Archive for August, 2013

Justice Dept. won’t challenge state marijuana laws

August 29th, 2013

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department will not attempt to challenge state laws that allow for the medical and recreational use of marijuana as long as the drug sales do not conflict with eight new federal enforcement priorities.

Those include the distribution of marijuana to minors and sales that assist or act as cover for trafficking operations, according to a directive being issued Thursday to federal prosecutors across the country.

Although the directive issued by Attorney General Eric Holder will apply nationwide, it will largely affect the 20 states and the District of Columbia that allow for medical marijuana use, and Colorado and Washington where state laws allow medical and recreational use by adults.

Holder briefed the governors of Colorado and Washington earlier Thursday on the new directive in a conference call. Federal prosecutors were expected to begin briefing authorities in other states later Thursday.

The new guidelines do not change marijuana’s classification as an illegal drug. But it effectively discourages the pursuit of individual non-violent marijuana users who have no links to criminal gangs or cartel operations.

The document contains a list of eight new federal enforcement priorities, which is expected to guide federal authorities when weighing decisions on marijuana prosecutions. It also notified state authorities that the federal government reserved the right to intervene if the states did not enact appropriate regulations to protect

Article source: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/08/29/justice-medical-marijuana-laws/2727605/

Medical marijuana: Hundreds in Maine apply to grow, state program takes in …

August 24th, 2013

AUGUSTA, Maine — An annual report by the Department of Health and Human Services released Thursday shows the medical marijuana program has been growing in Maine and is in the midst of a reorganization.

Some 575 people applied to the state last year to grow medical marijuana — 521 of those new applications. The state’s eight medical marijuana dispensaries employed 84 people.

The Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Program took in $612,370 in fees and spent considerably less: $466,028.

The report was due to the Legislature in April, by statute. DHHS spokesman John Martins said it had been held up by staff changes and the review process.

Maine has allowed the use of medical marijuana since 1999 on a grow-your-own basis and set up the current nonprofit dispensary system with a second statewide referendum in 2009.

Though there are no hard figures, it’s estimated 13,000 patients use it here.

Last year, Cumberland County had the highest number of medical marijuana patients voluntarily register with the state (255), followed by Kennebec (238), York (230) and Androscoggin (123).

Cumberland County also had the most physicians with 14 writing patient certifications for medicinal marijuana. Sixty-eight doctors across the state wrote at least one.

The report mentions a statewide conference this year that includes physicians and law enforcement, but Martins said it hadn’t been planned yet.

Also included:

–1,455 patients have voluntarily registered with the state; 1,311 patients asked someone to grow medicinal marijuana on their behalf.

–The number of employees ranged from 45 at the Wellness Connections’ four dispensaries to seven at Safe Alternatives

Article source: https://bangordailynews.com/2013/08/24/news/state/medical-marijuana-hundreds-in-maine-apply-to-grow-state-program-takes-in-more-than-600000-in-fees/

Medical marijuana: Hundreds in Maine apply to grow, state program takes in …

August 24th, 2013

AUGUSTA — An annual report by the Department of Health and Human Services released Thursday shows the medical marijuana program has been growing in Maine and is in the midst of a reorganization.

Some 575 people applied to the state last year to grow medical marijuana — 521 of those new applications. The state’s eight medical marijuana dispensaries employed 84 people.

The Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Program took in $612,370 in fees and spent considerably less: $466,028.

The report was due to the Legislature in April, by statute. DHHS spokesman John Martins said it had been held up by staff changes and the review process.

Maine has allowed the use of medical marijuana since 1999 on a grow-your-own basis and set up the current nonprofit dispensary system with a second statewide referendum in 2009.

Though there are no hard figures, it’s estimated 13,000 patients use it here.

Last year, Cumberland County had the highest number of medical marijuana patients voluntarily register with the state (255), followed by Kennebec (238), York (230) and Androscoggin (123).

Cumberland County also had the most physicians with 14 writing patient certifications for medicinal marijuana. Sixty-eight doctors across the state wrote at least one.

The report mentions a statewide conference this year that includes physicians and law enforcement, but Martins said it hadn’t been planned yet.

Also included:

* 1,455 patients have voluntarily registered with the state; 1,311 patients asked someone to grow medicinal marijuana on their behalf.

* The number of employees ranged from 45 at the Wellness Connections’ four dispensaries to seven

Article source: http://www.sunjournal.com/node/1412312

Maine City Pushes for Marijuana Legalization

August 16th, 2013

Article source: http://www.celebstoner.com/news/marijuana-news/2013/07/23/maine-city-pushes-for-marijuana-legalization/