Undocumented immigrants with marijuana convictions aren’t protected from deportation if their charges are expunged, ruled a federal court. Detroit will pay $60,000 to settle a lawsuit over police who killed three dogs during a marijuana raid. Institutional investors are increasingly warming up to the cannabis industry. Also: Big box retailers are considering CBD. 🌳
Federal court rejects expungements.
The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected an appeal from an undocumented immigrant who pleaded guilty to a marijuana offense. Claudia Prado’s parents brought her to the U.S. when she was six months old. She later pleaded guilty to a felony charge of possession of marijuana for sale. After the state legalized adult-use marijuana, Prado’s conviction was reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor. She argued that she should not be deported as she was no longer guilty of a felony, but the appeals court disagreed. “Federal immigration law does not recognize a state’s policy decision to expunge (or recall or reclassify) a valid state conviction,” wrote one of the judges on the panel. San Francisco Chronicle
Detroit to pay $60,000 to woman whose dogs were shot by cops.
Detroit is paying $60,000 to settle a lawsuit with a woman whose dogs were shot and killed by police during a marijuana raid. Narcotics officers shot three of her dogs, one of which was behind a closed bathroom door. Plaintiff Nikita Smith was arrested for marijuana possession but the charges were dropped after the officers failed to appear in court. “The settlement is the latest in a string of costly payouts for Detroit due to dog shootings during drug raids. It also set new precedent in Fourth Amendment law.” The city attempted to argue that the dogs were unlicensed, but that argument was rejected by the court. Reason
Where the marijuana money will go.
Illinois’ 522-page marijuana legalization bill includes “increased funding for social service programs, expungement of criminal records for marijuana possession and economic development help for poor communities.” While such provisions draw support from some lawmakers, they could end up turning rural and suburban lawmakers against it. Crain’s Chicago Business Related: One pro-cannabis lawmaker is saying that legalization in other states led to decreases in youth use. But there is no evidence to support that claim — instead, it looks like youth use has remained steady from the available data. PolitiFact
Moms in marijuana.
Mothers who work in the cannabis industry must navigate persistent stigma against marijuana. Their biggest concern is child custody: One child welfare law specialist says “she’s argued about 25 cases over the last five years across multiple states, in which parents had custody claims brought against them at least partially concerning their employment in the cannabis industry and associated exposure to the substance.” For moms in the industry, it means teaching their kids to speak in euphemisms or eschewing clothes with their company logo. Yahoo Finance
Pot arrests at LAX have surged.
Marijuana seizures at Los Angeles International Airport have jumped since the state legalized cannabis. While there has been an uptick in passengers with small amounts of marijuana for personal use, the number of trafficking arrests has jumped 166 percent. “Emboldened by legalization and facing only light punishment if captured, more and more smugglers are taking to the friendly skies in an effort to escape California’s glutted cannabis market.” Meanwhile, passengers are confused about the state-federal conflict in cannabis laws and often attempt to fly with what they perceive as legal weed. The Los Angeles Times
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The studies say…
Discoveries of illicit marijuana grows in national forests declined after Oregon and Washington legalized cannabis, according to a new study. “While legalization appears to have been a driving factor for decreased illicit cultivation in Oregon, that doesn’t seem to be the case in Washington. The difference, it seems, may have to do with the way each state wrote its marijuana laws.” Marijuana Moment Pregnant women tend to opt for THC over CBD, perhaps thanks to its efficacy in managing nausea, according to a recent survey on cannabis-consuming moms. Rolling Stone
Today in cannabis business news…
Massachusetts-based marijuana company Curaleaf has acquired the rights to purchase the Licking County, Ohio-based medical marijuana company Ohio Grown Therapies for $20 million. The Columbus Dispatch Institutional investors are increasingly warming up to the nascent cannabis industry. “The fact that traditional financial institutions are not participating in the market has opened up a huge opportunity to private equity and venture capital to play in the space and fill the need,” said one attorney. Crain’s Cleveland Investors are betting on precision dosing as the next big thing in cannabis. TechCrunch
Top executives at major retailers including Walmart, Target, Kroger, and Safeway, are exploring the possibility of getting into the CBD space. They are meeting with CBD product manufacturers and requesting product samples, lab test results, and pricing information. New York Post Saks Fifth Avenue announced the launch of a CBD in-house salon. Forbes
Elsewhere around the world…
Twenty U.S. prosecutors are touring Portugal to learn about the country’s drug decriminalization policy. They also plan to head to Germany to learn about its criminal justice system. Marijuana Moment The new cannabis licensing rules in Canada could worsen the market’s supply shortages, according to some in the industry. Bloomberg A new group of “Latin American startups is now plotting to out-compete Canadian greenhouses on cost and wrestle market share away from North America in the marijuana industry.” Ozy The interior minister of Italy threatened to close “cannabis light” retailers. The country approved cannabis that contained less than 0.2 percent THC in 2017. Marijuana Business Daily
Psilocybin in Denver.
A look at what Denver’s new psilocybin decriminalization law does and doesn’t change. The Denver Post While the new law doesn’t legalize psilocybin, we can expect “a bumper crop of Denver shrooms this year… The growing materials, including mason jars, cost about $100 and can be found in any big-box store. The seeds of magic mushrooms, called spores, are not illegal, and can be ordered online. A 10-week growing period yields more mushrooms than any user would reasonably want to consume, and the excess can legally be given away.” The Washington Post How to Change Your Mind author Michael Pollan is worried about the use of ballot initiatives to advance psychedelics, due to the lack of science on the subject. The New York Times
Weed + Grub
Weed + Grub is a podcast about cooking, cannabis, comedy, and pop culture — hosted by Mary Jane Gibson and Mike Glazer. Word on the Tree is happy to support the podcast’s news section, The Grublet Gazette! Check it out wherever you get your podcasts or listen right here on the web: Weed +
Word on the States
- In California, the legislature considers pushing municipalities to lift bans on marijuana stores if voters there supported the legalization initiative.
- In Nevada, the governor signed a bill to release information about the marijuana licensing process. Dispensaries prepare for on-site consumption.
- In Massachusetts, marijuana entrepreneurs rallied against “Big Cannabis” at the State House.
- In Georgia, how marijuana companies influenced cannabis legislation in the state. The governor signed a hemp farming bill.
- In Maine, Chelsea considers medical marijuana retail regulations.
- In Maryland, medical cannabis dispensaries educate the community about marijuana.
- In Ohio, more than 30,000 people have registered for the medical marijuana program.
- In Nebraska, the legislature will debate medical marijuana legislation this week. But the bill’s sponsor doesn’t expect it to pass.
- In New York, uncertainty faces the marijuana legalization effort. Lawmakers push for expanding the medical marijuana program.<
- In Arkansas, the state’s first medical marijuana dispensary opened its doors. After dealing with software problems, marijuana was sold legally in the state for the first time since 1923.
- In Missouri, Wednesday is the deadline for submitting feedback on proposed medical marijuana rules.
- In Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh expressed support for legalization during the lieutenant governor’s marijuana listening tour.
Word for Word
“I have never been a fan of going mainstream, and I think a lot of people have embraced [marijuana] just for profit. Some of the same people who were previously against it are now for it after seeing the profit involved, and not the common sense and freedom of choice, which should be the reason. Still, the positives definitely make the bandwagon douchebags more tolerable. For example, the laws are much better. Sentences are being commuted, and stuff like that is awesome. ” – Cheba Hut founder Scott Jennings, Westword
“It’s weird to me that fashion has been so hesitant about embracing cannabis. I find the far right so much scarier than weed. If I were a brand, I’d be more concerned about Megyn Kelly wearing my clothes than someone smoking weed in them. I don’t mind talking about weed at all. I don’t work for a corporation. I have two kids. We live in Brooklyn, so they know what weed is. If you walk down the street in Brooklyn, you will walk through clouds of pot smoke. Every day. That’s the smell of Brooklyn. They’re not old enough to point at it and know what it’s called, but I can be like, ‘That’s weed.'” – Stylist Kate Young, Gossamer