Apr 142015

Lawmakers in Tennessee unanimously passed a bill yesterday allowing the limited use of cannabis by medical patients suffering from seizures. The law, headed to the governor’s desk for signing, would allow someone diagnosed with epilepsy or other types of seizures to use cannabis oil, including children suffering from infantile spasms. The Senate voted 26-0 to pass the bill. The House followed suit just minutes later, voting 95-0. Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam signed a law last year giving researchers the greenlight to study the benefits of cannabis oil in clinical tests. The bill, introduced by Republican State Rep. Jeremy Faison, would exclude cannabis oil from being included under definitions of “marijuana,” and any cannabis oil prescribed in the state must contain less than 0.9 percent THC, the compound in marijuana that produces a high. The oil must be acquired from out of state.

Majorities of voters in the key swing states of Colorado and Virginia back the legalization of marijuana for personal use and overwhelmingly support the legalization of medicinal marijuana, a new poll shows. Fifty-four percent of Virginia voters support recreational pot compared to 41 percent who oppose it, and 62 percent favor it in Colorado, where marijuana is legal, compared to 34 percent opposed, according to results from a Quinnipiac poll released Tuesday. In Iowa, voters are divided on the issue at 47 percent apiece. But at least 86 percent of voters in each state support allowing adults to use marijuana for medical purposes. A Quinnipiac poll released last week showed similar numbers in the key presidential states of Florida, Pennsylvania and Ohio, where majorities of voters supported the legalization of marijuana and at least 84 percent of voters in each state supported the legalization of medical marijuana.

Eleven preschool-aged children were treated at Oregon healthcare facilities for marijuana ingestion in 2014, according to Oregon Poison Center data. The previous year, seven children younger than 5 were treated at a healthcare facility after ingesting cannabis. In 2012, the number was 10. The Oregon Poison Center, a statewide agency, does not track the types of marijuana ingested – whether the child ate a marijuana-infused edible or some other form of the drug — or the circumstances around the incident. Poison center calls involving a young child who has ingested marijuana are typically referred to a hospital for observation, said Dr. Zane Horowitz, medical director of the Oregon Poison Center. “They usually get observed for a few hours until they are more coherent and stable,” he said.

It’s been called “Tinder for marijuana users,” but Todd Mitchem hopes his app will be much more. Now, the founder of what may be the first social network for cannabis fans has passed a critical early hurdle-as Apple’s and Google’s own rules about the industry evolve. When High There launched just two months ago promising to connect people for whom marijuana consumption is a key lifestyle trait, it had a key restriction in the App Store and in Android’s Google Play: the app could only be downloaded by users in states in which the cannabis industry had been made legal. With 100,000-plus tourists expected to descend upon Denver on 4/20, a holiday for marijuana enthusiasts, the app was set to miss out on a major opportunity as potential users from other states like Texas, where the drug is still banned, might visit and download but then be unable to stay in touch in their home state.

The leader of the Senate’s move to jump-start Florida’s medical marijuana industry has agreed to increase the level of euphoria-inducing THC in the limited types of pot allowed under a nearly year-old law. Senate Regulated Industries Chairman Rob Bradley also has signed off on a change to make room for nurseries that don’t meet current criteria in the law, which restricts “dispensing organizations” to growers who have been in business in Florida for at least 30 years and grow a minimum of 400,000 plants. None of the state’s black farmers would be eligible under the current law. Bradley told The News Service of Florida on Monday he is holding off on a medical marijuana bill, scheduled to be heard and amended on the Senate floor Tuesday, until next week while he works out changes to his proposal with his Senate colleagues and the House. Until recently, Bradley had resisted attempts to change the levels of euphoria- inducing tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, now capped at .08 percent.