Health News

CBD: FDA approved, but still illegal

Despite the Food and Drug Administration's decision to greenlight a drug whose primary ingredient is CBD, the compound is still illegal. Mostly. Actually, it depends where it comes from: If it comes from a "marijuana plant" (a cannabis plant that tests at more than .03 percent THC), it's not legal under federal law. If it comes from hemp, which is also a cannabis plant but tests with far less THC, it's technically not legal yet, but the Farm Bill awaiting Trump's signature might change that. But the overall confusion has guaranteed one thing: People are dosing CBD "without the support of informed healthcare providers."

Regional News

Where did Nevada’s first year cannabis revenue go?

Leafly has an interesting analysis of where tax revenue generated from cannabis in Nevada's first legal year ultimately went. A smaller chunk is going to education than was promised by Governor Brian Sandoval, a Republican. A sizable portion is going to the state's rainy day fund. And even though Nevada took in more than $100 million in total tax revenue, spending gaps in the state's budget could use more.

In Phoenix, weed meets good ol’ fashioned corrupt municipal politics

The Phoenix New Times has a profile of former MMA fighter George Roop's foray into medical cannabis in Tucson, Arizona. Roop's growing facility, which is funded by his rich uncle in Florida, seems to be attracting unwanted attention by more conservative neighbors, who fear smelliness and (unjustifiably) rising crime.

Also, since we were at the New Times, we kept scrolling to read this investigation into how Phoenix paid the city's fire department union chief to design a failed medical marijuana tax intended to fund fire and police departments: "A proposal to fund city police and fire ended up being led by the head of a firefighters union from within the mayor's office."

California likely to approve new regulatory framework for cannabis

Recreational weed sales have been legal in California since the start of the year, but the regulations guiding the market were stand-ins. The state drafted permanent rules throughout the year, and they are all but final. The latest rules make it legal to deliver cannabis anywhere in the state, even in towns where it is banned, but still leave ambiguity about how to trace and track cannabis grows and sales.

Around the Web

Marlboro Greens

In the last week Altria, the maker of Marlboro cigarettes, paid almost $2 billion for a stake in a Canadian company that grows cannabis. It's part of a wave of giant companies, including Coca-Cola and the owner of Corona beer, who've either outright invested in or expressed a deep interest in cannabis investment. Its legalization in Canada, and potential legalization in Mexico, has made it more appealing to huge corporations with international holdings.

Hemp on Trump’s desk

After many months, both the House and the Senate approved a version of the farm bill that removes CBD as a Schedule I substance. This will officially legalize CBD derived from hemp. While it's de facto legal in practice, this would be the first time the federal government removes any form of cannabis from its list of most dangerous drugs. Trump had 10 days from Thursday the sign the $867 billion farm bill into law.