Colorado Medical Marijuana News
The first ever marijuana vending machine will make its debut in Eagle-Vail, Colorado later on this month. The machine goes by the name “Zazz” and is produced by a local company by the name of “American Green.”
The machine was unveiled to a crowd outside of a barbecue restaurant in Avon, Colorado last Friday and received a great response.
Consumers will be required to swipe their driver’s license through the vending machine in order to verify their age and identity before they are allowed to make any type of purchase. Alongside this, there are multiple cameras covering all angles of the machine to ensure that the person making the purchase is in fact the same person that their license claims they are.
Greg Honan, owner of Herbal Elements, theslated to make the vending machine debut says, “We’re looking forward to using the Zazz machine to easily track all inventory…we’re going to eliminate the middle man.”
Steve Beshear, governor of Kentucky, has signed Senate Bill 124 into law that which will legalize CBD (cannabidiol) for those who need it medicinally.
CBD oil has been shown to drastically reduce seizures in both children and adults suffering from epilepsy while producing none of the “narcotic effects” found in THC.
State universities who have a school of medicine will be permitted to produce and distribute CBD, the non-psychoactive component found in marijuana, to patients that are deemed qualified by university physicians.
Patients who have enrolled in a trial approved by the FDA will be permitted to be administered the cannabis extract as well.
The state of Utah also legalized CBD for medicinal purposes last month.
In an attempt to draw a massive crowd from all over, Colorado promoters have announced that Wyclef Jean and B.O.B. will headline this year’s massive 4/20 rally in. Organizers hope to make this year less about getting to the point of legalization (probably because they have already gotten there) and instead giving it more of a festival feel.
In year’s past, the Colorado 4/20 rally would be a place for people to gather and listen to activists speaks on marijuana related subjects that they are passionate about, while the music was much more of a secondary concern. The performers would usually be local acts that were convenient and easy to book, but by booking big names like Wyclef Jean from the legendary Fugees group, organizers are expecting a much larger turn out this year.
This isn’t to say that there aren’t still going to be a few bumps along the road. Organizers are still going back and forth with City Hall in an attempt to obtain a permit that would allow patrons to ingest marijuana on site, but if I had to guess I don’t see City Hall condoning smoking marijuana in public even if it is just for the day. Regardless, it sounds like the 4/20 weekend in Denver is going to be one for the record books!
420careers.com has announced that due to the massive expanse of the marijuana industry, jobs being offered in the marijuana industry are at an all-time high. With so many new states allowing and many more that will likely do so in the very near future, demand to get into such a “growing” industry just makes sense.
High Times magazine has taken note of the growing marijuana industry job market with an article about 420careers.com, the online marijuana industry job board where job seekers can browse and apply for jobs and employers can post available jobs.
The combination of the recreational marijuana industry with the medical marijuana industry could prove to net over $2 billion in sales in 2014 alone, and that number is only going to get bigger. Reports have shown that as many as 15 states could legalize marijuana to some degree by 2018, which could generate upwards of $10 billion annually.
Job seekers can apply for jobs directly through 420careers.com, while employers can freely post whatever available openings that they may have. The majority of jobs being filled right now are in thefield; whether working behind the counter as a “budtender” or actually getting your hands dirty on the cultivation side of things, 420careers.com is the place to go if working with marijuana is your passion.
The state of Utah has now made it legal for state residents suffering from severe epilepsy to buyoil that is rich in CBD in other states and transport it back to Utah for use without fear of being prosecuted; however, it could still prove to be a slippery slope. Whenever transporting anything that is illegal at a federal level across state lines, there are going to be a few obstacles to overcome, but this is still a tremendous victory for the state of Utah.
Patients must have the approval of a certified neurologist before they can obtain the CBD extract, and Utah Governor Gary Herbert insists that it is still very much illegal to produce the oil within state limits. Luckily for Utah, they are more or less surrounded by both recreationally legal and medically legal marijuana states.
Unfortunately, there are even more obstacles to overcome as the state of Colorado currently only produces CBD rich extracts like the famed “Charlotte’s Web” (a marijuana strain that doesn’t produce any mind altering effects due to its virtually nonexistent levels of THC) for sale to medical patients and not recreationally. So in order for Utah patients to obtain this potentially life changing medicine they must risk transporting the extract across state lines or gain residency in Colorado so that they can procure a medical marijuana card.
Over 100 families have already made the move to Colorado for the therapeutic benefits this oil has proved to provide.
It appears Americans now understand that consuming marijuana poses less harm to their health than the consumption of alcohol, tobacco or sugar, according to a poll released by the Wall Street Journal and NBC News.
Respondents were asked which four substances they believed to be the “most harmful to a person’s overall health.” The poll revealed that tobacco (49%), followed by alcohol (24%) and sugar (15%) were believed to be the most harmful. Then marijuana (8%) was believed to be the least harmful. The poll possesses a margin of error of +/- 3.10 percent.
“These results once again reaffirm that an overwhelming majority of the American public understands that any potential risks associated with the use or abuse of cannabis are relatively minor to those associated with many other legal and regulated substances,” said Paul Armentano, Deputy Director of NORML. “Criminalizing cannabis and those who consume it responsibly is a disproportionate public policy response to what is, at worst, a public health issue but not a criminal justice concern.”
Currently, marijuana is classified as a schedule I controlled substance by the Federal government, putting it in the same class as heroin.
There is good news coming out of Colorado for people who were arrested for marijuana possession dating as far back as December of 2012. The Colorado Court of Appeals announced last week that anyone who was arrested for possession since Amendment 64 (legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes) went into effect are eligible to have their convictions transposed.
Before Amendment 64, the state of Colorado was prosecuting over 9,000 cases a year for simple possession. Once marijuana became legalized a large portion of these cases were still in the courts. So anyone who was convicted before the amendment passed is unfortunately out of luck, but Brian Vicente, one of the amendment’s authors still sees this as a “huge victory”.
Attorney Brian Emeson says that he still sees a fair amount of marijuana appeals, proving that prosecutors are still adamant about getting these convictions. He hopes that this ruling will help shift their focus towards more “pressing matters”. There is still the concern that many people who were convicted during this time will choose not to appeal simply because of the time and money required to do so.
Recreational marijuana sales in Colorado have netted over 14 million dollars in January. The revenue department announced that roughly $420,000 in retail sales tax from recreational marijuana stores were collected over the month.
Many believe that this number won’t always be quite as high since January did mark the first time recreational marijuana could be purchased anywhere inside the United States, but if this trend were to continue, Colorado would see roughly $173 million in sales for the year.
Medical marijuana sales in the Rocky Mountain state have not been hindered by the newly available recreational market. Sales hit just around the monthly average of $30 million in dispensaries who solely cater to medical patients. If this trend were to continue the combined annual sales of marijuana would be close to $540 million in 2014, and this number could also increase drastically with the openings of new recreational marijuana stores.
These numbers are certainly something that other states are going to take notice of when deciding whether or notshould be included on their ballots this coming November.
The small town of Garden City, Colorado, is the only town within 4,000 square miles where it’s legal to purchase marijuana for recreational use.
Localowner, Erica Pilch, says that they get customers driving from as far as 2 hours away just to purchase marijuana because it isn’t offered where they live. Garden City, a town with a population of just 300 people, is starting to see some serious tax revenue already from this. With strictly medicinal sales, Garden City brought in $250,000 in 2013 alone. With the massive on pour of recreational marijuana users, that figure is going to be a lot higher in 2014.
Brian Seifred, the town’s mayor used some of this extra cash to trim the trees of everyone in town free of charge, as well as giving out matching grants for various town projects. “It’s great that the law was written in a way that each community can make their own decision,” Seifred says.
About 30 states and the District of Columbia are considering some type of marijuana law reform legislation in 2014. The laws include bills that cover marijuana legalization for adults,programs, decriminalization, and hemp cultivation.
Currently there are 14 states considering marijuana legalization for adults:, Hawaii, Maryland, , Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Wisconsin.
12 states and the District of Columbia are considering types of marijuana-related decriminalization: Alabama, Arizona, DC, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Wyoming.
11 states are considering establishing medical marijuana programs: Florida, Kansas, Kentucky, Hawaii, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, West Virginia, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.
3 states are considering industrial hemp cultivation: Indiana, New York, and Tennessee.
Before long every state in the country will likely be a part of the marijuana industry; whether it be marijuana legalization or marijuana for medical purposes.