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Oaksterdam defies federal crackdown

Posted on November 1st, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

Richard Lee, central figure in downtown Oakland's cannabis-friendly Oaksterdam enclave, does not appear intimidated by the federal government’s crackdown on medical marijuana dispensaries. Lee closed his dispensary, Coffeeshop Blue Sky, this week after US Attorney for California's Northern District Melinda Haag sent a letter to his landlord threatening criminal prosecution. But he promptly reopened it three doors down, with giant posters of cannabis buds in the windows. An employee at the door hands out fliers reading: "Thank you for your support. Together we will survive the attack. Long Live Oaksterdam." Lee told the New York Times he is not afraid of being a target. "If they do decide to prosecute me criminally," he said, "my defense is that juries cannot be punished for their verdicts."

Fort Collins cannabis workers vote to unionize

Posted on October 24th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

medical marijuanaWorkers at seven Fort Collins cannabis dispensaries officially affiliated Oct. 17 with Colorado's largest labor union in an effort to further legitimize and protect the medical marijuana industry. Union organizers said an "overwhelmingly" large majority of the Fort Collins workers voted to join the United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW), making Colorado the second state in the US, after California, where some cannabis industry workers have formally unionized.

Oakland's Harborside Health Center owes IRS $2 million in back taxes

Posted on October 6th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

medical marijuanaThe IRS has ordered Oakland's Harborside Health Center, biggest cannabis dispensary on the West Coast, to pay $2 million in taxes, ruling that the collective may not deduct standard expenses such as payroll and rent. "They're attempting to tax us out of business," protested owner Steve DeAngelo. Ironically, the same day he received the IRS letter, DeAngelo was photographed handing the Oakland treasury a $360,000 check —third installment of $1 million in city taxes  Harborside generated in 2010.

Humboldt firm markets vegetarian cannabis nutrient

Posted on October 1st, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , , .

Northern California's Humboldt Plant Fertilizers (HPF) announced Sept. 22 that it will become "the only natural liquid plant nutrient company banning any use of slaughterhouse by-products such as the bone meal, blood meal, and feather meal almost universally found in all other natural fertilizer products." Every product manufactured by HPF will now bear the "Holy Cow" symbol—a smiling bovine head with a halo and the words "We never use slaughterhouse by-products."

National cannabis prices mapped

cannabis price mapThe oddly named mapping website FloatingSheep.com has produced a map showing the differences in the retail price of cannabis in the United States, coast to coast. The map—apparently featured in the September issue of Wired magazine under the cheeky title "Infoporn: O Say, Can You THC?"—is based on information gleaned from consumer reports on the Price of Weed website.

Cannabis genome cracked

Posted on August 21st, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

cannabisA small Massachusetts-based company called Medicinal Genomics has announced the sequencing of the entire genomes of the species cannabis sativa and cannabis indica, opening the way for more research into the therapeutic effects of the plant—including its potential for treating cancer and inflammatory diseases. The company published the genetic code Aug. 18 on Amazon.com's EC2 cloud-computing system.

Medical cannabis not an agricultural crop, California court rules

Posted on August 12th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

CaliforniaSuperior Court Judge Paul Vortmann in California's Tulare County ruled Aug. 11 that a cannabis collective cannot operate on land zoned for agriculture, dismissing a property owner's arguments. "In this state, marijuana has never been classified as a crop or horticultural product," Vortmann wrote. Cannabis is a controlled substance, the ruling stated, adding that "the court finds as a matter of law that growing marijuana...is not an agricultural use of property."

New Oakland ordinance doubles dispensaries

Posted on July 28th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

The Oakland City Council on July 26 passed an ordinance that will double the number of medical marijuana dispensaries in the city, to eight from the current four—the Oakland Patient Center, the Purple Heart Patient Center, Coffeeshop Blue Sky, and the Harborside Health Center. The new ordinance was passed with an amendment that provides the city with access to all the dispensaries' financial information. And accompanying legislation imposes a $5,000 application fee and a $60,000 annual regulatory fee on each dispensary. The Council put off discussion of amending the city's cultivation ordinance, which would regulate large-scale cannabis farms, until the Public Safety Committee reconvenes in the fall. (Office of the City Clerk, City of Oakland, July 26; San Francisco Chronicle's Oakland Blog, July 13)

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