboration is now 1,600 members strong, making the group a force to be reckoned with.There is a lot on the line, of course, for this group, composed of roughly 1,000 growers and about 600 manufacturers, lab workers, delivery drivers, distributors, retailers, and other marijuana industry workers. They are tasked with protecting an industry estimated to be worth $3.7 billion by the end of 2018 and $5.1 billion in 2019, with forecasts only growing from there. One hiccup anywhere along the chain can have vast ripple effects across all areas, making it essential …

Putting Stock in the Future of Cannabis Businesses

A new first for cannabis businesses recently took place, with the first initial public offeringcannabis business on a U.S. stock exchange by a marijuana producer. Ontario, Canada-based cannabis conglomerate Tilray went public on New York NASDAQ recently. The stock price spiked 30 percent in one day proving what we have been saying all along: cannabis is very, very good for business. According to a report from Quartz, investors rated the value of Tilray at time at $2.65 billion.

Tilray grows and processes cannabis to meet pharmaceutical standards. The company has really taken off in the wake of Canada voting to make marijuana legal nationwide, but the company’s products can be found in 10 countries, including a production facility in Portugal. Though located in Ontario, the company has its roots in a private equity firm in Seattle that has been investing in brands connected to the marijuana industry in hopes of positioning businesses to be on the forefront as prohibition is lifted worldwide. Canada is the second country to make adult use legal (Uruguay being the first). The U.S. has 30 states that have legalized at least medical marijuana, though they are still somewhat bound by the federal Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. Section 812. Many countries have partial allowances, such as the infamous cannabis cafes in the Netherlands. Despite the best efforts of backward thinking anti-marijuana propagandists, the writing is on the wall for cannabis legalization to continue to grow, and companies like Tilray are primed and ready.

Simply being in the cannabis …

Veterans, Medical Marijuana, and the VA: What You Need to Know

A survey from the Department of Veterans Affairs recently indicated about a millionmedical marijuana veterans are using medical marijuana. This is in spite of the fact that the department does not allow its doctors to recommend marijuana. The department cites Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. Section 812 as the reason for this policy, stating they are bound by the federal ban on cannabis being part of a federal agency. The department even shies away from studying the benefits of cannabis, instead focusing their research almost entirely on its problems, according to an article from New York Times.

For veterans who rely on medical treatment through the VA, this can mean they never receive access to medical marijuana. Many veterans have reported cannabis to be an effective treatment for chronic pain and post-traumatic stress disorder – two common issues among those who have fought in wars. It could also mean that veterans will still seek a way to obtain medical marijuana, either by visiting a physician certified to recommend cannabis other than their VA doctor, by purchasing recreational marijuana if they live in a state where it’s legal, or by illicit means. None of these methods are ideal, and this certainly is not the way we should be treating those who have served our country. There are, however, a few things that would be helpful for veterans to know about medical marijuana and the VA.The VA has a list of guidelines to help veterans understand their patient rights and how medical marijuana and VA …

Medical Cannabis a Star Player in ‘Concussion Pill’

New medical research is revealing significant findings in the treatment of concussions thatmedical marijuana involves cannabis. A joint project by the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine,  Toronto’s Scythian Biosciences  Corp., and The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis has led to the development of a “concussion pill,” which combines CBD and an NMDA amino acid anesthetic, according to UPI. Pre-clinical studies on rodents are showing improved cognitive function after traumatic brain injury, more so than either component of the pills does on its own. Trials also showed no adverse effects caused by either component individually nor in combination.

Traumatic brain injuries have made headlines in recent years as more attention has been brought to the dangers of aggressive contact sports, such as football, and the long-term damage caused by concussions. Meanwhile, football players have become some of the strongest advocates for medical marijuana. Cannabis, particularly CBD, has proven to be effective at treating chronic pain caused by sport-related injuries, and does not have the addictive properties of opioids, which are typically prescribed for such injuries. Other players suffer from conditions unrelated to sports, but using medical marijuana has made it possible for them to enjoy activities with fewer limitations. For example, medical marijuana is proving to be a breakthrough treatment for severe seizures, paving the way for people with epilepsy to perform at a competitive level like never before. All of these factors make athletes ideal for receiving the benefits of medical marijuana treatments. Yet continued backward thinking about the drug is holding …

Legalization Changing the Way We Talk to Kids About Marijuana

Now that adults are starting to gain a better understanding of cannabis and itsmarijuana attorneys benefits, many parents and teachers are facing their next challenge: How do I talk to kids about marijuana? California has been tasked with establishing new education programs to effectively prevent children from consuming cannabis, while making them aware of the choices they will have to make as an adult in a post-legalization world. As such, we are seeing the classic “Just Say No” campaigns shift to a new message: “Delay.” According to an article from Brit + Co, the new strategies focus on lifelong health and good decision making.

Marijuana legalization has had major effects on the lives of adults across the country, with 30 states and the District of Columbia allowing for medical marijuana, and about a third of those states permitting recreational use. Many of the results of this legalization have been expected, including relief for debilitating medical conditions, such as chronic pain, epilepsy, and PTSD. Cannabis also has become an alternative to alcohol in social situations, without the same negative long-term health effects as alcohol. Also expected has been the boost for government coffers with an influx of marijuana tax revenue. The way legalization would come to effect the way we educate children was a bit unexpected. It makes a lot of sense, though, considering the way marijuana functions in our lives is entirely different than it was even 10 years ago.As our Riverside marijuana attorneys can explain, the “War on Drugs” shaped the way …

Riverside City Council Vaporizes Hope of Marijuana Businesses

Riverside City Council has made its temporary moratorium on marijuana businesses officialmarijuana business with a recent 4-3 vote that put a nail in the coffin for residents hoping to one day be able to legally purchase cannabis in their city. According to The Press-Enterprise, council’s decision effectively bans dispensaries, commercial cultivation, and any outdoor grow sites. Medical marijuana dispensaries were already banned by the city in 2007, and an intensive law enforcement strategy has kept illegal dispensaries at bay. Cannabis testing will, however, be permitted.

The tight vote is illustrative of how divided the city is over the issue. Riverside County was one that supported Proposition 64 by about 42,000 votes. Yet the county has banned cultivation, manufacturing, and retail, with individual cities also enforcing their own similar bans. When residents vote one way and their representatives vote in the opposite manner, it truly flies in the face of the will of the people. Try as they might, the city and county governments do not have the power to ban everything, though, no matter how many scare tactics they use to justify their agenda.
Our Riverside marijuana business attorneys are familiar with all local, state, and federal laws regarding cannabis. As such, we can explain that Riverside is only permitted to ban certain marijuana activities under state law. Prop 64 stills allows adults 21 years and older to cultivate up to six plants indoors in a locked area of a private residence. They can process, possess, transport, or even give away limited quantities of …

Marijuana Arrests Still Disproportionate Toward Minorities

One of the benefits of expanding marijuana legalization across the country is that it has afforded an opportunity to correct themarijuana criminal defense disparity in marijuana arrests along race and socio-economic lines. These disparities have negatively impacted black people, Hispanics, and other oppressed groups. The efforts, however, are not producing immediately successful results. A report from New Frontier Data is showing that even now black and Hispanic suspects are arrested at nine times the rate of suspects who are white, despite the fact that data shows the three subgroups sell cannabis at similar rates.

According to the data, from 1997 to 2016, marijuana arrests made up more than 40 percent of drug-related arrests, totaling 15.7 million. Arrests overall from cannabis-related offenses have declined slightly in recent years, down from their height in 2007. This is likely reflective of states expanding marijuana legalization, though the numbers are not significantly lower than the overall average since 1997. For example, arrests for possession hit a low in 2015 of 575,000, but went up again in 2016 to 588,000, neither of which is much lower than 599,000 way back in 1998. Considering 30 states now allow provisions for medical marijuana and nine, plus Washington, D.C., have recreational laws on the books, these numbers should be improving more drastically over the 20-year-old stats. The data sets delved more deeply into what these arrests meant specifically for black and Hispanic people. A look at New York City is revealing that even the best intentions cannot overcome racial profiling and decades of anti-marijuana …

DOJ Declares Canadian Border Battleground for Cannabis

The hysteria regarding marijuana laws and the heightened attention to border security have cannabis business lawyerscombined to reach a new fever pitch, with border patrol reportedly enforcing wildly audacious rules and ruining lives in the process. U.S. border guards have allegedly started turning away Canadian citizens entering the U.S. if it is revealed that they work in the cannabis industry, regardless of whether or not they are in compliance with Canada’s laws or even if their business deals directly with the drug or not, according to The Vancouver Star. Involvement in the cannabis industry means you are profiting from illicit drug trading, in the eyes of U.S. border patrol, an offense that can get you banned from entering the U.S. for life. Once you’re on the list, you never fall off, and admittance into the country would require the help of an immigration attorney and special temporary waivers. Even admitting to ever using cannabis has reportedly led to Canadians being turned away at the border.

Americans, too, are facing problems at the border. Some are crossing into Canada to take advantage of their legalized medical marijuana and will soon be flocking there to experience federally legalized recreational marijuana, beginning Oct. 17. If they attempt to bring any marijuana with them back into the U.S., however, they could be facing charges for possession or drug smuggling along with fines and/or jail time.

As our cannabis criminal defense attorneys in Los Angeles can explain, many are confused by the way the current marijuana laws work. If they …

Misinformation About Medical Marijuana Not Helping Anyone

Extremism breeds extremism, a concept seen pretty clearly in the marijuana industry. In amedical marijuana country where, despite mounting evidence, the federal government is stubbornly standing by marijuana’s classification as a Schedule I narcotic, it’s discouraging to see facts seemingly ignored. It’s no wonder, then, people would take the opposite extreme stance to combat. A report from Los Angeles Times delves into the phenomenon of pro-marijuana hyperbole in the face of anti-cannabis hysteria.

Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. Section 812, deems that marijuana has no medical benefits, is addictive, and would be harmful to use even under a doctor’s supervision. Thirty states and Washington, D.C., disagree with this assessment and have passed medical marijuana laws as such. Those states laws, however, can only go so far to usurp the authority of the federal government. As such, certified doctors in those states can only dole out medical cannabis recommendations, rather than a full-fledged prescription. They can suggest certain forms of consumption for the ailments of the particular patient, such a lotions or edibles, but the patient is on their own for the most part once they reach the dispensary. Dispensary owners, for their part, have done a tremendous job learning about the different products they carry. They gather information from their shoppers about which products have had the most effective results for what disorders and diseases and they try to share this anecdotal knowledge with other patients. This strategy is hardly the exact science many patients with really dire diagnoses need.

This has bred a grassroots …

Marijuana and the Opioid Crisis: A Tale of Two Countries

In the fight for medical marijuana, there has been no more compelling of a battlegroundmedical marijuana than opioid addiction. Both U.S. and Canadian governments have dubbed the rapid increase in overdoses to be a crisis or epidemic. Meanwhile, cannabis has demonstrated itself to be the potential key to unlocking the addictive cycles, adding to the urgency in passing more effective medical marijuana laws. In New York, emergency rules have been put in place to allow medical marijuana as an opioid replacement. Yet in Ontario, where medical marijuana is permitted at the federal level for a variety of conditions, workers are still having opioids pushed on them.

New York state Department of Health recently added opioid dependency to the list of 12 other conditions that qualify patients for medical marijuana recommendations, according to Marijuana Moment. Chronic pain, one of the key issues opioids are used to treat, is already on the list, but specifically adding opioid substitution gives doctors the freedom to recommend cannabis to those with opioid addictions regardless of the reason they started taking them. Officials are hoping this strategy reduces the number of opioid deaths, noting that states with pro-medical marijuana laws on the books have seen a 30 percent drop in opioid prescriptions for Medicaid users.Statistics as of March 2018 from National Institute on Drug Abuse show more than 115 people die of opioid overdoses every day in the U.S. In Canada, numbers are also on the rise with an average of almost 8 deaths per day in 2016 and …

Indiana Judge Won’t Recognize Pot as Part of Higher Power

State law, federal law, and religious liberties have collided to form an unholy trinity in a casecannabis lawyers involving First Church of Cannabis. The church had put in a bid attempting to allow smoking of marijuana as a religious sacrament in Indiana. The group sued the state, attorney general, and then Gov. Mike Pence in 2015. But a judge out of Marion County Superior Court recently ruled against the church, according to RTV6.

Indiana currently has extremely limited medical marijuana provisions and relatively strict laws against recreational use. Attempts to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana were thwarted in 2013, and instead an amendment to IC 35-48-4-11 was added to HB 1006 to increase penalties of certain types of possession to felonies rather than misdemeanors. Some attempts to legalize medical marijuana also failed a few years ago, but last year the legislature was able to push through a bill allowing CBD oil specifically for seizures. Considering all of the people nationwide who have found relief from cannabis for a wide variety of ailments, this seems to be the absolute least they could do.First Church of Cannabis was attempting to appeal to the state’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which is intended to protect religious groups from government interference. The act stirred up controversy from people concerned the law could lead to discrimination against certain residents, particularly LGBTQ individuals, with business owners citing religion as a shield for their discrimination. It is clear, though, given the reaction to the First Church of Cannabis that the …

Adding a Little Green to the Red, White, and Blue

Sparklers weren’t the only things people were lighting up across the country this Fourth of marijuana lawyerJuly. Residents of states with adult-use marijuana laws were enjoying newfound freedoms to consume cannabis products. This was especially true here in California with this being the first Independence Day with legalized recreational marijuana.

The holiday came just a few short days after regulations went into place for packaging and sales of cannabis in California. The new rules mean that all products must meet certain standards of quality control, pass tests for safe pesticide content, and have packaging that clearly displays warnings and the makeup of the product, including THC levels. This spurred retailers to offer deep discounts on cannabis products last month that did not meet new standards, putting an influx of marijuana in the hands of Californians ahead of the July 1 deadline. This made for a very happy Independence Day for many users, indeed.Some people used the holiday famous for cookouts and picnics to try new cannabis-infused recipes. Others hosted soirees that allowed celebrants to indulge in cannabis products and enjoy the holiday, all while staying at one location, according to Palm Spring Desert Sun. One local inn, which has dubbed itself a “bud and breakfast,” hosted a Fourth of July event complete with swimming, catered snacks and meals, cannabis and crystal healers, vendors, dispensary representatives, and music, all with a safe place to crash at the end of the night.

This type of event was ideal for law enforcement, who were encouraging residents …

What Groups Still Oppose Marijuana? Follow the Money

At Cannabis Law Group, we discuss at length the groups who support marijuana marijuana criminal defenselegalization: from health organizations and doctors to veterans, cancer patients, and NFL players. Support crosses age groups, socio-economic status, race, and gender. A recent report from High Times, however, revealed some groups who do not support marijuana legalization, and it paints an interesting picture of those who have profited most off of the criminalization of this relatively benign drug.

Several of the groups on the list are, no surprise, involved in the arrest and incarceration of marijuana users. Law enforcement officials, for example, have received a great deal of funding over the years that was earmarked for the barbaric and misguided “War on Drugs.” Despite much more dangerous and lethal street drugs, marijuana users have always been a favorite target. It’s no wonder, considering the docile effect cannabis can often have on users, as opposed to the aggressive, violent, and hyperactive responses other drugs can induce. Marijuana has allowed police officers the ability to go after low-hanging fruit, pull in big numbers, and still get paid the same. Many police stations have also benefitted greatly from asset forfeiture programs, in which they line their budgets with money made off of auctioning seized property in marijuana raids. It’s not like there would even be a lack of work to be done. Without marijuana, officers will have to focus their time and resources on more risky areas, such as meth labs and opioid rings, which will be far more challenging.From there, …

Recreational Marijuana Use Legal in Vermont; Sales, Not So Much

Recreational marijuana is now officially legal in Vermont, but it looks quite a bit different recreational marijuanathan it does in California. According to Associated Press, the new law that recently went into effect did not include provisions for how to tax and regulate marijuana production. As our marijuana attorneys can explain, this means while residents can possess and consume cannabis, they cannot open up a business to sell recreational products.

Broken down into more precise terms, this is what adult-use legalization means for those in Vermont. Residents are allowed to have four immature cannabis plants and two mature plants in their homes, so while it’s true there are no stores to purchase from, marijuana can be grown at home. Plants must be in enclosures that are secure and obscured from public view. Renters, however, must have permission from their landlords before they are allowed to begin a grow. Those 21 years and older are allowed to possess up to one ounce of marijuana, but it cannot be consumed in public spaces.Aside from home grows and all their limitations, the only other options Vermont residents have is to procure marijuana by illicit means. This is not unlike the way medical marijuana started in Vermont. Medical marijuana was legalized in the state in 2004 with the passage of Senate Bill 76. This law offered protections to qualifying patients and their caregivers who possessed or cultivated marijuana. The move was more about making sure that people who needed cannabis for health reasons were not treated

Oklahoma Proves Facts are Winning in Fight for Medical Marijuana

medical marijuanaOklahoma recently became the 30th state to approve some form of medical marijuana, a significant step in proving cannabis support is a non-partisan issue and that old-school propaganda tricks aren’t working to scare an informed electorate anymore.

State Question 788 passed with 57 percent approval despite almost half a million dollars spent on a campaign to shut down the proposal. Gov. Mary Fallin and Sen. James Lanford (R) joined several health and law enforcement organizations to voice opposition to the ballot initiative, according to a report from Forbes. Some voters claim the issue did not even appear on their ballot, causing speculation as to how far some would go to stop the measure. Even the fact that the issue was placed on a primary ballot rather than during a general election seemed to be tactically designed to set it up for failure since voters who show up at primaries tend to lean more conservative. The passage of the measure in spite of such obstacles, however, proves what cannabis advocates like our medical marijuana attorneys have been saying all along: marijuana is not a partisan issue.

Not only was the medical marijuana initiative passed, but it also stands apart from other states in that it gives more freedom to doctors. Some government officials in other states have decided they know better than medical doctors and have confined the permissible medical conditions by which health practitioners can recommend cannabis to a pre-determined list. The new Oklahoma law, however, keeps the power to decide squarely where …

Creative Solutions for California Marijuana Business Owners

When life hands you lemons, make lemonade … or in this case cannabis-infused water. Amarijuana business brewery in northern California called Lagunitas is doing just that with a line of sparkling waters it plans to sell in dispensaries. Drinks with cannabis are not common, but the brewery was able to achieve what other marijuana businesses have been afraid to tackle thanks to some creative thinking and close consideration of the law.

As our cannabis attorneys can explain, many in the beverage industry have been nervous to dabble in cannabis drinks out of concern for Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. Section 812. Because the law bans marijuana and lists it as a Schedule I narcotic, brewers worry that crossing the federal government could put their alcohol licenses at risk, even if they are abiding by state laws. That’s where ingenuity, creative problem solving and help from a knowledgeable legal team can help.Most California cannabis business owners will tell you it’s a delicate dance they must perform in order to run a business that is appealing to customers, profitable, and follows all ordinances and regulations. The most successful have worked state and local laws into their business plans right from the beginning, giving them a strong foundation to build on. Lagunitas, for example, was very conscious of any ways federal law could conflict with their licenses, so they decided to brew the water and hops flavoring at its own facility, then ship the water to another company to be infused with THC and CBD, according …

FDA Approval Could Change Everything for Medical Marijuana

A major victory in the fight for medical marijuana has finally arrived. Amedical marijuana marijuana-derived drug was recently approved by the FDA, making it the first of its kind. According to Washington Post, Epidiolex is a liquid anti-seizure drug which contains a purified cannabidiol, a non-psychoactive element in marijuana. CBD, as you likely know it as, only contains trace about of THC and does not create the “high” that so many marijuana naysayers point to as the defense for their outdated thinking.

CBD oil is commonly used for pain management, anxiety, addiction treatment, and now in a drug used for childhood epilepsy. Clinical trials of Epidiolex have shown better results without the severe side effects of epilepsy drugs already on the market. The drug has now been approved for patients 2 and older. Of course this is significant for families battling this debilitating disorder, but it also could be a groundbreaking moment for the rest of us as well.

As our Orange County marijuana lawyers can explain, cannabis is still classified as a Schedule I narcotic. According to Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. Section 812, a drug is considered Schedule I if it meets three criteria:

1) It has high potential for abuse.
2) It has no currently accepted medical use.
3) Even under medical supervision, it lacks accepted safety standards.

Millions of Americans have come to understand that these three statements couldn’t be further from the truth in regards to cannabis. That is precisely why FDA approval of a CBD derived drug

Senate Plants Seed for Hemp Legalization

U.S. Senate overwhelmingly voted to pass HR-2 Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018, also known as the Farm Bill, which contains (among standardcannabis business food policy legislation) measures to legalize industrial hemp sales, cultivation, and processing, according to a report from Forbes. Hemp is a variety of cannabis popular for its lower concentrations of THC and higher levels of CBD, the non-psychoactive component of marijuana. This has made it ideal for creating a variety of products, from plastics to biofuel to animal feed to yarn.

The federal ban on marijuana has made no distinction between these strains of cannabis and THC-laden versions, which has caused Americans to seek out everyday products that happen to include hemp from other countries. Finally, a bipartisan group of politicians, led by Mitch McConnell (R-KY), is standing up for this common sense action.

The bill would open the door to hemp farming nationwide, not just states with legalized marijuana, and would allow those plants to be insured just like other crops. As the bill stands, it also would legalize other products, such as CBD oil, which is used for many medical purposes, including pain, anxiety, and seizures. It has been touted as a useful resource in weaning people off of opioids and acting as an effective pain relief substitute.

Champions of cannabis watch in wonder as a plant the federal government has gone out of its way to demonize and criminalize has continually been given special exceptions. Legislators have attached an amendment to Congressional spending bills preventing federal …

O, Cannabis: Canada Passes Adult-Use Marijuana

After months of anticipation, Canada has officially become the secondcannabis business country in the world to legalize adult-use cannabis after Senate recently passed the long-awaited bill. Uruguay was the first country to pass legalization measures, with sales starting last year. Canada’s size and global standing, however, give it a unique opportunity to set the tone for what legal marijuana could look like for the rest of the world. It will still be a couple months of preparations, though, before legal sales can begin, according to Los Angeles Times.

Uruguay has had a complicated relationship with legalization, primarily because the motivation was to regulate out-of-control crime syndicates related to the black market marijuana industry. An micro-managed infrastructure has made for a rocky start getting the legal economy off the ground, but officials are still confident their plans will help eventually neutralize illegal sales.Our Los Angeles cannabis business attorneys know California has played an important role in setting an example for other states and countries. The state is the fifth largest economy in the world, so there has been a great deal of interest in how cannabis legalization would play out. California had an advantage in being the first state to legalize medical marijuana in 1996 with the Compassionate Use Act, so there was already a decent foundation in place when the state moved forward with recreational legalization at the beginning of this year. Still there are issues that exist simply because federal law labels cannabis as a Schedule I narcotic, which means all …

Veteran Advocate Boone Cutler Joins Roger Stone & John Morgan At United States Cannabis Coalition

MARIJUANA POLITICS – The News Source For an Informed Citizenry Post by Marijuana Politics Staff

New York – The United States Cannabis Coalition is proud to announce the appointment of retired US Army Sergeant Boone Cutler to the USCC Advisory Board. A noted author, radio talk show host and veteran’s advocate, Cutler is an important activist for cannabis PTSD treatment. Cutler joins Board Member and former US Army Infantryman Tyler Nixon on the USCC’s Committee on Veterans Access.
“Cannabis literally saved my life’ says Cutler ‘the VA’s combat cocktail was killing me. I was a zombie and my symptoms were getting worse, not better. When I learned that Israel and other developed countries successfully use cannabis to treat issues like mine; it became my mission to fight for my Warfighter family to get the same life-saving cannabis that helped me. Together with the USCC, we will win the fight for real PTSD treatment”.
Cutler’s influence has helped several institutions, including his partnership with the venerable American Legion, to adopt a pro-medical marijuana stance.
Cutler suffered traumatic brain injury during Iraqi Freedom combat operations which later developed into Parkinson’s disease. Cutler spent years shuffling in and out of the VA hospital system, where he was given, as he calls it, ‘the combat cocktail’; 27 different mainly opiate and psych-based medications. Recognizing that the overload of pills was ruining his life, Cutler switched to medical cannabis and finally found relief from his symptoms.
“The demonization of cannabis has become a political movement that’s partnered big-money Pharma …

Florida Sidesteps Medicinal Marijuana Progression

MARIJUANA POLITICS – The News Source For an Informed Citizenry Post by Marijuana Politics

By Annie Loupy

If you are a medical marijuana patient in Florida, you are familiar with the long and complicated history of cannabis legalization. The law is vague and restrictive causing backups, delays and inconvenient challenges.

In 2016, Florida voters flooded the polls to allow legal medicinal use of marijuana. With one step in the right direction, the government shot back with regulations like making the act of smoking cannabis illegal and only offering medicinal marijuana relief to patients with “debilitating conditions.” Thankfully, due to John Morgan’s successful advocacy, smoking herb is now legal. This marks one more victory for one of the largest potential markets in America, though patients are far from liberation of government restriction.

Recently, the topic of debate raised by 77-year-old patient Joe Redner diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer advocates for the right to grow his own marijuana. According to his doctor’s recommendation, Redner needs immediate access to a generous amount of his herbal prescription which would be more convenient if accessed from his backyard. Redner, a strip club owner, can afford his own weed but he knows many patients that are unable to fork over the unbelievably high prices of $9.27 per gram.

The Verdict
On the 11th of April,, judge Gievers ruled in Redner’s favor. And for a few weeks, Redner had the right to grow his own weed until the Health Department fired back with an appeal, putting Redner’s recent right on …

Buy Your Seeds Online

MARIJUANA POLITICS – The News Source For an Informed Citizenry Post by Marijuana Politics Staff

The benefits related to marijuana are quite well established by now and the fact that medical marijuana successfully treats various conditions and illnesses is not a torrid topic of contestation anymore. Using the whole marijuana plant, in an unprocessed state has a number of usages. Though it is still not legal across all states in the USA or approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the chemicals present in marijuana known as cannabinoids are known to be present in two pills that have been approved by the FDA.

The ‘THC’ level that determines the potency of a particular strain of cannabis to get you ‘high’ is actually tetrahydrocannabinol- to which the chemical cannabinoids are related to. The ‘THC’ element is responsible for increasing appetite, reducing feelings of nausea, decreasing pain, inflammation or problems relating to muscle control.

In a context where transactions in marijuana are largely illegal, it can sometimes become difficult to acquire what you’re looking for and ensure that it is of superior quality. This is why buying seeds online becomes a great plan because it ensures that what you’re partaking is pure and safe. Here is an option where you can choose the kind of strain that you want to smoke and order its seeds online, so that you can grow it yourself in a completely controlled environment. Not only do you get to get to ensure that it is grown as it should be, …

Marijuana Support at an All-Time High

We are currently experiencing the final gasps of the anti-marijuana agenda in the U.S., evidenced by more and more medical marijuanaAmericans not only support cannabis in theory, but also in practice. Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs recently published a report showing that daily use of marijuana among adults is on the rise since 2007, while teen use is actually dropping.

Findings showed daily use increased among all age groups between 18 to 64, with an insignificant lead in the data among 18 to 34-year-olds. Non-daily use increased across all adult categories as well, but especially among 26- to 34-year-olds. The most likely cause is the wave of states that have legalized marijuana in some form. California is one of nine states (with a guest appearance by Washington, D.C.) that has total legalization for adult use. The number jumps to 29 when counting states with medical marijuana laws. The specifics vary by state, but the fact of the matter is Americans are discovering the health and recreational benefits of marijuana and incorporating it into their daily lives. The study was put together by researchers from Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health in New York. Results were compiled based on more than 700,000 respondents ages 12 and older to the 2002-2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health.

The increase of use mirrors the increase of support for marijuana legalization across the country. A Quinnipiac University poll released in April showed nationwide support of recreational marijuana legalization at 63 percent, the highest yet in …

Advertising Los Angeles Marijuana Business

There is no question marijuana, including medical marijuana and marijuana for recreational use is big business in the greater Los Angeles area.  Like any business, advertising is often needed to bring in new patients or customers, but many are concerned about where and how marijuana businesses choose to advertise.

l.a. marijuana lawyerAccording to a recent news article from the Los Angeles Times, this massive growth in the legalized marijuana industry has led to equally massive ad campaigns some of which feature full-sized billboards being placed around our area.  One of the major concerns is that legalized marijuana will lead to an increase in illegal marijuana use among minors, especially in the case of teenagers. 

While data in other markets where marijuana has been legal for quite some time shows these fears are largely exaggerated, and mainly the product of those who are, and always will be, against the legalization of marijuana for recreational use, there is no question we all want to curb any real problem of teens illegally obtaining marijuana for recreational use. This had led to the enactment of a new ordinance in the City of Los Angeles is designed to reduce the exposure of minors to these ads for marijuana industry products and services.

Specifically, the new ordinance, effective July 2018, will prohibit the placement of any billboard advertising marijuana and marijuana-related services withing 700 feet of many places where it is likely children will be present. These restrictions include the following:

  • Schools
  • Parks (Public)
  • Playgrounds
  • Libraries
  • Daycare Facilities
  • Youth Activity Centers

California Hotels Try to Attract Cannabis Tourism

While there may come a day when marijuana is legal for recreational use all across the nation, that day is nowhere in sight yet.  President Donald J. Trump has said he would be willing to remove marijuana from Schedule One of the United States Controlled Substances Act of 1970 (USCSA), but that is far from something certain to happen in light of his Attorney General’s feelings about marijuana, and marijuana users.  It would be certainly be a good thing for the nation if marijuana were legal for adults everywhere, but for now, those few states which have legalized marijuana for recreational purposes are finding themselves at a distinct advantage when it comes to what is now being called marijuana tourism, and those in the recreational marijuana business in Los Angeles are hoping to cash in on this.

recreational marijuanaThere was a time when people had to travel to Amsterdam for legal marijuana, and now they can go to Canada as our neighbors to the north have legalized marijuana nationwide, but according to a recent news article from the Los Angeles Times, local hotels are trying out new strategies to make their properties more marijuana friendly and hopefully make a big impact in this growing market.  

One hotel in Coachella Valley has started an ad campaign where they are telling prospective guests they are welcome to some marijuana at the pool.  They are also allowing guests to use vaporizers in their rooms, though they cannot smoke due to existing laws.  As our Los …

Issues Related to Illicit Marijuana Trade in Legalized California

For many decades before recreational marijuana was legalized in California, people were buying marijuana illegally. This included literally buying it on the street in open air drug markets as they are called by the Los Angeles Police Department, and they were also buying on what is often dubbed the marijuana gray market. Now that marijuana is legal for adults to purchase it for recreational purposes, it would seem people would no longer have to buy it illegally.

marijuana tax lawyerThe problem is that people are able to get high quality cannabis products on the gray market, and will not be charged with possession of marijuana under state law for having it, and if they want to purchase it legally, they may be forced to pay much higher prices.  This is not to say there is no risk to those selling marijuana illegally as they can be arrested and charged with various criminal offenses, but there is not much risk to the consumers. 

When Canada legalized marijuana for recreational use recently, the government said it would only place minimal taxes on cannabis products in an attempt to drive illegal sellers of marijuana out of business since it consumers could get higher quality products from legal vendors and comparable prices.

However, as our Riverside cannabis attorneys can explain, California officials did not choose to go this route as they saw it is a revenue generating industry with respect to taxes, so it may actually be cheaper to buy cannabis on the street than it is to go a …

Long Beach Finally Passes Recreational Marijuana Business Policies

Long Beach will soon be the next city in Los Angeles County to embrace recreational marijuana business planmarijuana after its city council voted overwhelmingly to regulate industry operations. The council passed a series of amendments that will set guidelines for cultivators, testing labs, distributors, and dispensaries in the city, according to an article from Press-Telegram. The 7-1 vote reflected a strong support from council, with the support of the mayor as well as the residents who voted for Proposition 64 in November 2016.

City staffers estimate the move could bring in about $750,000 in taxes from recreational sales next year and a whopping $4.5 million from medical marijuana taxes. City officials also hope to stimulate the economy with a clause that requires collective-bargaining agreements with United Food and Commercial Workers 324, the union that represents cannabis workers, raising the bar on the quality of jobs provided by local establishments. Long Beach also joins other California cities in creating social equity programs, designed to lift up communities most harmed in the past by reckless marijuana law enforcement policies. Those who qualify will have certain fees waived, have their applications fast-tracked for review, get access to special workshops, and qualify for tax deferrals. Restrictions for the program include meeting certain income requirements. More specifically, a person would need to have less than $250,000 net worth and fall below 80 percent of the local median income. They also would have to have an arrest, conviction, or citation spurred by a marijuana-related offense before recreational marijuana was passed in …

Pennsylvania Must Ditch Harsh Marijuana DUI Law

Pennsylvania’s marijuana DUI law could be about to see some much needed reform. State medical marijuanaRep. Sheryl Delozier (R-Cumberland) is working on a bill that would exempt medical marijuana patients from an overbearing law that prevents them from ever being allowed to drive, according to The Inquirer. The move comes as Pennsylvania Department of Health is in the process of implementing the state’s medical marijuana program.

PA Code Title 75, Sec. 3802, as it currently stands, states: “An individual may not drive, operate or be in actual physical control of the movement of a vehicle … (if) there is in the individual’s blood any amount of a Schedule I controlled substance.” Just as under the federal Controlled Substances Act, Pennsylvania also has cannabis listed under their own Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act as a Schedule I narcotic, right alongside heroin, peyote, mescaline and the like.To call the current law far-reaching is a wild understatement. Unlike many other substances, marijuana can stay in a person’s blood for up to 15 days, which means anyone who consumes cannabis in any quantity would be barred from driving in Pennsylvania for about two weeks. Of course it’s absurd to believe that because the drug is simply in one’s blood that they remain high for the entire duration. It has been documented that the effects of cannabis will last roughly a few hours, depending on the quantity consumed, how it was ingested, and the tolerance level of the person. Edibles, for example, might still …

Criminal Charges Dropped for Prominent Marijuana Dispensary Owner

Cannabis legalization isn’t enough to protect someone from being arrested on marijuana criminal charges. Being onemarijuana criminal defense of the trailblazing marijuana business owners in the state isn’t even necessarily enough. Just ask the woman who opened Ventura County’s first legal medical marijuana dispensary. She has spent the last year and a half facing down charges for perjury, possessing and transporting marijuana, and maintaining a place to sell the drug. These charges, however, were recently dropped, freeing her to focus on her business at last.

The woman is also president of a collective in Ojai, Calif. The property of the collective and her own home in Ventura were raided in November 2016, just before Proposition 64 passed on the ballot. She lost many personal possessions in addition to property of the collective. At the time, the collective was operating under the guidelines of Compassionate Use Act of 1996, which regulated use and sales of medical marijuana in the state, but investigators said she was in violation of those rules, according to a Ventura County Star article.As our Los Angeles marijuana criminal defense attorneys can explain, collectives are allowed to grow limited amounts of marijuana and share among members of the group, including deliveries to those members. They could not share outside the group, and they should only charge as much as necessary to cover the costs of growing marijuana, but not enough to turn a profit. Any suspicion of violating these rules could draw the attention of officials, as in the case at hand. …

Hashing Out Cannabis Supply Issues

California could learn a thing or two from those who paved the way for cannabis legalization. For example, Uruguay cannabis lawyerwas the first country to fully legalize marijuana, and the South American country has learned much as a result of trial-by-error. Cannabis was legalized there five years ago, but it wasn’t until last year that legal sales began. Since then, Uruguay has experienced a number of supply problems. Residents report having to travel long distances to licensed pharmacies, and sometimes once they arrive, the supply is dry.

According to a report from High Times, the issues are two-fold. First an excess in government oversight is creating supply chain issues. Only registered pharmacies can sell cannabis, and there have only been 14 licenses issued out of the 1,200 pharmacies in Uruguay. The government is also in charge of cultivation of marijuana, but only two cultivators have received licenses. Much like in California, when too many restrictions come between buyers and their marijuana, many consumers will choose black market options, even though there are legal options.

Second, the head of the Uruguay National Drug Council said there is an issue of farming capacity. Farming cannabis on such a large scale was not common, and there certainly was not a guidebook available. This led to a learning curve for cultivators to catch up on technology and processing on a mass scale. The two cultivators have just recently reached the allowed capacity of 4 metric tons per year.Meanwhile, demand for cannabis reaches an estimated 25 tons of …

Inventory Situation Could Get Sticky for Marijuana Businesses

Time is almost up for marijuana business owners to achieve full compliance of testing and packaging regulations. Forcannabis business six months, businesses have enjoyed a grace period that allowed them to sell marijuana products that were not in total compliance so long as they included a label indicating any safety standards the product did not meet. As of July 1, owners must clear their shelves of all product that does not meet regulations, resulting in an influx of cannabis sales in the month of June and could lead to an impending shortage, according to the Orange County Register.

When Proposition 64 went into effect Jan. 1, it brought with it new sets of rules in regards to recreational marijuana sales. Because marijuana products were already in production long before then, having served the medical marijuana market for almost 20 years, California imposed a grace period in which production and labeling regulations could catch up. This led to retailers bulking up on less expensive products that were not in total compliance at the end of 2017 to keep their stores well stocked in the first half of the year. Now they will need to clear their shelves of any remnants of that stock. Meanwhile, owners will be clamoring to replace that inventory with new products that meet regulations. 

As our Los Angeles cannabis business attorneys can explain, the new rules entail several aspects of marijuana production. First of all, products must go through a licensed lab to be tested. These labs will test for …

STATES to Feds: Marijuana is None of Your Business

A bipartisan blend of politicians has come together to support a bill that could finally offer some marijuana businessconcrete relief from the oppressive federal law that continues to bind the hands of marijuana businesses despite state legalization. The STATES Act, Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States, is a more formal way of declaring that state laws regarding cannabis usurp the federal government’s Schedule I classification under Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. Section 812.

According to a report from Leafly, the bill allows representatives who refuse to step into the 21st Century to support marijuana businesses without taking a stance on marijuana at all. It turns the matter purely into a states’ rights issue, which has become the great unifier in the cannabis debate. It also removes industrial hemp from the definition of “marijuana,” freeing many industries that create products unrelated to the psychoactive properties of cannabis.The bill would help marijuana businesses owners clear a key hurdle they face daily in running a proper business: lack of banking options. As our L.A. marijuana business lawyers can explain, banks are under federal jurisdiction, and therefore must be in compliance with federal rules. By housing funds for cannabis businesses, they would knowingly be engaging in criminal activity in the eyes of the federal government, regardless of the laws within the state. The STATES bill would establish a federal law that would act as a buffer, declaring that following state guidelines in regards to marijuana would not be considered trafficking, thus freeing the banks. …

Cannabis Drivers Burnt By Confiscation of Property

Nine drivers in Northern California are speaking out against what they say are shady practices by marijuana criminal defensepolice departments who allegedly are targeting businesses while transporting cannabis and seizing their delivery and cash. North Coast Journal conducted an investigation of these cases and found a pattern of confiscations over the past three years without any charges ever being filed against the drivers. Each of the incidents allegedly occurred during traffic stops with local police officers, and some said they were not even in the jurisdiction of that department when the stops were made.

It is not unusual that officers would share duties with other departments near major highways, like Highway 101, to patrol those long stretches of road. It’s not even unusual that they would be intercepting illegal drug transports, as the department in question was part of joint efforts to go after cocaine, meth, opioids, ecstasy, and methamphetamines. Also on the list of targeted drugs, though, was marijuana, and drivers alleged officers showed no interest in whether or not drivers were in compliance with state and local laws. One driver described a briefcase full of all necessary paperwork he carried on his route in case he was pulled over, but it allegedly did not protect him, and the contents of his vehicle were confiscated.This is one of the many ways the gray area between state marijuana legalization and the federal ban really hurts residents. Police can still monitor cannabis activity under the premise that they are searching for illegal behavior at the state …

Marijuana Rolling Onto International Stage

While we try to hash out how to handle marijuana laws across the U.S., World Health Organizationmedical marijuana is bringing their findings to the global stage. WHO was tasked by secretary general of United Nations to deliver a recommendation on the level of international control necessary for cannabis, according to a Mother Jones report. It is of no surprise to our cannabis law firm that the first report from WHO described marijuana as a “relatively safe drug.”

An international team of marijuana experts contributed to the report, which was presented to the Expert Committee on Drug Dependence. The report analyzed both THC and CBD and found evidence it has medical benefits, particularly in relieving symptoms of cancer treatments, pain relief, and anxiety. It also concluded that driving under the influence of cannabis is risky, but not as risky as alcohol. Marijuana use also can also be risky for pregnant women and children.Americans have been all abuzz about cannabis for many years now, with California first to legalize medical marijuana in 1996 when voters passed Proposition 215. Yet it is still illegal at the federal level thanks to its classification under the Controlled Substances Act. Not only is marijuana considered a Schedule I narcotic in the U.S., but it also was identified as a Schedule I narcotic under the treaty of the United Nations Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, also known as the ’61 Convention. WHO’s findings could potentially change all that. Rescheduling cannabis internationally wouldn’t change any laws, but it would …

New York Marijuana Tax Revenue Potential

MARIJUANA POLITICS – The News Source For an Informed Citizenry Post by Marijuana Politics Staff

As states mull over the logistics of legalizing recreational marijuana, New York Marijuana tax revenue potential might be seen in the context of using Colorado as a case study of how to roll it out and reap the financial rewards. While Colorado started recreational sales in January 2014, it took a few years for them to iron out how the law and its corresponding tax generation are applied. It also took time for businesses to set up shop and start achieving some sort of stable revenue.

Colorado now has 8.9 dispensaries and is grossing $16.6 million in sales per 100,000 people, generating $247 million in taxes and fees last year.

If states like New York can emu

late Colorado’s rate of marijuana sales, they could see substantially higher revenue due to the state’s larger population:

New York Marijuana Tax Revenue Potential Colorado

[email protected], the online MBA program from Syracuse University

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Unlicensed Marijuana Firms in L.A. Face Wrath of City Police, Prosecutors

If you are a cannabis retailer in Los Angeles and you do not yet have all of the necessary licenses and regulations inmarijuana criminal defense place, it’s time to get your house in order with the help of a trusted legal team. The city attorney and Los Angeles Police Department have made clear their commitment to ending the unlicensed marijuana marketplace in the city and have already filed 36 criminal cases, according to High Times. Punishments could include fines up to $1,000 and even jail time. Other shops are receiving cease-and-desist letters, and officials hope this round of charges will show others that they mean business.

These raids did not come without warning. Earlier in the year, officials from California Bureau of Cannabis Control sent warning letters to several hundred businesses they knew to be operating without licenses and promised civil and criminal action should they continue operating illegally. This is all good news for licensed cannabis business owners who have had to face stiff competition from a vast unregulated network. Applying for licenses and remaining in compliance both cost time and money, so those businesses that cut corners have a distinct advantage over those playing by the rules. Cities and states had high hopes for revenue that would be generated after Proposition 64 went into effect and recreational marijuana became legal in the state. Excise taxes collected have not met quarterly estimates, however, with $34 million being collected in the first three months, shy of what is necessary for the state to meet it’s …

Fighting Pests on Cannabis Farms the Legal Way

One of the biggest obstacles for any farming community is how to best control pests. Each plant attracts a differentcannabis business set of insects and animals and requires special care to deter wildlife from harming crops. Farmers must also take into consideration how pest-control methods could harm natural surroundings and affect the people who will consume the product. Cannabis farms are no different, though they lack the years of shared wisdom other farmers have gathered. In fact, cannabis farmers have to be even more thoughtful in some ways about what they use because their end product isn’t easily washable like an apple. Although it wouldn’t seem a cannabis attorney would be your first consult on this front, it’s worthwhile to review it with your counsel so you are sure you’re abiding local and state environmental regulations.

The California Department of Pesticide Regulation, has been tasked by California’s Medicinal Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act to provide guidelines for pesticide use in cannabis farming. The department said there is not a pesticide product federally registered for use specifically for cannabis farmers. However, there are plenty of pesticides that can legally be used on cannabis so long as they meet certain criteria. According to the department, the state permits certain pesticides for use on cannabis crops that are “exempt from residue tolerance requirements and the product is either exempt from registration requirements or registered for a use that is broad enough to include use on cannabis.” Examples of substances exempt from registration would be food-grade essential …

Dabbing Shatter and Resin With Saber

MARIJUANA POLITICS – The News Source For an Informed Citizenry Post by Marijuana Politics Staff

Dabbing has taken off in the last year in states where it is legal and is available at most dispensaries. We wanted to see what all the hype was about so we tested some Live Resin, THC crystal powder, shatter and whatever else we could find to see for ourselves.
Most dabbing materials seem to be either processed with Butane (BHO) or C02, which is considered ‘cleaner.’ My local Budtenders were not very helpful in directing me to any CO2 concentrates as most were just selling the BHO.
Basically to ‘dab’ you are vaporizing concentrated marijuana on a ‘nail’ that heats up the processed weed.
Many a Budtender have gotten quite creative by combining these concentrates similarly, as is done with some of those primo mixed joints laced with hash oil and crystals.
It was interesting how the high differs when experimenting combining the different hash like, crystallized or shatters materials.
We used a Saber Vape Pen and I was pleasantly surprised that the heating element delivered such a nice smooth inhale for such a small, portable unit, about the size of a sharpie. A full review can be seen here.  With 3 levels of heat, I was able to arrive at the smoothest and least wasteful hits based on what I was testing.
Some are stronger than others, some more cerebral and some more of a body high. The wild world of cannabis concentrates is alive and …