Newsletter #150

Chuck Schumer to introduce cannabis decriminalization bill

Senator Chuck Schumer has announced legislation that would remove marijuana from the list of scheduled substances, which would essentially legalize cannabis at the federal level. The bill would also provide funding to boost minority- and women-owned businesses. The legislation is expected to be released next week, so stay tuned.

Trump promises no federal crackdown on legal marijuana

Months ago, Senator Cory Gardner of Colorado pledged that he would block all Justice Department nominees until President Donald Trump promised not to mess with Colorado’s legal cannabis industry. Trump just made that promise. Learn more about this pledge here.

Lyft’s 4/20 deal

Lyft, a major ridesharing company, is offering a special April 20th discount to those residing in Denver, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Portland, San Francisco and Seattle. Never toke and drive!

No marijuana at McDonald’s

There have been rumors that McDonald’s is planning to turn play areas into weed-smoking lounges in a handful of Colorado locations. The company says this is fake news.

The FDA wants your opinion on pot

The Food and Drug Administration is asking for citizens’ opinions on cannabis laws. Check out the details here.

Newsletter #149

John Boehner joins cannabis corporation

Former Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner is joining the advisory board of Acreage Holdings, one of the U.S.’s largest marijuana companies. This strikes many as odd, given that Boehner had been vocally opposed to legal cannabis in the past. Boehner said he had a change of heart. Learn more about this surprising development here.

Mormon church vs medical marijuana

In an announcement that was not particularly surprising, the Mormon church stated its opposition to a medical cannabis ballot initiative in Utah. Come November, we’ll see how Utah voters feel.

California’s cannabis sales

Recreational marijuana has been legal in California for over three months. While sales are certainly booming, they aren’t as strong as some analysts predicted. Learn more about the numbers here.

Snoop’s secret

Snoop Dogg recently divulged the identity of the only person who has ever out-smoked him. Click here to find out who! Just kidding, we’ll tell you. It was Willie Nelson.

Millennials and marijuana

If you were ever wondering what millennials think of cannabis, look no further than this poll. Sneak peek: They’re pretty into it.

Newsletter #148

Lamar Odom announces cannabis business plans

Former NBA player Lamar Odom has announced plans to launch a marijuana business. Odom used marijuana to help him overcome his cocaine addiction, and he believes his business, Rich Soil Organics, will help others find a path to wellness. His celebrity—he was married to Khloé Kardashian, after all—will likely help with this endeavor.

Medical marijuana vs the opioid crisis

According to two recently published studies, opioid use is lower in states that allow easy access to medical cannabis. There’s a theory that many people are willing to supplant their opioids with marijuana, and these findings certainly support this idea. Learn more about the studies here.

Cynthia Nixon says yes to legal cannabis

As you may have heard, Cynthia Nixon recently announced her candidacy for New York governor. Nixon, best known for playing Miranda Hobbes on Sex and the City, stated that she would work to legalize marijuana if elected. It’s all about that tax revenue.

Seniors support medical marijuana

A new survey from the University of Michigan found that a majority of polled seniors support medical cannabis, even while many of them have not tried medical marijuana themselves. Cheers to being open-minded.

Fake weed kills

Okay, so this isn’t technically cannabis news. It’s news about fake cannabis. Synthetic cannabinoids are deadly. Please don’t use them, and don’t let anyone you know use them. End of story.

Newsletter #147

Mitch McConnell supports hemp

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has announced plans to introduce The Hemp Farming Act of 2018, and hemp activists are stoked. This bill would remove hemp from federal regulation as a controlled substance and treat it as an agricultural commodity. Find out more about the act here.

Marijuana meetings

States with legal recreational cannabis are requesting a meeting with Attorney General Jeff Sessions to try to find a solution to the clash between federal and state marijuana laws. It’s hard to be optimistic when it comes to Sessions and cannabis, but we’ll do our best.

Cannabis non-profits no longer tax-exempt

When the IRS updated its policies earlier this year, the ability for cannabis advocacy groups to receive tax-exempt status was removed. Learn more about this blow to marijuana-related non-profits here.

Brewmaster ventures into marijuana

The brewer behind Blue Moon has left his career with MillerCoors to launch a line of THC-infused beers. Can we volunteer as taste testers?

Cannabis tech and coffee

Technology developed in the marijuana sector is helping out other industries, like the coffee business. Sharing is caring.

Newsletter #146

Legal cannabis and homelessness

Law enforcement and anti-marijuana politicians in Colorado have been claiming that legal marijuana leads to increases in homelessness. A recently published study indicates otherwise. The research did not find evidence that links cannabis legalization to an increase in the homeless population, but concluded that the main causes of homelessness include unemployment and a lack of affordable housing. No surprises there.

Secondhand smoke risks

Many people are aware of the risks of secondhand cigarette smoke, but there hasn’t been much talk about secondhand cannabis smoke. A professor at University of California, San Francisco decided to dig into this subject. His team found found that the effects of inhaling secondhand smoke from marijuana can be severe. Learn more about the research here.

Ricky Williams starts marijuana company

Ex-NFL player Ricky Williams has been an advocate of medical marijuana for many years, but he and the league weren’t on the same page. He failed four drug tests during his professional career. Now, he’s launching his own cannabis brand. Real Wellness by Ricky Williams will be available in California dispensaries.

Utah’s medical cannabis bill

Governor Gary Hubert of Utah recently signed a bill that gives terminally ill individuals the freedom to try medical cannabis. The bill doesn’t specify where these people can receive medical marijuana or if they can grow it themselves. Less than ideal, but it’s a start.

Marijuana scratch and sniff cards

Police in Northern Ireland are concerned that the public doesn’t know what cannabis smells like, so they’re handing out marijuana scratch and sniff cards. The more you know.

Newsletter #145

Weedmaps vs Bureau of Cannabis Control

Weedmaps is a cannabis community website that, among other things, features ads from California marijuana businesses. California’s Bureau of Cannabis Control sent a letter to Weedmaps, explaining that since the website occasionally shows ads for companies that are not licensed by the state, it is in violation of state law. Weedmaps executives countered with their own letter, insisting that Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act protects the company. Section 230 is a federal law that asserts that a website cannot be held liable for the actions of its users. Such drama!

Virginia’s medical marijuana expansion

Until recently, medical cannabis was only available to Virginia residents afflicted with epilepsy. Fortunately, last Friday, Governor Ralph Northam approved the expansion of the state’s medical marijuana program. Doctors will now be able to recommend cannabis for patients as they see fit. Many are hoping this expansion will assist in the fight against Virginia’s opioid crisis. Smart move.

Hemp company to hire workers with cannabis convictions

Hikurangi Hemp, a New Zealand-based hemp company, aims to hire growers with marijuana convictions. The company’s leaders see workers convicted of cannabis-related crimes as assets to the company. Here’s hoping other marijuana businesses follow suit.

Snoop Dogg’s reefer-related venture firm

Rapper Snoop Dogg founded Casa Verde Capital, a venture capital firm, to invest in ancillary marijuana companies. The firm has closed its inaugural fund after landing $45 million from investors. Learn more about Casa Verde’s investments here.

Governor of New Jersey wants legal marijuana by the end of 2018

When Phil Murphy ran for Governor of New Jersey in 2017, he was vocal in his support of legalizing recreational cannabis. Now that he’s in office, Murphy has asked state lawmakers to legalize marijuana by the end of 2018.  It’s go time.