The Joint Committee on Medical Cannabis met for the first time Thursday to discuss what options the legislature has to legalize medical marijuana in the next session.
A panel made up of state representatives and senators listened to testimony from law enforcement, Tennessee Department of Health staff, various doctors, and experts. The committee was requested by House Speaker Beth Harwell, among other lawmakers, like state representative Jeremy Faison.
“I feel like it’s the same arguments that we’ve heard historically. I feel like the deeper we get into this over the next couple of months, the arguments have no foundation,” said Faison. “When it comes just to the strict use of the medical grade cannabis, it’s a great benefit all the way around for the state.”
The room was packed at Tennessee Tower with supporters and opponents, plus people who have a direct interest. Stacie Mathes has been wanting… Continue reading
The Tennessee Black Caucus of State Legislators will hold meetings with Memphis City Council members as well as area press to rally support in favor of marijuana decriminalization.
“We have made criminal justice reform a caucus priority and this is a perfect example of the kind of issue that needs to be discussed,” Black Caucus Chairwoman Brenda Gilmore said. “Statistics have shown that the impact of these low level drug offenses hits harder on poor and minority communities, saddling many with crippling criminal records and lessening their chances of employment, housing and other areas of life.”
The black caucus, along with Councilman Berlin Boyd, will hold a press conference at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 20 in the Hall of Mayors at Memphis City Hall to advocate for decriminalization. The day’s agenda also includes meetings with the Commercial Appeal editorial board, individual meetings with the Memphis City Council members and a… Continue reading
The United States is in the midst of a major drug epidemic. Stories continue to roll in daily about the lives claimed by prescription and non-prescription drug overdoses. The numbers are staggering. Opioids alone (including prescription pain killers and street heroin) killed more than 33,000 people in 2015, 90+ Americans every single day, and more than any year on record according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC). From 2000 to 2015, half a million people died from prescription drug overdoses.
“The potential for addiction and health risks associated with using multiple scheduled drugs places additional direct monetary and health costs on patients and healthcare systems due to an increased number of side effects, risky drug interactions, dependency, and overdose” stated University of New Mexico researchers Jacob Miguel Vigil and Sarah See Stith, of a new study titled, Effects of Legal Access to Cannabis on Scheduled II-V Drug Prescriptions, which… Continue reading
The Times’ cover story this week on patient struggles to get doctor certifications for medical marijuana opens with the case of Erich Laufer, a Minnesota native who moved to Arkansas to take advantage of our state’s medical marijuana laws. Dr. Dane Flippin of Jonesboro agreed to certify to the state that Laufer has cancer, one of the medical conditions that will qualify him for a state-issued card he can use to purchase medical cannabis when it becomes available, sometime next year.
As it turns out, Flippin also moved to Arkansas because of medical marijuana. Flippin — who did a family practice residency in Jonesboro after getting his medical degree in Memphis and who is a descendant of the Flippin for whom the town is named — closed his family practice in Memphis after 20 years and moved to Arkansas in April to open an office… Continue reading
The $15.3 billion disaster aid package, debt limit increase and government spending extension approved by Congress on Friday includes the existing Rohrabacher-Blumenauer provision, which prevents the Justice Department from using funds to interfere with the 46 states that have legalized some form of medical marijuana.
- GOP-led House Rules Committee blocks voting on bipartisan marijuana amendments
- House Rules Committee hears key marijuana amendments
- Rohrabacher calls on fellow Republicans to protect medical marijuana from the feds
The aid bill, which was sent to President Donald Trump, extends the omnibus legislation passed in May and will fund the government through Dec. 8.
As states legalize marijuana across the country for medical and recreational use, prices are dropping faster than growers and sellers would like them to, according to the Wall Street Journal. The cannabis industry has grown over the past few years, bringing in more than $6 billion a year in retail.
Retail: BDS Analytics tracks marijuana market trends, their data shows sales increasing and prices decreasing in Colorado and Washington state:
Wholesale: Since 2015, prices have dropped from $2,133 a pound to $1,614 a pound.
Why it matters: Marijuana growers are struggling to find ways to make a profit. Some are attempting to set themselves apart my touting “organic” products – plants grown outside with sunlight instead of indoors with heat bulbs. The more cannabis grown, the lower prices will continue to get. More consumption would help, but growers and retailers have to be careful about pushing for that.… Continue reading
Tennessee’s gubernatorial election is still over a year away, but with a newly appointed committee on medical marijuana, Representative Jeremy Faison, R-Cosby, expects cannabis to play a large role in the election.
“Obviously we see jobs and infrastructure as probably going to be number one, and abortion and gun rights are way up there when it comes to Republican values,” Faison said. “I do see a lot of sick people making this issue a top five issue for candidates.”
Faison is co-chair of a medical marijuana committee that will hold three public workshops across the state so lawmakers can study potential impacts of legalizing medical marijuana in Tennessee.
The committee is co-chaired by Republican Sen. Steve Dickerson of Nashville and members include Sens. Richard Briggs, R-Knoxville; Rusty Crowe, R-Johnson City; Joey Hensley, R-Hohenwald; and Jeff Yarbro, D-Nashville; and Sheila Butt, R-Columbia; Bob Ramsey, R-Maryville; Sam Whitson, R-Franklin; Raumesh Akbari, D-Memphis.… Continue reading