420 with CNW – Lawmakers in Connecticut Unveil Marijuana Legalization Plan

At the end of last week (March 14), lawmakers in Connecticut’s Assembly held a press conference at which they outlined a plan to legalize recreational marijuana in the state.

Rep. Michael D’Agostino, the chair of the General Law Committee, led the proceedings by giving a brief outline of the legalization plan.

He revealed that three major areas would be looked at when pushing the legalization plan forward. These are regulation, monetization and decriminalization. These three areas would be handled by different committees that are mandated to legislate in those areas.

D’Agostino added that the different committees would formulate various bills covering the cannabis legalization areas within their mandate before all those different bills are merged into one comprehensive bill. This will be after the committee bills are modified and agreed upon by all or most of the committee members.

The chair of the House Judiciary Committee (Rep. Steve Stafstrom) was next on the microphone and he talked about the three bills in his committee. One was focused on legalizing cannabis possession by adults 21 or older while also laying out how marijuana misdemeanor crimes would be expunged from the criminal records of residents.

A second bill in this committee looks at issues of impaired driving. One notable provision of this bill would see resources ring-fenced for training law enforcement to be experts at recognizing and screening drivers who may be under the influence.

The third bill for this committee will absolve employers from making any exceptions for employees who use weed. This means that if the bill becomes law, an employer may refuse to hire anyone who tests positive for marijuana, or fire an employee who is under the influence at work.

Rep. Jason Rojas, who sits on the Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee spoke about the tax structure that Connecticut may adopt once recreational marijuana is permitted. He revealed that they were cautious and would propose a 20 percent tax so that Connecticut’s weed doesn’t cost more than what is available in Massachusetts where adult-use cannabis retails sales are already a reality.

Otherwise, people may buy recreational cannabis out-of-state instead of spending their money on Connecticut’s supply. The details of the tax structure would be made clearer in due course, Rojas added.

What came out strongly during the press briefing was that it is still early days to start talking timelines to the availability of recreational cannabis. A lot of work needs to be done to get the law in place, and this fact is brought home by the memory of what happened last year when legalization by legislative means failed after a bill that had been passed by a slim majority in the Appropriations Committee was stalled by the House Speaker until the end of the legislative session.

Hope is high this time round since Democrats control both chambers. Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF) and Earth Science Tech, Inc. (OTCQB: ETST) wish the cannabis advocates good luck as they try to get the people of Connecticut to enjoy what the residents of 10 other U.S. states are already enjoying.

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – The UN Announces Yet Another Delay of its Cannabis Reclassification Vote

First, the World Health Organization (“WHO”) delayed and postponed the release of its recommendations after an expert committee studied proposals for the reclassification of cannabis in international treaties. Now, yet another delay has hit that activity and the UN has announced that the March sitting of the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs, and the one in December this year, will not have marijuana reclassification on its agenda.

The recommendations of WHO had initially been scheduled to be voted on in December last year, but this was inexplicably postponed.

Some of the 53 members of the Narcotic Drugs Commission reportedly claimed that they needed additional time to study the recommendations made by the World Health Organization before they can decide how to vote when a vote is called.

Other members, such as Uruguay and Norway, were disappointed that no timeline was set for when the recommendations will be considered and voted upon. There are fears that the matter may be put on the backburner for an indefinite amount of time, for political reasons.

The recommendations were widely seen as a way for many countries to be free to embark on medical cannabis research and legalization, with others taking it a step further and decriminalizing adult-use marijuana.

The WHO had recommended that whole-plant marijuana and its resin should be removed from the strictest category (Category 4) of the 1961 International Drug Convention and placed in a less restrictive category.

To put this into perspective, the U.S. system of categorizing controlled substances is different from that of the UN. For example, in the U.S., Schedule 1 is reserved for the substances that deserve the strictest controls and the restrictions reduce as the schedule number gets bigger. This is unlike the UN where the smaller numbers have fewer restrictions while the bigger numbers, such as Category 4, have more stringent restrictions.

Meanwhile, as the UN is still playing hide and seek regarding its position on the calls for marijuana rescheduling, Europe is taking a different path. The EU Parliament approved a resolution calling on member states to avail support and funding for medical cannabis research. While the decision isn’t binding, it could pave the way for widespread research and legal reforms in EU member countries. This will leave the U.S. further behind in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry.

Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF) and Earth Science Tech, Inc. (OTCQB: ETST) call on the UN to stop dragging its feet and make the decision for which the world has been waiting.

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – South Carolina Medical Cannabis Bill Stalls Until Concerns are Addressed

The members of the subcommittee on Medical Affairs in the South Carolina Senate have decided to stall moving a medical cannabis bill forward to the full committee until all the concerns of the different stakeholders have been taken into account. This decision was made on Wednesday (February 27).

One of the proposed changes that may be made to the bill is to include language that makes it clear that smoking medical marijuana will be outlawed. Those interested in this wording say that nothing that may create an impression that marijuana is being legalized for anything other than medical use should be permitted in the bill.

Another issue that needs further consideration is the matter of the qualifying conditions which will be listed in the bill. The legislators want more time to be taken to study the different conditions which can be alleviated by the use of cannabis. Under the current bill, terminal or debilitating conditions, such as chronic diseases and cancer are currently listed as qualifying conditions. Could other deserving conditions have been left out? The legislators want to hear from stakeholders on this before moving forward.

The members of the subcommittee also want to hear more about the fiscal implications of the proposed six percent sales tax that will be imposed on the medical cannabis sold. Will that tax make medical cannabis too expensive for some patients to afford? Are there other ways to collect revenue from the industry without imposing a sales tax? Stakeholders need to inform the members on all these financial implications before the bill is sent to the whole committee.

In its present form, the bill will allow patients enrolled on the medical cannabis program to buy up to two ounces of cannabis (or its equivalent) once a fortnight as long as a doctor has prescribed it.

Representatives of the law enforcement agencies in the state, such as the Association of South Caroline Sheriffs, have said that they would like to review the bill in order to understand the details it contains and the implications of those details. The devil is always in the details, they say.

Such sentiments give further credence to the decision of the subcommittee to wait and hash out all the concerns of the stakeholders so that the bill forwarded to the whole committee reflects the input collected from everyone concerned.

This proactive way of drafting a legalization bill is good for the cannabis industry, including Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF) and Earth Science Tech, Inc. (OTCQB: ETST).

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – Demand Soars as UK Customers Fear CBD Drinks Ban

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) in the UK has triggered panic buying after it announced that CBD drinks fall under the “novel” products category as stipulated by the EU. This classification means that such “novel” products can only be available for sale after being tested and approved.

2018 saw an explosion of CBD-based products on the UK market. These included CBD chocolates, sweets, cakes and even pet products. All these products hit the market amidst a rise in the popularity of CBD.

However, January saw the FSA vowing to exert more control over CBD products on the market. It called on local authorities to work with it to remove any CBD products that were being sold without undergoing the required public safety tests.

As a result of that announcement, customers are rushing to bulk buy CBD drinks just in case the regulator makes good on the threat to pull CBD products from retail shelves.

Green Monkey Drinks (the first UK company to make carbonated CBD drinks) revealed that its online sales have jumped by 8,000 percent ever since the FSA made its ruling. They believe that this rise in sales can be attributed to customers who are trying to stockpile CBD products.

Green Monkey Drinks expressed disappointment that the Food Standards Agency hasn’t been in touch with the different companies that have invested heavily in the CBD industry. The drinks maker believes that the regulator hasn’t taken the right decision given the fact that the World Health Organization has just asserted that CBD is safe and should therefore not be subjected to any international controls.

For its part, the FSA insists that its decision is based on the changes that were made to the Novel Food Catalogue of the EU. The EU says players in the CBD industry failed to prove that CBD products have a history of consumption dating back to 1997 or earlier within the EU. This means that CBD is a novel product which should not be allowed on the market without undergoing safety testing and approval.

The FSA therefore wants to find a way forward in light of the decision made by the EU. They intend to meet different stakeholders, such as CBD product manufacturers and local authorities in order to clarify how the different players will execute their role in ensuring that the CBD industry complies with the existing laws.

ChineseInvestors.com (OTCQB: CIIX) as well as Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF) hope that the UK regulator finds a solution that addresses the regulatory needs without stifling the nascent CBD industry there.

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – Why the US is Unlikely to Legalize Cannabis in 2019

The year of 2018 registered some major wins for marijuana (Canada legalized recreational cannabis, the FDA made history by approving a cannabis-derived drug, more states legalized marijuana, public opinion is at an all-time high in favor of legalization, etc.), and that has led many cannabis advocates to expect 2019 to bring even better news along the lines of the U.S. federal government legalizing marijuana. However, this is unlikely to happen this year for a number of reasons.

The Senate isn’t Warm to Marijuana

While Congress is now dominated by Democrats (and Democrats have a history of being friendly to cannabis law reform), the Senate is still firmly in the hands of Republicans. Even the recent polls that show massive support for cannabis legalization reveal a small majority of Republicans supporting legalization (53 percent, according to the latest Gallup poll) while Democrats (75 percent) support the end of cannabis prohibition. This means that even if Congress passed a bill to legalize marijuana, such a bill is unlikely to make it past the Senate this year.

Marijuana isn’t Yet Divisive Enough to Cost Politicians their Jobs

The elected representatives on Capitol Hill don’t yet feel that their position on marijuana can cost them their jobs. Some opinion polls conducted last year discovered that a large majority of people (82 percent) would still vote for a politician even if that candidate had a different view on marijuana from that of the voter.

What such polls show is that politicians are unlikely to take the public’s views on marijuana seriously if the voters don’t put their representatives on the spot over the issue. Consequently, it is unlikely that marijuana will be legalized federally, unless the subject becomes so polarizing that political offices can be lost or earned based on this one issue alone.

There’s Money Involved

The role of money also rears its head on matters of cannabis legalization. Under the present legal framework, marijuana companies are subjected to very high corporate tax rates (as high as 90 percent). This is because such companies cannot claim corporate tax deductions since they deal in a substance that is federally illegal.

Legalizing cannabis would change the section of the tax code applicable to pot companies, and the federal government may lose approximately $5 billion over five years in corporate taxes from these companies. The federal government may be unable to recoup this money from the federal excise tax on legal marijuana sales since some states already have very high state-level excise taxes on cannabis, hence any increase can effectively be an advert for the cannabis black market. So, 2019 may not be the year for cannabis legalization at the federal level until a solution to this money conundrum is found.

While the issues above appear to be serious individually, the views of the voters can trigger a dramatic shift in the way cannabis is regarded at the federal level. The cannabis industry, including ChineseInvestors.com (OTCQB: CIIX) and Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF) can only wait for that time when pressure from below forces the federal government to end cannabis prohibition.

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – New Tax Plan Injects Life into New Jersey Marijuana Legalization Debate

A stalemate had developed between the Senate President and the Governor of New Jersey regarding how the marijuana industry will be taxed once an appropriate law is passed. However, a new plan has reignited the legalization debate and a compromise may be reached to move forward on this long-awaited matter.

Previously, Stephen Sweeney (the Senate President) had dug his heels in that he would not go along with any marijuana legalization law that set the tax rate at more than 12 percent. Meanwhile, the Governor (Phil Murphy) was adamant that the tax rate should be in the region of 25 percent.

The disagreement between these two influential leaders had driven the legalization debate to a standstill and there seemed to be no hope for a way out of that stalemate.

Now a new proposal to tax marijuana products by weight rather than by each item sold appears to be providing the much needed compromise between the two parties. While there are disagreements on various issues, the different opinions on tax matters were the biggest bone of contention between the lawmakers and the Governor.

Proponents of the new tax proposal see that plan as beneficial in two major ways. The first, as already mentioned, is to build consensus between the two sides on the tax rate.

Secondly, taxing marijuana by weight has the added long-term benefit of protecting the state’s tax revenue from the effects of marijuana price fluctuations.

You see, in states where marijuana taxes are based on the sales made (excise tax), falling marijuana prices have caused tax revenues to take a hit.

For example, Colorado reported in 2018 that marijuana prices had fallen by approximately 70 percent from what they were in 2014 when recreational cannabis was legalized.

Such a huge drop in prices can cause serious funding shortfalls for states where an excise duty is imposed on all marijuana products sold.

The plan to tax cannabis by weight shields the state from such tax income drops since the taxes collected will stay the same regardless of which trend marijuana prices take. As historical data shows, prices inevitably go down as more players enter the industry and new production methods cut costs for cultivators.

Taxing marijuana by weight may therefore be a masterstroke that gets legalization back on track while also ensuring that the state will have a sustainable source of revenue. Such win-win solutions are what everyone in the industry, including Earth Science Tech, Inc. (OTCQB: ETST) and Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF), wants for all jurisdictions where marijuana is legalized.

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – Four Issues New York Needs to Agree Upon Before Legalizing Recreational Cannabis

While Gov. Andrew Cuomo says that a law legalizing recreational marijuana is likely to be passed this year, legislators still have a lot to do before the details of what form legalization will take shape up. The following issues are some of the sticking points that are likely to generate a lot of debate as a law is finalized.

What Role Will Local Governments Play?

You cannot think about legalizing adult-use marijuana without considering how to factor in local governments. It isn’t yet clear whether the law that will be passed will give local authorities any power to accept or refuse recreational cannabis businesses in their jurisdiction. California granted local authorities the right to determine whether retail outlets will operate in their jurisdictions or not.

However, Massachusetts took a different approach and centralized the issuance of retail licenses. Either approach has its own pros and cons. For example, California licensed hundreds of retail outlets while only a handful are so far open in Massachusetts. So, which direction will New York take on this matter?

How Much Tax Will Be Imposed?

The issue of taxes is a major one because taxes are one of the reasons why proponents have been advocating for the legalization of recreational pot across the U.S. However, it is hard to build consensus on what rate should be used to tax recreational marijuana.

While a low rate is attractive and can pile pressure on the black market, it has the downside of potentially failing to raise sufficient revenues to meet the cost of regulating the industry as well as fund other state priorities, such as rebuilding the aging infrastructure.

Conversely, a high tax rate has the potential of generating the target revenues for the state, but will buyers play along? Price-sensitive consumers may find it easier to drive to nearby states for more affordable cannabis, or they may opt for the black market. Then, where will the tax money be spent? Opinions abound on this matter as well.

How Will the Market Be Regulated?

Numerous proposals have been fronted regarding how or more specifically who should oversee the recreational marijuana industry. Some people think that the Department of Health should be in charge since it is already handling medical cannabis. Others are of the opinion that a new body should be built from the ground up just for the recreational market.

Which way this debate finally goes may determine how soon New Yorkers can legally buy recreational marijuana within the state.

Where Will the Cannabis Be Consumed?

It is also not yet clear where and how the recreational cannabis will be consumed. For example, will it be acceptable for adults to smoke a joint in public, or will they be restricted to doing so in the privacy of their homes? Will cannabis cafes similar to what is in Amsterdam be permitted in New York? Will edibles and concentrates be legal as well, or these will be addressed later?

As you can see, the legislators have their work cut out. New Yorkers, and industry players like Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF) as well as ChineseInvestors.com (OTCQB: CIIX) hope that a speedy resolution to all the sticky questions is found so that New Yorkers don’t have to wait for too long before they can access marijuana legally.

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – Want to Make Money in 2019? Think About These 3 Cannabis Trends

As the year comes to an end, many investors are evaluating their portfolios and are planning how to reallocate funds from losing investments to other avenues where the earning potential is higher. If you plan to make money from the cannabis industry, read on and discover the three trends that you can consider as you make your 2019 investment allocations.

Think Small

Seasoned investors know that the worst time to acquire interests in an entity is when the price is at its peak, because that means that a market correction will soon happen and latecomers will lose out.

Similarly, people who are planning to invest in the marijuana industry need to move away from the large-cap companies and examine the small-cap companies. There is logic in this approach because many of the large-cap entities are most likely to have partnered with a large entity in the past year (2018), so their shares are likely to have hit an all-time high.

Instead, think of smaller companies, such as those valued at less than a billion dollars. Such companies may have better prospects going forward because you will be positioned to get a slice of any gains they make when big players come knocking to acquire a stake in those companies.

However, you also need to be cautious and avoid very small companies, such as those valued at less than $200 million because the long-term survival of those companies may not be certain as yet.

Look to Auxiliary Companies

It may also be a smart move for investors to put some money in companies that complement the companies involved with the cannabis plant directly. For example, a good place to start would be the companies that provide packaging materials to the cannabis industry. These auxiliary companies are a good investment choice because they will grow as the industry grows, and they often have a foot in other industries, so they are a smaller risk when compared to the companies which “touch the plant.”

Slot CBD In

Cannabis drinks are likely to take the world by storm, and many of them will not cause a high. That means investing in a company that has interests in CBD (from industrial hemp, for example) may line your pockets as the popularity of CBD oils and drinks reaches feverish level in the years to come. Current trends point in this direction, especially after hemp was legalized by the federal government and more states are legalizing either medical or adult-use cannabis.

As always, do your due diligence before making an investment decision. You can start by watching the journey of Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF) and ChineseInvestors.com, Inc. (OTCQB: CIIX) in order to get an idea of the historical trends for cannabis companies, and then branch out in the direction that you think holds most promise to you as an investor.

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CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – Nebraska May Vote on Medical Cannabis in 2020

Two legislators in Nebraska have announced plans to put medical marijuana on the ballot in 2020 if lawmakers don’t pass a medical marijuana law in the session due to begin in January 2019.

State Senators Adam Morfeld and Anna Wishart announced that they had formed a group, Nebraskans for Sensible Marijuana Laws, to campaign and gather signatures for a ballot measure on medical marijuana.

The two legislators from Lincoln said that their campaign would be similar to what forced the issue in Utah, Oklahoma and Missouri during the recent midterm elections.

Wishart said that they were forced to register this committee after being frustrated by the inaction of the legislative arm in recent times.

The legislature in Nebraska is nonpartisan, but it is dominated by Republicans. Recent attempts to legalize medical cannabis have been blocked by these Republicans who cite different reasons for their actions.

First, they claimed that legalizing medical cannabis is a ruse to allow recreational use in the state. Secondly, some claimed that the medicinal benefits of cannabis are unproven, so there is no reason to pass enabling legislation over unsubstantiated claims.

Attorney General Doug Peterson and Governor Pete Ricketts are also opposed to the legalization of medical cannabis. That notwithstanding, Wishart plans to table another bill in the coming session as a final step before she calls on voters to have their say if the legislature blocks her bill.

This will not be the first time that voters in Nebraska are called upon to bypass the lawmakers on an issue. In 2014, a ballot measure resulted in an increase of the minimum wage after legislators rejected a bill on the matter. In November this year, voters again approved a ballot measure to expand Medicaid in the state when legislators were unwilling to do so. Before that, capital punishment was reinstated in 2015 through a ballot measure.

The two Lincoln legislators will not be on their own as they gather signatures to put medical marijuana on the ballot. The pair will have the support and the resources of the Marijuana Policy Project.

This non-profit was instrumental in the success of similar ballot measures in Utah, Maine, Nevada, Michigan and Massachusetts.  The group feels that it is inhumane to regard the patients who can benefit from medical marijuana as criminals.

The Marijuana Policy Project also believes that their campaign in Nebraska will be successful. After all, the people there already support the proposal to legalize medical marijuana. ChineseInvestors.com (OTCQB: CIIX) and Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF) hope that the people, who are the final beneficiaries of medical cannabis, will be at the center of any discussions regarding whether or not to legalize medical cannabis in the state.

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CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – New Zealand Passes Medical Cannabis Bill

The government of New Zealand passed the medical cannabis bill earlier today (December 11). The bill provides a legal defense to anyone prosecuted for consuming medical cannabis during the time when a scheme has not yet been established to regulate how medical cannabis can be accessed.

The bill stipulates that the regulatory framework for access to medical cannabis should be in place within 12 months after the bill was passed. In the meantime, those who are terminally ill and are undergoing palliative care or are otherwise in the final stages of terminal illnesses can use cannabis and rely on the legal defense provided in the bill should such patients ever be prosecuted for consuming an illegal substance (cannabis).

The third reading and eventual passing of the bill only became possible after three parties supported the bill. These were the Labor Party, the Green Party and the New Zealand First Party.

The Green Party only supported the bill after getting a concession that native strains of cannabis will be used rather than relying on imported varieties. The Green Party also pushed to have the Medicinal Cannabis Scheme established speedily, in any event not later than one year after the bill was passed.

New Zealand First pushed, and succeeded, in having the legal defense apply not just to patients having less than a year to live, but to all those undergoing palliative care.

Talking after the passing of the bill, Health Minister David Clark said he was delighted with the “most progressive” bill ever passed with regard to cannabis. He promised to do everything possible to ensure that medicinal cannabis would become increasingly affordable as the years go by.

Clark added that his ministry would draft a paper on the medicinal cannabis scheme and invite experts as well as the general public to contribute to this paper before the scheme is implemented. This draft will be ready early next year (2019).

However, the bill didn’t pass without opposition. The National Party initially supported the bill, but voted against it during the third reading in Parliament.

The National Party is of the opinion that the current bill effectively decriminalized marijuana without being explicit about it. Simon Bridges, the leader of the National Party, described the bill as an attempt at “decriminalization by stealth” because the bill doesn’t provide any guidelines regarding the implementation of the scheme.

For example, he wondered what a police officer would do in case that officer encountered someone smoking cannabis outside a school.

The National Party drafted its own National Bill containing a detailed plan of how medical cannabis can be provided without creating any unnecessary risks. For instance, their bill bans the smoking of paper-rolled cannabis and includes a photo-ID system to enable the eligible patients to access medicinal cannabis at pharmacies.

The plan suggested by the National Party may not go to waste, for its recommendations may be considered during the consultative process hinted at by the Health Minister. After all, both sides in this debate want a Medicinal Cannabis Scheme that works for all. ChineseInvestors.com (OTCQB: CIIX), Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF) and other players in the cannabis industry would be glad to see the US pass legislation permitting cannabis in some form at the federal level.

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CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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For more information please visit https://www.CannabisNewsWire.com

Please see full terms of use and disclaimers on the CannabisNewsWire website applicable to all content provided by CNW, wherever published or re-published: http://CNW.fm/Disclaimer

CannabisNewsWire (CNW)
Denver, Colorado
www.CannabisNewsWire.com
303.498.7722 Office
Editor@CannabisNewsWire.com