Tags Recreational


Oregon begins distributing nearly $85 million marijuana tax revenue

10/7/17--The state of Oregon has started to distribute tax dollars collected from legal marijuana sales totaling nearly $85 million. The reason money is now finally being distributed is because the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, the state agency that governs legal marijuana, had to reimburse the administrative costs associated with setting up the program. The OLCC took out a loan for $13 million to cover initial administrative costs, according to agency spokesman Mark Pettinger. Read

Massachusetts farmers hope to keep marijuana business local

10/8/17--Sheffield farmer Ted Dobson is one of a number of farmers in Massachusetts who are hoping to get into the nascent recreational marijuana industry. While many of the companies currently growing medical marijuana in Massachusetts are large corporations, these farmers have been lobbying for laws and rules that would keep recreational marijuana growing accessible to local agriculture. Read

Retail marijuana is spreading to California, Massachusetts and Maine

10/7/17--Recreational marijuana sales will launch in California, Massachusetts, and Maine next year. These states already have medical marijuana programs and dispensaries, but soon they'll also have stores that can sell recreational marijuana to anyone 21 and older. California is aiming to open retail marijuana stores by January 1, Massachusetts and Maine plan to open stores next summer. Read

Uncertainty surrounds Maine’s recreational marijuana law

10/2/17--There is now a distinct possibility that Maine’s recreational marijuana implementation bill could be shot down. According to a report from the Portland Press-Herald, House Minority Leader Ken Fredette has said that he will likely oppose a bill that a special legislative committee has been working on for months in an attempt to hash out the details of the state’s legal marijuana market. The state’s House leader says the current proposal, which has been nine months in the making, attempts to tackle too many issues at one time. Read

As the top pot-producing state in the nation, California could be on thin ice with the federal government

10/1/17--The new California Bureau of Cannabis Control is scrambling to put regulations in place to begin issuing state licenses to grow, transport, and sell marijuana starting Jan. 2. Those rules explicitly prohibit the export of marijuana to other states. California officials say they plan to impose regulations to keep pot off the black market and ensure that marijuana offered for sale is safe. But leaders of the marijuana industry remain concerned the surplus will still need to be addressed. If the new regulated system in California does not make a dent in exports, more federal action is likely. Read

Pot legalization in California brings a bonanza of government jobs

9/30/17--Recreational marijuana use becomes legal in California in 2018, and one of the things to blossom in the emerging industry is government jobs. The state is on a hiring binge to fill what eventually will be hundreds of new government positions by 2019 intended to bring order to the legal pot economy, from keeping watch on what’s seeping into streams near cannabis grows to running background checks on storefront sellers who want government licenses. Thousands of additional jobs are expected to be added by local governments. Read

Growing Pains: Wholesale marijuana prices continue to drop

9/21/17--In many states where cannabis is legal, wholesale marijuana prices continue to drop. As more cannabis producers enter the market, with bigger cultivation facilities, this drop is entirely predictable. As reported by Marijuana Business Daily, the average asking price for a pound of cannabis on Colorado’s wholesale market is currently at an all-time low of $1,298, down from a three-year high of $2,007 in January 2015. All the factors driving down the price—more competition, more efficient production and even more competition—are still at play, meaning prices should plummet even further. Read

Denver and Colorado Springs residents both high on legalizing cannabis

9/21/17--Nearly five years after Colorado voters decided to legalize recreational cannabis, Colorado Springs has yet to allow any retail pot businesses within city limits. Meanwhile, Denver has the largest number of recreational dispensaries and cultivations in the state. Despite differences, Denver and Colorado Springs share many similarities when it comes to cannabis consumption. According to a new study by Consumer Research Around Cannabis, a majority of the residents, in both Denver and Colorado Springs, are in favor of legal pot. Read

Proposed marijuana rules would let adults buy online and at drive-thrus

9/21/17--Proposed adult-use cannabis regulations from the Legislature’s marijuana committee would allow licensed retail stores to sell pot from drive-up windows and over the internet. Like any other recreational marijuana consumer, drive-up and online customers would have to show identification to the window or delivery employee to prove they are at least 21 years old. Supporters say marijuana purchase regulations should mirror those for alcohol, but opponents warn against making it too easy to buy a drug that's still illegal under federal law. Read

Conflicting advice presented to marijuana rulemakers

9/18/17--When Maine solicited advice on how to set up its new recreational cannabis market, about a dozen groups from all over the country chimed in. Responses released show opinions that varied widely, from those who want to encourage this new industry to those who would rather undo the results of the November referendum that legalized recreational cannabis use. Some want to make sure the state can capitalize on the benefits of adult-use cannabis, while others sought to avoid other states’ mistakes on the road to legalization. Read

Cannabis use on the rise, but not because of legalization

9/18/17--While cannabis use in the U.S. has been on a sharp rise the last decade plus, some studies try to get to the root of why. Many people and entities have speculated that changes in law have emboldened the masses; however, a study published in the journal Addiction conclusively showed no link between the rise in pro-pot policies across the states and increased use by Americans. Read

California officially calls on feds to reclassify marijuana

9/18/17--Last November, California voters approved a ballot measure to legalize marijuana. Now, the state’s lawmakers are formally calling on the federal government to reclassify cannabis. Researchers have long complained that marijuana’s classification creates additional hurdles that don’t exist for studies on other substances. Heroin and LSD are also in Schedule I alongside cannabis, yet cocaine and methamphetamine are classified in the less restrictive Schedule II category. Read

Legal marijuana is not staying where it’s supposed to in the US

9/7/17--According to a recently released paper from economists at the University of Oregon, huge amounts of legally purchased marijuana spill over from Washington into other states. They estimate that about 7.5% of the marijuana sold in Washington leaves the state. The finding has important implications for legalization across the US, as it’s a blow to the argument that legalized marijuana can be contained within a state. Read

Dunes City votes to ban future marijuana grows, keep existing ones

9/13/17--Dunes City Council voted unanimously to temporarily ban any future medical grow sites in the city but allow existing grow operations to remain. Ordinance 245, originally proposed in August, would have banned all processing sites, producers, dispensaries, processors, and wholesalers from opening within city limits, including those facilities which are currently being built. But, Councilor Robert Orr moved for an amendment to the ordinance, stating that existing operations should be allowed to stay. Read

Alaska regulators to revisit onsite marijuana use proposal

9/14/17--Alaska regulators in November plan to revisit onsite use of marijuana in cannabis shops around the state. Alaska's Marijuana Control Board has gone back and forth on the onsite consumption issue and will take up the matter at its meeting scheduled for Nov. 14 and 15 in Anchorage. Read

Cannabis lounges looking more likely in Las Vegas

9/13/17--Nevada is moving forward on consumption lounges, festivals, concerts, and one-off events after a new legal opinion, in the form of a letter from its legislative council bureau to State Sen. Tick Segerblom, states that such businesses would not violate state law. While cannabis industry representatives in Nevada celebrated news of the legislative council’s opinion, they described feelings of “cautious optimism” toward local licensing processes, which could take months to complete before the first Las Vegas marijuana lounge opens its doors. Read

Marijuana consumption lounges don’t run afoul of Nevada law

9/11/17--According to a new opinion released by the Legislative Counsel Bureau, nothing in Nevada law prevents a business from establishing a lounge or hosting a special event where legal recreational marijuana is used. A ballot measure passed in 2016 that legalized recreational marijuana in Nevada bars public consumption of marijuana, but doesn’t speak to the legality of venues that control access and bar people under the age of 21 from entering. The public consumption ban limits legal use by Nevada’s tens of millions of visitors, who are technically not allowed to use pot except in private locations like someone’s home. Read

California bans drones from delivering marijuana

9/11/17--California’s Bureau of Cannabis Control has recently unveiled new regulatory rules that will ban drones from delivering marijuana, as spotted by Ars Technica. The Bureau is currently developing regulation surrounding weed use and sales under the Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA) after recreational marijuana was legalized in California. Read

Legal marijuana is almost here. If only pot farmers were on board.

9/9/17--More than nine months after California voted to legalize recreational marijuana, only a small share of the tens of thousands of cannabis farmers in Northern California have joined the system, according to law enforcement officers and cannabis growers. Despite the promise of a legal marketplace, many growers are staying in the shadows, casting doubt on the promise of a billion-dollar tax windfall for the state and a smooth switch to a regulated market. Read

Mass. marijuana czar hopeful for on-time rollout of pot sales

9/6/17--In his first public comments since becoming chair of the new Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission, Steve Hoffman said that he believes marijuana isn’t harmful, that the country’s prohibitionist drug policies have failed, and that he’s committed to creating a thriving recreational sector. Hoffman’s remarks should help soothe the angst of the many voters, advocates, and cannabis entrepreneurs who are upset that state officials have delayed implementation of the Question 4 ballot initiative that legalized marijuana. Read

How legalization caused the price of marijuana to collapse

9/5/17--All the diverse effects of legalizing recreational marijuana may not be clear for a number of years, but one consequence that has become clearly evident is pot has never been so cheap. Steven Davenport of the Pardee Rand Graduate School has analyzed marijuana retail prices in Washington state since legal recreational markets opened in July 2014. Remarkably, prices have fallen every single quarter since. Read

Haze surrounding California marijuana regulations is starting to clear

8/30/17--On January 1, California will begin issuing licenses allowing businesses to legally sell marijuana for recreational use. To get a state-issued license, businesses must first find a local jurisdiction that allows them to operate and must be operating in compliance with all local-level regulations. Additionally, prior to receiving a license, business owners must submit fingerprints and pass a general background check. Licenses will not be issued to persons convicted of certain felonies. There will be 20 types of licenses in all, and the types of licenses issued will be the same for medicinal and recreational use. Read

State issues new plant limits for medical marijuana

9/1/17--Oregon public health officials drafted new rules for how many plants medical marijuana cardholders may grow at home or at a grow site registered with the state. The regulations are the result of legislation passed this year to tackle the flow of medical marijuana into the black market. Read

Learn from Colorado’s mistakes, says former cannabis czar

8/31/17--If he had to do it all over again, Andrew Freedman, Colorado’s former marijuana czar, would approach cannabis legalization by gathering loads more data, taking a calculated approach to edibles, and including an even greater cohort of public health voices. His hope is that others can learn from Colorado’s successes and its stumbles as it became the first state to regulate and tax the sale of cannabis for adult-use. Read

Aspen School District lands $250,000 state grant from marijuana taxes

8/30/17--The Aspen School District is receiving Colorado's marijuana tax collections in the form of a $250,000 grant the district will use to employ an on-campus social worker for the next three years. The money from the Colorado Department of Education's School Health Professionals Grant Program will pay for the new hire starting this fall. The social worker will deal directly with students and staff in grades pre-K through eighth to emphasize self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making. Read

Former deputy indicted in huge marijuana trafficking case

8/31/17--Renee Rayton, a former Pitkin County sheriff’s deputy who left the department a few years ago to join the Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division, faces charges for allegedly having a role in a massive trafficking ring that police say distributed and sold cannabis in other states. Rayton is charged with conspiracy to cultivate over 30 marijuana plants, a felony, and violating the state licensing authority. Read

Canna Care Docs opens medical marijuana practice in Pittsfield

8/29/17--Canna Care Docs has opened in Pittsfield, filling a void in the state's medical marijuana system. The arrival of the medical marijuana practice enables Berkshire County patients interested in this therapeutic option to be evaluated by physicians in Pittsfield, instead of having to travel out of the region. With nine offices in Massachusetts — and an equal number in seven other states, Canna Care Docs is emerging as one of the largest medical practices to evaluate prospective medical pot patients. Read

Colorado gov responds to Sessions marijuana letter questioning state’s regulatory regime

8/24/17--In a five-page missive obtained by The Cannabist, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and Attorney General Cynthia Coffman responded to Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ July 24 letter that raised “serious questions” about the state’s ability to regulate legal marijuana and prevent illegal activities. Coffman and Hickenlooper express in their letter that Colorado’s marijuana regulatory system is a model for other states, and the fledgling program could become even more robust with the federal government’s support. Read

San Diego may regulate marijuana cultivation more strictly than state

8/24/17--San Diego would regulate cultivation, manufacturing, and testing of marijuana more aggressively than the state under a long list of rules proposed by City Councilman Chris Cate. They include outlawing any signs on such businesses, requiring them to have a “positive impact” on the surrounding community, and mandating they have a round-the-clock liaison to respond to any complaints. Those proposals and several others go beyond state law. Read

Vacaville moves forward with marijuana regulations

8/23/17--After hearing a small group of speakers for and against marijuana, Vacaville city council members expressed ideas for what they want to see in marijuana-related land-use ordinances and regulations. The council told staff to come forward with a new moratorium on marijuana sales or cultivation in town as quickly as possible to give city staff time to research and come up with marijuana regulations later this fall. Read

Senator named to marijuana regulatory post opposed legal pot

8/23/17--Democratic state Senator Jennifer Flanagan, Leominster, is the first appointee to the five-member Cannabis Control Commission. She was named by Republican Gov. Charlie Baker to the regulatory board that will oversee the cannabis industry in Massachusetts. Flanagan played a key role in crafting a 2016 state law that offered several new approaches to stemming the deadly opioid addiction crisis. She opposed the marijuana initiative on the November ballot, citing concerns over unknown or unanswered questions about what legalization might mean to Massachusetts. Read

West Covina reconsiders ban on commercial cultivation of marijuana

8/16/17--West Covina leaders — although divided — are inching toward allowing the commercial cultivation of marijuana. The City Council on Tuesday voted 3-2, directing staff to develop an ordinance to allow cultivation and laboratory testing of marijuana and options for how to tax the pot-related businesses. Read

Alaska and Washington govs push back on Sessions’ marijuana enforcement letters

8/16/17--The governors of Alaska and Washington are questioning the data cited by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions in recent letters he sent to their states regarding the efficacy of their respective marijuana regulatory regimes. Sessions referred to regional and state data depicting serious public health and safety issues arising from marijuana legalization. Both states note that the data Sessions utilized when discussing their state’s respective regulatory regimes is out of date and incomplete. Read

Is the marijuana industry actually making money for Alaska?

8/12/17--The potential for government revenue is one argument people make in favor of commercializing marijuana. But in Alaska, is it true? Some in the marijuana industry say that the state has moved too slowly, and more money could be coming in if the process were faster. According to Cary Carrigan, executive director of the Alaska Marijuana Industry Association, when the industry matures and operates at full speed, it will be dynamic, and there will be enough money coming in that it won't be a question whether Alaska should have a marijuana industry or not. Read

Patients greet the state’s first cannabis dispensary with smiles

8/9/17--Patients rejoiced after making the first legal purchases of medical cannabis at a licensed dispensary in the state at Maui Grown Therapies in Kahului. The Maui dispensary, one of two licensed on the island, got the green light from the state Department of Health to be the first dispensary in the state to begin sales of medical cannabis. Read

Marijuana devastated Colorado, don’t legalize it nationally

8/7/17--According to USA Today opinion contributor Jeff Hunt, the true impact of marijuana on communities is just starting to be learned. The negative consequences of legalizing recreational marijuana will be felt for generations, and the effects in Colorado neighborhoods, in particular, is not wished upon the nation. Read

Marijuana grows leaving more Colorado homes filled with mold

7/31/17--Law enforcement authorities say they’re seeing more and more houses that have been left with thousands of dollars in damage from marijuana grow operations. Often the plants are tended by people who have little or no experience in horticulture and don’t realize the damage that water and humidity can do to a home. The biggest environmental danger in homes where weed is grown is mold caused by the amount of humidity growers inject into the home. Read

Marijuana’s legalization fuels black market in other states

7/31/17--Marijuana smugglers are growing and shipping vast quantities of illicit cannabis across the USA. Many are starting in states where growing marijuana is legal, such as Colorado, and sending the drug elsewhere. Legalization advocates have long argued that regulating marijuana forces the industry out of the shadows and into the public eye, where the drug can be taxed and the black market effectively eliminated. But because marijuana remains illegal in so many states, smugglers can take advantage of the patchwork of laws. Read

Commentary: Nevada needs to implement safeguards for legal pot

7/29/17--Some reports have suggested that Nevada will sell so much weed that the state will never have to worry about tax revenue again. But, according to a commentary by Kevin Sabet published in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Nevadans should look at what has happened in states that previously legalized the drug before rushing to sell more marijuana and spend more time putting safeguards into place. Read

Black market marijuana bust leaves bruises on Colorado’s marijuana industry

8/26/17--Owners of a marijuana head shop in Colorado Springs were allegedly running a criminal enterprise that illegally distributed about 200 pounds of marijuana. At the public announcement of the indictment, 4th Judicial District Attorney Dan May said marijuana is the gateway drug to homicide. He also stated the homeless population has gone up 50 percent each year in Colorado Springs since marijuana was legalized. May has been asked to retract his statement because it is considered to be dangerous to Colorado’s fastest growing industry and to anyone associated with cannabis in Colorado. Read

Colorado official: ‘Marijuana is gateway drug to homicide’

7/29/17--4th Judicial District Attorney Dan May pronounced marijuana to be a "gateway drug to homicide." His controversial remarks came at a news conference about a large black market marijuana bust in the state. He went on to say that Colorado Springs had 22 homicides in 2016, and eight were directly tied to marijuana. Read

Easthampton Planning Board to discuss recreational marijuana zoning

7/28/17--The Easthampton Planning Board is preparing to discuss a purpose statement for new zoning for recreational marijuana. Such zoning could decide where cannabis shops are allowed, their hours of operation, signage, and describe other potential limitations. Any zoning change must ultimately be approved by the City Council. Read

There’s way too much weed in California

7/28/17--According to a report by Patrick McGreevy at the Los Angeles Times, California's marijuana producers are growing eight times the amount needed for consumption. It has also been reported the pot glut at 12 times what's being consumed. A consequence of the glut is that some growers on the black market would most likely export their product to other states in violation of federal law. Read

Governor Baker signs rewritten recreational pot law

7/28/17--Gov. Charlie Baker signed a law on Friday overhauling the marijuana legalization measure voters put on the books in November, and immediately afterward offered a cautious outlook on the future of the cannabis industry in Massachusetts. Read

Maine legislative panel mulls raising 10 percent tax on marijuana

7/23/17--As the legalization of recreational marijuana sales in Maine nears, a legislative panel has spent months pondering the best way to tax pot to bring in state revenue, fund regulatory enforcement, and discourage the illicit market. The referendum included licensing fees as well as a 10 percent tax on sales by retail marijuana stores and social clubs, but nothing has been decided yet. Maine is looking at examples from others states, some of which also allow local taxes. Read

Recreational marijuana dispensaries now able to restock shelves with fresh pot products

7/22/17--Since the Nevada Department of Taxation has started licensing pot distributors, the Northern Nevada dispensaries can start restocking their shelves with new marijuana products. Dispensaries around Reno are starting to get new shipments in now, but the state has only granted a handful of distribution licenses. Read

Pot users keep Lyft and Uber drivers busy

7/22/17--Rideshare drivers with Uber and Lyft say they're making more money than ever before due to the legalization of marijuana. Although Uber says they don't have any specific data on the number of marijuana-related trips in Las Vegas, their safety spokesperson released a statement stating, in part, that they have continued to see a steady growth in trips throughout Nevada. With our technology, we want to help everyone have a safe ride home." Read

What Maine’s new recreational marijuana market will look like

Voters backed legalization by a slim margin in the 2016 election, approving a law allowing Mainers over age 21 to possess 2.5 ounces of marijuana. It’s too early to tell what the market will look like, but the industry is watching closely. Paul Armentaro, the deputy director of NORML, a national pro-legalization group, said Maine’s initiative as written is “one of the more progressive regulatory schemes with regard to marijuana in the country.” Read

Uruguay’s marijuana law turns pharmacists into dealers

7/17/17--When Uruguay’s marijuana legalization law takes full effect, getting high will just take a visit to the pharmacy. Uruguay is the first nation in the world to fully legalize the production and sale of marijuana for recreational use. Under the law, only Uruguayan citizens and legal permanent residents are allowed to purchase or grow pot, and the government will limit how much people can buy each week. Furthermore, in an effort to undercut drug traffickers, it is setting the price below black market rates. Read

Mass. lawmakers unveil proposed overhaul of marijuana law

7/17/17--The Massachusetts Legislature is expected to approve a broad overhaul of the voter-approved marijuana legalization law this week after House and Senate negotiators agreed on a bill that would hike marijuana taxes and change how communities can ban local pot shops. Read

Vegas pot price hike has medical marijuana buyers looking for alternate sales

7/17/17--Some unintended consequences of the legalization of recreational marijuana in Nevada has forced medical marijuana buyers to return to the black market as a result of patients not being able to afford “the price gouging” at dispensaries. To offset the costs– dispensaries are offering incentives to medical card holders. Read

States keep saying yes to marijuana use. Now comes the federal no.

7/15/17--In a national vote widely viewed as a victory for conservatives, last year’s elections also yielded a win for liberals in eight states that legalized marijuana for medical or recreational use. But the growing industry is facing a federal crackdown under Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who has compared cannabis to heroin. Read

SF officials approve former Oakland Mayor’s marijuana dispensary

7/14/17--After a great deal of deliberation and heated discussion, the commission approved a measure with conditions regarding cultural and educational services for former Oakland Mayor Jean Quan to open a medical marijuana dispensary in the city. The measure will go to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors if opposition appeals. Many speakers who were present at the Planning Commission meeting don't want the dispensary in their neighborhood because they say it's bad for the children, nearby schools, and many in the community. Read

Here’s why Nevada’s marijuana supply can’t keep up with sales

7/12/17--Dispensaries in Nevada are facing a pot shortage, and lost sales could result in less funding for the state’s schoolchildren. The supply problem has little to do with wilting plants and a lot to do with regulations that give alcohol wholesalers exclusive distributor rights. Although 47 dispensaries obtained licenses to sell cannabis in Nevada, regulators have yet to approve any wholesalers' distributor applications. Read

Nevada issues first marijuana delivery license

7/14/17--The state of Nevada, which officially began selling legal marijuana on July 1, only issued its first license to Blackbird Logistics Corporation to actually transport the product from the farm to the store on Wednesday. The move will give some dispensary managers relief while officials sort out a larger distribution issue. Read

When did Nevada’s alcohol industry get dibs on marijuana delivery?

7/13/17--Lots of Nevadans are wondering when wholesale alcohol distributors got involved with Nevada's recreational marijuana program, and why the delivery of marijuana to dispensaries depend on them. In short, a small group of wholesale alcohol distributors gave money to the marijuana legalization campaign at its start, which inspired language in Question 2 that entitled distributors to exclusive rights to deliver recreational marijuana to dispensaries for the first 18 months of legal sales. Read

Inside story on Uruguay, where the government is your weed dealer

7/10/17--Uruguay is the world’s first country to fully legalize the production, sale, and consumption of marijuana. However, under its strict rules, there will be no Amsterdam-style smoking cafes, and foreigners won’t have access to the national stash. Nor will there be shops selling ganja candies, psychedelic pastries, or other edible derivatives. Instead, Uruguay’s government has developed a legalization model whose apparent goal is to make marijuana use as boring as possible. Read

Amid heavy demand at Nevada marijuana shops, gov gives go-ahead for emergency rule on distribution

7/10/17--Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval has authorized state regulators to consider an emergency regulation that would allow officials to determine whether the state has enough marijuana distributors to keep its retail shops supplied. Sandoval’s approval came after dispensaries across the state reported higher than expected demand for marijuana since recreational sales of the drug became legal in Nevada. Read

Digipath receives recreational testing license and renews medical license

7/10/17--Digipath, Inc., an independent testing laboratory and media firm focused on the burgeoning cannabis market, announced that it has both received its recreational testing license and renewed its existing medical testing license alongside the launch of the highly anticipated retail cannabis market in Nevada, which began on July 1, 2017. Read

Legalized it: Nevada’s first night with recreational weed

7/5/17--On Saturday at midnight, Nevada became the fifth state to open dispensaries to recreational users, joining Colorado, Oregon, Washington, and Alaska. Under Nevada law, people 21 years of age and older can now buy and possess up to an ounce of flower, or an eighth-ounce of concentrates like wax, shatter, and oil, available at dispensaries throughout the state. Nevada expects to collect $70 million for education in the next two years by taxing recreational at about 34 percent. Read