Medical Marijuana Patient Registry Opens in Maryland

ANNAPOLIS, MD — After lengthy delays, the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission has opened up the patient and caregiver registry for the state supervised medical marijuana program.

Starting Monday April 24, open enrollment for all patients and caregivers is available on the agency’s website.

The registry was opened in a three-phase roll-out earlier this month. Previously, patients and caregivers with last names starting A through L could only register in the week beginning…

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Reminder: Oregon Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Return to Patients Only Jan 1

As of January 1, 2017, Oregon’s medical marijuana dispensaries will no longer be able to sell to adults 21 or older without a valid medical marijuana card as the state’s early recreational marijuana sales end.

Adults 21 or older wishing to purchase marijuana for recreational use will only be able to do so from retail marijuana shops licensed by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission.  Currently, there are about 100 recreational pot shops licensed statewide.

Limited…

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Teen Pot Use Not Increased by Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

Teen Pot Use Not Increased by Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

SAN DIEGO, CA — The availability of medical marijuana dispensaries is not positively associated with an increase in the number of adolescents currently using cannabis, according to data published online ahead of print in the journal Preventive Medicine.

An investigator at the University of California, San Diego assessed the association between marijuana dispensaries and cannabis use habits among young people residing within a 25-mile radius. The author reported that adolescents’ proximity to dispensaries did not influence their current…

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Maryland Medical Marijuana Program Facing Delays

Maryland Medical Marijuana Program Facing Delays

Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission Announces Continuing Delays in Implementing Program

BALTIMORE, MD — The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission (MMCC), the state agency in charge of establishing Maryland’s medical marijuana program, announced another delay Tuesday in implementation of the medical marijuana law enacted over two years ago in April 2014.

While this delay is only a few additional months, it is the latest in a series of delays that will result in medical marijuana not being available until 41 months after the law’s…

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Constitutionality of California’s New Medical Marijuana Law Challenged in Court

Constitutionality of California’s New Medical Marijuana Law Challenged in Court

SAN JOSE, CA — California’s Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act, signed into law this month to regulate the state’s medical marijuana industry, violates the state’s constitution, a medical marijuana collective operator claims in court.

Governor Jerry Brown signed the law on Oct. 9, to establish a comprehensive legislative framework for the production, transportation and sale of medical marijuana in California.

The bipartisan group of legislators who drafted the laws says they will provide a licensing structure for the…

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Report Dispels Myths about Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

Report Dispels Myths about Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

Patient Advocates Release Comprehensive Guide to Crafting Fair Rules to Create Local Medical Cannabis Access

WASHINGTON, DC — On Thursday, advocacy group Americans for Safe Access (ASA) released a white paper on the impact of medical cannabis dispensaries on patients, teen cannabis use, crime and communities titled “Where Will Patients Obtain Their Medicine?”.

Since legal medical cannabis dispensaries first emerged following the creation of California’s medical cannabis program in 1996, the location of medical cannabis dispensaries has been a contentious issue. Although critics have long suggested that medical cannabis dispensaries will worsen crime rates or otherwise undermine the communities that host them, empirical research shows that dispensaries bring economic development…

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Gov. Brown Signs Historic California Medical Marijuana Regulation Bills

Gov. Brown Signs Historic California Medical Marijuana Regulation Bills

Under the new laws, businesses will be licensed to produce, test, and distribute medical marijuana, and a Bureau of Medical Marijuana Regulation will be established to develop and enforce uniform state regulations

SACRAMENTO, CA — Gov. Jerry Brown signed three bills into law Friday that establish a statewide regulatory framework for California businesses that produce and distribute medical marijuana in the state. AB 243, AB 266, and SB 643 create standards for licensing businesses as well as testing, packaging, labeling, and tracking marijuana products, among other things.  

The bills establish a new agency within the Department of Consumer Affairs, the Bureau of Medical Marijuana Regulation, which will oversee the system and work with other agencies that will be involved in licensing…

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California Governor Signs Medical Cannabis Regulation Bills

California Governor Signs Medical Cannabis Regulation Bills

Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act Will Establish State-Level Regulation in California

SACRAMENTO, CA — On Friday, California Governor Jerry Brown signed the trio of bills known as the Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act that will establish regulation of commercial medical cannabis cultivation, manufacturing, and transportation, as well as create a state-level licensing system in California for the first time since the medical cannabis program was enacted in 1996.

The California legislature passed Assembly Bills 243 and 266 and Senate Bill 643 on September 11th, 2015, with overwhelming support in both the Assembly and the Senate.

“Governor Brown’s approval of the Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act ushers in a new era in California,’” said…

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Recreational Marijuana Sales Begin in Oregon

Recreational Marijuana Sales Begin in Oregon

Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Given Head Start Before Other Stores; Oregon Becomes First State to Expunge Prior Nonviolent Marijuana Records

Oregon, which legalized marijuana in 2014 with Measure 91, is beginning sales Thursday, October 1st. Existing medical marijuana dispensaries were permitted to get a head start on sales before other, non-medical stores, which are expected to open in Fall 2016.

This will ensure existing medical marijuana retailers have an opportunity to fairly compete in the new market as it emerges in the next several…

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Oregon: Legal Recreational Marijuana Sales Start Thursday

Oregon: Legal Recreational Marijuana Sales Start Thursday

PORTLAND, OR — Limited retail sales of marijuana to adults 21 or older will begin in Oregon on Thursday, October 1st, making Oregon the third US state to allow for the legal sale of marijuana to adults without a medical marijuana card.

With the early start to legal retail marijuana sales, Oregon will have the quickest start of lawful marijuana sales out of the four states that have approved legalization, doing so less than a year after voters approved Measure 91.

Under the voter-approved Measure 91, possession of marijuana by adults 21 or older became legal in Oregon on July 1.  But the law gave the Oregon Liquor Control Commission until January 1, 2016 to implement regulations on production, processing, and commercial sale of marijuana.

The Oregon legislature took the unusual…

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California Lawmakers Urge Gov. Brown to Sign Marijuana Bills

California Lawmakers Urge Gov. Brown to Sign Marijuana Bills

OAKLAND, CA – A bipartisan front of California legislators urged Gov. Jerry Brown to sign their bills regulating the medical marijuana industry at a news conference on Thursday.

The bills are Assembly Bill 266, Assembly Bill 243 and Senate Bill 643, known together as the Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act.

Should Brown sign them, the bills would provide a licensing structure for the industry, establish security, worker and safety standards and protect patients and their access – all under a hybrid of state and local control.

The…

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California: Legislative Package Seeking to Clarify, Regulate Medical Cannabis Sent to Governor

California: Legislative Package Seeking to Clarify, Regulate Medical Cannabis Sent to Governor

California lawmakers approved a series of bills in the final hours of the 2015 legislative session that seek to establish statewide rules and oversight governing the distribution of medicinal cannabis. The three bills — Assembly Bill 266, Senate Bill 643, and Assembly Bill 243 — now await final approval from Democrat Gov. Jerry Brown.

Much of the measures’ finalized language was amended and approved by lawmakers at the close of the session and was not subject to public testimony or significant floor debate.

Specifically, the legislative…

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California Will Regulate Medical Marijuana

California Will Regulate Medical Marijuana

SACRAMENTO, CA — After nearly 20 years of wrangling over what is and is not legal under California’s 1996 Proposition 215 medical marijuana law, the state legislature has passed a set of bills designed to bring order to the chaos.

If, as expected, Gov. Brown signs the bills into law, the medical marijuana status quo, rife with ambiguities, contradictions, and grey areas, will be transformed into a robust, strictly regulated medical marijuana industry. It won’t always be painless, and there will be winners and losers.

For starters, the…

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California Legislature Agrees to Last-Minute Medical Marijuana Bills

California Legislature Agrees to Last-Minute Medical Marijuana Bills

SACRAMENTO, CA — California’s state assembly reached a bipartisan agreement on a “historic framework” to regulate the state’s medical marijuana industry, lawmakers announced Friday.

The bill, AB 266, will “ensure patient access, as well as protect the environment, public safety, and public health,” according to a press release.

It marks the first time in state history that framework for medical marijuana regulation has been agreed to by the state assembly, the state senate and the governor’s office.

California was the first…

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Oregon Releases Draft Rules for Early Recreational Marijuana Sales

Oregon Releases Draft Rules for Early Recreational Marijuana Sales

SALEM, OR — Limited retail sales of marijuana to adults 21 or older will begin in Oregon on October 1, and this week the government agency that oversees medical marijuana sales in the state released proposed regulations for the early recreational marijuana sales.

Earlier this year, the Oregon legislature passed a measure , Senate Bill 460, to allow recreational marijuana sales to adults beginning October 1.  On Wednesday, the Oregon Health Authority, who oversees the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program, issued draft regulations for the…

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Public Meetings this Week to Determine New Hampishere Dispensary Locations

Public Meetings this Week to Determine New Hampishere Dispensary Locations

There will be a series of meetings over the next several days to discuss locations for where the state’s medical marijuana dispensaries and cultivation centers will be licensed. The meetings will take place in the towns of Plymouth, Peterborough, Lebanon, and Merrimack. We encourage you to attend these meetings and show your support for safe and legal access.

Medical marijuana businesses make good neighbors. Studies have shown that medical marijuana businesses do not cause an increase in crime. In fact, they have a minor impact in reducing crime by increasing foot traffic as well as the security cameras and other required safety features. You can learn more about dispensary safety in the community by reading ASA’s dispensary reports for Massachusetts and California.

Monday, August…

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Medical Marijuana is Legal in Las Vegas, but Nowhere to Buy It

Medical Marijuana is Legal in Las Vegas, but Nowhere to Buy It

LAS VEGAS, NV — Nevada defrauds patients by charging annual fees for medical marijuana identification cards, but refuses to license dispensaries in and around Las Vegas, a medical marijuana cardholder claims in a federal class action lawsuit.

John Doe sued the state, the governor and the Department of Health and Human Services, which has the power to issue licenses for marijuana dispensaries but has not done so in Clark County.

The 2 million residents of Clark County, home to Las Vegas and Henderson, account for more than two-thirds of the population of Nevada.

Doe claims that forcing Nevadans to get prescription cards but forcing them to buy the drug on the street constitutes fraud, unjust enrichment, unequal taxation and violation of equal protections.

Nevada amended its constitution…

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First Medical Marijuana Dispensary Opens in Nevada

First Medical Marijuana Dispensary Opens in Nevada

Last Friday, Silver State Relief became the first medical dispensary to open in Nevada.

In the year 2000, voters overwhelmingly supported an initiative that made Nevada one of the earliest states to adopt a medical marijuana law. It took another 12 years for the legislature to create a law allowing regulated businesses to provide safe access to medical cannabis. A little over two years from the date the bill was signed into law, that system is finally rolling out.

Nevada’s medical marijuana program now serves over 9,300 patients across the state, and the opening of Nevada’s first regulated business represents an important milestone in the state’s system.

For many patients, it has been a long two years. The agency created and then adopted rules, businesses applied to operate in a…

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Nevada’s First Medical Marijuana Dispensary Finally Opens

Nevada’s First Medical Marijuana Dispensary Finally Opens

SPARKS, NV — Fifteen years after Nevadans voted to legalize it, medical marijuana was sold legally in the state for the first time Friday at a dispensary in a strip mall about 5 miles east of downtown Reno.

Dressed in polo shirts, tie-dyes and button-downs, about 75 people with medical marijuana cards lined up outside Silver State Relief, between a sub shop and pizza place in Sparks, to be among the first to buy as much as a half-ounce of pot for $195.

“It smells good in there,” said Dana Metz, 64, a retired General Motors worker who said he suffers from back pain, insomnia and anxiety. He was the first in line two hours before the doors opened just after 10 a.m.

“Like a kid in a candy store,” Metz said with a smile as he emerged with a package of pre-rolled cigarettes….

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Recreational Marijuana Sales to Begin October 1 in Oregon

Oregon will have the quickest start of lawful marijuana sales out of the four states that have approved legalization, doing so less than a year after voters approved Measure 91. The bill, Senate Bill 460, was overwhelmingly approved by the legislature at the beginning of July, as possession and limited cultivation of marijuana became legal for adults 21 and older with parts of 2014’s Measure 91 taking effect. The new law is intended to provide adults with legal access to marijuana…

Oregon Governor Kate Brown signed into law Tuesday legislation allowing medical marijuana dispensaries in the state sell recreational cannabis to adults beginning October 1.

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MPP Releases Report Criticizing New Hampshire Medical Marijuana Program

MPP Releases Report Criticizing New Hampshire Medical Marijuana Program

Delays, Confusion, and Continued Arrests: A Two-Year Retrospective on New Hampshire’s “Therapeutic Use of Cannabis” Law

WASHINGTON, DC — On two year anniversary of New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan signing legislation making New Hampshire the 19th medical marijuana state, the Washington, DC-based Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) released a report Thursday heavily criticizing the state’s implementation of the law.

Gov. Hassan signed House Bill 573 into law on July 23, 2015, creating the limited and restrictive “Therapeutic Use of Cannabis” program, which was to be administered by the state’s Department of Health and Human Services.

Two years later, however, patients in the state who’s motto is “Live Free or Die” have yet to be provided with any safe, legal access…

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Hawaii Governor Signs Bill Legalizing Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

Hawaii Governor Signs Bill Legalizing Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

— Nearly 15 years after medical marijuana became legal in Hawaii, Governor David Ige has signed into law a bill that for the first time will establish a system of state regulated medical marijuana dispensaries.

Governor Ige signed the bill into law on Wednesday.

“I support the establishment of dispensaries to ensure that qualified patients can legally and safely access medical marijuana,” said Gov. Ige. “We know that our challenge going forward will be to adopt rules that are fair, cost effective and easy to monitor. The bill sets a timeline. We will make a good faith effort to create a fair process that will help the people most in need.”

Medical marijuana has been legal in Hawaii for nearly 15 years, and now the state’s first dispensaries could open as soon…

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Hawaii Bill to Allow Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Becomes Law

Hawaii Bill to Allow Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Becomes Law

Legislation to establish a system of medical dispensaries for the state’s nearly 14,000 medical marijuana patients has become law.

Governor David Ige signed the measure Wednesday, stating:

“I support the establishment of dispensaries to ensure that qualified patients can legally and safely access medical marijuana. We know that our challenge going forward will be to adopt rules that are fair, cost effective and easy to monitor. The bill sets a timeline. We will make a good faith effort to create a fair process that will help the people most in need.”

House Bill 321 permits the state “to issue eight dispensary licenses statewide; provided that three dispensary licenses shall be issued for the city and county of Honolulu, two dispensary licenses each shall be issued for the county of…

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Washington: Unlicensed King County Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Must Close

Washington: Unlicensed King County Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Must Close

SEATTLE, WA — Fifteen unlicensed medical marijuana dispensaries in unincorporated parts of King County are illegal and have one month to close, officials said Wednesday.

King County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg and King County Sheriff John Urquhart made the announcement at a press conference Wednesday.  The 15 affected dispensaries were sent letters earlier in the week informing them that they do not have state-approved licenses for the sale of marijuana and must close down their establishments, they said.

The 15 dispensaries in White Center, Skyway and other unincorporated rural areas of King County are operating illegally under a recently passed law that requires medical marijuana dispensaries to follow the same rules and regulations that recreational pot shops must…

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Oregon Passes Bill to Allow Recreational Marijuana Sales by Medical Dispensaries Starting Oct. 1

Oregon Passes Bill to Allow Recreational Marijuana Sales by Medical Dispensaries Starting Oct. 1

SALEM, OR — Lawmakers in both chambers of the Oregon legislature voted this week to approve a bill that will allow medical marijuana dispensaries to sell marijuana to anyone 21 or older starting October 1st.

The bill, Senate Bill 460, was passed 23-6 by the Senate on Tuesday, followed by a 40-19 approval in the House on Thursday.  On Wednesday, possession and limited cultivation of marijuana became legal for adults 21 and older, as 2014’s Measure 91 took effect.

Senate Bill 460 is intended to provide legal access for adults while the state crafts the rules and regulations for recreational marijuana sales to adults, which are expected to begin in the summer of 2016.

Meanwhile, the bill will allow adults 21 and older to purchase up to a quarter ounce of marijuana per day (dried…

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Delaware: First State’s First Medical Marijuana Dispensary to Open Friday

Delaware: First State’s First Medical Marijuana Dispensary to Open Friday

WILMINGTON, DE — After nearly four years and numerous delays, access to medical marijuana is coming to Delaware on Friday when the state’s first medical marijuana dispensary will open its doors to qualified medical marijuana patients.

First State Compassion Center, located in an industrial park on the outskirts of Wilmington, will open its doors at 10:30 am Friday, marking the first time the state’s estimated 340 medical marijuana patients will have safe, legal access to medical marijuana.

Medical marijuana patients are currently protected from prosecution for possessing cannabis, but can not grow their own and must purchase marijuana on the black market.

“Although we have been frustrated by the glacial pace of implementation, we are thrilled that Delaware’s qualified…

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Delaware Governor Signs Bill to Allow Medical Marijuana Use by Children

Delaware Governor Signs Bill to Allow Medical Marijuana Use by Children

DOVER, DE — On Tuesday, Delaware Governor Jack Markell signed into law a bill that will allow children to be accepted into Delaware’s medical marijuana program.  The bill was unanimously passed by both chambers in the legislature earlier this month.

Under Senate Bill 90, known as Rylie’s Law, special under-18 medical marijuana cards will be issued to qualifying minors that will allow them access to medical marijuana oils that contain limited amounts of THC once dispensaries become operational later this month.

To qualify, minors must suffer from intractable epilepsy or a medical condition that has not responded to other treatments and that involves wasting, intractable nausea, or severe, painful, and persistent muscle spasms.

Only medical marijuana oils that contain a…

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Delaware Lawmakers Unanimously Approve Allowing Medical Marijuana Oils by Children

Delaware Lawmakers Unanimously Approve Allowing Medical Marijuana Oils by Children

DOVER, DE — A bill that would allow children to be accepted into Delaware’s medical marijuana program has been unanimously passed by both chambers in the legislature, and heads to the desk of Governor Jack Markell for final approval.

The bill, Senate Bill 90, also adds intractable epilepsy to the list of debilitating medical conditions that qualify for medical marijuana in the state.

The House voted 40-0 on Thursday to approve the measure, which passed the Senate by a 21-0 vote last week.

Currently, under Delaware’s medical marijuana law, minors under 18 years old are not eligible for the program.

Under the bill passed Thursday, known as Rylie’s Law, special under-18 medical…

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Source: The Daily Chronic

Better Late than Never: Delaware Medical Marijuana Dispensary to Open June 26

Better Late than Never: Delaware Medical Marijuana Dispensary to Open June 26

WILMINGTON, DE — After nearly four years and numerous delays, access to medical marijuana is coming to Delaware on June 26 when the state’s first — and only — dispensary is expected to open.

First State Compassion Center, located in an industrial park on the outskirts of Wilmington, will open its doors at 10:30 am on June 26.  Patient orientations are planned for June 18 and June 19 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

An estimated 340 Delaware residents have been approved to use medical marijuana in the state, although the First State Compassion Center’s opening will mark the first time those patients have legal, safe access to medical marijuana in the First State.

Medical marijuana…

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Source: The Daily Chronic

Connecticut Seeks to Add More Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

Connecticut Seeks to Add More Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

HARTFORD, CT — With Connecticut’s medical marijuana program seeing significant growth since the first dispensaries opened last year, the state is now accepting applications for up to three additional medical marijuana dispensaries in the state.

The Department of Consumer Protection, who oversees the state’s medical marijuana program, made the announcement Thursday.

“Connecticut was the first state to adopt a true pharmaceutical model for its medical marijuana program; as a result, Connecticut patients are able to purchase safe, pharmaceutical grade products from pharmacists at licensed dispensary facilities in this state,” Commissioner Jonathan A. Harris said in a press release Thursday.

Since September 2014, the number of patients registered for the medical marijuana program…

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California: Yucca Valley Voters Defeat Measure X; Uphold Marijuana Dispensary Ban

California: Yucca Valley Voters Defeat Measure X; Uphold Marijuana Dispensary Ban

YUCCA VALLEY , CA —  Voters in Yucca Valley, California have defeated Measure X, which sought to allow exemptions to the town’s ban on medical marijuana dispensaries, in a special election held Tuesday.

According to unofficial election results posted by the San Bernardino County Registrar of Voters, Measure X was defeated 56.73% to 43.27%.  The final election results will be certified next week.

Measure X was aimed at allowing a limited number of exemptions to the town’s ban of medical marijuana dispensaries.

Had Measure X passed, one…

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Hawaii Lawmakers Give Final Approval to Bill Authorizing Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

Hawaii Lawmakers Give Final Approval to Bill Authorizing Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

— Lawmakers in both chambers of the Hawaii legislature have voted to approve a bill that will establish a system of state regulated medical marijuana dispensaries.

Medical marijuana has been legal in Hawaii for nearly 15 years, and now the state’s first dispensaries could open as soon as July 15, 2016.

The Senate voted 24-0 to approve House Bill 321 on Thursday.  The House then voted 38-13 to the measure.  The bill will now be sent to Gov. David Ige, who has indicated he supports the establishment of dispensaries.

House…

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Hawaii Lawmakers One Step Closer to Authorizing Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

Hawaii Lawmakers One Step Closer to Authorizing Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that eight dispensaries will be authorized statewide.  Under the proposal, eight dispensary licences will be issued, with each licence valid for two dispensaries to operate.  The article has been updated to correct this error.

— Medical marijuana has been legal in Hawaii for nearly 15 years, and now lawmakers in Hawaii are one step closer to authorizing medical marijuana dispensaries.

House Bill 321, which would establish a state-regulated system of…

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Judge Halts Federal Seizure of California Medical Marijuana Dispensary

Judge Halts Federal Seizure of California Medical Marijuana Dispensary

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – A federal judge stayed a forfeiture action by the United States against a licensed Berkeley medical marijuana dispensary, pending Berkeley’s appeal to the 9th Circuit.

The government sought to shut down Berkeley Patients Group in May 2013. The dispensary, its landlord Nahla Droubi and the city of Berkeley challenged the forfeiture.

In March 2014 the court struck Berkeley from the action for lack of standing, but the city appealed to the 9th Circuit, asserting that its interest in dispensary-generated tax revenue and its ability to regulate dispensaries within its jurisdiction gave it a stake in the case.

U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar on Feb. 6 granted Berkeley’s motion to stay the forfeiture until the 9th Circuit resolves the appeal.

The case is similar to an…

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