Author: Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director

New York: Patients Using Fewer Opioids Following Enrollment In Medical Cannabis Program

Patients enrolled in New York state’s medical cannabis program reduce their use of opioids and spend less money on prescription medications, according to data published online in the journal Mental Health Clinician. “After three months treatment, medical cannabis improved [subjects’] quality of life, reduced pain and opioid use, and lead to cost savings,” authors concluded.

Maine: Lawmakers Override Governor’s Veto, Amend Voter-Initiated Adult Use Measure

Maine lawmakers voted overwhelmingly to override Republican Gov. Paul LePage’s veto of LD 1719; the enactment of the legislation establishes a framework for the retail sale of marijuana to adults, but also amends numerous provisions of the 2016 voter-approved measure — including those specific to home grow limits and taxation.

Legislation Introduced To End The Federal Government’s Marijuana Production Monopoly

A bipartisan coalition of over two-dozen federal lawmakers, including House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and Matt Gaetz (R-FL), are backing newly introduced legislation — The Medical Cannabis Research Act of 2018 — to facilitate federally-approved clinical trials involving cannabis. Passage of this act would end the University of Mississippi’s existing monopoly on the growth of cannabis for clinical research purposes by requiring the licensing of additional manufacturers.

GOP Lawmaker: Trump Administration Pledges Non-Interference In Legal Marijuana States

Republican Senator Cory Gardner (CO) says that he has received a verbal commitment from President Donald Trump specifying that the administration will not take action to disrupt marijuana markets in states that legally regulate the substance. In response to the administration’s pledge, NORML Director Erik Altieri stated: “[I]t is time for Congress to do its part and swiftly move forward bipartisan legislation that explicitly provides states with the authority and autonomy to set their own marijuana policies absent the fear of federal incursion.”