Marapharm Ventures, Inc. (OTCMKTS: MRPHF) Obtains Key Funding


 

Marapharm Ventures, Inc. (OTCMKTS: MRPHF) has been investing in the medical and recreational cannabis space, since 2014. Marapharm has expanded its portfolio to include cultivation, production and dispensary locations in the US, in the key states of Washington, Nevada, and California, and are seeking expansion opportunities worldwide.

Though the company has been in business for quite some time, this is the first time we have taken the opportunity to mention the stock here on Street Register. After spending nearly the whole of 2018 thus far in decline, shares of MRPHF are just beginning to make a run off of their bottom, and it comes in conjunction with a busy couple of weeks for the company, per its news feed.

Marapharm Ventures, Inc. (OTCMKTS: MRPHF) this week revealed that the non-brokered private placement unit offering announced last week, for gross proceeds of $4,000,000, closed oversubscribed for total gross proceeds of $4,500,000.

The non-brokered private placement of 7,500,000 Units at CDN $0.60 per Unit. The Unit consists of one common share of the Company and one-half of one common share purchase warrant of the Company. Each warrant entitles the holder thereof to purchase one Common Share of the Company at an exercise price of $0.70 for a period of 12 months from the date of issuance of the warrant.

Pursuant to the terms of the warrants, the expiry date of the warrants may be accelerated should the closing price at which the common shares trade exceeds $0.85 for five consecutive trading days. Any warrants which remain unexercised after the accelerated expiry date will be cancelled.

The net proceeds raised from the Unit Offering are intended to be used for further development of the Company’s Las Vegas project, further development of the Company’s project in Washington State, and further development of the Company’s projects in California as well as general corporate purposes. The common shares and warrants issued pursuant to the Non-Brokered Offering are subject to a four month hold period. No finder’s fees will be paid in connection with this non-brokered offering.

“We are weeks away from entering production at our newly built facilities in Nevada. 2018 will be the first revenue producing year for the Company, we are passionate about our future and excited to achieve these significant milestones,” said Linda Sampson, CEO. (Source: Marapharm.com)

Also last week the company kept its shareholder’s updated with U.S. cannabis reform news. A U.S. House Committee has approved the first marijuana reform bill ever to be given a vote. While legalization supporters have previously scored victories in the form of amendments attached to larger legislation, none of their standalone bills have ever advanced before.

Tim Walz and Chairman Phil Roe, M.D. introduced H.R. 5520, the VA Medicinal Cannabis Research Act of 2018, to authorize the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to advance scientific and medical research into the safety and efficacy of medicinal cannabis usage by veterans with diagnoses such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and chronic pain. Upon introduction, the legislation was cosponsored by 28 Democrats and 7 Republicans. (democrats-veterans.house.gov)

It could be a surprise if a piece of legislation like that could pass, but in truth, it may still be a longshot at this point. What we will be interested to hear more about are updates from MRPHF pertaining to the uses of these newly obtained funds. We’ll be sure to continue looking out for key events. We’ll stay up on any further developments with MRPHF and pass them along to you! Stay locked on StreetRegister.com and be sure you’re signed up for our 100% free small cap newsletter. It’s as easy as that! Simply submit your primary active email address in the box below. Subscribe now!

 

Disclosure: No one at Street Register has been compensated in any way for the publishing of this article, nor do we hold any position in MRPHF stock, short or long.

 

 



Source link

Jeff Sessions Will Lose the GOP’s Battle Over Weed


In the year-and-a-bit since Donald Trump took office, Americans have witnessed a neck-wrenching 180-degree turn on an array of policy topics. One of the biggest has been with regard to drugs.

Between anti-marijuana moves by Trump’s attorney general, Jeff Sessions, and apparent interest by the administration in making passing a drug test a condition for receiving food stamps in states that request it, Trump and key figures in his administration seem eager to jump back to a time in history when drug use that has become more or less accepted in society is again disqualifying and indeed criminal. And where Trump goes, the GOP often follows.

But is the Trump administration truly set on achieving this? Those of us watching drug policy debates in the era of Trump are feeling a little (OK, a lot of) whiplash.

The direction in which Sessions wants to take the country is clear. So too are Republicans’ views with regard to food stamps and drug testing.

With Trump, things are a bit murkier. He generally cultivated an anti-drug message with his “death penalty for heroin dealers” chat. He’s pushed that message in other ways too, such as the little noticed controversy in February, when Israel put the brakes on a plan to export marijuana to the U.S., apparently because Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu didn’t want to piss off Trump. Trump also claims never to have smoked pot, something that some pot advocates view as inherently likely to predispose him against cannabis.

But during the campaign, Trump was pot-neutral. He exclaimed that he was for letting states decide their own pot and medical marijuana policies. And just weeks ago, he voiced support for Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO)’s bill codifying states’ rights with regard to pot. Reportedly, his campaign manager is making that position a selling point to Colorado voters ahead of 2020.

Outside of Trump, the GOP itself seems to be in the midst of an evolution on pot. Or, at least, a process of self-discovery. Gardner was so adamant that states’ rights on the matter be respected that he threatened to hold up any nominees to the Department of Justice until Sessions and Trump backed down. We’ve also learned that John Boehner is joining the board of a cannabis company—a pretty big turnaround for a former speaker of the House known more for his love of wine than weed.

So what the heck is going on with the GOP and pot? The short answer is: a lot. But though much of it seems contradictory, there is still an obvious, ultimate direction. The GOP will, in the end, follow Gardner and Boehner’s path, even if that feels like an Olympic gymnast-level flip-flop for a lot of voters.

It used to be that the only pro-decriminalization or pro-legalization Republicans were Libertarians who voted GOP because they wanted tax cuts and a tiny bit more fiscal restraint (with the exception, perhaps, of some prominent figures at National Review who always took a surprisingly pro-decriminalization line on marijuana).

More recently, however, the pro-decriminalization ranks have been joined by the Koch brothers, especially Charles Koch, who champions criminal justice reform and sees issues like pot decriminalization and mandatory minimums reform as obviously related.

There are also Republicans from states where marijuana laws have been liberalized, leading to a booming new sector of the economy.

Gardner is one such figure. But more Gardners are on the way. While Sessions may believe the “War on Drugs” has failed because it has been prosecuted with insufficient zeal, you’ve got a whole raft of states represented by Republican officeholders who manifestly believe that the anti-pot aspect of it, at least, is stupid.

Get The Beast In Your Inbox!

Daily Digest

Start and finish your day with the top stories from The Daily Beast.

Cheat Sheet

A speedy, smart summary of all the news you need to know (and nothing you don’t).

Thank You!

You are now subscribed to the Daily Digest and Cheat Sheet. We will not share your email with anyone for any reason.

It’s certainly economically unhelpful. Nine states have fully legalized recreational pot (including Alaska, a deep red state, and Colorado, Nevada, and Maine—purplish ones with GOP elected officials). Twenty-nine states have legalized medical marijuana (including the magenta-ish states of North Dakota, Arkansas, Montana, and West Virginia, and swing state New Hampshire).

Rank-and-file Republican voters are becoming much more opposed to the War on Weed too, according to an October 2017 Gallup poll. Maybe that’s because veterans (who Republicans love to champion) claim marijuana helps them with physical and psychological battlefield injuries. Maybe it’s because of claims that legalization could help combat the opioid epidemic, which is ravaging Republican areas. Maybe it’s because Republicans are hearing from unlikely marijuana advocates like Michelle Malkin.

Or maybe it’s because Republicans still tend to consider themselves “pro-business,” and the pot business is growing—fast. According to a report last year from Arcview Market Research, across North America, legal pot sales in 2017 were on pace to hit $9.7 billion. That’s 33 percent growth against the previous year—evidence of a booming market. Many Republicans may oppose pot use personally. But basically all Republicans love making and keeping money.

Whatever it is, the reality is this: The ranks of pro-legalization Republicans, like plants on weed farms, will continue to grow over time, while those sharing Sessions’ views will shrink and shrivel and decline. That’s a good thing, in terms of achieving limited government goals, and expanding personal liberty—something today’s GOP could do with getting back to focusing on.

The debate may seem muddied now. But it’s heading in a very clear direction.



Source link

Tight job market has businesses mellowing out over hiring pot smokers | Business


WASHINGTON — FPI Management, a property company in California, wants to hire dozens of people. Factories from New Hampshire to Michigan need workers. Hotels in Las Vegas are desperate to fill jobs.

Those employers and many others are quietly taking what once would have been a radical step: They’re dropping marijuana from the drug tests they require of prospective employees. Marijuana testing — a fixture at large American employers for at least 30 years — excludes too many potential workers, experts say, at a time when filling jobs is more challenging than it’s been in nearly two decades.

“It has come out of nowhere,” said Michael Clarkson, head of the drug testing practice at Ogletree Deakins, a law firm. “I have heard from lots of clients things like, ‘I can’t staff the third shift and test for marijuana.'”

Though still in its early stages, the shift away from marijuana testing appears likely to accelerate. More states are legalizing cannabis for recreational use; Michigan could become the 10th state to do so in November. Missouri appears on track to become the 30th state to allow medical pot use.

And medical marijuana users in Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island have won lawsuits in the past year against companies that rescinded job offers or fired workers because of positive tests for cannabis. Before last year, courts had always ruled in favor of employers.

The Trump administration also may be softening its resistance to legal marijuana. Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta suggested at a congressional hearing last month that employers should take a “step back” on drug testing.

“We have all these Americans that are looking to work,” Acosta said. “Are we aligning our … drug testing policies with what’s right for the workforce?”

Major shift

There is no definitive data on how many companies conduct drug tests, though the Society for Human Resource Management found in a survey that 57 percent do so. Nor is there any recent data on how many have dropped marijuana from mandatory drug testing.

But interviews with hiring executives, employment lawyers and agencies that help employers fill jobs indicate that dropping marijuana testing is among the steps more companies are taking to expand their pool of applicants to fill a near-record level of openings.

Businesses are hiring more people without high school diplomas, for example, to the point where the unemployment rate for non-high school graduates has sunk more than a full percentage point in the past year to 5.5 percent. That’s the steepest such drop for any educational group over that time.

Excluding marijuana from testing marks the first major shift in workplace drug policies since employers began regularly screening applicants in the late 1980s. They did so after a federal law required that government contractors maintain drug-free workplaces. Many private businesses adopted their own mandatory drug testing of applicants.

Most businesses that have dropped marijuana tests continue to screen for cocaine, opiates, heroin and other drugs. But James Reidy, an employment lawyer in New Hampshire, says companies are thinking harder about the types of jobs that should realistically require marijuana tests. If a manufacturing worker, for instance, isn’t driving a forklift or operating industrial machinery, employers may deem a marijuana test unnecessary.

“Employers are saying, ‘We have a thin labor pool,’ “Reidy said. “‘So are we going to test and exclude a whole group of people? Or can we assume some risks, as long as they’re not impaired at work?'”

Yet many companies are reluctant to acknowledge publicly that they’ve dropped marijuana testing.

“This is going to become the new don’t ask, don’t tell,” Reidy said. 

In most states that have legalized marijuana, like Colorado, businesses can still, if they wish, fire workers who test positive. On the other hand, Maine, which also legalized the drug, became the first state to bar companies from firing or refusing to hire someone for using marijuana outside work.

Companies in labor-intensive industries — hoteliers and home health care providers and employers with many warehouse and assembly jobs — are most likely to drop marijuana testing. By contrast, businesses that contract with the government or that are in regulated industries, like air travel, or that have safety concerns involving machinery, are continuing marijuana tests, employment lawyers say. Federal regulations require the testing of pilots, train operators and other key transportation workers.

Dropping marijuana testing is more common among employers in the nine states, along with the District of Columbia, that have legalized pot for recreational use. An additional 20 states allow marijuana for medical use only. But historically low unemployment is driving change even where pot remains illegal.

After the Drug-Free Workplace Act was enacted in 1988, amid concerns about cocaine use, drug testing spread to most large companies. All Fortune 500 companies now engage in some form of drug testing, according to Barry Sample, a senior director at Quest Diagnostics, one of the largest testing firms.

In Denver, in a state with just 3 percent unemployment, 10 percent of employers that screen for drugs had dropped marijuana as of 2016, according to a survey by the Employers Council, which provides corporate legal and human resources services.

“It’s because unemployment is virtually non-existent” in Colorado, said Curtis Graves, a lawyer at the council. “People cannot afford to take a hard line against off-duty marijuana usage if they want to hire.”

That’s particularly true in Colorado’s resort areas, where hotels and ski lifts are heavily staffed with young workers, Graves said: “They can lose their jobs and walk across the street and get another one.”

FPI, a property-management firm in San Francisco that employs 2,900 around the country, from leasing managers to groundskeepers, has dozens of jobs listed on online boards. Its ads say applicants must pass a “full background check and drug screening.”

But it adds, “As it relates to marijuana use, FPI will consider any applicable state law when dispositioning test results.”

FPI didn’t respond to requests for comment, which isn’t unusual given that companies that have dropped marijuana tests aren’t exactly billboarding their decisions. Most still seek to maintain drug-free workplaces and still test for harder drugs.

“They’re pretty hush-hush about it,” Graves said.

AutoNation, which operates dealerships in 17 states, is one of the few that have gone public. The company stopped testing for marijuana about a year ago. Marc Cannon, a company spokesman, said it did so mostly in response to evolving public attitudes. But it also feared losing prospective employees.

“The labor market has tightened up,” Cannon said.

AutoNation heard from other business leaders, Cannon said. They said things like, “‘We’re doing the same thing; we just didn’t want to share it publicly.'”

Spreading trend

Relaxed attitudes among employers are spreading from states where recreational marijuana is legal to those where it’s lawful only for medical use, such as Michigan and New Hampshire.

Janis Petrini, who owns an Express Employment staffing agency in Grand Rapids, Mich., says that with the area’s unemployment rate below 3 percent, employers are growing desperate. Some are willing to ignore the results of drug tests performed by Express, which still screens for marijuana and won’t place workers who test positive.

“We have had companies say to us, ‘We don’t worry about that as much as we used to,'” Petrini said. “We say, ‘OK, well, we are still following our standards.’ “

One of Reidy’s clients, a manufacturer in New Hampshire, has dropped marijuana testing because it draws some workers from neighboring Massachusetts and Maine, which have legalized pot for recreational use. Another client, which runs assisted living facilities from Florida to Maine, has stopped testing its housekeeping and food service workers for marijuana.

The stigma surrounding marijuana use is eroding, compounding pressure on employers to stop testing. Sixty-four percent of Americans support legalizing pot, a Gallup poll found, the highest percentage in a half-century of surveys.

In Las Vegas, where recreational use is legal, marijuana dispensaries “look almost like Apple stores,” said Thoran Towler, CEO of the Nevada Association of Employers.

Many high-tech companies have been moving from California to Nevada to escape California’s high costs, and they’re seeking workers. Towler says the most common question from his 400 member executives is, “Where do I find employees?”

He estimates that roughly one-tenth of his group’s members have stopped testing for marijuana out of frustration.

“They say, ‘I have to get people on the casino floor or make the beds, and I can’t worry about what they’re doing in their spare time,'” Towler said.



Source link

The Movement To Expunge Cannabis Convictions In Legalization States Picks Up Steam – Weed News


By Clarence Walker

As marijuana legalization spreads into various states, some are allowing people who’d been previously been convicted of possession of a small amount of pot to clear their records.

They have their convictions either wiped off their record forever under state expungement laws or, in some cases, have low-level felony marijuana convictions be reduced to misdemeanors. In another variation, a marijuana conviction can be sealed from public view pursuant to a court order under a state’s nondisclosure law.

According to the Drug Policy Alliance, over 574,000 American citizens were charged with simple possession in 2016.

“It really makes sense to not burden these people with a lifelong criminal record,” Kate Bell, a lobbyist for the Marijuana Policy Project in Maryland, recently told the Washington Post.

Approximately 12 more states are considering marijuana legalization this year, with possibly more hopping on the express train as the continuing quest for marijuana legalization continue to roll down the tracks at full speed, making 2018 a pivotal year in the ever-growing movement to convince lawmakers to legalize pot in all 50 states.

“With over 60 percent of Americans now supporting the full legalization of marijuana for adults, the momentum behind marijuana law reform will not only continue but increase as we head into 2018,” said NORML executive director Erik Altieri.

People with prior marijuana convictions face a harsh reality when it comes to becoming a productive member of society with a criminal record. A simple marijuana conviction carries adverse consequences by diminishing a person’s access to employment and higher education, military induction denial, and a person can even be denied access to fair housing, particularly apartment rentals.

Recently at least 4,900 Californians petitioned the courts to have their prior marijuana convictions expunged off their criminal record.

Washington state legalized marijuana in 2012, yet many convicted citizens have been burdened with criminal records for simple misdemeanor pot convictions while slick wealthy investors make a killing selling legal weed. Moving to redress the injustice, Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan announced in February that the city will toss several hundred low-level misdemeanor marijuana cases.

“The war on drugs ended up being a war on people who needed help, who needed opportunity and who needed treatment,” Durkan told a news conference at the time.

Similarly, prosecutors in San Francisco will throw out thousands of marijuana-related convictions dating back to 1975. San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon said earlier this year his office will dismiss and seal 3,038 misdemeanor convictions from before the state’s legalization of marijuana went into effect, with no action necessary from those convicted.

The moves make perfect sense. What else should happen to convictions for a victimless crime when that victimless behavior is now no longer a crime? American University Law Professor Jenny Roberts has an idea.

“If you’ve made a legislative determination that this is no longer criminal; why would you want to continue to have people feeling the ramifications of something that people going forward will no longer have to suffer?” she asked.

In many states that have legalized marijuana, lawmakers are moving in the same direction.

“Since this is now the law of Nevada, it’s important we allow folks who have made these mistakes in the past to have their records sealed up,” said Nevada Assemblyman William McCurdy, a Democrat who proposed a bill on the issue.

Oregon state law now allows people who’d been convicted of an ounce of marijuana or growing up to six marijuana plants to have their record sealed now that marijuana is legal.

But in Colorado, some lawmakers fought against the proposal. For example, the legislature considered a bill in 2014 to allow citizens to petition the courts to seal their criminal records for old convictions, but the bill died in committee after facing stiff opposition from prosecutors. The Colorado District Attorneys Council opposed the bill because, they argued, it allowed low-level drug dealers to wipe their records clean.

“There were many cases of (drug) distribution that were pleaded down to low-level (possession) felonies,” said council executive director Thomas Raynes.

“The bill creates a horrible precedent by retrofitting criminal sanctions for past conduct every time a new law is changed or passed,” objected Carolyn Tyler, spokeswoman for Republican Attorney General John Suthers.

This year, Colorado passed a less controversial law focused specifically on misdemeanor possession.

Nevada also suffered a mild setback. Governor Brian Sandoval (R) vetoed McCurdy’s bill requiring judges to seal records and vacate judgments for marijuana offenses that are now legal.

“To the extent there are individuals suffering under criminal records for conduct now legal in Nevada, those cases are best handled on a case-by-case basis,” Sandoval wrote in his veto statement. “Given other reforms to the sealing and expungement process in Nevada, a marijuana-specific law wasn’t necessary,” Sandoval added.

Although nearly a million people have been arrested for marijuana crimes in California during the past decade, according to Drug Policy Alliance, California courts only received 1,506 petitions from applicants requesting their marijuana conviction be sealed or expunged.

DPA further reported that more than 78,000 convictions qualify to be set aside in Oregon, yet few are seeking expungement. Oregon courts only received approximately 388 requests for set-asides in cases involving marijuana in 2015, with 453 in 2016, and 365 requests in 2017.

Courts are more likely, though, to reject petitioners with extensive criminal histories including violent crimes like murder, kidnapping, sexual assaults, money laundering and crimes involving large amount of drugs.

Marijuana is now legal in nine states and the District of Columbia, and medical marijuana in 29 states. The following states are preparing marijuana offense expungement legislation:

California

Assembly Bill 1793, introduced by Assemblyman Rob Bonta (D-18th District), seeks to enact legislation that would allow the “automatic expungement or reduction of a prior cannabis conviction for an act that is not a crime as of January 1, 2017.” Under Proposition 64, residents of California are now allowed to possess and purchase up to 1 ounce of marijuana and cultivate no more than six plants for personal use. The voter-approved measure, in addition to legalizing adult-use consumption, cultivation, and distribution — allows individuals convicted of past criminal marijuana possessions to petition the courts to have those convictions expunged. An expensive and time-consuming venture for most individuals, the automatic expungement of records would be mandated by the passage AB-1793.

Massachusetts

H.2785, authored by Rep. Aaron Vega (D-5th District), and cosigned by 25 other elected officials, would allow for the expungement of “records of marijuana arrest, detention, conviction and incarceration.” Marijuana use in Massachusetts was first decriminalized in 2008, with the voters approving medical marijuana just four years later in November 2012. Officially legalized for adult use on Nov. 8, 2016, residents are still waiting for their first recreational dispensary to open.

New Jersey

S.830, sponsored by Sen. Nicholas Scutari (D-22nd District), would not only legalize the personal possession and use of small amounts of marijuana by those over the age of 21, the bill also allows a person convicted of a prior marijuana possession to present an application for expungement to the state’s Superior Court.

Vermont

H.865, sponsored by Maxine Grad (D), Tom Burditt (R), Chip Conquest (D), would allow a person to file a petition with the court requesting expungement or sealing of the criminal history related to a conviction if “the person was convicted of an underlying offense for which the underlying conduct is no longer prohibited by law or designated as a criminal offense.”

Article From StoptheDrugWar.orgCreative Commons LicensingDonate



Source link

Greg David: Taxing decisions for New York as weed and betting near legality



In the near future, New York is likely to have no alternative but to legalize sports gambling and recreational use of marijuana. Whatever the social consequences, the moves will provide a nice boost in tax revenue to the state and the city.


The momentum for both initiatives is building. With neighboring Massachusetts legalizing pot and New Jersey moving to do the same, New York’s rationale for following suit is getting stronger. Some 63% of voters supported the idea in a recent poll. The need to move sooner rather than later was obvious when a New York Times investigation this month showed marijuana arrests were almost exclusively of African-Americans and Hispanics, even though whites use pot just as often.

The Supreme Court decision last week lifting a ban on sports betting outside Nevada set off a race among states—led by New Jersey—to seize a new opportunity.

The potential revenue from marijuana is reasonably clear from the experiences of other states that have legalized it, especially Colorado and Washington. New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer issued a report last week estimating the market at $3 billion in the state and a little more than a $1 billion in the city. Excise taxes, like those levied elsewhere, and sales taxes would annually produce $436 million for the state government, $336 million for the city and more than $500 million for other localities, Stringer projected.

Deciding how much to tax is complicated, however. Set the rate too high and buyers will make their purchases across state lines or from illegal dealers. (For that reason, the comptroller estimates, more than half of all cigarettes consumed in the state are smuggled from elsewhere.) Set it too low and the chance for more revenue is lost.



*Estimates

SOURCES: NYC comptroller, California Department of Tax and Fee Administration

No immediate windfall is likely, either, because it takes time for the market to develop. California reported last week that it took in $61 million in marijuana-related revenue for the first quarter of the year, much below what was expected.

The numbers are even bigger for sports gambling, which is expected to reach $150 billion. A study by Oxford Economics pegged the likely tax revenue to states and cities at $3.4 billion. The projections are based on a long list of assumptions. Revenue from new casinos in the state has been much less than forecast, so skepticism is warranted with sports betting as well.

Another issue is whether the money should be segregated. Stringer suggested revenue from marijuana should be used to “invest in communities most damaged by decades of criminalizing marijuana.” Segregating tax money like that is generally a bad idea, but it might be worth considering in this case.



Source link

Hear how weed is changing America


Welcome to Season 1 of The Potcast!

We’re a podcast hosted by Jenny Kane, who covers marijuana for the RGJ and USA TODAY Network.  In the show, Jenny examines America’s shift toward legalizing marijuana by telling the stories of the people who are living it: pot farmers, rural sheriffs, a professional mountain biker, a Cordon Bleu cannabis chef.

You don’t have to be a stoner to listen. We’re not. We’re just interested in having a front-row seat at this historic moment when America unravels a century of marijuana prohibition.

Subscribe (for free!), rate and review the Potcast here.

Season 1 episodes:

Episode 1: Before 420: The true story behind pot’s biggest day

We’re going back to 1971, to find out the true story of how 420 — the universal code for pot — began. This story starts with a treasure map, a rogue California coast Guardsman and five adventurous stoners who are fortuitous enough to hang out with the Grateful Dead.

Listen on iTunes

Listen on Stitcher

Episode 2: Chef for Higher: Inside the secret world of a cannabis kitchen

Jenny talks to Los Angeles-based chef Andrea Drummer, who used to be a youth drug counselor touting the ubiquitous motto, “Just say no” to at-risk children. Not anymore.

Listen on iTunes

Listen on Stitcher

Episode 3: Old sheriff in town: A drug war veteran’s struggle with new pot

How does marijuana legalization change dog searches, evidence handling, and DUI testing for the police? Here’s the story of a rural county sheriff as he reckons his own values with the increasingly progressive, pot-friendly policies of our time.

Listen on iTunes

Listen on Stitcher

Episode 4: How one pro-mountain biker is paving the path for weed-loving athletes

Risk is professional mountain biker Teal Stetson Lee’s passion. So, when a marijuana company wanted to sponsor her, she said “hell yes”— despite the possible consequences. This show explores how athletes and cannabis don’t always go together.

Listen on iTunes

Listen on Stitcher

Episode 5: Meet the King of Cannabis, the senator who “loves pot”

Tick Segerblom rules Nevada’s pot policy and uses another kind of green — cash money — to get the Wild West on the cannabis caboose. The sneaker-wearing senator even has his own strain dedicated to his legacy.

Listen on iTunes

Listen on Stitcher

Episode 6: Inside the silent culture war of marijuana farms in California’s Emerald Triangle

California’s Emerald Triangle for decades has been an underground powerhouse for West Coast weed, but as the state goes online with recreational marijuana, the lifestyle of many old school farmers is in danger.

Listen on iTunes

Listen on Stitcher

Want more? Join the conversation

Connect with the Potcast Podcast by emailing us at Potcast@gannett.com, or visit our pages on InstagramTwitter and Facebook

Read or Share this story: https://www.rgj.com/story/news/marijuana/2018/05/18/potcast-hear-how-weed-changing-america/624279002/



Source link

Authorities seize $300,000 of marijuana products in Henderson


Henderson Police

A photo of some of the $300,000 worth of marijuana products Henderson Police say were seized after authorities served a search warrant on Tuesday, May 15, 2018, at a home in the the 800 block of Sheerwater Avenue, near Maryland Parkway and Boulder Highway.

Authorities seized nearly $300,000 worth of illegal marijuana products from a Henderson man’s vehicle and home as part of an investigation into the sale of drugs to minors, according to Henderson Police.

After stopping the man’s vehicle, Henderson and Metro police, along with federal agents, executed a search warrant Tuesday in the 800 block of Sheerwater Avenue, near Maryland Parkway and Boulder Highway, Henderson Police spokesman Rodrigo Pena said.

They seized more than 52 pounds of marijuana-infused edibles, like cookies, brownies and candies, 28 pounds of high-potency THC wax, 3,500 THC vaporizer cartridges, 1.7 pounds of marijuana flower and nearly 300 concentrated marijuana THC syringes, Pena said.

The man’s name was not released because the case is pending indictment through the Clark County District Attorney’s Office, Pena said. The man was not taken into custody.

While Nevada allows the sale of marijuana at licensed dispensaries, this type of bust confirms a robust black market still exists, said Riana Durrett, executive director of the Nevada Dispensary Association. Recreational marijuana sales became legal in Nevada on July 1, and with time, police will catch up with the illegal dealers, she said.

“Illegal dealers are essentially taking money out of the state’s hands because they’re not charging a tax,” Pena said.

Tuesday’s operation was conducted by the Southern Nevada Heroin Task Force and included Henderson and Metro police officers and agents from the federal Homeland Security Investigations department.



Source link

This seed-to-sale cannabis platform wants to be the PayPal of pot


In June 2016, Microsoft made a startling announcement: It had partnered with a Los Angeles-based company called Kind Financial to start offering marijuana software to government agencies. The software, part of a government-specific version of Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform, allowed states that had legalized medical or recreational marijuana to easily track that cannabis from the moment it was planted to when it was sold at a local dispensary. Through the relatonship, Microsoft became one of the first major tech companies to affiliate its name with the cannabis industry.

Now two years later, Kind’s software is being used by the state of Rhode Island and by hundreds of companies in states with legal marijuana across the United States, as well as in Canada, Australia, and Jamaica. And Kind Financial is gearing up to introduce a new product: Kind Pay.

“We hope Kind Pay will be the PayPal for the cannabis industry,” says Kind founder and CEO David Dinenberg. An obvious next step for the company, the service will enable credit-card transactions in states where marijuana is legal. Accepting plastic is currently a problem for the legal-cannabis business: The drug is still illegal at a federal level, leaving banks unwilling to work with the industry.

“We’re going to be bringing a phone-based payment system,” says Dinenberg. “Very similar to your Starbucks app or your Dunkin’ Donuts app or any of those retailer rewards-payment mechanisms.” That payment system will arrive first in Canada, but the U.S. likely won’t be far behind, he adds. Kind is partnering with Link to Banking, a consulting and technology company for the cannabis industry run by former bankers and ex-federal regulators.

Growth of an industry

Kind Pay is powered, like Kind’s other tools, by Microsoft’s Azure, and will work alongside them. “In other industries, it’s called track and trade,” says Dinenberg. “In the cannabis space, it’s called seed-to-sale.” The company’s software monitors the growth and harvesting of plants using attached RFID sensors. When the final product arrives at a local dispensary, Kind’s point-of-sale module can identify shoppers using biometrics or state-issued medical ID cards. Overall, the company can provide up-to-date information about what’s being grown where in a state, where it’s being sold, and who’s buying it.

The legal cannabis industry is changing rapidly: Just since Kind and Microsoft announced their collaboration in 2016, California, Maine, Massachusetts, and Nevada have all legalized marijuana sales. “You have to be very nimble,” says Dinenberg. “I think the fact that we’re built from the ground up and we’re partners with Microsoft is a huge advantage.” For instance, when a local government enacts a new piece of legislation that impacts the marijuana industry, Kind can roll out relevant changes to its tools quickly and efficiently.

Beyond the technical benefits of building on top of Azure infrastructure, Dinenberg says that the number-one thing partnering with Microsoft did was provide credibility. Thanks to the vast amount of business the software giant already does with government agencies, Kind gets better access to prospective customers.



Source link