Cannabis news briefs: Hurricane Michael keeps hemp legalization at bay, Marriott strike hurts NewWest Summit
By Rick Schettino
Oct 25, 2018
Delays in passing the Farm Bill agitated some hemp sector members, as the House continues to fight over the bill’s rules for gaining food stamps. Now, however, a new issue might stand in the way as mother nature aims to slow down the bill’s consideration.
Hurricane Michael might push passage of the Farm Bill into early 2019. The ranking member of the House Agriculture Committee Collin Peterson noted that after the November election there would be pressure for legislators to immediately turn to emergency funding legislation to help rebuild parts of states that were destroyed by the hurricane.
Last week, the NewWest Summit saw a collapse in attendance, speaker cancellations, and booth pull-outs all due to a sudden worker strike at the Oakland Marriott. Show promoter Jim McAlpine repeatedly expressed his solidarity with striking union members, going as far as to demand the Marriott stop underpaying their employees to the extent that many need to work three jobs just to make ends meet.
However, McAlpine also lamented how he was unable to find an alternative place for the popular show which began three days after the strike commenced.
“We had 10-plus speakers back out, several exhibitors back out and a lot of attendees who did not come and asked for refunds,” he told Forbes. Some estimates noted that only half of the expected 5000 conference attendees showed up causing the expanded show floor to look very slow.
“I was going to be interviewing former Men’s Wearhouse CEO George Zimmer on stage, but he canceled due to strike as well,” said McAlpine. Zimmer, who is now the CEO of Generation Tux, is a well-known advocate for cannabis legalization.
My name is Chris Wolfenbarger. I fought for our country in Afghanistan and was injured by a roadside bomb. I’m proud to have served, but now I’m in chronic pain. That’s why I’m supporting Yes on Amendment 2—because it offers veterans like me hope. #YesOn2https://t.co/sA3klXlEPppic.twitter.com/M3iCq2pSA3
In Missouri, the push for medical marijuana known as Amendment 2 has so far garnered $1.33 million in donations at the cost of $1.435 million. While Amendment 2 would set a tax limit of 4 percent, the other ballot proposal, Amendment 3, that also encourages research, proposes a 15 percent tax on medical cannabis.
Amendment 3 reports donations of $1.766 million, of which over $1 million came from its principal backer, lawyer, and physician Brad Bradshaw. For Amendment 2, Drug Policy Action was the highest donor, kicking in $258,500.
Just days after recreational marijuana became legal in Canada supplies of many products might be running out. SDQC, which manages sales in Quebec, recorded more than 12,500 in-store sales and 30,000 online orders the first day, "far exceeding" expectations.
"Given the craze created by the legalization of cannabis and the scarcity of products across Canada, the SQDC expects significant short-term supply challenges for branches," said the SDQC in a statement.
Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries warned that shortages of some products could last months. The Ontario Cannabis Store said that legalization has "resulted in a high volume of orders" but ads that deliveries will likely still be made within five business days. "We apologize for any inconvenience," the statement said.
Tvert and Carlson debate legal weed
Canada became the second nation in the world to legalize the sale and recreational consumption of marijuana; should Americans take notice? Tucker Carlson o Fox News took on press respondent Mason Tvert in a testy debate recently. Tvert is a spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project.