New England

Connecticut approves medical marijuana bill

Posted on May 7th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

medical marijuanaConnecticut's Senate on May 5 passed HB 5389, which will allow citizens to obtain cannabis for medicinal use under defined conditions. The bill cleared the Democrat-controlled Senate in a 21-13 vote. The new law will make Connecticut the USA's 17th medical marijuana state. Opponents of the law raised the usual concerns that those who do not qualify under the act might be able to purchase cannabis with faulty prescriptions. The Connecticut law, however, seeks to eliminate this problem by requiring that qualified patients purchase only from licensed pharmacists who also must obtain a permit to dispense cannabis. The bill has already been passed by the state's House and now only needs to be signed by Gov. Dannel Malloy (D), who has already expressed support for the measure. (Journal Inquirer, Manchester, CT, May 7; Jurist, May 6)

Amherst Extravaganja smokes out on town common

Posted on April 28th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

cannabisThe 21st annual Extravaganja festival was held April 28 on the town common of Amherst, Mass. Sponsored by the UMass Amherst Cannabis Reform Coalition, the event featured six live bands and several speakers in addition to many vendors selling everything from glass pipes to hemp food products. Police said 33 people were cited for possession of under an ounce of marijuana, a civil offense that carries a $100 fine in Massachusetts. Town authorities turned down organizers' request for a permit for a two-day event, which had been granted last year on an experimental basis for the festival's 20th anniversary. (The Republican, Springfield, April 28; The Republican, April 12)

Massachusetts to vote on medical marijuana?

Posted on April 11th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

medical marijuanaWith Massachusetts lawmakers deadlocked over medical marijuana legislation, the question seems more likely to go before the commonwealth's voters in November. Two bills before the Public Health Committee on legalizing medical marijuana (S 1161 and H 625) have been sent to "study"—a move that almost always ends the chances of a bill passing. A ballot measure on the issue will only be averted if backers fail to collect 11,485 certified signatures by July 3 or if they drop their effort in deference to a plan in the legislature to pass an alternative proposal—neither of which now seem probable. (Statehouse News Service, April 10)

Lawmakers in five states issue letter telling feds: hands off medical marijuana

Posted on April 9th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , .

medical marijuanaOn April 2, a bipartisan group of legislators from five medical marijuana states—California, Colorado, Maine, New Mexico, and Washington—issued an open letter to President Barack Obama opposing the federal crackdown and calling upon his administration to "respect our state laws." The lawmakers underscored that such an aggressive policy "makes no sense" and is "not a good use of our resources," recalling Obama's original pledge to de-emphasize enforcement in states with medical marijuana laws.

Governors petition for cannabis reclassification

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

medical marijuanaGovernors Christine Gregoire (D-WA) and Lincoln Chafee (I-RI) announced at a press conference in Olympia Nov. 30 that they are jointly filing a federal petition to reclassify cannabis for medical use. Under the Controlled Substances Act, the federal government considers cannabis a Schedule I substance, a dangerous drug with no medical value. The rescheduling petition filed by governors Gregoire and Chafee comes after their administrations were sent letters threatening medical marijuana producers and distributors and the implementation of state laws.

Anti-pot pol caught with pot seeks plea bargain

Posted on September 6th, 2011 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , .

Robert WatsonRobert Watson, a Republican Rhode Island state lawmaker charged with pot possession and DUI in Connecticut, is said to be hoping for a plea bargain in New Haven Superior Court. Watson, who has pleaded not guilty, lost his job as Rhode Island's House minority leader after his April arrest in East Haven. (AP, Aug. 25) Bloggers had a field day with his bust, because he had just recently made comments baiting liberals in his state as soft on immigrants, gays—and pot smokers! Here's what the "Irony Alert" blog in The Week had to say in its coverage of the coverage:

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.

Supreme Court hears arguments on definition of "cocaine base"

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

cocaineThe Supreme Court heard arguments Feb. 28 in DePierre v. United States, on whether the term "cocaine base" in the Federal Sentencing Guidelines is limited to "crack" or includes all forms of cocaine chemically classified as a base. The US First Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston ruled that "cocaine base" refers to "all forms of cocaine base, including, but not limited to crack cocaine." Counsel for the petitioner argue that Congress did not intend "cocaine base" to refer to substances used in the crack-production process.

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