[author: Susan Ryan]
Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.
Missouri begins medical marijuana sales. Opponents of legalization in Montana speak up. The 9th Circuit releases an immigration opinion involving marijuana. Asylum seekers are disqualified by most cannabis offenses. And finally, medical marijuana is free in France.
Almost two years after voters legalized medical cannabis, dispensaries opened last weekend in Missouri. Consumers saw long lines and high prices, due to limited supplies. The state expects more dispensaries to be open by the end of the year.
A new poll shows Montana voters poised to legalize marijuana by a 10-point margin. The state’s top federal prosecutor, however, is opposed to legalization and wrote an op-ed urging voters to consider all the potential downsides to allowing cannabis consumption. Meanwhile, the anti-legalization group Wrong for Montana has filed suit to block the initiative, saying it is unconstitutional.
The 9th Circuit ruled late last week that Oregon’s former marijuana delivery statute is not an illicit trafficking of a controlled substance offense. This means that an alien convicted under that statute is not removable as an aggravated felon.
However, the Trump administration has just finalized a proposed rule that would ban most people with misdemeanor drug offenses from seeking asylum. The rule does offer an exception for those who have been convicted of a a single offense involving possession for one’s own use of 30 grams or less of marijuana.
High prices for medical marijuana are no concern in France. The government has just announced a pilot program in which companies will be allowed to supply up to 3,000 patients with medical cannabis at no charge. The companies will have to foot the bill for the product and meet pharmaceutical standards. The government has also stated that participating companies should expect no benefits from their participation in the program. One wonders how many companies will sign up for this opportunity.
Stay safe and be well everyone – we’ll see you next week!