United States

New Mexico, Virginia latest to legalize cannabis

Posted on April 15th, 2021 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , .

leafNew Mexico's Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham signed the state's cannabis legalization bill on April 12, allowing those age 21 and over to start cultivating up to six plants at home and possess up to 2 ounces (56 grams) outside their homes starting at the end of June. Retail sales are to begin in a year. On April 7, Virginia's Gov. Ralph Northam reached a deal with the General Assembly, signing amendments that speed up the state's legalization to July 1. The law makes home cultivation of up to four plants and possession of up to an ounce legal for those 21 and older. Sales are expected to begin in 2024. The Virginia law has strong social equity provisions, while those in the New Mexico bill were mostly put off to future legislation. (National Law Review, AP, NPRVirginia Mercury, Marijuana Moment, Marijuana Moment)

The Vilsack Attack?

hempWhat will Biden’s Agriculture Department Mean for Small Farmers and Hemp?

Progressives coast to coast breathed a heavy sigh of relief as Joe Biden took the oath of office, ending the turbulent and reactionary rule of Donald Trump over the past four years.

But hemp cultivation, like the rewriting and replacement of NAFTA, was one of the few areas that actually saw positive change in the Trump years—with bipartisan support. The 2018 Farm Bill that re-legalized the crop after generations of prohibition bore Trump’s signature.

And there are fears that Biden could mean a return to the Washington consensus of a corporate-friendly “free trade” status quo ante, shorn even of the limited populist measures of the Trump era.

For small farmers, including some hemp cultivators, Biden’s choice to lead the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) may provide a case in point.

Dawn Wells, TV's 'Mary Ann,' was a toker

Posted on December 30th, 2020 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

Dawn WellsSome of her fans fondly recall that Gilligan's Island co-star Dawn Wells, who played innocent Mary Ann and passed away on Dec. 30 in Los Angeles, had been arrested for cannabis possession in 2007. Police in Idaho, where she then lived, stopped her car for swerving on the night of Wells' 69th birthday, Oct. 18, and said they detected the smell of marijuana. Four partially smoked joints were found in the car.

UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs deschedules cannabis —partially

Planet WatchAt the annual Vienna meeting of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, the governing body of the UN Office on Drugs & Crime (UNODCvoted Dec. 2 to strike cannabis from Schedule IV of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, the global treaty regulating drug control policy.

Cannabis, ecology and the California fires

CaliforniaThe year 2020's record-breaking wildfires in California and other Western states have compounded the grim impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic—and have similarly been politicized. Thus far, the blow they have dealt to the burgeoning cannabis industry has been well weathered. But this will clearly pose a growing challenge in the years to come—as those parts of the country where legal cannabis cultivation is most advanced are also the most vulnerable to this devastating sign of ecological disequilibrium.

Montana's tortuous trail to legalization

Posted on November 8th, 2020 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , .

MontanaVoters in Montana passed a ballot measure mandating legalization of adult-use cannabis. But there was a pre-emptive attempt in the state legislature to repeal it before it even passed. Montana's road to legalization has been a long and twisted one, and there may be further political fights ahead. 

Hemp & Native American Sovereignty

SiouxThe original peoples of what is now the United States were left in legal limbo in the wake of the 2018 Farm Bill, which made hemp cultivation again lawful. Federally recognized Native American tribes could not cultivate under state regulation, because the states have limited jurisdiction on their reservations. But the US Agriculture Department dragged its heels in issuing federal regs that could apply on these lands. Caught between two sovereigns, many farmers in Indian country are asserting their right to cultivate hemp under the un-extinguished sovereignty of their own Native nations.

Study finds no link between legalization, pedestrian traffic fatalities

Posted on September 8th, 2020 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , .

trafficQuestions about road safety have been a real concern as cannabis legalization has unfolded across 11 states, with medical marijuana laws in many more. But with several years of data to analyze, a new study finds no link between these policies and traffic fatalities.

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