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Tomorrow: Historic U.S. Senate Hearing on Marijuana Legalization

September 9th

WASHINGTON, DC — On Tuesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a first-ever Senate hearing on the issue of marijuana legalization and the tension between state and federal marijuana laws. Last November, Colorado and Washington became the first political jurisdictions in the world to approve the legal regulation of marijuana. Twenty states and the District of Columbia […]

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Senator Leahy Calls Judiciary Hearing on Federal Marijuana Policy

August 28th

WASHINGTON, DC – US Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, announced Monday that he would hold a hearing next month on the Justice Department’s response to marijuana legalization in Colorado and Washington and legal medical marijuana in 20 states and the District of Columbia. The hearing is set for September 10. Leahy […]

Read Senator Leahy Calls Judiciary Hearing on Federal Marijuana Policy in its entirety on The Daily Chronic.

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Delaware to Establish Medical Marijuana Dispensary Program

August 16th

DOVER, DE — Delaware Gov. Jack Markell (D) informed state lawmakers Thursday that state officials are preparing to establish a regulated medical marijuana dispensary program. “We applaud Gov. Markell for taking this essential step toward providing safe and legal access to medical marijuana for qualified patients,” said Robert Capecchi, deputy director of state policies for […]

Read Delaware to Establish Medical Marijuana Dispensary Program in its entirety on The Daily Chronic.

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Delaware Governor Moves Forward on Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

August 16th

DOVER, DE — More than two years after signing a medical marijuana bill into law, Delaware Gov. Jack Markell (D) signaled Thursday that he is ready to move forward with drafting regulations for dispensaries, or “compassion centers” in Delaware-speak. Markell originally halted the dispensary portion of the law in February 2012 after receiving a letter from US Attorney […]

Read Delaware Governor Moves Forward on Medical Marijuana Dispensaries in its entirety on The Daily Chronic.

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Washington State Marijuana Regulators Want Clarity From Feds

July 12th

OLYMPIA, WA – Two Washington state regulators who are drafting rules for the state’s newly legal recreational marijuana industry said they would benefit from clearer directives by the federal government on how to build a system that would avoid being shut down.

Chris Marr, one of three appointed members of the state Liquor Control Board charged with drafting state pot rules, said the U.S. Department of Justice had so far provided scant guidance on how to develop an industry that federal authorities, who view pot as an illegal drug, won’t feel compelled to shutter.

“Policy is being established that will be a precursor for a large number of states,” Marr said. “It’s irresponsible. They should at least engage even if just for the purposes of information gathering.”

Washington and Colorado last November became the first U.S. states to legalize recreational pot use, even as the drug remains illegal under federal law, and both expect to have recreational-use marijuana stores open starting next year.

Despite the federal prohibition of cannabis, the states are proceeding with efforts to create rules for their nascent markets with provisions including advertising restrictions and security requirements for growing operations.

Engagement in those efforts could give federal authorities a voice in a pr. . . . . READ MORE

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CA Medical Marijuana Dispensary Numbers Shrink in Two-Pronged Attack

June 30th

LOS ANGELES, CA — California medical marijuana dispensaries — and their patients — are under a sustained, two-pronged attack, and that is having a dramatic impact on patient access across the state. Under pressure from the federal government on one hand and newly-emboldened local officials on the other, dispensary numbers are shrinking and ever larger swathes of the state that legalized medical marijuana nearly 17 years ago are without anywhere to get medical marijuana.

Anyone who is following the situation in the Golden State at all closely has seen a numbing litany of reports of dispensaries forced out of business, including from some of the most venerable, respected, and law-abiding operations in the state.

What had been the occasional raid or prosecution by the DEA or federal prosecutors during the early years of the Obama administration has turned into a heightened onslaught since the issuance of the notorious Cole memo, written by Assistant Attorney General James Cole, two years ago next week and the announcement by California’s four US Attorneys that fall that they were declaring open season on dispensaries.

And while recalcitrant city and county law enforcement and elected officials had managed to make access to medical marijuana a pat. . . . . READ MORE

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