Many Veterans Have to Break the Law to Use Medical Cannabis

For veterans in states with restrictive medical programs, acquiring the medicinal benefits of cannabis means breaking the law.

There are almost 900,000 military veterans living in New York State, and as many of 20 percent of them may suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder; if they served overseas in Iraq or Afghanistan — or if they were in Vietnam — that number may be as high as 30 percent, according to the Veterans Administration.

To call PTSD a debilitating nightmare is not an exaggeration: Sleepless nights, anxiety-filled days, and suicidal thoughts are common. The most common treatment is a pharmaceutical cocktail: anti-depressants, anti-anxiety drugs, and opioids.

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NCIA Expo Oakland: Day Three (Plus Mini Cup Results!)

Following a night of festivities across the cannabis industry’s spiritual home in Oakland, the final day of the National Cannabis Industry Association’s Summit & Expo hit on emerging issues like tax reform and industry-wide packaging standards.

Things started fast on the final day of the NCIA expo: Harborside Health Center’s CEO and co-founder, Steve DeAngelo, and the dispensary’s lead attorney, Henry Wykowski, (one of the top pot tax attorneys in the business) talked about section 280e of the tax code, which prevents legal lot businesses from deducting basic business expenses like rent.

Last November, following Berkeley Patients Group’s victory over the Department of Justice, Wykowski told Cannabis Now that Harborside’s own 280e case is a big domino waiting to fall— the results (either way) will set precedent for the entire industry.

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CA’s Legal Weed Market Is Worth $5 billion — There’s a Catch

California already accounts for roughly a quarter of all legal cannabis sales in the Unite States and is poised to be an economic powerhouse in a decriminalized national industry — if it can introduce regulation without empowering a new illicit market.

By sheer numbers, California is easily the nation’s largest market for legal marijuana — which means the state is the biggest bonanza for cannabis sales on the planet.

Once legal commercial sales of recreational cannabis begin sometime next year, California will play host to a $5 billion legal marijuana market, according to a recently released state-sponsored study from UC Davis.

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NCIA Cannabis Business Summit & Expo in Oakland: Day Two

4,500 participants at the fourth annual NCIA mega-conference woke up in Oakland — a newly rechristened city of champions following the Golden State Warriors’ NBA Finals victory — and embarked on a day filled with industry leaders, celebration of the past year’s success and excitement for the future.

The first full day of panels and workshops at NCIA was opened by Executive Director, Aaron Smith, who explained the purpose of the business organization; to advance business interests —the NCIA is made up of 1,300 member businesses in 13 different states — but also to promote cannabis decriminalization as a social justice and freedom movement.

“Believe it or not cannabis is still illegal under federal law,” he said, adding that the roughly $7 billion industry is uprooting “criminal drug cartels here at home and south of the border.”

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Dads & Grads: The Perfect Pot Gift Purchase Guide for June

This is a special time of year. Once June rolls around, it’s everyone’s chance to start getting ready for summer. But, first the celebrations — and gifts for dads and grads!

With Father’s Day around the corner and graduation ceremonies happening throughout the month, it’s good to start getting your gift-giving plans in order.

The Handbook of Cannabis 

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NCIA Cannabis Business Summit & Expo in Oakland: Day One

The National Cannabis Industry Association kicked off its annual mega-conference in Oakland to the backdrop of Game 5 of the NBA Finals and lots of great cannabis.

Once again, professionals from around the globe converge on the Marriott conference center in Oakland, California for the fourth annual NCIA Cannabis Business Summit & Expo to get their view on the next year in cannabis, embrace the latest tech and chum it up with colleagues.

In this microcosm of America’s fastest growing industry (from $6.7 billion in 2016 to an expected $22.6 billion in 2021 according to a recent Arcview Group report) people are either refining their processes or trying to figure out how to tie themselves to the rocket.

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AG Sessions to Congress: Let Me Prosecute Cannabis Patients

A recently revealed memo from AG Jeff Sessions urging Congress to overturn restrictions on DOJ prosecution of state-legal medical cannabis operations is heating up already simmering uncertainty surrounding the nascent cannabis industry.

Like his boss Donald Trump, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is making headlines by making bombastic statements. But beyond the noise, Sessions has yet to accomplish much during his first few months in office.

For instance, he has yet to follow through with any of his many vague-yet-ominous threats to crack down on the country’s burgeoning legal marijuana industry. The main reason why is that Sessions —even if he had enough DEA agents (he does not) and even if he were to fill many of his vacant federal prosecutor positions (he has not) — can’t do anything about it.

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Blending Styles & Strains with Beats Antique

Experimental musical group discusses investigating CBD and how marijuana factors into their creative process.

For over a decade, the Bay Area trio Beats Antique has been carving out a niche for themselves by blending a dazzling mix of far-flung styles — often from eras long past — with inventive grooves that, on stage, are accompanied by Zoe Jakes’ riveting dance performances.

Their tenth album, ‘Shadowbox,’ released in October 2016, further celebrates their adventurous spirit through a series of ambitious collaborations recorded across the globe: from Moscow to Tel Aviv, London to New Orleans.

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Prosecutor Charges Marijuana Business Attorney

An attorney who successfully returned money seized from a dispensary owner has now been changed with criminal action. The case is being called “vindictive prosecution.”

It appeared Bonnie Dumanis had lost. As San Diego’s district attorney, Dumanis had seized more than $324,000 from a local medical marijuana distributor during a January 2016 raid. But in May, with no charges filed against James Slatic, the operation’s owner, and no indication any charges were coming after almost a year and a half, a judge ordered Dumanis to return $100,000 seized from the personal bank accounts of Slatic and his family.

The money was expected within 10 days. For Dumanis, who is exiting the post on July 7 following a rare decision to resign mid-term, it would be an embarrassing footnote on her career.

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Legalization in Trump’s America: Skating on Thin Ice

With an aggressive executive branch openly defying constitutional checks on its authority and installing noted prohibitionists in key positions, will the Trump administration make America raid again?

The cannabis industry’s general policy seems to be avoidance of “bad vibes” at all costs —  even when that means ignoring the pounding vibrations of an oncoming freight train.

The first few weeks of Donald Trump’s presidency have revealed an unprecedented disregard for the constitutional checks and balances on the executive branch. That doesn’t bode well for an industry already precariously balanced on a tenuous high-wire of precedents, amendments and memos.

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