Don't hold your breath
Included in House Bill 10-1284, Colorado's initial set of regulations for medical marijuana centers, was a clause that mandated the state "make a request by January 1, 2012, to the federal Drug Enforcement Administration to consider rescheduling, for pharmaceutical purposes, medical marijuana from a Schedule I controlled substance to Schedule II controlled substance."
On Dec. 22, Barbara Brohl made just such a request, joining administrators from Washington, Rhode Island and Vermont.
"As long as there is a divergence in state and federal law, there is a lack of certainty necessary to provide safe access for patients with serious medical conditions," Brohl, the director of the Department of Revenue, wrote to DEA administrator Michele Leonhart. "As a result and in compliance with Colorado law, I respectfully request your consideration of the medicinal value of medical marijuana ..."
In a statement lauding the states' actions, Americans for Safe Access executive director Steph Sherer said, "State laws and medical science deserve more respect than they are getting from this Administration."
DEA spokeswoman Barbara Carreno told CNN that the letter would receive "the same attention as a petition from a medical group or anything else." All previous requests — like the one made in May by the Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis, of which ASA's a member — have been rejected.
A California marijuana activist has released a guidebook designed to help anyone involved in Colorado's MMJ industry navigate the ins and outs. Michael Malott's Colorado Medical Marijuana Handbook ($24.95) offers info on federal and state laws, including how to apply for your red card; marijuana's medicinal benefits; handling interactions with law enforcement; and a breakdown of more than 500 strains and how each is best used medicinally. Similar books have been written for Michigan and Arizona.
"Malott was involved with Dennis Peron in the operation of the San Francisco Cannabis Buyers Club, the very first medical marijuana dispensary in US history," says a release. "He also contributed in the drafting of California's Proposition 215 ... which launched the beginning of medical marijuana ..."
• Cannabis Science, a developer of MMJ products that was started by University of Colorado at Colorado Springs professor Dr. Robert Melamede, says it expects sales for the upcoming year to reach $6.85 million. Numbers could reach $65.74 million by 2014.
• As alluded to in last week's CannaBiz, the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol has submitted roughly 160,000 signatures in support of placing a question on the 2012 ballot. Only 86,105 valid signatures are needed to qualify.
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