New England

Massachusetts to get country's biggest legal grow

Posted on December 29th, 2016 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , , .

MassachusettsDenver-based AmeriCann is planning to develop what will be the United States' largest medical marijuana facility in Freetown, Mass. At one million square feet, the Massachusetts Medical Cannabis Center is planned for a tract in the Bristol County town formerly slated for a brewery by the Boston Beer Co. Boston Business Journal reports that AmeriCann bought the property this fall for $4.475 million. AmeriCann CEO Tim Keogh said the facility will be "the place in the northeast US for the creation of a wide variety of exciting new advanced products for medical cannabis patients."

The cannabis question in Trump's America

BlackLivesMatterThe results of the Nov. 8 elections really indicate the schizophrenic nature of American political culture at this moment. Amid the fear and loathing over the election of the fascistic Donald Trump as president, big gains were registered for cannabis freedom. Voters in California approved Proposition 64, legalizing  up to an ounce for those 21 and older, and allowing individuals to grow up to six plants. The measure also permits retail sales and imposes a 15% tax. Similar measures passed in Massachusetts, Maine and Nevada, bringing the percentage of Americans living in states where cannabis is legal for adults up from five to 20 percent. Only Arizona's Proposition 205 was rejected by the voters.

New York State push for cannabis justice

Posted on April 28th, 2015 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , .

New YorkBack in March, Connecticut's Supreme Court, the state's highest, ruled that those convicted of past cannabis possession misdemeanors can have the charges erased from their records because the state decriminalized the herb in 2011. The  unanimous ruling came in the case of Nicholas Menditto, who will now have his 2009 possession conviction expunged from his record. (The Joint Blog, March 17; AP, March 16) Last week, reporter Jon Campbell wrote in New York's Village Voice that activists in the Empire State are hoping for a similar outcome. New York was one of the first states to decriminalize, way back in '77, and the cut-off point for an infraction rather than a misdemeanor is a full ounce (as opposed to a half-ounce under the Connecticut law). But New York pot arrests have ironically continued at the highest rate in the country—especially in the Big Apple, under the aggressive policing since the '90s. The loophole that cops used? Cannabis in public view remains illegal—and suspects are basically forced into pulling out their stashes when stopped by cops and ordered to empty their pockets.

Massachusetts nixes DeAngelos' Boston dispensary over pot conviction

Posted on June 28th, 2014 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

SteveDeAngeloOn June 27, Massachusetts' Department of Public Health rejected an application from Green Heart Holistic Health and Pharmaceuticals to operate a dispensary in Boston, despite giving the company initial approval. The reason stated for the denial is Steve DeAngelo's criminal record. Controversy over the Green Heart dispensary, awarded to Andrew DeAngelo, erupted when Steve's participation as the financial backer and "strategic adviser" was revealed. Since Steve wouldn't be physically working at the store, his name was not included in the application. DeAngelo pleaded guilty on Aug. 6, 2001 of possession of cannabis with intent to distribute and received a five-year suspended sentence and three years' probation.

New Hampshire moves toward medical marijuana

Posted on June 29th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

Last week, both houses of the New Hampshire legislature voted overwhelmingly to approve a bill permitting doctors to prescribe medical marijuana to many patients with chronic or terminal illnesses. Gov. Maggie Hassan (D-NH) said she would sign the bill. The New Hampshire bill is somewhat less permissive than medical marijuana laws in many other states, with compromise language that denies patients the right to grow cannabis at home, or to use it for post-traumatic stress disorder. The bill also includes restrictions aimed at ensuring that patients do not engage in "doctor shopping" in order to obtain a cannabis prescription. Doctors may only prescribe to those who have been their patients for at least 90 days, and who have already tried other treatments. (Think Progress, June 28)

Vermont decriminalizes cannabis

Posted on June 6th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

Vermont's Gov. Peter Shumlin (D) on June 6 signed into law a bill passed by the state legislature that decriminalizes the possession of up to one ounce of cannabis or five grams of hashish.  Shumlin's signature make Vermont the 17th state to remove criminal penalties for possessing small quantities of cannabis—including all of its neighboring New England states except New Hampshire. "This change just makes common sense," Shumlin said as he signed the bill. "Our limited resources should be focused on reducing abuse and addiction of opiates like heroin and meth rather than cracking down on people for having very small amounts of marijuana." (Drug War Chronicle, June 6)

Patient advocates respond to Rep. Patrick Kennedy's anti-cannabis campaign

Posted on January 9th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

medical marijuana In response to public comments made against marijuana reform by former Rhode Island Rep. Patrick Kennedy, patient advocates wrote to Kennedy inviting him to attend a national conference on medical marijuana scheduled for Feb. 22-25 at the Mayflower Renaissance Hotel in Washington DC. Kennedy announced on Jan. 9 the formation of a new group, Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), which claims to take a different approach than either legalization advocates or government drug warriors. However, advocates argue that SAM's supposed pro-public health approach ignores the therapeutic benefits of the cannabis plant and is simply using a new narrative to make the same arguments used by marijuana opponents for years.

Colorado and Washington: will the ripples reach Mexico and Colombia?

Posted on November 24th, 2012 by Peter Gorman and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

leafWell, the dust has hardly settled but the boots are at the door; they might come storming through, riling up that dust some more.

But we hope not. The boots belong to the Justice Department and the door belongs to the states of Washington and Colorado. The dust is the election that saw those two states make the biggest moves toward cannabis legalization any state has made in a long long time. No, neither law is perfect, and it is going to be a cold day in hell probably before state stores are up and running. But still, the fact that the voters got out there and said enough is enough and let's get something on legalization out there is very freaking refreshing. Ask anyone who works in any capacity to end the drug war: Wins are few and far between. It took more than 10 years of effort to rein in law enforcement's forfeiture spree; it took a lot longer than that to get New York's racist Rockefeller sentencing laws even semi-tossed. So what happened in Washington and Colorado is in the win column, though we cannot be at all sure that the feds are not going to come in and try to muck things up like they have with California's and Oregon’s medical marijuana laws.

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