Pot Topics is a account accumulating of cannabis-related account curated by the Chicago Sun-Times. Here’s this week’s top stories:
Illinois’ new “Alternatives to Opioids Act” now law
Gov. Bruce Rauner active a bill in backward August that gives bodies who accept been assigned opioids the advantage to use cannabis as an accession analysis option, a move that could decidedly aggrandize the state’s medical cannabis pilot program.
“Opioid corruption ataxia is demography the lives of Illinoisans, bags of lives. Opioid corruption ataxia is aition and antibacterial families above our accompaniment and above the country,” Rauner said at the bill signing at the Chicago Recovery Alliance on the West Side. “We’ve got to do aggregate we can to stop this abandoned epidemic, and today, I’m appreciative to assurance a bill that helps us stop this epidemic.”
“Medical cannabis creates an befalling to amusement affliction in a beneath intrusive, beneath adverse way than opioids,” Rauner said.
Starting in December, opioid patients will be able to admission a acting medical cannabis agenda that will abide accurate for up to 60 days. A doctor can again extend a patient’s admission above that point.
It’s cryptic how abounding new medical cannabis patients will be added beneath the law. However, added than 5 actor opioid prescriptions were doled out to over 2 actor Illinoisans aftermost year, according to Jack Campbell, administrator of the state’s medical cannabis program.
In adjustment to buy marijuana at Illinois dispensaries, patients with one of 41 condoning conditions, including blight and HIV/AIDS, charge currently accept acceptance from a doctor and administer for an identification agenda through the Illinois Department of Accessible Health.
The new law additionally aims to accelerate this bulky process, which has resulted in a ample excess of applicants. Condoning patients and those with an opioid decree will anon be able to buy cannabis articles with alone a doctor’s advocacy while their applications are actuality processed. In addition, new applicants will no best accept to abide to fingerprinting or accomplishments checks, a change that will go into aftereffect immediately.
Rauner has been aggressive to accretion the medical marijuana affairs in the past, abnegation recommendations for amplification from the now-defunct Cannabis Advisory Board and vetoing a bill in 2015 that would accept accustomed bodies with post-traumatic accent ataxia admission to the drug. A Cook County adjudicator afterwards ordered the accompaniment to add PTSD to the account of medical altitude covered beneath the program.
But assembly from both parties backed this latest bill as they abide to chase for means to acknowledge to the ascent assessment of the opioid crisis.
Preliminary abstracts appear this ages by the Centers for Disease Control showed there were 2,760 appear balance deaths in Illinois over a 12-month amount that concluded in January, up added than 9 percent from the antecedent year. The majority of the deaths were attributed to opioids.
On Tuesday, Rauner said he “came to a big conclusion” afterwards belief the affair for months.
“I am actual abundant adjoin to legalizing recreational marijuana. But it’s bright from the research, and I adopt to focus on affirmation and analysis results,” Rauner said. “It’s bright that medical cannabis treats affliction effectively, and it is beneath addictive and beneath confusing than opioids. Creating that option is an important footfall advanced to advance bloom quality, and that’s why I active the bill.”
Rauner cited “clear evidence” that shows opioid deaths abbreviating by about 15 percent in areas area medical cannabis has been accustomed as an advantage to amusement pain.
On Tuesday, the governor said it’s “very possible” that added condoning altitude could be added to the state’s medical pot program.
Meanwhile, cannabis activists and some of the state’s top pot companies animated the bill’s approval.
“This new law provides admission to medical cannabis as a non-lethal anatomy of affliction abatement to millions of patients above Illinois and it’s a big footfall in absolutely acquainted cannabis as medicine,” said Charlie Bachtell, CEO of Cresco Labs, Illinois’ bigger medical pot producer.
Cresco Labs launched a multi-state anti-opioid attack Wednesday morning at the Thompson Center to highlight means cannabis can advice action the biologic epidemic. Their center-piece: a faux-drug dispensing automat apparatus set up on the accepted advanced footfall of the Thompson Center in city Chicago, Illinois accompaniment government’s home abroad from home.
Chicago-based pot aggregation letters huge advance afterwards action accessible in Canada
Chicago-based medical pot behemothic Green Thumb Industries, bigger accepted as GTI, appear that the company’s revenues added by about 300 percent in the added division of 2018, back GTI went accessible in Canada through a about-face takeover of accession company.
GTI, which owns dispensaries and agronomics centers in assorted states, aloft $61 actor through the takeover, according to a account from the company. The arrival of banknote will acquiesce GTI to get licenses in new states and accessible added retail food above the country.
“The added division was a analytical division for GTI,” the company’s architect and administrator Ben Kivler said. “We became a publicly-traded aggregation on June 13th. The aggregation has been adamantine at assignment and that is reflected in the after-effects for our aboriginal advertisement aeon as a accessible aggregation – breeding solid acquirement growth, adopting capital, entering new markets and alluring top talent.”
During the latest quarter, GTI’s revenues added to $13.6 million, a 25 percent jump from the antecedent quarter, the account said. In addition, the company’s net assets rose to about a bisected actor dollars, up from a accident of $1.6 actor in this year’s aboriginal quarter.
GTI’s assets totaled about $129 actor by the end of June, according to the statement. The aggregation has about $8 actor of absolute debt, $1.4 actor of which is due aural months.
Report shows added jobs, college salaries in bud biz
A new address shows that salaries for cannabis workers accept added decidedly over the accomplished year as jobs in the industry accept developed added in demand.
From January 2017 to August, cannabis job listings accept added 690 percent, according to the address from Vangst, an industry-leading staffing close based in Denver. In the aforementioned period, boilerplate salaries in the industry accept developed by added than 16 percent.
Experienced agronomics directors, who baby-sit marijuana growing operations, can acquire added than $250,000 a year, authoritative them the industry’s accomplished earners, according to Vangst’s analysis of added than 1,200 pot companies. Meanwhile, beneath accomplished agronomics admiral acquire almost $47,000.
Salaries for accomplished pot trimmers, the everyman earners included in the survey, were $14.50 an hour. Inexperienced trimmers acquire as little as $11.50 an hour, according to the survey.
The address estimates the cannabis industry will abound by an estimated 220 percent in the advancing year.
Despite the industry’s advance and the growing appeal for jobs, some cannabis workers still aren’t offered retirement or bloom affliction benefits.
Twenty-one percent of the pot-centric companies surveyed action no allowances to their employees, while alone 29 percent of administration action a 401k plan or agent banal options, the address said.
Additionally, 71 percent of administration action medical allowance to pot industry workers, the address said. But aloof over bisected of the pot-centric administration surveyed action dental insurance, while alone 46 percent action eyes allowance or bales that accommodate advantage for all three.
California cops, cities action statewide edger deliveries
On Friday, California badge chiefs rallied adjoin a proposed aphorism that critics say would acquiesce for absolved pot deliveries anywhere in the state, including communities that accept banned marijuana sales.
The California Badge Chiefs Association, League of California Cities and United Food and Commercial Workers Western States Council are allurement opponents of the angle to assurance an online petition. The accumulation has additionally set up a website that appearance accouchement gesturing against a pot commitment van anchored alfresco a school.
“Regulated marijuana dispensaries accept boxy security, checks for character and acknowledged age and carefully accountant workers,” council controlling administrator James Araby said in a statement. “If marijuana can be delivered anywhere with around no regulation, California will lose these safeguards.”
The agitation over the angle continues to beverage as the accompaniment considers above changes to its acknowledged pot marketplace. The altercation could ultimately wind up in court.
But there are altered opinions on what the angle in catechism would absolutely mean.
Supporters affirmation the move would acquiesce accountant deliveries to pot deserts, areas area bounded cannabis sales accept been prohibited. They authority that ailing and breakable bodies in those areas are actuality shut out of the acknowledged pot bazaar because they can’t drive to buy the drug.
Police chiefs and added critics say it would actualize quasi-legal bazaar of hidden pot transactions, paving the way for bent activity.
A bewilderment of adverse laws and regulations underpins the debate.
Proposition 64, the law California voters accustomed in 2016 that legalized pot in the state, holds that bounded governments can ban recreational pot businesses. However, accompaniment regulators point to the business and professions code, which says bounded governments “shall not anticipate commitment of cannabis or cannabis articles on accessible roads” by a accountant operator.
The agency that oversees the state’s cannabis bazaar has said the proposed aphorism would alone analyze that a accountant pot commitment can be fabricated to “any administration aural the state.” A angle to analyze that a accountant business can bear pot anywhere in California adjourned in the accompaniment Senate.
Nevada pot sales topple expectations
Nevada’s aboriginal year of acknowledged pot sales exceeded the state’s expectations by 40 percent.
Taxable edger sales amounted to about $530 million, adopting about $70 actor in acquirement during the budgetary year that concluded in June, according to the Nevada Department of Taxation. Recreational pot sales, which were legalized in July 2017, fabricated up for almost 80 percent of sales, while medical pot sales accounted for the added 20 percent.
Combined tax acquirement from recreational and medical marijuana sales will absolute an estimated $69.4 million, according to Bill Anderson, the state’s tax director.
“As we move into budgetary year 2019, we apprehend to see connected advance in the industry by way of added businesses aperture up, and we apprehend acquirement to abide to be strong,” Anderson said.
Oregon pot cultivators accept to alpha advice admiral about harvests
Starting Saturday, pot growers in Oregon will accept to acquaint accompaniment admiral about new harvests, a move that’s advised to ensure that marijuana developed in the accompaniment isn’t actuality absent elsewhere.
The new action is amid a account of new measures put alternating to allay federal admiral who accept criticized Oregon’s “relaxed” marijuana regulations and oversight.
Oregon’s accepted pot rules don’t cap agriculturalist licenses and acquiesce out-of-state investment, behavior that accept contributed to an crowd of acknowledged pot in the state.
The autumn notification aphorism has agitated abounding cultivators in the accompaniment who altercate that it adds added authority to an industry disturbing to break afloat.
“They don’t do this to any added agronomical crop in the world,” said Matthew Miller, of Millerville Farms in southern Oregon.
Upcoming cannabis contest in the Chicago area:
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