New Jersey to Pause Prosecution of All Cannabis Cases

New Jersey’s Attorney General Gurbir Grewal wrote in a letter to municipal prosecutors they should seek an adjournment of all cannabis-related offenses until at least September 4, 2018, NJ.com reports. Grewal is seeking the adjournment so that his office can develop appropriate guidance for prosecutors regarding cannabis offenses, but the move effectively decriminalizes cannabis possession in the state […]

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Study: Cannabis Decriminalization Laws Work Without Increasing Youth Access

A recent study by Washington University found a significant drop in adult and youth cannabis arrests and no increase in cannabis use among youths in five states that adopted cannabis decriminalization laws between 2008 and 2014. A team of researchers from around the country compared federal arrests data and state youth risk surveys of Massachusetts, […]

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Israel to Vote On Cannabis Decriminalization

Israel’s legislative body, the Knesset, is expected to vote this week on a law that would decriminalize cannabis possession, according to a High Times report. The law would change the penalty for cannabis possession from jail time to a simple fine for the first three offenses. The fine ranges from 1000 – 2000 shekels, approximately $275 – […]

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Texas GOP Endorses Cannabis Decriminalization, Rescheduling, & Industrial Hemp

The Republican Party of Texas officially endorsed the decriminalization of cannabis last month. Party leaders also called on the federal government to reschedule cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule II under the Controlled Substances Act and to legalize industrial hemp. “Civil Penalty: We support a change in the law to make it a civil, and […]

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St. Louis to Stop Prosecution of Cannabis Possession Under 100 Grams

St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner, in an email sent to her staff Tuesday, said her office will no longer prosecute typical possession charges for less than 100 grams of cannabis, according to a report by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. This step is the city’s next towards full decriminalization following a decision earlier this year by […]

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North Carolina Bill Seeks to Legalize Possessing Up to Four Ounces of Cannabis

According to a report by the Winston-Salem Journal, a Forsyth County, North Carolina legislator has sponsored a state Senate bill that would legalize the possession of up to four ounces of cannabis flower or plant material (for personal use) before one could be charged with a Class 1 misdemeanor. The language of the bill redefines less than […]

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Tim Fair: Launching Vermont’s First Cannabis Law Firm

Tim Fair is a Vermont-based cannabis consultant and the owner/founder of Vermont Cannabis Solutions, the state’s first cannabis law practice. In this episode of the Ganjapreneur.com podcast, Tim joins our podcast host TG Branfalt in his Vermont studio for a conversation about the landmark cannabis reform law passed earlier this year by Vermont’s legislature, the […]

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West Virginia Fails to Pass MMJ Reforms

The West Virginia Legislature failed to pass legislation to increase the number of medical cannabis licenses and open the door to patients accessing flower products, according to a WVNews report. The bill, which passed the House late last month, was heavily amended by the Senate and was unable to make it back to the House […]

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Albuquerque, New Mexico City Councilors Introduce Cannabis Decrim. Measure

City Councilors in Albuquerque, New Mexico have introduced a proposal to decriminalize cannabis possession of an ounce or less, the Associated Press reports. The measure would reduce penalties to $25 dollars and no jail time. Under current laws for the state’s largest city, police can issue $50 fines for first-time cannabis possession of an ounce […]

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Alabama Republicans Kill Cannabis Possession Reform Bill

The legislative push to reduce cannabis possession penalties in Alabama is dead as the state’s powerful Republicans ensured it would not make it to the House floor for a vote, AL.com reports. According to the report, Rep. Paul Beckman demanded the measure get a voice vote, which ensured the bill would not make it to […]

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Cannabis Decriminalization Bills Introduced in Alabama

Cannabis decriminalization bills have been filed in both chambers of Alabama’s Legislature and are expected to be heard in committees today, according to an ABC 33/40 report. The measure, introduced in the Senate by Republican Sen. Dick Brewbaker, would set fines for first-time possession of less than 1 ounce at $250 and up to $500 […]

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Philadelphia DA Will Not Prosecute Simple Cannabis Possession Cases

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania’s District Attorney Larry Krasner dropped 51 cases for simple cannabis possession last week, part of his new policy to not prosecute such crimes, NBC Philadelphia reports. The prosecution reforms will not apply to possession charges with intent to deliver or sell cannabis. “We are going to tell them, yes, drop any cases that […]

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Virginia Senate Passes First-Timer Cannabis Expungement Bill

A measure allowing first-time cannabis offenders in Virginia to expunge the charge for $150 passed the state Senate 38-2 on Monday, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reports. The measure would allow individuals to defer a finding on the charge and ultimately be found not guilty if the offender does community service and pass drug tests as ordered […]

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Study: Rhode Island Police Issuing Thousands of Cannabis Citations Despite Decriminalization

Despite cannabis decriminalization throughout the state in 2013, Rhode Island police issued about 5,000 citations for cannabis possession through 2017, according to a University of Rhode Island study. The study, conducted by journalism Professor Peter Phipps and students in his Media and Law course, analyzed police department data representing about 85 percent of the state’s […]

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German Police Association Calls for Cannabis Decriminalization

A German police association is calling for the decriminalization of cannabis throughout the nation, and André Schulz, the head of the organization, predicts that “cannabis will not be banned for long in Germany,” according to a report from The Local. “The prohibition of cannabis has historically been seen as arbitrary and has not yet been […]

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Virginia Lawmakers Kill Cannabis Decrim Bills; Advance Expungement Proposal

The Virginia Legislature has killed two bills aiming to decriminalize cannabis possession in the state but a measure allowing first-time offenders to expunge their records passed the Senate Courts of Justice Committee, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reports. Last week, House Republicans on the Courts Committee voted down a measure by Del. Steve Heretick that would have […]

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Virginia Legislature Considering MMJ, Cannabis Law Reforms

The Virginia Legislature is considering bills aimed at both medical and criminal justice cannabis reforms, NBC12 reports. The measure being considered by the Joint Commission on Health Care would open up the state’s limited medical cannabis program beyond the one condition – intractable epilepsy – permitted for medical cannabis access; while lawmakers have two bills […]

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French Government Report Recommends Fines for Cannabis Charges to Free Up Police

A French government report suggests the nation’s cannabis laws should be reformed in an effort to free up police, calling for fines instead of bringing cases to court, according to a France24 outline of the report, which is due Wednesday. The report recommends introducing a fixed fine of between 150 and 200 euros, allowing police […]

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Erie, Pennsylvania City Council Moves to Decriminalize Cannabis Possession

The Erie, Pennsylvania City Council has voted to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of cannabis, according to a YourErie report. The measure would reduce the charges for possession of fewer than 30 grams from a misdemeanor to a summary offense, carrying a penalty of $25. Under current law, cannabis possession of 30 grams or […]

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Virginia Crime Commission Studies Decriminalization, Senate Majority Leader Plans Legislation

Virginia Senate Majority Leader Tommy Norment, a Republican, is planning to introduce a measure to decriminalize cannabis possession in the state following the release of a State Crime Commission study that suggests more than 10,000 arrests could be prevented under such reforms. According to the commission report, the agency received 5,665 written comments on the […]

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Bexar County, Texas Announces ‘Cite and Release’ Program for Cannabis Possession, Other Crimes

Following plans in Harris County and Dallas, Texas to decriminalize cannabis possession up to 4 ounces, officials in Bexar County have announced their own plans for a “cite and release” program. The program would include Class A and Class B cannabis offenses — possession of up to 4 ounces; criminal mischief; Class B theft; Class […]

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Atlanta, Georgia City Council Considering Cannabis Possession Law Reform

Under an Atlanta, Georgia City Council proposal, penalties for possessing 1 ounce of cannabis or less would be reduced to a $75 ticket and no jail time – and the council is just one vote away from passing the measure, WSB-TV reports. Under current law, possessing less than 1 ounce can result in fines up […]

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New Hampshire Cannabis Decriminalization Bill Takes Effect

New Hampshire’s cannabis decriminalization bill took effect on Saturday, making the state the 22nd to eliminate criminal penalties for low-level possession, according to a Forbes report. New Hampshire was New England’s remaining holdout providing jail time for cannabis possession. The measure, which eliminates criminal penalties for possession up to three-quarters of an ounce until the […]

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Virginia Lt. Gov. Calls for Cannabis Law Reforms

In a letter to the Virginia State Crime Commission, which is studying the topic of decriminalizing simple cannabis possession in the state, Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam, a Democrat, called the state’s cannabis sentencing and enforcement laws “costly and disproportionately harmful to communities of color,” WRIC reports. In his letter, Northam pointed out that Virginia spends […]

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