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Will Ohio Legalize Medical and
Recreational Marijuana in Three Weeks?
Responsible Ohio recruited 10 investors to donate $2 million each to place a marijuana legalization initiative on the Ohio ballot this year. The election is November 3, 2015. Early voting has begun.
According to Ballotpedia, the initiative, Issue 3, would allow:
  • Anyone 21 years or older with a license, similar to a fishing license, purchased from the Ohio Marijuana Control Commission to use, possess, grow, cultivate, and share up to eight ounces of homegrown marijuana and four flowering marijuana plants.
  • Anyone 21 years or older (with or without a license) to purchase, possess, transport, use, and share up to one ounce of marijuana.
  • Anyone of any age with a certified debilitating medical condition to use medicinal marijuana.
The ten sponsors who are financing the initiative would have exclusive commercial cultivation and extraction rights, in other words a monopoly, to produce marijuana in the state. Because ballot initiatives in Ohio amend the state constitution, voters would have to pass another initiative to end those rights.
Many other provisions to support a commercial marijuana industry at the expense of other concerns are loaded in this initiative. One prohibits any local or state law, including zoning laws, from being applied to prohibit the development or operation of marijuana growth, cultivation, and extraction facilities, retail marijuana stores, and medical marijuana dispensaries unless the area is zoned exclusively residential as of January 1, 2015 or as of the date that an application for a license is first filed for a marijuana establishment.
For details, see Ballotpedia here
Proponents: Responsible Ohio 
Opponents: Ohioans Against Marijuana Monopolies
See NFIA/SAM Hey Ohio Facebook Campaign here.

Washington State Health Officials:
Only Difference between Medical and Recreational Marijuana Is Intent of the User
The Washington State Legislature passed a new law this session designed to close down unlicensed marijuana dispensaries. Current law forbids dispensary owners from labeling their products as if they were medicine.
The new law also asked state health officials to develop rules governing the sale of marijuana for medical use. Health officials developed a seal certifying safety and hygienic practices that can be placed on products sold for medical use, but only if labels make no pretense that the products are medicine. No medical claims or images such as the caduceus may appear on labels using the safety/hygienic seal.
Those who comply with the new rules will be able to sell patients more marijauna with higher potencies. But all labels must state, “This product is not approved by the FDA to treat, cure, or prevent and disease.”
“We don’t want to give patients a false sense that this is accepted, approved medicine, because there’s no science to back that up yet,” says a Health Department spokesperson.
Read story here.
Instead of Weakening Mexican Cartels, Regulation Results in Their Moving to Colorado to Grow Pot on Public Land
Under the authority of the US Justice Department’s Cole Memo, federal and state law enforcement officials are closing down illegal marijuana grows on federal and private land in Colorado at the rate of one a week.
While legalization proponents promised an end to the black market if Coloradans would legalize the drug, that hasn’t exactly panned out. Here are the data for the most recent pot busts:
Pike National Forest, Jefferson County, Colorado, August 19.
Eradicated 3,900 marijuana plants.
Confiscated over 3,000 pounds of irrigation pipe, pesticides, flammable liquids, camping gear, and trash.
Investigation ongoing.
Routt National Forest, Routt County, Colorado, August 28.
Eradicated 1,000 plants.
Confiscated camping gear and a handgun.
Clean-up of trash and other items ongoing by US Forest Service.
2 Mexican nationals in country illegally arrested.
Private Land, Freemont and Custer Counties, Colorado, September 1.
Eradicated well over 1,000 plants and 50 pounds of dried marijuana.
Confiscated 28 firearms and $25,000 in cash.
20 people arrested, mostly Cubans who were driving or shipping harvested pot to Florida.
San Isabel National Forest, September 7.
Eradicated more than 11,700 plants.
Confiscated irrigation pipe, pesticides, flammable liquids, camping gear, trash, a rifle.
2 men arrested.
Bureau of Land Management Land, Montrose County, Colorado, September 15.
Eradicated 1,200 fully mature plants; confiscated 211 kilograms of dried marijuana.
4 Mexican nationals on scene arrested.
Bureau of Land Management Land, Montrose County, Colorado, September 30.
Evidence of at least 1,000 recently harvested marijuana plants and 69.6 kilograms of processed marijuana still on site. 
1 Honduran and 5 Mexican nationals arrested.
Read story here.

The Marijuana Report is a weekly e-newsletter produced by National Families in Action in partnership with SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana). Subscribe to The Marijuana Report and visit our website, The Marijuana Report.Org, to learn more about the marijuana story unfolding across the nation.

About National Families in Action (NFIA)
NFIA consists of families, scientists, business leaders, physicians, addiction specialists, policymakers, and others committed to protecting children from addictive drugs. Our vision is:
  • Healthy, drug-free kids
  • Nurturing, addiction-free families
  • Scientifically accurate information and education
  • A nation free of Big Marijuana
  • Smart, safe, FDA-approved medicines developed from the cannabis plant (and other plants) 
  • Expanded access to medicines in FDA clinical trials for children with epilepsy

About SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana) 

SAM is a nonpartisan alliance of lawmakers, scientists and other concerned citizens who want to move beyond simplistic discussions of "incarceration versus legalization" when discussing marijuana use and instead focus on practical changes in marijuana policy that neither demonizes users nor legalizes the drug. SAM supports a treatment, health-first marijuana policy. 

SAM has four main goals: 
  • To inform public policy with the science of today's marijuana.
  • To reduce the unintended consequences of current marijuana policies, such as lifelong stigma due to arrest.
  • To prevent the establishment of "Big Marijuana" - and a 21st-Century tobacco industry that would market marijuana to children.
  • To promote research of marijuana's medical properties and produce, non-smoked, non-psychoactive pharmacy-attainable medications.
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