North Carolina Legislation Filed to Legalize Recreational Marijuana

Legislation to legalize recreational marijuana was filed today in the North Carolina House of Representatives.

House Bill 626 was filed by State Representative Johnnie Autry along with three cosponsors – Representatives Kelly Alexander, Mary Harrison and Zack Forde-Hawkins. The law would allow those 21 and older to possess up to two ounces of marijuana flower, 15 grams of marijuana concentrates and  2,000 milligrams of THC worth of infused-products, which they could purchase from licensed marijuana retail outlets. The personal cultivation of up to six marijuana plants would also be allowed.

“Cannabis prohibition, like alcohol prohibition before it, has been a wasteful and destructive failure”, states the preamble to the bill. “About half of Americans admit to having used cannabis despite more than eight decades of prohibition.”
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Minnesota Marijuana Legalization Bill Passed by 15th House Committee, Sent to Full House

Minnesota legislation to legalize recreational marijuana is finally heading to the House floor after being approved by its 15th committee.

Today the House Ways and Means Committee approved House Bill 100 on a voice vote, making it the 15th House committee to do so. This finally sends it to the House floor, where it is expected to receive a vote before the end of the legislative session in May.

A companion bill, SF 73, needs just two more committee votes before it can be voted on by the full Senate. The Senate Taxes Committee is expected to vote on the measure later today.
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Australia: 37% Have Tried Marijuana, Legalizing It Would Save $1.2 Billion Annually

If Australia were to legalize marijuana they would save $1.2 billion each year, which doesn’t account for the potential billions that could be made in new taxes.

This is according to the Cannabis in Australia report by Penington Institute. The report also found that more than a third of Australians aged over 14 have used cannabis at least once, 37% of the population (7.6 million people).

The report found that over a recent two year period Australia spent $1.7 billion on law enforcement costs, including $1.1 billion on imprisonment, $475 million on police, $62 million on courts, $52 million on legal aid and prosecution, and $25 million on community corrections.
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Maine Marijuana Prices Down Nearly 50% Since 2020

The cost of legal marijuana has seen a substantial drop since the start of legal sales in 2020.

According to data compiled and released by the Maine Office of Cannabis Policy, the average price of marijuana throughout the state as of the end of March was $8.04. This marks a 49% decrease from the average price of $15.83 at the start of legal recreational marijuana sales in 2020.

Prices in other legal marijuana states have seen similar drops. For example, as of the end of February in Massachusetts, marijuana was priced at $7.12, an identical-to-Maine 49% decrease from the $14.09 at the start of legal sales in late 2018.
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A Study Found Infants With Marijuana in Their System Had Drastically Decreased Mortality Rates

In the biggest study of its kind, published in the journal Pediatrics (the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics), infants that tested positive for marijuana had a massive decrease in their likelihood of early mortality.

In the study of 2,964 infants, those that were drug-negative had an average mortality rate of 15.7 deaths per 1,000 live births. Cocaine and opiate-positive infants had a mortality rate of 17.7 and 18.4 deaths per 1,000 live births. However, those that tested positive for cannabis had an average mortality rate of 8.9 deaths per 1,000 live births, a 44% decrease in comparison to the infants that were drug-negative.

Of the babies who tested positive for only cannabis, and no other substance (157 babies total), there was not a single death during the course of the study.
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Colorado House Approves Measure to Allow Online Marijuana Sales and Deliveries

Colorado legislation to allow marijuana stores to sell marijuana and marijuana products online, while also allowing them to deliver it, has been passed by the state’s House of Representatives.

(Photo Credit: AdobeStock)

According to the official summary of House Bill 1279, “Current law prohibits a licensed retail marijuana store from selling retail marijuana or retail marijuana products over the internet or through delivery. The bill repeals the prohibition.”

HB 1279 was filed by State Representatives William Lindstedt, Said Sharbini and Robert Rodriguez, and it will soon be sent to the Senate for consideration. If it can pass the Senate it will be sent to Governor Jared Polis who is expected to sign it into law if given the opportunity.
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Report Finds Portland, Oregon is America’s Best City for Marijuana, Followed by Denver and Buffalo

According to a new report Portland, Oregon is America’s most cannabis-friendly city, followed by Denver, Colorado and Buffalo, New York.

The report, conducted by Real Estate Witch (an online publication from Clever Real Estate) and Leafly, analyzed various criteria including the legality of marijuana, dispensary data, marijuana prices, and more in order to determine the definitive list of the most cannabis-friendly cities. Topping the list of best marijuana cities is Portland, Oregon, with Birmingham, Alabama topping the list of worst cannabis cities.

According to the report Portland boasts the most affordable cannabis prices in the country, with a high-quality ounce costing just $210 — 34% less than the national average of $316. In contrast, the most expensive cannabis is in Washington, D.C., where an ounce of high-quality cannabis costs $590 — 87% more than average.
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Washington State Magic Mushrooms Bill Sent to Governor

Legislation to establish a psilocybin taskforce and pilot program has officially been sent to Washington State Governor Jay Inslee.

Washington’s House of Representatives voted earlier this week to pass Senate Bill 5263, with it having already passed the Senate. However, amendments made in the House created a need for the Senate to give the measure one final vote before it could be sent to Governor Inslee. That vote took place today, with the Senate voting 40 to 4 on final passage.

Governor Inslee now has the option of signing it into law, vetoing it or allowing it to become law without his signature. Worth noting is that the measure passed both chambers with well more than the 2/3rds required to override an executive veto.
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Study: Marijuana Improves Pain Scores and Health-Related Quality of Life in Those With Chronic, Refractory Pain

Medical marijuana was observed to “improve pain intensity scores and HRQoL [health-related quality of life] outcomes in patients with chronic, refractory pain” in a new study published by the British Journal of Pain.

Conducted by researchers at the University of Sydney and Westmead Hospital (both in Australia), the objective of the study was to “examine the tolerability and effectiveness of medicinal cannabis prescribed to patients for chronic, refractory pain, with a subset analysis on arthritis.”

The study examined self-reported adverse events (AEs) and changes in health-related quality of life (HRQoL) outcomes over time after commencing medicinal cannabis in patients with chronic, refractory pain. Patients were prescribed medicinal cannabis by a medical practitioner, containing various ratios of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and/or cannabidiol (CBD).
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Delaware Lawmakers “100% Confident” Enough Votes to Override Potential Marijuana Legalization Veto

Delaware House Bill 1 was delivered to Governor Carney on April 11, with House Bill 2 being delivered tomorrow. The governor has 10 days from the day they reach his desk to determine his approach.

Although there is fear the governor may veto the measures, Senator Trey Paradee, the bills’ prime sponsor in the Senate, tells us that “Rep. Osienski (the House sponsor) and I are 100% confident that we have the votes to override the Governor’s veto if it comes to that.”

Senator Paradee says they “are hopeful that the Governor will allow both bills to pass into law with or without his signature.”
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