Medical Marijuana

Ohio: March 1 deadline to request expansion of medical marijuana program

Send your letter to the Ohio State Medical Board.

Quick reminder: Sunday, March 1 is the last day the Ohio State Medical Board will be accepting comments regarding the possible addition of anxiety, autism spectrum disorder, and cachexia (wasting syndrome) as qualifying conditions for medical marijuana.

So far, our supporters have sent in over 800 letters! If you haven’t yet, will you send a message now?

There’s considerable evidence that patients with these conditions can benefit from medical marijuana, and many other states already allow them to qualify.

Please take a moment to let them know you support adding these conditions by emailing them at MedicalMarijuana@med.ohio.gov. Or use our email action tool, which allows you to edit a pre-written message.

Please forward this email to others so they can send a letter, too!

Thank you.

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Tax and Regulate

Vermont House passes bill to legalize, regulate cannabis sales!

Attend your town meeting next week and speak to your representatives about their votes on S. 54!

Yesterday, in a historic 90-54 vote, the Vermont House approved the bill to legalize, regulate, and tax cannabis sales. S. 54 passed in a final voice vote today, and it will now return to the Senate. Next, we expect the Senate will work with the House to resolve differences before sending a final version of the bill to Gov. Phil Scott’s desk.

Since the House did not pass S. 54 by a veto-proof majority, it’s especially important that we thank the representatives who voted in favor and speak to those who voted “no.” The legislature is off for Town Meeting next week, so that will be an ideal time for you to speak with your state legislators. Please take a moment to see how your representative(s) voted and plan to attend your town’s meeting on Tuesday, March 3!

If you’re not able to speak to your representative(s) in person, you can look them up here and either email or call them to follow up on their votes.

You can read an updated summary of the bill here.

Vermonters have already waited far too long for legal, regulated sales of cannabis. Please share this message with your family and friends!

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Tax and Regulate

R.I.: Ask your state legislators to amend and pass Gov. Raimondo’s legalization proposal

Click here to send a letter to your state senator and representative.

Earlier this year, Gov. Gina Raimondo submitted her annual budget proposal to the General Assembly. Like last year’s, the proposed legislation includes a plan to legalize and regulate marijuana for adults’ use. You can read a summary of it here.

We’re happy to see the governor once again leading on this issue, and as we advocated last year, this year’s legislation does more to address the harms created by decades of marijuana criminalization, including the creation of a Community Equity and Reinvestment Council. However, we also have significant concerns about the proposal as currently written.

We are asking members of the General Assembly to amend the legislation in three key ways:

  • In case of a conflict with federal law, the law should establish a privately run system of retail stores as a back up to replace state-run establishments.
  • Legislators should remove the ban on people with prior drug felonies from owning and operating a marijuana business.
  • The law should allow adults to cultivate a small number of plants in their residences.

With these amendments, we believe the governor’s proposal would be greatly improved and would urge state legislators to pass it.

Will you send a letter to your state representative and senator right now asking them to advocate for these changes and the passage of marijuana legalization in Rhode Island this year?

Thank you.

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Tax and Regulate

Vermont: House vote on legalizing, regulating cannabis sales expected this week — act now!

Bill passes final committee — urge your representatives to vote in favor.

Today, Vermont’s House Appropriations Committee approved S. 54 in a 6-5 vote. The bill to legalize, regulate, and tax cannabis sales appears likely to receive a vote in the full House later this week.

Please contact your representatives now and ask for their support!

The House has amended the bill, including by changing the tax rate to a flat 20% (in the Senate’s version, it’s 16% plus a 2% local option tax), but none of the House’s changes should be considered final. Assuming the bill passes the House, it will proceed to a conference committee, where members of the House and Senate will work to resolve their differences and agree on a single version of the bill to send to Gov. Phil Scott’s desk.

You can read an updated summary of the bill here.

Vermonters have already waited far too long for legal, regulated sales of cannabis. After you contact your representatives, please share this message with your family and friends!

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Medical Marijuana

Ohio: Send a letter to expand qualifying conditions for medical marijuana

Click here to send an email to the State Medical Board of Ohio.

The State Medical Board of Ohio is accepting public comments through March 1 regarding the possible addition of anxiety, autism spectrum disorder, and cachexia (wasting syndrome) as qualifying conditions for medical marijuana.

Research shows medical marijuana can be helpful in treating all three conditions. More than 10 states already allow anxiety as a qualifying condition. Over 20 allow autism spectrum disorder patients to access medical marijuana. And nearly 30 states have approved cachexia (or wasting syndrome).

Please take a moment to let them know you support adding these conditions by emailing them at MedicalMarijuana@med.ohio.gov or using our email tool, which has a pre-written message you can edit.

Thank you for taking action, and please forward this email to others so they can send a letter, too! We'll keep you updated on the medical board's decision.

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Prohibition

N.H. House votes to legalize cannabis with two-thirds majority!

Urge your senator to support HB 1648!

Last Thursday, the New Hampshire House of Representatives overwhelmingly voted in favor of HB 1648, the bill that would legalize possession and limited cultivation of cannabis for adults 21 and older in New Hampshire. The bill passed with a veto-proof 236-112 majority. Next, it will be scheduled for a public hearing by the Senate, which has rejected previous cannabis legalization bills.

Please email and call your senator’s office and tell them New Hampshire should not be an island of prohibition!

Since Gov. Chris Sununu opposes legalization, it will be difficult to pass this bill in 2020. However, if 16 of the state’s 24 senators can be convinced to support the bill, it will be possible to override a potential veto. Gov. Sununu and all 24 senators will face re-election in November, so it’s important for them to understand that cannabis legalization is more popular than the legislature or any of the state’s best-known elected officials.

A summary of HB 1648 is available here.

After you contact your senator, please share this message with your family and friends.

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Medical Marijuana

Kentucky House passes medical cannabis bill!

Patients have already been waiting far too long — urge your senator to support HB 136!

Yesterday, in a huge victory for patients, the Kentucky House voted 65-30 to pass HB 136, a bill that would legalize cannabis for medical use. The bill will now proceed to the Senate for further consideration. You can read a summary of the bill here.

Please contact your senator today and urge him or her to pass this compassionate legislation!

Gov. Andy Beshear has indicated that he strongly supports medical cannabis. However, some Senate leaders remain opposed, so we know that it will be a challenge to get this bill to the governor’s desk.

It’s critical that legislators hear from their constituents who support medical cannabis. After you contact your senator, please share this message with your friends and family.

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Tax and Regulate

New Mexico: Legislature adjourns without advancing legalization

Please reach out to your lawmakers in support of legalizing, taxing, and regulating marijuana for adults!

The effort to legalize cannabis for adult use in the Land of Enchantment will now shift to 2021.

Unfortunately, the legislature wrapped up its 2020 legislative session yesterday without advancing SB 115 — a bill that would have legalized, taxed, and regulated cannabis for adults and provided automatic expungements of past cannabis convictions.

Keep up the pressure by taking a moment to let your lawmakers know you want them to support ending marijuana prohibition and replacing it with sensible regulation!

This year’s effort fell short when the Senate Judiciary Committee decided (6-4) to table SB 115. The bill was approved (4-3) by the Senate Public Affairs Committee, and Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) — who made legalization one of her 2020 legislative priorities — supported the bill.

Poll after poll has shown that the majority of New Mexicans support legalizing, taxing, and regulating cannabis for adults, and Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham again voiced her support for getting it done.

Urge your lawmakers to support legalizing, taxing, and regulating cannabis for adult use. Then, forward this message to your friends and family in New Mexico and encourage them to do the same.

 

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Medical Marijuana

W.Va.: Battle brewing over effort to allow whole plant cannabis

Tell your elected officials to support reforming West Virginia’s outdated cannabis policies!

West Virginia’s 2020 legislative session is underway, and several cannabis-related bills have been introduced, including bills to improve the medical cannabis law, to decriminalize possession, and to legalize, regulate, and tax cannabis for adults’ use.

It is unlikely that a legalization bill will be seriously considered in 2020, but there appears to be a much better chance that legislators will support improving the medical cannabis program. West Virginians have been waiting far too long for safe, legal access to medical cannabis, so it’s encouraging to see that bipartisan leaders in the Senate — Majority Leader Tom Takubo (R-Charleston) and Senator Ron Stollings (D-Madison) — have introduced SB 752, a bill that would allow patients to grow their own cannabis until an adequate supply can be established through the dispensaries.

Please contact your elected officials and urge them to support SB 752!

SB 752 would allow patients and caregivers to apply for “compassion certificates,” which would temporarily authorize them to possess up to 12 mature plants and 12 seedlings per patient. The bill would also make other beneficial changes, such as eliminating the restriction on selling cannabis flower at dispensaries and permitting regulators to enter reciprocity agreements with other states.

After you write your legislators and follow up with a phone call, please forward this message to your family and friends!

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Prohibition

Virginia: Decriminalization is close to crossing the finish line!

Email your lawmakers in support of decriminalization today!

Virginia is very close to becoming the 27th state to decriminalize marijuana!

This week, both chambers of the General Assembly passed similar decriminalization bills. Now, the legislature will have to reconcile the differences in the two bills before a final bill heads to Gov. Ralph Northam's desk. Gov. Northam — who has made decriminalization a top priority in 2020 — is likely to sign the bill into law.

Make sure you let your lawmakers know you want 2020 to be the year Virginia stops criminalizing residents for simple marijuana possession!

The Senate decriminalization bill, SB 2, cleared the Senate yesterday (27-13). The bill would make possession of up to an ounce of marijuana punishable by a $50 civil fine and increase the threshold for charges for sales and possession with intent to distribute from half an ounce to one ounce.

Meanwhile, the House version, which was approved by the House (64-34), would make simple possession a civil penalty punishable by a $25 fine and allow criminal records for marijuana possession to be sealed.

The move to decriminalize marijuana in Virginia is long overdue. Under current law, marijuana possession is a criminal offense punishable by up to 30 days in jail and/or up to a $500 fine.

Help seal the fate of decriminalization in 2020 by contacting your lawmakers today. Then, share this message with your friends and family in Virginia and encourage them to do the same.

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