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Maryland marijuana panel approves ban on cannabis advertising on billboards, radio, TV and other media

12/6/18--The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission voted unanimously Thursday to ban billboard, radio, TV, and most online advertising by marijuana companies — a move that representatives for the firms said they would fight in the General Assembly when it convenes next month. The new rules also prohibit advertising in print publications such as newspapers and magazines that cannot prove that 85 percent of their audience is over 18 years old, and bans the use of leaflets or flyers in most public and private places. Read

Medical marijuana sales in Maryland set to blow through one expert forecast, reach $100 million

11/21/18--Sales of medical marijuana in Maryland this year are surpassing projections from one of the cannabis industry’s leading market research firms. New Frontier Data forecast last year — before Maryland’s market kicked off last December — that the state’s 2018 sales would be $46 million. However, sales have been $67 million, according to the latest data from the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission. Read

Medical marijuana commission alerts patients to how best to report negative reactions

8/11/18--An email from a medical marijuana dispensary owner alerting patients to a state investigation into whether a Maryland cannabis grower used pesticides and warning them of possible harmful side effects has spurred concern throughout the young industry. The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission took issue with the email in an online bulletin from executive director Joy A. Strand, who stated that the notification was “not accurate.” Read

Don’t let Sessions turn back the clock on medical marijuana

10/12/17--U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is urging Congress to make medical marijuana programs illegal in Maryland and the 30 other jurisdictions that have approved legislation shielding use of the drug for medicinal purposes from criminal prosecution. According to an op-ed published in The Baltimore Sun, Sessions' impulse to revive discredited policies of the past is part of a more general backward-looking understanding of his office, which he sees as an instrument for rolling back the progressive reforms of his predecessors. Read

University of Maryland pharmacy school cancels plans to train medical marijuana workers

9/18/17--After consulting with the Maryland attorney general’s office, the University of Maryland’s School of Pharmacy canceled plans to offer training for those who work in the medical marijuana industry amid legal concerns. The classes, initially scheduled to start in August, offered basic and advanced certifications in areas including cultivation, manufacturing, dispensing, laboratory standards, and assessment. It’s unclear whether the courses might be offered in the future. Read

Judge temporarily halts Maryland medical marijuana industry

5/25/17--Baltimore Circuit Judge Barry Williams put Maryland's medical marijuana industry temporarily on hold Thursday, granting the request of a company that alleged state regulators illegally ignored racial diversity when picking firms to grow the drug. Judge said the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission is not permitted to grant any additional marijuana licenses for 10 days. He will decide after a June 2 hearing whether to extend that ban until the conclusion of a lawsuit that asks for the entire application process to begin anew. Read

Black caucus issues ‘ultimatum’ on medical marijuana

4/12/17--The Legislative Black Caucus stepped up its demand for a special General Assembly session to address a lack of diversity in the medical marijuana industry, saying that failure to do so would effectively shut out African-Americans from a lucrative business. If the leaders refuse, the 51-member caucus will not cooperate with Democratic leaders, caucus chair Del. Cheryl Glenn said. Read

Maryland General Assembly ethics committee hires special counsel

1/20/17--The General Assembly ethics committee that's investigating Del. Dan K. Morhaim's work with a medical cannabis company has hired a lawyer to assist with the review. Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, who on Friday disclosed the hiring of the special counsel, said the action underscores the serious nature of the investigation. Read

Leader of Maryland’s black lawmakers outraged by medical marijuana plan

tmr_image-block11/18/16--The leader of the General Assembly's black caucus was outraged that medical marijuana regulators plan to choose companies to dispense the drug while the state's selection process is mired in controversy. Black lawmakers felt they already had grounds for a civil rights fight because firms owned by African-Americans did not win any of the 15 preliminary licenses to grow marijuana. The decision to issue preliminary licenses for dispensaries before addressing that problem drew Baltimore Del. Cheryl Glenn's rebuke. Read

Few doctors sign on to recommend medical marijuana in Maryland

screen-shot-2016-11-27-at-10-26-09-pm11/14/16--Just 1 percent of the 16,000 doctors who treat patients in Maryland have signed up for the state's medical marijuana program, and two of the largest hospital systems in the state have banned their physicians from participating. The lack of enthusiasm threatens to undermine the fledgling program by limiting access to the drug that has shown promise in easing pain and other severe conditions. Read

Top lobbyist represents winner of controversial medical marijuana license

fb-square-english-spanish10/3/16--Holistic Industries LLC, represented by top-earning lobbyist Gerard E. Evans, was awarded a lucrative Maryland marijuana-growing license after a state commission pulled it from the ranks of losers and gave it a winning slot. Holistic was originally ranked too low to receive one of 15 state growing licenses, but members of the state's Medical Cannabis Commission reconsidered an earlier vote. Read

Company that didn’t win medical marijuana license sues state commission

fb-square-english-spanish9/20/16--Bethesda-based GTI Maryland was bumped out of the running for one of Maryland's lucrative medical marijuana grower licenses. The company is suing the state commission that issues the permits, throwing the already delayed program into further uncertainty. Read