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Maine Adopts Law Allowing Medical Marijuana for PTSD

June 26th

AUGUSTA, ME – Maine residents suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) will soon be allowed to treat their symptoms with medical marijuana if their doctors recommend it. A bill adding PTSD to the list of qualifying conditions for medical marijuana, LD 1062, became law Tuesday without the governor’s signature.

A similar measure was signed into law earlier this month in Oregon, and medical marijuana is currently allowed in the treatment of PTSD in California, Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, and New Mexico.

“There is mounting evidence demonstrating the benefits of medical marijuana for individuals suffering from PTSD,” said David Boyer, Maine political director for the Marijuana Policy Project. “Maine lawmakers should be commended for taking action to ensure veterans and others living with PTSD are able to use medical marijuana to alleviate their symptoms and live healthy and productive lives. They deserve nothing less.

“A growing number of states are beginning to consider allowing the use of medical marijuana in the treatment of PTSD,” Boyer said. We hope they will move forward and follow the example that has been set. . . . . READ MORE

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Oregon Medical Marijuana Dispensary Bill Heads to Senate

June 26th

SALEM, OR – A bill that would create a registry of medical marijuana outlets and help legitimate the state’s thriving medical marijuana industry passed a major hurdle Monday, winning approval in the House. The bill, House Bill 3460, now goes to the state Senate.

The bill passed the House 31 to 27 on a near party-line vote Monday. All Republicans opposed it, and all Democrats but two supported it.

The Oregon Medical Marijuana Act (OMMA) allows patients to grow their own medicine or have someone else to it for them. But many patients have complained that they can grow marijuana themselves, can’t find a reliable grower, and have to either do without or resort to the black market.

In the past few years, dispensaries have opened up to serve patient needs, but they have operated in a grey area since the OMMA did not specifically provide for them. That has led to differences in access to medical marijuana based on the attitudes of local officials.

In Multnomah County (Portland), for example, medical marijuana outlets have been largely tolerated, but providers have been raided in less tolerant areas of th. . . . . READ MORE

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Final Vote on New Hampshire Medical Marijuana Bill Expected Today

June 26th

CONCORD, NH — The New Hampshire legislature is expected to vote today on a medical marijuana compromise bill after successful negotiations last week reconciled differences between bills passed previously in both chambers.

The bill, House Bill 573,  allows qualifying patients to obtain medical marijuana from one of four special dispensaries across the state beginning in 2015, abandoning the House’s proposal that patients or their caretakers would be allowed to grow their own marijuana.

The vote, expected Wednesday afternoon, is expected to pass both chambers, sending the bill to the desk of Governor Maggie Hassan for final approval.

Governor Hassan has said that she will sign the bill, now that the compromise has been reached and her concerns have been addressed.

“I encourage the full legislature to pass this compromise so I can sign this legislation into law,” Hassan said last week.

“Allowing doctors to provide relief to patients through the use of appropriately regulated and dispensed medical marijuana is the compassionate and right policy for the State of New Hampshire,” Gov. Hassan said in a statement issued Tuesday.

Hassan, who voted in favor of medical marijuana. . . . . READ MORE

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Oregon House Approves Medical Marijuana Dispensary Bill

June 25th

SALEM, OR — The Oregon House voted 31-27 Monday to approve a bill that would license and regulate medical marijuana dispensaries statewide.  The bill has now been sent to the Senate for consideration.

Earlier last week, the bill received endorsements from Oregon Attorney General  Ellen Rosenblum, who said that the passage of the bill will help to ensure that all patients with a valid Oregon Medical Marijuana Program card will be able to obtain medical marijuana “safely, predictably, promptly and legally.”

The bill, House Bill 3460, directs the Oregon Health Authority to establish a registration system for medical marijuana facilities.  Such facilities exist presently in the state but are unregulated and are subject to state and local prosecution.

The bill, introduced by Rep. Peter Buckley and Sen. Floyd Prozanski, both Democrats, would require medical marijuana facilities to seek a license from the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program similar to the license that patients and registered growers are required to obtain under current law.

The bill sets out a series of regulati. . . . . READ MORE

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New Jersey Lawmakers Pass Bill to Allow Easier Access to Medical Marijuana

June 25th

TRENTON, NJ — The New Jersey Assembly passed a bill Monday that would give children with certain medical conditions easier access to medical marijuana.

The Assembly voted 55-13 to approve the bill, which was approved by the Senate last week and will now go to the desk of Gov. Chris Christie for final approval.

If signed into law by Gov. Christie, Senate Bill 2842, would eliminate the need for written consent from a pediatrician and a psychiatrist for juveniles to be eligible.

The bill also would allow dispensaries to grow more than three strains of marijuana, and to sell it in edible form — conditions current state rules forbid, aside from the sale of lozenges.

Assemblywoman Linda Stender (D-Union) sponsored the bill on behalf of a two year old Scotch Plains girl with severe epilepsy, whose parents had not been able to find a psychiatrist to sign a medical marijuana consent form.

“I sympathize fully with her parents’ efforts to provide her with as much comfort and relief as possible. That was intended to be the essence of our Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana law,” Stender said in a statement after the vote. “This measure will help ensure that New Jersey residents who are suffering with severe . . . . . READ MORE

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New Jersey Assembly to Vote on Medical Marijuana Bill Today

June 24th

TRENTON, NJ — The New Jersey Assembly is expected to vote on a bill today that would give children with certain medical conditions easier access to medical marijuana.

The bill was approved by the Senate last week, and will go to Gov. Chris Christie for final approval if it clears the state Assembly Monday.

The bill, Senate Bill 2842, would eliminate the need for written consent from a pediatrician and a psychiatrist for juveniles to be eligible.

The bill also would allow dispensaries to grow more than three strains of marijuana, and to sell it in edible form — conditions current state rules forbid, aside from the sale of lozenges.

Assemblywoman Linda Stender (D-Union) sponsored the bill on behalf of a two year old Scotch Plains girl with severe epilepsy, whose parents had not been able to find a psychiatrist to sign a medical marijuana consent form.

“I sympathize fully with her parents’ efforts to provide her with as much comfort and relief as possible. That was intended to be the essence of our Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana law,” Stender said in a statement after the vote. “This measure will help ensure that New Jersey residents who are suffering with severe illnesses, regardless of age, ar. . . . . READ MORE

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Final Vote on New Hampshire Medical Marijuana Bill Wednesday

June 24th

CONCORD, NH — The New Hampshire legislature will vote Wednesday on a medical marijuana compromise bill after successful negotiations last week reconciled differences between bills passed previously in both chambers.

The bill, House Bill 573,  allows qualifying patients to obtain medical marijuana from one of four special dispensaries across the state beginning in 2015, abandoning the House’s proposal that patients or their caretakers would be allowed to grow their own marijuana.

The vote, scheduled for Wednesday, is expected to pass both chambers, sending the bill to the desk of Governor Maggie Hassan for final approval.

Governor Hassan has said that she will sign the bill, now that the compromise has been reached and her concerns have been addressed.

“I encourage the full legislature to pass this compromise so I can sign this legislation into law,” Hassan said last week.

“Allowing doctors to provide relief to patients through the use of appropriately regulated and dispensed medical marijuana is the compassionate and right policy for the State of New Hampshire,” Gov. Hassan said in a statement issued Tuesday.

Hassan, who voted in favor of medical marijuana legalizati. . . . . READ MORE

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Vote Expected This Week on Oregon Medical Marijuana Dispensary Bill

June 24th

SALEM, OR — Lawmakers in the Oregon legislature are expected to vote this week, possibly as early as today, on a bill that would licence and regulate medical marijuana dispensaries statewide.

The bill  was approved the Ways and Means committee last Thursday on a 13-2 vote among House members and 6-5 vote among Senate members.

Earlier last week, the bill received endorsements from Oregon Attorney General  Ellen Rosenblum, who said that the passage of the bill will help to ensure that all patients with a valid Oregon Medical Marijuana Program card will be able to obtain medical marijuana “safely, predictably, promptly and legally.”

The bill, House Bill 3460, directs the Oregon Health Authority to establish a registration system for medical marijuana facilities.  Such facilities exist presently in the state but are unregulated and are subject to state and local prosecution.

The bill, introduced by Rep. Peter Buckley and Sen. Floyd Prozanski, both Democrats. . . . . READ MORE

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New Hampshire Lawmakers to Vote on Medical Marijuana Compromise Next Week

June 21st

CONCORD, NH — The New Hampshire legislature will vote next week on a medical marijuana compromise bill after successful negotiations Tuesday that reconciled differences between bills passed previously in both chambers.

The bill, House Bill 573,  allows qualifying patients to obtain medical marijuana from one of four special dispensaries across the state beginning in 2015, abandoning the House’s proposal that patients or their caretakers would be allowed to grow their own marijuana.

The vote, scheduled for Wednesday, is expected to pass both chambers, sending the bill to the desk of Governor Maggie Hassan for final approval.

“I encourage the full legislature to pass this compromise so I can sign this legislation into law,” Hassan said earlier this week.

Governor Hassan has said that she will sign the bill, now that the compromise has been reached and her concerns have been addressed.

“Allowing doctors to provide relief to patients through the use of appropriately regulated and dispensed medical marijuana is the compassionate and right policy for the State of New Hampshire,” Gov. Hassan said in a statement Tuesday.

Hassan, who voted in favor of medical marijuana legalizatio. . . . . READ MORE

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New Jersey Senate Approves Bill to Allow Easier Access to Medical Marijuana

June 21st

TRENTON, NJ — The New Jersey Senate approved a bill Thursday that would give children with certain medical conditions easier access to medical marijuana.

The Assembly budget committee also advanced the measure to the full chamber.

The bill, Senate Bill 2842, would eliminate the need for written consent from a pediatrician and a psychiatrist for juveniles to be eligible.

It would also allow treatment centers to produce an unlimited number of strains, and for marijuana to be produced in an edible form, which is now banned.

The bill was drafted in response to the plight of a Scotch Plains girl with severe epilepsy, whose parents had not been able to find a psychiatrist to sign a consent form.

Some medical professionals acknowledge a problem but say eliminating regulations is not an answer.

New Jersey’s medical marijuana program, signed into law in 2010, has gotten off to a slow start. Just one dispensary is open and a second was issued a state growing permit earlier this month but is not expected to open until September.

The state’s proposed budget would double the funding for the program to allow for more money to be available for the creation of more treatment centers.

New Jersey Senat. . . . . READ MORE

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