This week, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously agreed to shut down all 900 store fronts selling marijuana for so-called “medical” purposes.” Siding with neighborhood residents and public health experts like the American Medical Association, the Council took a courageous stand against what has become a magnet for crime, nuisance, and addiction. The vote — and the federal court ruling confirming the decision that followed just hours after – signals the major sense of buyers’ remorse Californians are feeling after voting in “medical” marijuana 16 years ago.
In 1996, when Californians passed Proposition 215 allowing for marijuana to be used for “medical” purposes, voters decided that if a cancer or AIDS patient should find relief from marijuana, they should not be arrested. Voters also believed that if the patient was too ill and unable to grow marijuana on his or her own, the patient could buy it from a non-profit group of people growing small amounts for specific users. Read more
Lawmakers who have been negotiating a plan to regulate medical marijuana in California said late Thursday that they have reached an agreement with Gov. Jerry Brown on legislation to be acted on by Friday’s deadline.
The proposal would create a new state office that, along with cities, would issue licenses for medical cannabis dispensaries. Marijuana growers also would face regulations enforced by the state. Assemblyman Jim Wood (D-Healdsburg) said the compromise drops a proposed excise tax that would have brought in $60 million for policing and environmental protection.
“This package is the end product of countless hours meeting with stakeholders and extensive negotiations with the governor’s office,” Wood said.
Petitions are hitting the streets soon for a new proposed constitutional amendment that would fully legalize marijuana use, possession and cultivation by adults in Florida.
A political action committee called Floridians For Freedom, associated with a longtime marijuana advocacy group called the Florida Cannabis Action Network, announced Tuesday it has gotten state approval to begin seeking signatures to get their measure on the November, 2016, ballot.
The measure is distinct from another constitutional drive, run by United For Care and led by Orlando lawyer John Morgan, because Morgan’s group wants to legalize marijuana for medical purposes only, while Floridians For Freedom wants it legalized for all uses. Read more
Marijuana prohibition is entering its 78th year. Colorado’s marijuana law went into effect at the beginning of last year in the wake of changing attitudes. Compared to 1969, when only 12% supported legalizing pot, today a majority of Americans support legalizing recreational use of the drug.
It is legal to purchase marijuana in four states – Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington – as well as in the District of Columbia. Prior to the legalization, all of these states had already reduced the penalties for possession and use of small amounts of the drug or introduced policies permitting medical marijuana use. To identify the states most likely to legalize marijuana next, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the 11 states where by law residents in possession of small amounts of the drug are not punishable by jail time, and medical marijuana use is permitted.
Advocacy groups have poured millions of dollars into legalizing both recreational and medical marijuana in states across the country.
One of the most powerful and influential groups – Washington, D.C.-based Marijuana Policy Project – was behind successful recreational measures in Alaska and Colorado, two of four states that now allow recreational use. MPP organizers hope to replicate those efforts in five other states during the 2016 elections, an undertaking they say will – if successful – prove significant for the effort to end marijuana prohibition. Read more