Marijuana Decriminalization: Recent State Law Changes

There has been movement on the decriminalization front in various states in 2015, with a number of bills advancing through several state legislatures in recent weeks. Let’s take a look at some of the developments. In Illinois, a cannabis decriminalization bill is on Governor Rauner’s desk awaiting his signature. HB218 is significant for several reasons.

Is Your Pot Safe? Don’t Be So Sure

Noelle Crombie of the Oregonian blows the lid off Oregon’s lack of any real testing or standards for its medical marijuana products. In her series, “A Tainted High,” Ms. Crombie calls into question the safety of cannabis in Oregon. This is the kind of story that will lead to major realizations and to significant changes and I

Cannabis, Guns and States’ Rights

Senate Bill 33 advanced through the Illinois Senate over the weekend, making clear that our state’s medical cannabis patients’ gun rights will not be affected. SB33 was originally introduced to add PTSD to the list of debilitating conditions and was then amended to include a provision preventing the Illinois State Police from using a person’s status as a

Illinois Cannabis Update

The Illinois General Assembly’s spring session is gathering steam before its late May adjournment. We wrote last month about several bills pending in the legislature and we are happy to report that some are making progress and could soon reach Governor Rauner’s desk. First, HB218, which just passed the House, would essentially treat possession of small amounts

Illinois Medical Cannabis: State Weighs Potential New Qualifying Conditions

It was a year ago that the Illinois Department of Public Health released its proposed rules and regulations governing patient access to and use of medical marijuana. We noted back then that the regulations included a provision establishing the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board, whose chief concern is reviewing petitions for the inclusion of new qualifying

Illinois Marijuana Legislation Roundup

Last Friday marked the deadline in the Illinois General Assembly for the introduction of new House bills for the current legislative session, so now seems like an appropriate time to survey current marijuana-related bills in Illinois. First we should mention that there is no proposal to legalize marijuana for recreational use. However HB2750 would require the state to study of

Illinois Marijuana: Let The Lawsuits Begin

With cultivation and dispensary license winners announced only last week, the era of legalized medical marijuana is barely dawning in Illinois. But, predictably, litigiousness is also starting to rear its ugly head. If you had asked us two weeks ago what people would have been itching to sue about, we would have guessed the state’s delay

First Marijuana Tribal Conference: Tulalip Reservation on February 27

On October 28, 2014, the United States Department of Justice issued a “Policy Statement Regarding Marijuana Issues in Indian Country.” In this memo, the DOJ stated that its eight enforcement priorities will apply “in the event that sovereign Indian Nations seek to legalize the cultivation or use of marijuana in Indian Country.” At least one

Medical Marijuana in Illinois: A Look Back and A Look Forward

Yesterday marked the one-year anniversary of the Illinois Medical Cannabis Pilot Program becoming law. Much was accomplished in 2014: potential patients began to file applications for medical marijuana cards; potential cultivation centers and dispensaries filed applications for their respective licenses; a significant amendment to the law was enacted. Below is a quick update on where things stand now.

Marijuana and Unemployment Benefits: Illinois Appellate Court Says Yes

We are always saying that the United States is a patchwork of law, policy, and public opinion about marijuana, though things are trending towards relaxation and legalization. Evidence of this varied landscape is abundant. Last week we wrote about a lawsuit pending in Rhode Island, where the plaintiff (a lawful card-carrying MMJ patient) alleges she