420 with CNW – Marijuana Legalization Takes a Step Forward in South Dakota

South Dakota is one of the few states in the U.S. that hasn’t legalized marijuana for either recreational or medicinal use. However, this may change if the recent flurry of activity to certify legalization measures eventually bears fruit on voting day in 2020. One particular ballot measure has recently earned an official explanation written by the state’s attorney general.

This measure is a rather ambitious one because it seeks to legalize medical marijuana, recreational marijuana and industrial hemp, all in one fell swoop.

The recreational use of marijuana would be legalized through an amendment to the state constitution while the state legislature would be mandated to debate and pass laws regulating medical marijuana and hemp.

In his explanation of the measure, Jason Ravnsborg, the South Dakota Attorney General, wrote that the measure seeks to legalize the use, possession, transport and distribution of cannabis by adults who are 21 years old or older. He added that cannabis plants and products produced from those plants may also be permitted under clearly defined circumstances.

Additionally, the department of revenue in the state would issue licenses to businesses that wished to cultivate, manufacture, test or distribute marijuana. Local authorities may opt out of allowing marijuana businesses to operate within their jurisdictions, according to the ballot initiative.

The AG’s explanation also emphasizes that the marijuana measure doesn’t make industrial hemp legal. Hemp can only be legalized once the legislature enacts an enabling law.

The initiative proposes that an excise tax of 15 percent should be levied on all sales of marijuana. This revenue will be used to fund the activities related to regulating the marijuana industry, and what remains will go to education and the general fund from which other state activities or programs are funded.

This explanation is similar to the one that the AG issued with respect to another proposed amendment to legalize medical cannabis in South Dakota.

The attorney general’s office also revealed that a few more measures are awaiting certification by his office. For any of those measures to make it onto the state ballot, the activists behind it must gather at least 33,921 verifiable signatures from voters in the state.

For now, it isn’t yet clear whether the campaigners will rally around one initiative rather than each group of advocates going it alone. Industry experts believe that it would be in the interest of the entire cannabis industry, including players like Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP) and Marijuana Company of America Inc. (OTCQB: MCOA), to combine forces and promote one initiative so that the chances of success can be increased in this largely conservative state.

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CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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420 with CNW – Mexican Government Seeks Public Input on Plans to Legalize Marijuana

Mexican legislators have announced plans to hold a series of public meetings in order to gather information on how the public thinks the government should handle the matter of legalizing recreational marijuana in the country. The meetings are planned for August 12, 14 and 16.

The announcements indicate that Mexicans will be free to pass on their suggestions on five different aspects of marijuana legalization. These are public health issues, matters of human rights, how to develop drugs derived from marijuana, how to prevent access to marijuana by minors and how to deal with marijuana addiction.

A translation of the information carried on the government website indicates that the move towards legalizing marijuana is motivated by several factors which include the changing attitude towards prohibition at the international level and the Supreme Court ruling that declared banning the recreational use of marijuana by adults as unconstitutional. These factors made it necessary to give serious thought to creating a regulated marijuana industry in the country.

The Mexican Senate has created a page where members of the public can find all the details about the planned meetings, as well as how interested people can register to attend the meetings in person. There is also a provision for Mexicans to submit their comments using an online form provided on the website.

The website also indicates that many bills related to marijuana legalization have been filed before the Senate and the content of those bills would form part of what is discussed during the public meetings.

Before the legislative committees start examining those bills, public input will be collected in a transparent and inclusive way so that the final legislation passed will be a true reflection of what the people of Mexico want at this time.

It should be remembered that a few months ago, Julio Ramon Salazar, the chair of the Senate Justice Committee, announced that his committee would use the summer recess to draft a law for the legalization of marijuana in the country.

While there are at least 10 bills seeking to reform Mexico’s marijuana policies, it is widely believed that the bill introduced by Olga Sanchez Cordero, the Mexican Secretary of Interior, is the one that is most likely to be passed by the lawmakers.

Marijuana reform is supported to the very top tiers of decision making in Mexico, with President Manuel Obrador saying that it is unsustainable to continue the war on drugs. He even went so far as suggesting in his National Development Plan that marijuana should be decriminalized.

Marijuana industry analysts would be eager to know what players like IONIC Brands Corp. (CSE: IONC) (OTC: IONKF) and Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP) think will be the regional ramifications of Mexico legalizing marijuana.

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CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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420 with CNW – Congressional Bill Seeks to Protect Some Students from Losing Financial Aid Due to Marijuana Convictions

On Friday, a group of Democratic lawmakers introduced a bill in Congress that would protect some college students from losing their federal financial aid if they are convicted for possessing marijuana. The bill also states that to benefit from this protection, those affected students must complete a rehabilitation program in order to remain eligible for financial aid.

The existing law allows the government to strip students of their federal financial aid for a period that can range from a year to indefinitely based on their prior drugs convictions and the gravity of the drugs offense they have been convicted for.

The bill titled “Second Chance for Students Act” is sponsored by Reps. Gwen Moore (D-WI) and Bill Forster (D-IL). Under this proposed legislation, students who are convicted for the first time for possessing marijuana without any intention to distribute the drug can continue to receive financial assistance as long as they enroll for, and complete an approved drugs rehab program in six months.

In a press release, Rep. Forster stated that a single mistake shouldn’t cost a student their education. He added that for many students, their college education is entirely dependent on the federal financial aid that they receive. Discontinuing that aid therefore means that the student’s education, and their future, has taken a huge blow from which they could never recover.

Moore also stated that the existing law harms students of color more than any other demographic group of students since these people are particularly targeted for low-level crimes like cannabis possession.

While the bill has received a lot of support, some critics have argued that it will perpetuate a wrong mentality that people who use marijuana have a disorder for which they need rehabilitation.

Those opposed to the proposed law believe that if it is passed, it will strengthen the stigma against marijuana use and yet advocates are working hard to have the substance legalized. By treating users as people suffering from substance abuse disorder, one unwittingly admits that nobody should be using marijuana.

These critics are more comfortable with a similar draft law which was filed in the Senate by Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) in May. In that legislation, the question on whether a student applying for federal financial aid has ever been convicted for possessing or selling illegal drugs would be removed from the application form. Consequently, more students would be able to benefit from the protection without being coerced into signing up for drug rehab programs whose effectiveness is questionable.

It would be interesting to hear what advice cannabis industry players like Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP) and Hemptown USA would have on this matter so that students are protected from lifelong punishment for one mistake they make.

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CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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420 with CNW – Study Finds Legalized Recreational Cannabis a Danger to Alcohol, Not Tobacco

The recent wave of adult-use marijuana legalization across the U.S. has the potential of generating $22 billion in annual sales, but not everyone is thrilled about this development. New research that will soon be published in the Marketing Science journal shows that the alcohol industry is likely to take a hit once marijuana is legalized.

The research was done by Pengyuan, an assistant professor at the Terry College of Business (University of Georgia). He worked with Guiyang Xiong from Syracuse University.

The duo analyzed online search data taken from one of the leading web portals based in the U.S. In total, they crunched the numbers on 120 million ad impressions and 28 million anonymous searches done using this portal. The data in question covered the period January 2014 to April 2017.

The research revealed that the number of online searches done for alcohol reduced by almost 11 percent while the searches for tobacco and its products saw an increase of 8 percent.

The tobacco and alcohol industries are worth a total of $300 billion in the U.S. alone. While these two industries have been vehemently opposed to the legalization of cannabis, this research shows that the tobacco industry would be well advised to revisit their opposition to legal marijuana since opposing the advance of cannabis isn’t in their best interest.

However, the alcohol industry is justified (from an existential point of view) to oppose the onward march of legal marijuana across the country since a law legalizing marijuana at the federal level would see a major decline in the sales of alcohol. The industry therefore has to think fast and come up with ways to retain their customers if they want to retain as much of their market share as possible.

Interestingly, while this research revealed that the legalization of adult-use marijuana in a state causes 17 percent more adults to conduct online searches on marijuana, the number of people who are less than 19 show a reduced interest in marijuana (or at least they perform fewer online searches on the substance).

This again serves to dispel another perception that the legalization of recreational cannabis causes a spike in the interest shown in the substance by minors. Policymakers may therefore need to revisit their positions if they based any decisions they made upon a presumption that there will be an uptick in the number of people who show interest in the drug yet they aren’t of age.

These findings seem to make sense because pollsters have pointed out severally that many adults would opt for recreational marijuana rather than alcohol since pot doesn’t come with hangovers, weight gain and the other effects of consuming alcohol on a regular basis.

It would be interesting to know what industry players like Marijuana Company of America Inc. (OTCQB: MCOA) and Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP)  are planning to do in response to the likely spike in the opposition of the alcohol industry once the findings of this research are released and the fears of the alcohol industry are confirmed.

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CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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420 with CNW – Study Finds Most People Buy Marijuana to Get Some Sleep

Contrary to the common perception that most people buy marijuana in order to get stoned, a new study done by the University of Miami and the Albert Einstein College of Medicine has found that the majority of those who buy marijuana in Colorado use the substance as a sleep aid. These findings are significant because recreational marijuana has been legal in the state for about 5 years now.

In the survey, 1,000 customers of two recreational marijuana stores in Colorado were asked a variety of questions about their motivation for using cannabis. 74 percent of the respondents revealed that they buy marijuana as a sleep aid while 65 percent confessed that they buy marijuana to combat pain.

About 80 percent of the survey participants who said they use marijuana for pain relief admitted that the substance was very helpful in that regard, and 88 percent of these people who had ever used opioids reported that because of using cannabis, their use of prescription opioids had reduced.

It isn’t altogether surprising that people are using cannabis to get some sleep. For long, marijuana has been known to have soporific (inducing sleep) effects and some research even suggests that CBD (cannabidiol) is responsible for expediting sleep and enhancing the overall quality of sleep that one has.

Additionally, while limited research is still available on the pain-relief effects of cannabis, some small studies indicate that marijuana may be a viable alternative to the traditional pain medication available on the market. Researchers think this is a strong possibility since the nerves which detect pain also have a large number of cannabinoid receptors.

The researchers who surveyed the cannabis buyers in Colorado wrote that if cannabis is legalized federally, there is a possibility that people’s dependence on strong prescription pain medications which have serious side effects could be reduced.

It has also been suggested that marijuana could be a good alternative if it is used as a harm reduction agent for people who are addicted to opioids.

The findings of this Colorado study are in line with another 2014 study whose findings appeared in JAMA showing that there was a reduction in the level of opioid use after marijuana was legalized.

While more research still needs to be done, industry experts think that the findings of the latest research in Colorado aren’t anything new to companies like Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP) and Hemptown USA since the cannabis industry has been talking about the different benefits of cannabis to different groups of people.

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CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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420 with CNW – It’s Official, Illinois is 11th to Legalize Recreational Marijuana

As had been widely expected, Gov. J.B Pritzker yesterday (June 25) signed a bill legalizing recreational marijuana in Illinois. This makes the state the 11th to legalize marijuana fully, joining the likes of Colorado and California.

When this new law takes effect on Jan 1, 2020, adults 21 and older will be allowed to possess up to 30grams of marijuana and non-residents will be permitted to possess a maximum of 15grams.

The signing ceremony marked the fulfillment of a pledge Gov. Pritzker made when he was campaigning for office. He promised to see the swift legalization of recreational marijuana in order to bring needed revenue to the state, correct historical wrongs occasioned during the futile war on drugs and also shift scarce law enforcement resources to more serious crimes.

This law makes Illinois the first state to legalize recreational marijuana legislatively while creating a comprehensive framework for sales across the state. The other state (Vermont) which took this path just stopped at passing a law that created an agency to work out the details of full implementation.

Until legal sales start at the beginning of 2020, it will still be illegal to possess marijuana unless one is registered on the state’s medical marijuana program.

On the market side, the legalization law creates a first-of-its-kind mechanism through which people from impoverished communities will be helped to participate in the legal cannabis industry. This help will come in the form of fee waivers, low-interest loans and other forms of preferential treatment for “equity” applicants. A portion of all revenue generated from the marijuana industry will also be reinvested in impoverished communities in order to revive their economies.

Police departments have been jittery ever since the law was drafted, and their stiff opposition led to the dropping of a provision which would have seen residents allowed to grow up to five plants for recreational use. This opportunity now went to medical marijuana cardholders who weren’t initially allowed to grow marijuana for their own use.

Police departments are now worried that it will be hard for them to stay on top of people driving under the influence of marijuana since there isn’t reliable technology to test for impairment.

Meanwhile, hopes were high among advocates that New York and New Jersey would also legalize marijuana legislatively this year but the plans in those states fizzled out during spring. There is almost no doubt among cannabis industry analysts that the whole industry, including Marijuana Company of America Inc. (OTCQB: MCOA) and Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP), has heaved a collective sigh of relief that the momentum of state-level legalization hasn’t stalled completely.

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CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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420 with CNW – Group Claims Federal Government Broke the Law in Cannabis Scheduling Evaluation

The Competitive Enterprises Institute, a libertarian think tank, has claimed in a formal filing that the federal government erred in the way it handled the scientific evaluation of cannabis’ therapeutic value, and the government must therefore take steps to fix the errors it made.

Their request for correction was sent to the Department of Health and Human Services (U.S. HHS). HHS had written to the DEA in 2015 and the DEA relied on that letter from HHS in determining that marijuana be classified as a Schedule 1 drug in the U.S.

According to CEI (Competitive Enterprises Institute), the letter sent by HHS lacked a very important element which is required by federal law. The federal Information Quality Act demands that such “highly influential scientific assessment” as the contents of the HHS letter to the DEA be subjected to a peer review evaluation before the information therein can be relied upon when making regulatory decisions.

No such peer review was conducted, and the CEI is demanding that HHS withdraws its letter to the Drug Enforcement Administration until the requisite peer review exercise has been done as stipulated in the law.

The DEA leaned heavily on the contents of the letter written by HHS to the effect that “marijuana has no recognized medical use in the U.S., has a high potential for abuse and doesn’t have an acceptable level of safety even when used under medical supervision.” Based on this information, the DEA rejected an application which had been made to have marijuana rescheduled in 2016.

In its letter to HHS, CEI points out that various medical associations and a huge fraction of the public in the U.S. have formed a largely different conclusion about marijuana. By law, HHS now has a maximum of 120 days within which to respond to the concerns raised by the Competitive Enterprises Institute.

Devin Watkins, an attorney for CEI, says that the federal government’s policy is likely to change if a reassessment of the matter is conducted. This is especially likely given that 33 states across the country have legalized marijuana for medical use.

The attorney added that the reassessment would be significant in ensuring that government agencies don’t brand uninformed opinions as scientific positions upon which public policies are made. Independent experts can shine a torch on the opinion of an agency and correct it if a mistake has been made.

Industry observers suspect that the entire cannabis industry, including players like Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP) and Hemptown USA, are likely to follow keenly how HHS responds to the letter written by CEI.

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CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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Dramatically Improved Delivery Systems Promise More Effective Cannabis Treatments

CannabisNewsWire Editorial Coverage: Experiments with next-generation delivery systems appear certain to lead to better cannabis-based products.

Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP) (LXRP Profile) has recently seen spectacular improvements in the effectiveness of cannabinoids thanks to its proprietary chemical delivery treatment. GW Pharmaceuticals Plc (NASDAQ: GWPH) (OTC: GWPRF), which has won widespread praise for its innovative medical work, has seen good trial results for a new treatment for seizures.  Tilray Inc. (NASDAQ: TLRY) is supporting studies into the uses of cannabinoids to treat behavioral problems and HIV. MariMed Inc. (OTCQB: MRMD) has set up a subsidiary focused on CBD, currently the highest-profile cannabinoid product. Cronos Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CRON) (TSX: CRON) has established a new research lab to develop…

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420 with CNW – French Medical Marijuana Experiment Starting Soon After Enabling Law is Passed

On May 28 this year, the French Senate passed a bill paving the way for marijuana to start being used therapeutically in the country. The health ministry is yet to give its approval to this law, but once it does, an experiment lasting two years will be launched to analyze the effects of marijuana on pain relief.

Patient groups put the estimate of people who would be eligible to access marijuana for pain at about 300,000-1,000,000 people. A committee is evaluating the measures which have been designed to implement the medical cannabis experiment. This committee will release their findings on June 26.

The experiment is likely to get underway in a few weeks, but the biggest challenge which will be faced is how to set up a supply chain for the industry. Initially, medical cannabis will be imported from countries where it is legal and produced to internationally acceptable standards.

As medical cannabis is imported, locally licensed producers will be busy at work setting up cultivation facilities in greenhouses or highly controlled fields. The sunlight, humidity and temperature will all be closely monitored and controlled in this unconventional agricultural undertaking.

The growers selected will be required to meet the EU rules on how to grow medical cannabis whose quality is consistent.

Medical marijuana will not be a bonanza for all who wish to use it. Physicians will only prescribe it if a patient hasn’t benefited from all the available pain treatments in the country. Of special interest will be people suffering from cancer, multiple sclerosis, some forms of epilepsy and patients undergoing palliative care.

When addressing the French Senate at the beginning of the debate on the medical marijuana bill, Senator Esther Benbassa revealed that the list of conditions for which medical marijuana could be prescribed is likely to be expanded in future to include more ailments.

Some senators, especially those from the Republican Party, fear that the medical marijuana program is being used as a Trojan horse in a bid to legalize recreational marijuana. Advocates disagree and assert that medical marijuana cannot be abused for recreational purposes since the two uses require different forms of cannabis. For example, the advocates say that therapeutic-grade marijuana is low in THC, so recreational users cannot get the psychoactive effects which they require to address their needs.

Marijuana advocates welcomed the new bill and hope that the way will be opened for exploring other purposes for which marijuana can be used. These include wellness products like supplements, oils and cannabis-infused vitamins.

Marijuana Company of America Inc. (OTCQB: MCOA) and Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP) welcome France into the fold of countries which are benefiting from the medicinal effects of marijuana.

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CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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Disruptive CBD Delivery Technology Could Revolutionize World of Cannabis Consumer Products, Edibles

CannabisNewsWire Editorial Coverage: Fueled by an explosion of CBD-infused edibles, billion-dollar projections for the CBD market may even be conservative.

This seems possible when one considers the truly innovative work being done in the sector by the likes of Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP) (LXRP Profile), which has developed a patented delivery technology with disruptive potential, delivering 475% more CBD to the bloodstream after 15 minutes than conventional formulations. Other sector innovators are making a similar impact, including the likes of noted cannabinoid biopharma GW Pharmaceuticals Plc (NASDAQ: GWPH) (OTC: GWPRF) and that of researchers and product developers…

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