Last Updated Projects in Cannabis Regulations
How to Make Legal Pot Work in Michigan
Michigan’s policy leaders must lay the groundwork for a safe and legal market in which consumers can gain access to marijuana products that have been tested to ensure they contain no dangerous chemicals or impurities. Implementing a state-run regulatory structure and market for marijuana is a difficult and arduous task. There are dozens of important facets to consider, including what substances to test for, whether to allow for deliveries, how the program will overlap with the state’s still-developing medical marijuana program, collaborating with local governments, and more. The state now has one year to adopt regulations that will help it carry out the new law. A year might sound like a long time, but marijuana regulations in other states often stretch hundreds of pages and Michigan’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs will likely need to host dozens of meetings to collect public feedback before proceeding. The initiative provides only cursory guidance on some key policy issues. Many elements of these regulations are highly technical and can range from the software integration requirements for businesses seeking licensees with the state to the specific forms of mold or bacteria for which marijuana must be tested.
The Absurdity of Marijuana and Firearm Laws
While the federal government has been generally tolerant of state experimentation with cannabis legalization, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has made it clear it will not tolerate mixing cannabis and guns. Thus, firearms dealers will have to abide by the ATF’s rules by denying medical cannabis card holders and anyone convicted of illegal cannabis possession the right to purchase guns. The enforcement of this law creates an absurd policy issue as states must register medical cannabis patient data but not recreational marijuana consumer data. As a result, medical cannabis patients are denied gun rights because the state keeps a registry that shows up when firearm background checks are conducted. Recreational users, however, are not required to register to purchase retail cannabis and are therefore untracked. The contradiction is blatant and damaging to medical patients, especially for those using the non-psychoactive CBD compound found in cannabis products that are commonly used to mitigate epileptic seizures.
A Conceptual Framework for State Efforts to Legalize and Regulate Cannabis
When drafting, evaluating and implementing cannabis reform policies, policymakers face a myriad of detailed choices, from specific agency authority to issues like tracking and testing. While these details are often overlooked by many advocates and media, they can actually mean the difference between policy implementation success or failure. Most states have stumbled and seen early hiccups in their regulated marijuana markets. Nevada, for instance, suffered a dearth of licensed distributors who could legally transport marijuana products from commercial cultivation facilities to dispensaries within the first few months of its program, resulting in sharp price increases and lack of availability. Both Colorado and Washington experienced delays, inefficiencies, cost overruns and revenues falling short of projections, resulting in a rollback of some of their more onerous initial mandates.
The high cost of (not) stopping people getting high
Prohibition of marijuana, just like prohibition of alcohol before it, has been a costly failure. Treasury’s informal estimate of the cost is over $300 million per year and the benefits to date, in terms of reduction in usage, are modest.
San Bernardino's Corrupt and Illegal Cannabis Licensing Program
This project addresses facts that appear to show both intentional City corruption and potential City incompetence. Specifically, the City of San Bernardino issued cannabis licenses to a number of businesses who it is illegal to issue permits to. These businesses were shown to be too close to “sensitive uses” under the Municipal Code and violated the General Plan. Despite the fact that the City Council was advised of this by City staff, the City Attorney, some of the applicants who did not receive licenses, and the general public, the City Council went forward with awarding those permits. This appears to have been done knowingly by at least some within the City. The evidence suggests that there was a “pay for play” scheme involving the marijuana permitees, the City Manager (Defendant Andrea Miller) and the former Mayor (Carey Davis). This is because the City Manager (Defendant Andrea Miller) set up meetings between the former Mayor (Carey Davis)’s campaign funder, Scott Beard, and the marijuana groups that should have been disqualified under the Municipal Code and State Law. The marijuana groups texted to confirm campaign contributions to the former Mayor’s campaign, both on and off the books. These same businesses received marijuana permits from the City Council despite being disqualified. This was accomplished through a combination of intentional acts by some within the City, and incompetence through others at the City directed by those taking intentional acts.
Deschedule Marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act Now
Marijuana has been officially recognized as a legitimate medicine in 16 U.S. States in addition to the District of Columbia. The current FDA guidelines for scheduling controlled substances categorize all uses of marijuana (including that used for medical use, only) as Schedule I, erroneously placing it in the same category as Heroin and Crack Cocaine, stating that it has a high potential for abuse and no recognized medical value. The second portion of the requirement to be a Schedule I substance is absolutely untrue of medical marijuana – a point made quite clear simply by the term itself: medical marijuana. We are demanding Congress and President Barack Obama to alter our current federal policy on medical marijuana and reschedule it appropriately to a Schedule V substance, where it can be researched and prescribed in the same fashion that other therapeutic medicines are today, including as Vicodin or Oxycontin. Please apply our current laws fairly, as they were intended, and adjust mistakes made in the in
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