This Week in Cannabis 9/5

This Week: Free Weed, DEA May Support Growing, More Tales of Decriminalization, How to Bank your Stash, and the Growing Benefits of Marijuana

Free Weed

Berkeley, California is now helping its less fortunate get a little greener. The Berkeley City Council, in a unanimous decision, has mandated that medical marijuana dispensaries donate 2% of their stock to those city residents who cannot afford it.

The “compassion system” does have its opponents (of course it does), but those residents who qualify and earn less than $32,000/year are eligible to get help in the form of the same strength of medical marijuana that paying customers have access to.

Fed Up Marijuana Growing

The Federal Government is set to increase the amount of marijuana grown for research purposes by 30 times! According to a report in the LA Times, the new figure is set to be around 1,400 pounds, which might not seem like a lot unless you put it up against the previous figure of 46 pounds.

Who is responsible for growing the research material? The National Institute on Drug Abuse pretty much holds the monopoly on growing marijuana for federally approved research studies. They are preparing to accept bids for a new 12-acre pot farm contract. The current contract is held by the University of Mississippi, which has been the sole U.S. provider of marijuana for scientific and medical researchers since 1968.

Of course, hopeful researchers will need DEA approval, a DNA sample, references and their firstborn as well as agreeing to get the marijuana from the Feds. Now how good the quality is or how it is being used (as pointed out by U.S. News) is a source of debate, but be it to slander or augment the effects of marijuana, it is clear that the Federal Government’s interest has been more than piqued.

Small Amounts of Change in Santa Fe

New Mexico has had its fair share of dust ups regarding medical marijuana and marijuana in general, but those living in Santa Fe can breathe a little easier.

The Huffington Post is reporting that the Santa Fe City Council has joined the host of other cities and states that have decided to be civil and decriminalized the possession of small amounts of marijuana. In this case, an ounce or less. Being in possession of that amount of marijuana is now a civil offence with a $25 fine, not a $100 criminal misdemeanor and potential jail time.

Banking On It

We have kept an eye on the developments in how financial institutions are now attempting to do business with marijuana dispensaries, and a recent article in the Marijuana Business Daily explores how transparency can help to forge a lasting relationship with banks.

It is, or rather has been, risky business for banks, but now there are some venturing into the unknown and the article in question gives some guidelines for marijuana businesses to consider in streamlining the process when banks do become available to them. Suggested things to do:

1. Proper documentation of all cash transactions or a paper trail that trails your paper.

2. Ixnay on the plastic. Stop taking credit cards. Visa and MasterCard aren’t green friendly. The potential misrepresentation of who you are to those CC companies doesn’t help to put your best foot forward on a compliance platform

3. Up-to-date current financials that are balanced internally as well matching sales and tax returns

4. Be at one with all local, state and federal laws (well…expect for that one pesky federal law about marijuana consumption, growth, distribution)

5. Document money in from all capital sources as well as monies or equity out

Also, don’t forget to eat your Wheaties, drink your milk and floss daily.

Weed’ll Fix That, Too

This List of “Things that Weed Might Also be Able to Fix” continues to grow with another two recently added, according to articles in the Weed Blog and The Huffington Post.

The former publication has quoted research from the Journal of Clinical Investigation and the National Institute of Health that cannabidiol’s “lipostatic, anti-proliferative, and anti-inflammatory effects”, might be able to treat acne.

The Huffington Post has even better news regarding marijuana. We’ll let their words do the research findings justice:

Findings of a preclinical study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, suggest very small doses of THC, a chemical found in marijuana, slows down the production of the beta-amyloid protein, which builds up to create plaques in the brain, an accumulation of which is a known hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease.”

The benefits of this medicinal plant continue to grow.