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Hot off the press cannabis, marijuana, cbd and hemp news from around the world on the WeedLife News Network.

Doctor known for giving Medical Marijuana cards could lose her license

ST. LOUIS - A local doctor could lose her license because she is now facing discipline for doling out medical marijuana.

Dr. Zinia Thomas is also facing criminal charges. We’ve met Dr. Thomas before. She’s a licensed psychiatrist in Missouri who runs several local businesses. But she also took her medical marijuana practice on the road and that could ultimately send her career up in smoke.

In 2019, News 4 Investigates went undercover as Dr. Thomas took her Cannibus tour to a shop in Festus. KMOV employees filled out a form and though they were never seen personally by Dr. Thomas, she diagnosed one of them with a debilitating psychiatric disorder to qualify them for a medical marijuana card. In fact, she did it for everyone there.

It’s just that practice that now has her in trouble with the state of Missouri.

The complaint, filed just last week, alleges Dr. Thomas “demonstrated conduct or practices which are or might be harmful or dangerous to the mental of physical health” of patients, claiming “repeated negligence” in her duties.

The state is starting a process to possibly discipline her.

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San Diego health officials remind Parents of the risks of teen Marijuana use

Parents encouraged to talk to their kids early and often to prevent substance abuse.

SAN DIEGO - San Diego health officials last week highlighted the mental health-related risks of marijuana, particularly frequent use of high-potency cannabis among youth.

The potency of cannabis — measured by the amount of THC found in products — has been on the rise for years, with a roughly 0.20 percent increase every year from 1970 to 2017, according to a study published by the Society for the Study of Addiction. THC is the chemical that gives cannabis its effect.

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which cites various studies, regular use of marijuana, especially high-potency cannabis, is a risk factor for psychosis and mental health disorders such as schizophrenia.

Among youth, the risk is greater.

It’s for this reason that officials with Family Health Centers of San Diego, Scripps Mercy Hospital and Marijuana Prevention Initiative urged parents last week to talk to their children early and often about the risks. The Marijuana Prevention Initiative held a news conference Thursday at the City Heights Family Health Center.

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Investors are high on the Cannabis Industry, but Federal Rules kill the buzz

At a wealth management conference hellbent on bucking trends, green and alternative investing were two topics that dominated the conversation.

But for one afternoon during "the world's largest wealth festival," the OG green investment took center stage.

With Huntington Beach as their backdrop and Future Proof 2022 as their host, five insiders who know the ins and outs of the budding legal cannabis industry discussed the investment opportunities presented as more states huddle in the smoke session.

But marijuana remaining illegal at the federal level means compliance and perception continue to create challenges for the most alternative of alternative investments. 

Still, Tiby Erdely, founding partner of the Denver, Colorado-based investment firm KEY Investment Partners, believes the momentum generated each time another state decriminalizes or outright legalizes cannabis makes federal rescheduling a matter of when, not if.

As of fall 2022, 19 states and the District of Columbia have legalized the recreational use of marijuana. The tally climbs to 39 states and Washington, D.C., when looking at the legalization of medical marijuana. The complete holdouts are a collection of midwestern and southern states that are at least broaching the conversation.

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An Art Gallery that sells Cannabis? How one Dispensary is Standing Out

2022 has been a tough year for a lot of cannabis brands. On the one hand, more markets than ever have opened.

But between inflation and taxation many are feeling the pinch.

That doesn’t mean it’s all doom and gloom, some brands are standing out, and they’re doing it by exploring those new markets and having a unique business model. 

On the retail side, The Artist Tree just launched their fifth location and the first licensed cannabis dispensary in Fresno, California. From nearly 100 applicants for a retail cannabis permit, The Artist Tree emerged victorious to become the first dispensary to serve the community of the Golden State’s 5th largest city. 

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Lower-risk guidelines for Cannabis use

Cannabis is often marketed and presented as a less problematic drug than its contemporaries alcohol and tobacco.

However, just like everything else in this world, there is a risk associated with cannabis use.

Lucky for you, dear reader, there are ways to mitigate this risk while still partaking.

In a new review of previous studies published in the International Journal of Drug Policy, scientists have created general guidelines for lower-risk cannabis use. 

The article contains 12 recommendations, but there are a few major, actionable guidelines: Delay cannabis use until adulthood, avoid high-potency THC products, use infrequently, abstain from inhalation methods and refrain from driving high. 

First is waiting until adulthood. Luckily, you have confirmed you’re at least 21 to enter this section, so you’re at much lower risk than adolescents for cannabis use. Cannabis use prior to the completion of puberty is associated with “adverse health and psycho-social effects, especially in those who engage in intensive use,” according to the study.

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420 Finder launches a new platform to help Cannabis users and Businesses connect Safely

he 420 Finder team has been supporting cannabis businesses for years, and the launch of the platform shows it.

WASHINGTON D.C. - As cannabis legalization continues to happen per state, 420 Finder, a leading cannabis technology company, is excited to announce the launch of its revolutionary new, sharply designed platform that connects cannabis users with local businesses safely.

Underpinned by years of national industry expertise, 420 Finder is an intuitive and flexible solution that focuses on helping local cannabis businesses connect with consumers, operate more efficiently, and create superior customer experiences.

"Many assume the plant sells itself, but it's not so simple for legal local businesses. The industry remains a highly regulated environment with an influx of challenges and increasing competition. With 420 Finder, cannabis users can find local businesses and connect safely," said Brad Overton, Director of Operations at 420 Finder.

420 Finder offers free accounts and free online ordering for all its Customers. For businesses, they offer online ordering with all memberships and opportunities for businesses to increase their exposure. The 420 Finder team has been supporting cannabis businesses for years, and the platform's launch shows it. They have used their experience to make the platform intuitive and easy to use. It eliminates redundancy and streamlines the process of getting cannabis to users as fast as possible. Most importantly, it creates a fun and interactive way for users to discover new businesses and deals in their area.

"We're here to power the upcoming explosion of innovative retail experiences that sustain healthy cannabis businesses and keep customers returning for more," he adds.

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A legal Pot Problem that’s now Plaguing the Streets of America: Plastic Litter

“We're going to have this entire new universe of plastic waste of the worst kind,” says one environmental activist.

Pre-rolled marijuana cigarettes in sativa, indica and hybrid varieties are seen for sale at a dispensary in California on Jan. 1, 2018. Credit: Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images

Waste packaging from a burgeoning and newly legalized marijuana industry litters streets across the country, adding to a global crisis of plastic waste.

In New York, regulators who are making the state’s first-ever rules for the retail sale of recreational marijuana hope they have answers to limit their state’s contribution to the problem. They’ve been working to include sustainable packaging requirements into the licenses that businesses will need to open by the end of this year.

However, at least one prominent environmental advocate fears New York—and other states grappling with a new and booming industry—aren’t requiring enough producer responsibility for the environmental impacts of their products.

Judith Enck, president of Beyond Plastics, a group working to end plastics waste, said the best time for a nascent industry to bake in sustainability principles is when it’s just getting established—and for legalized cannabis sales, she added, that means now. 

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It’s official: Arkansas to vote on Legal Cannabis this fall

‘We’re extremely grateful to the Supreme Court that they agreed with us and felt like it was a complete validation of everything we’ve done’

The Supreme Court of Arkansas has ruled that voters will get their say on whether or not to legalize recreational cannabis in the state come the November elections. The recent decision overturns an earlier ban by Arkansas Board of Election Commissioners.

“The people will decide whether to approve the proposed amendment in November,” Justice Robin Wynne notes in the court’s ruling.

“We’re extremely grateful to the Supreme Court that they agreed with us and felt like it was a complete validation of everything we’ve done,” says Steve Lancaster, an attorney from Responsible Growth Arkansas, which had raised more than $US4 million in support of the measure. “We’re excited and moving on to November.”

In August, the state board rejected the proposed amendment. Despite supporters of the measure submitting more than enough signatures to get the issue on the election ballot, it needed final approval from the board.

Commissioners claimed the ballot’s title didn’t explain the amendment’s true impact to voters. One example listed was a concern that the amendment would eliminate the state’s THC limit established when medical marijuana was approved.

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Proposal for Marijuana Cigarette manufacturing unravels at Vineland zoning hearing

VINELAND - The city has turned away a proposal for manufacturing marijuana cigarettes at a property on North Delsea Drive.

The proposal rested on getting a use variance from the local cannabis zoning ordinance, since the site has a house on it and regulations prohibit a house sharing a lot with any cannabis operation.

Zoning Board members unanimously rejected the idea at a hearing Wednesday night.

“I don’t believe that a residential use on this type of property based on the city’s creation of regulations is appropriate,” Chairman George LoBiondo said. “I don’t think the application would have been approved without a site plan, even if there wasn’t a residential use.”

The idea was not popular with neighbors who spoke at the public hearing, either.

In testimony, applicant Anthony Copernico said he and a partner, Allen Lemmerman, had an option to lease 3680 N. Delsea Drive.

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Greens announce new plans to Legalise Cannabis by 2023

A member of the Australian Greens says fresh legal advice paves a clear path for the national legalisation of cannabis.

The Australian Greens say fresh legal advice from an expert in constitutional law paves a clear path for the national legalisation of cannabis.

NSW Greens senator David Shoebridge announced on Twitter on Monday morning that his office had received advice that all state legislation criminalising cannabis use could be overridden by the commonwealth, with the legalisation of its use a possibility this year.

In an explainer released for their renewed campaign, the Greens said advice from constitutional law expert and dean of law at Australian Catholic University, Patrick Keyzer, revealed a pathway to legalising cannabis was through the commonwealth’s power to regulate plant variety rights under section 51 of the constitution.

“In short, the commonwealth can regulate the cultivation, licensing and sale of cannabis,” the Greens said, referring to Mr Keyser’s advice.

They said this included “all ancillary machinery provisions needed to create a legal national market for cannabis”.

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Passage of Marijuana amendment would mean huge economic boom for State and Municipalities

KANSAS CITY - When Missouri voters go to the polls in November to decide whether recreational use of marijuana should be legal there’s a lot more than pot use at stake.

Approval could mean big money for the state and cities.

Marijuana is estimated to be an almost two-billion-dollar market in Missouri. Most of that is due to illegal sales with no benefit to the state. But if voters approve the amendment, the hope is that those underground buyers would move their business to stores, creating revenue by way of taxes.

If approved, Amendment 3 would allow those 21 and over to  possess, purchase, consume and cultivate marijuana. A recent SurveyUSA poll showed that 62% of Missouri voters favor the amendment.

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New Poll sheds light on GOP’s progressing views on Cannabis Legalization

If this poll is any indication of how republicans nationwide view cannabis policy, there could be lots to discuss, and possibly celebrate, when it comes to cannabis legalization in states throughout the country.

With the midterm elections on the horizon, many political issues are taking center stage as November inches closer into view. Cannabis reform and legalization has already entered the conversation in several races, and its legalization will be on the ballot in several states this election.

But where many issues are very polarizing, a new poll suggests that republican voters might actually favor marijuana access and reform more than you might think, in ways that align them closer to democrats than is typically seen in today’s political climate.

The poll, which was conducted on behalf of the National Cannabis Roundtable in late August and surveyed 1,000 Republican voters, found the majority of republicans surveyed support a number of progressive cannabis policies. For one, according to the poll, 3 and 4 of the GOP voters surveyed believe that cannabis companies should have the same rights as any other type of business.

The Fresh Toast had the chance to ask the NCR a few questions about the poll, including whether they think Republican lawmakers with conservative views will start changing their stance on cannabis policy.

“Members of congress are elected to represent the viewpoints of their constituencies and these poll numbers overwhelmingly show that there are more voters in favor of cannabis reform than against,” said Saphira Galoob, executive director, National Cannabis Roundtable.

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Does Weed help treat ADHD?

Cannabis and ADHD have a complex relationship, but there is compelling evidence that marijuana helps treat the chronic condition.

If cannabis can be used to enhance your focus, can weed help ADHD? In this article, we’ll look at what the science says about cannabis and ADHD, including recent research that suggests that ADHD may be connected to the endocannabinoid system.

While scientists are still exploring weed and ADHD, there is some early evidence that suggests cannabis may be a helpful therapy.

Cannabis and ADHD: An Overview

Before we get into how weed affects Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), let’s define what we are discussing.

ADHD is a neurological condition that makes it difficult to focus and can lead to impulsivity and hyperactivity. ADHD is the official medical diagnosis, whereas Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) is a now-outdated term that describes people with primarily inattentive symptoms. At present, one in nine children are diagnosed with ADHD and an estimated 6.76% of adults display ADHD symptoms.

People with ADHD may encounter trouble in school or work. However, many successful individuals with ADHD — such as business mogul Richard Branson or the award-winning journalist Lisa Ling — view their ADHD as an advantage, so this condition affects everyone differently.

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‘Let’s Do It Legit’: Drug Arrestees Vie for First New York Pot Licenses

Anytime the police approached the street in the Bronx where Hector Bonilla used to hang out, his friends would toss away their marijuana on the ground, he said.

The police would pin the drugs on whomever was closest, Mr. Bonilla said. That is how he ended up with two convictions for marijuana possession in early 2000, he recalled, for weed he maintains was not his.

Mr. Bonilla, 42, a taxicab driver, said his criminal record haunted him for years and made getting work difficult. “Now, over 20 years later, it’s my free ticket to this,” he said, pointing to a laptop screen.

Mr. Bonilla was applying for a license to open one of New York’s first dispensaries to legally sell recreational cannabis. The four-year licenses are reserved for business owners who have been convicted of marijuana-related offenses in a New York State court, and will allow them to sell cannabis to any adult as early as this year.

The licensing effort aims to atone for the damage inflicted during the war on drugs, which has been criticized for targeting communities of color and focusing on drug use as a crime and not a public health issue. Despite similar levels of use across races, Black and Latino residents have been swept up on low-level marijuana charges at higher rates than their white peers.

Lawmakers legalized cannabis last year with a focus on social equity, the idea that policy should address past harms and eliminate hurdles that prevent some people from accessing opportunities. There are growing concerns, however, that the licensing process has been more difficult than expected and left eligible applicants without support.

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Parents hope Medical Cannabis production in Georgia will bring relief for their children

ATLANTA - The fight to make medical cannabis more accessible here in Georgia takes a step forward.

The state awarded two companies licenses to grow it in Georgia. The move comes as some good news to parents of children living with life-threatening seizures.

Right now, it is legal to possess medical cannabis in Georgia, but can’t buy it.

Some parents, like Janea Peloquin, moved out of state just to get it for their kids’ seizures. They say the decision to let companies grow medical cannabis in the state is a step in the right direction.

Peloquin’s daughter Haliegh Cox used to suffer hundreds of severe seizures each day. So they left behind their family in Georgia and moved to Colorado where medical cannabis is legal to buy.

"Colorado just seemed like the best place to be until we could get it legalized and grown in Georgia," Peloquin said.

Peloquin was part of a core of passionate parents who fought to bring medical marijuana cannabis to Georgia. Haleigh’s Hope, the law legalizing medical cannabis in the state, is named after Haleigh Cox. There’s even a product called Haleigh’s Hope. Peloquin can possess medical cannabis here in Georgia. She just can’t buy the product that bears her daughter’s name.

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Florida firm Bankrolls drive to legalize Recreational Marijuana

TALLAHASSEE - Florida-based Trulieve, one of the nation’s largest medical marijuana companies, has kickstarted a campaign to legalize recreational marijuana for adults in the Sunshine State.

The company has contributed $10 million to date to the Smart & Safe Florida campaign to get a constitutional amendment on the 2024 ballot, and so far is its sole contributor. The organization already has spent $6.5 million to start collecting the nearly 900,000 signatures needed to bring the citizen initiative to a vote.

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L.A. Times investigates California's Marijuana legalization disaster

An emphasis on corruption and enforcement downplays the very real influence of regulation and taxes on California's booming black market.

The Los Angeles Times has released a heavily researched, heavily reported investigation on the many, many ways that California's legalization of marijuana has been a disastrous mess.

Titled "Legal Weed, Broken Promises," the four stories of the series painstakingly illustrate the breadth of the illegal grow operations scattered across much of the rural parts of California, the political corruption and bribery that has come from the way the state has given politicians control over licensing, and the spread of unlicensed dispensaries that are seemingly uncontainable.

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Why Cannabis Consuming parents need the protection of Child Welfare Laws

While societal rules are changing, people’s personal norms aren’t because if it’s acceptable to smoke weed outside, how do parents set ground rules at home?

As of the time of writing, 18 states and the District of Columbia have already legalized marijuana for recreational use. A majority of US states have also approved it for medicinal use. In these areas, it’s legal for adults over the age of 18 — parents included — to consume marijuana the way they would a bottle of beer.

However, the stigma is still there. The cultural bias can still be astounding especially for parents who need marijuana the most. Each state has its own specific laws regarding cannabis use though in many cases, it’s far too easy to charge a parent for endangerment or even child neglect if they consume marijuana and others suspect that their children are being put at risk.

While we’re living in terrific times — legal marijuana and all — parents must still think carefully and strategize around cannabis consumption. Whether or not your cannabis use puts your child at risk, it will depend on many things such as how conservative your social circle is, whether you act impaired around your child or not, and what your lawyer thinks.

Unfortunately, there are many gray areas still at this time when it comes to parenting, child safety, and marijuana use.

There are many parents who have no problem consuming responsibly. After all, what ‘harm’ is being done when you smoke a few puffs when your kid is in bed? Then there again, there are also those who abuse it, and they give the rest of the responsible parents a bad rap.

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Hemp-Derived Delta-8 skirts Marijuana laws and raises Health Concerns

Suzan Kennedy has smoked marijuana, and says her Wisconsin roots mean she can handle booze, so she was not concerned earlier this year when a bartender in St. Paul, Minnesota, described a cocktail with the cannabinoid delta-8 THC as “a little bit potent.”

Hours after enjoying the tasty drink and the silliness that reminded Kennedy of a high from weed, she said, she started to feel “really shaky and faint” before collapsing in her friend’s arms. Kennedy regained consciousness and recovered, but her distaste for delta-8 remains, even though the substance is legal at the federal level, unlike marijuana.

“I’m not one to really tell people what to do,” said Kennedy, 35, who lives in Milwaukee and works in software sales. But if a friend tried to order a delta-8 drink, “I would tell them, ‘Absolutely not. You’re not putting that in your body.’”

The FDA and some marijuana industry experts share Kennedy’s concerns. At least a dozen states have banned the hemp-derived drug, including Colorado, Montana, New York, and Oregon, which have legalized marijuana. But delta-8 manufacturers call the concerns unfounded and say they’re driven by marijuana businesses trying to protect their market share.

So what is the difference? The flower of the marijuana plant, oil derived from it, and edibles made from those contain delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, the substance that produces the drug’s high, and can be legally sold only at dispensaries in states that have legalized marijuana.

Similar products that contain delta-8 THC are sold online and at bars and retailers across much of the U.S., including some places where pot remains illegal. That’s because a 2018 federal law legalized hemp, a variety of the cannabis plant. Hemp isn’t allowed to contain more than 0.3% of the psychotropic delta-9 THC found in marijuana.

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Hemp needs more Regulatory Certainty

It wasn't that long ago that advocates were promoting hemp as the crop that would save agriculture, promising unprecedented profits.

On paper the prospects are bright. CBD, processed from hemp, is seen by many as a magic elixir for health and beauty aids. A variety of products can be manufactured from the plant's fibers.

But in just four years the crop has gone from boon to bust, thanks to overproduction and a federal regulatory scheme that has made processors wary of developing new hemp-related products.

Oregon growers can attest to the crop's change in fortune.

Acreage in the state soared after Congress legalized hemp in 2018. Growers planted nearly 64,000 acres in 2019, a more than fivefold increase from 2018.

Farmers accustomed to earning a few hundred dollars per acre were inspired to switch to hemp after hearing about others earning $50,000 per acre in revenues from hemp.

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