Police Departments Telling K9 Units to ‘Sit and Stay’

What happens to K9 cops when cannabis is decriminalized? For the most part, not much — departments aren’t planning to part with drug dogs any time soon.

Humans of the 21st century think highly of our pets — almost as highly as we think of ourselves. So now that drug-policy reform is swelling government budgets and thinning prisons, some people are asking, “won’t someone think of the drug-sniffing dogs?”

Colorado Public Radio is the latest to examine the question of what to do with K9 units in an era of drug-policy reform. Marijuana is legal in Colorado, CPR points out, so what’s the use of a dog trained to suss out marijuana?

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Cannabis Deserts

Even in states that are home to some of the best cannabis on Earth, access to medicine can be a challenging dilemma.

Many people think of California as a veritable utopia for cannabis aficionados and in many ways they’re right. The Golden State is home to some of the finest cannabis genetics in the world and remains a mecca for the best and brightest minds in the industry. While people in prohibition states are waiting by the phone and hoping their shady dealer brings the same stuff as last time, they imagine Californians are at the candy shop, holding up a line out the door, vacillating between whether to purchase the Mango Kush, Cake Badder wax and medicated cherry chocolates or the Cherry Chocolate Kush, Mango wax and medicated cake.

Like many regional stereotypes, there are a few kernels of truth to the notion that Californians are spoiled by easy access to quality medicine, but the whole truth is a bit more complicated and a lot less pleasant.

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New Hampshire Decriminalizes Marijuana!

Bill set to take effect in 60 days.

The culmination of activists working in Concord for a decade, today saw New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu make good on campaign trail promises and sign a decriminalization bill into Granite State law.

The bill, HB 640, will take effect in 60 days and make New Hampshire the 22nd state in the nation decriminalize marijuana. The state will also become the last of the New England states to eliminate the possibility of jail time for simple marijuana possession

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What Does Net Neutrality Mean for Legal Cannabis?

The uncertain fate of net neutrality is a hot button issue across all industry sectors, and the emerging legal cannabis market is no exception.

The free flow of information faces its greatest threat since the superhighway found its way to the masses — this is a big deal for cannabis.

Few things have helped marijuana change its cultural identity from Spicoli falling out of a van to Sanjay Gupta watching cannabis end a child’s seizure than the internet. So any changes to how it works could have major impacts on the emerging legal industry.

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Michigan Poised to End Marijuana Prohibition in 2018

Support for cannabis legalization grows in Michigan.

Michigan is on a magnificent course to becoming one of the next jurisdictions in the United States to be dragged out of the trenches of marijuana prohibition.

According to a report from CBS Detroit, a campaign pushing to legalize a taxed and regulated cannabis market in the Great Lake State is having absolutely no trouble gaining the signatures necessary to earn a shiny spot on the ballot in the election next November.

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Buying Legal Weed Is Easy. Smoking It? Not So Much.

Legalizing cannabis is a massive challenge, but once it’s legal and access becomes a (relatively) simple matter, an even bigger challenge presents itself — finding somewhere to (legally) smoke your legal weed.

At one minute past midnight on July 1, recreational marijuana dispensaries in Las Vegas opened for business to much fanfare and long lines.

Denver has been America’s go-to destination for international marijuana-driven tourism — that title is now at serious risk: With 42 million annual visitors and sanctioned culture of permissiveness — the “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” line comes from the official tourism bureau — Sin City’s cannabis boosters are already dubbing the desert fun-times mecca a second Amsterdam.

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Legal Cannabis Could Mean Illegal Cannabis Company T-Shirts

The T-shirt — one of the oldest mainstays of decriminalized cannabis branding — may be hitting the chopping block in California’s capitol: Senate Bill 162 would ban cannabis companies (or anyone with a license to sell pot in California) from selling branded merchandise.

For years, T-shirts have been one of the only options for folks trying to get their brand out there. In the dark ages it was word of mouth, in the less dark ages it was word of mouth, Weedmaps and tees. Today we live in an age where cannabis companies can advertise in mainstream news publications, but this wasn’t always the case.

SB 162 (which has already passed the state Senate and an additional committee) seeks to slash the marketing capabilities of licensed cannabis; the original language would have seen bans on describing products on websites and online ordering, but those didn’t make the cut.

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Data Links LA Crime Spikes To Cannabis Dispensary Closures

Recent research shows that Los Angeles, California’s 2010 mass closure of “unregistered” dispensaries was associated with a significant crime spike in the surrounding area  — not just immediately in front of the closed shops, but blocks away.

A new study published in the Journal of Urban Economics found that the closure of more than 400 Los Angeles, California medical cannabis dispensaries in 2010 caused an increase in crime activity for blocks.

Study authors, Tom Y. Chang and Mireille Jacobson, discussed their findings in the Harvard Business Review. They said they looked at the wave of dispensary closures that hit Los Angeles at the turn of the decade because the number of shops closing offered a meaningful data set with an array of variables to consider.

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The Feds Will Be Drug Testing Drivers At Burning Man

Cannabis and a variety of other controlled substances will be the targets of law enforcement officers empowered by the Bureau of Land Management to test vehicle operators traveling in and out of Burnings Man’s desert playa — in Nevada, which just legalized recreational cannabis. What’s going on?

Legal cannabis sales in Nevada are set to start this July, but the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management will be showing no love to the state’s new cannabis users: A microscopic 10 nanograms of cannabis per milliliter of urine (or 2 ng/ml of blood) will get you popped if you’re behind the wheel, according to a statement in today’s Federal Register.

Law enforcement will conduct the tests at their own discretion, but also at BLM’s request, based on guidelines listed in today’s announcement. Erratic driving or possession of anything falling under the notoriously broad category of “drug paraphernalia” appear to be the chief “red flags” that will initiate these encounters.

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Nevada Recreational Rollout Still on Schedule for July 1

Las Vegas, Nevada has long been associated with indulging in vices that are forbidden back home. For Sin City visitors flying into The Strip from states or countries without decriminalization, recreational cannabis is about to become a major attraction.

For the thrill-seeking traveler, Las Vegas’s allures are many: Gambling, a Penn & Teller show, all-night dance clubs, a dinner whipped up by a Michelin-starred chef — and now, beginning at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, July 1, an armful of recreational marijuana.

Eight months after voters in four states approved recreational marijuana legalization, Nevada will be the first of the four to record the first sale.

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