Republicans Are Playing Dirty in Their Bid to Stop North Dakota’s Legal Pot Initiative

As North Dakotans prepare to head to the polls in November to vote on the Measure 3 marijuana legalization initiative, they rely on their state government to come up with an estimate of what it will cost taxpayers. It’s not just this initiative—state law mandates that voters be informed of the potential budgetary impacts of any measure on the ballot.

But for voters to accurately assess the cost of a measure, the cost estimates must reflect reality. That’s not the case with the cost report issued last week by the state’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and approved in a party-line vote over the objections of Democratic lawmakers.

The OMB report put the cost of implementing the marijuana measure at $6.7 million, but two-thirds of that figure is to pay for a program not mandated in the initiative. OMB said it would take $2.2 million in clerical costs to expunge some 18,000 marijuana arrest records, as the initiative requires, but that it would also cost $4.4 million for a youth education campaign that the state Health Department argued would be necessary and the salaries of two full-time employees to run it for the next four years.

The Health Department may think such a campaign is necessary, but the initiative itself does not require—or even mention—any such campaign, and to include the Health Department’s wish list in the measure’s fiscal impact statement is just plain dishonest. That didn’t stop Republican lawmakers from voting to approve it.

Democrats tried to stop them. House Minority Leader Corey Mock (D-Grand Forks) offered an amendment to approve the fiscal impact statement but omit the Health Department’s figures, with other costs to be determined.

“This does not lead to a $6.7 million fiscal impact. It’s a $2.2 million fiscal impact, with more that’s likely to happen but it cannot be determined,” Mock said. “It will cost more than $2.2 million. We just don’t know how much.”

The amendment failed on a 10-5 party line vote. The Legislative Management Committee then approved by the same margin a motion by House Majority Leader Al Carlson (R-Fargo) to accept the fiscal impact statement with the Health Department’s cost estimate included.

Sen. Erin Oban (D-Bismarck) told the Bismarck Tribune after the vote that the fiscal impact statement as passed amounted to a lie.

“There seems to be a disagreement among this committee about what we want versus what the language in the measure actually says,” Oban said. “I think there was universal agreement, probably around this table, about wanting, if Measure 3 passed, an education campaign from the health department about the impacts of marijuana, especially on youth, for prevention purposes. But the measure does not require that. To me, it is lying to claim that Measure 3 required that because it didn’t.”

One Republican lawmaker, Sen. Jerry Klein (R-Fessenden), defended including the Health Department costs on rather dubious grounds.

“Until the measures are passed, and the Legislature and all the agencies can dig in and put an actual cost on it, I think our job has been simply to approve something that somebody said might cost this,” Klein told the Tribune.

The Health Department argued that because it has a responsibility to protect the health and welfare of North Dakotans, the educational campaign would be warranted, but again, it is not mandated in the initiative itself, and the Health Department doesn’t exactly have a great record when it comes to marijuana measures.

As North Dakota columnist and political blogger Rob Port pointed out in a column laying into the shady cost estimates, the Health Department was way, way off in its estimate of the costs of the successful 2016 medical marijuana initiative there.

“What people should keep in mind is that two years ago when the health department presented their information on what they estimated to be the cost of medical marijuana if it passed they said $8.7 million,” he quoted one lawmaker as telling him after the vote. “For fiscal year ending June 30, 2018, their actual cost was $363,000.”

That inflated figure didn’t stop voters from approving medical marijuana in 2016. Perhaps the inflated figure this year won’t stop voters from approving marijuana legalization in 2018, but it would be better if North Dakota Republicans could just be honest about the costs.

This content is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license from and was first published here.

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Tuesday, February 19, 2019 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

A single marijuana bud sits alone on the middle front console of a car.

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Tuesday, February 19, 2019 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// NJ edges closer to legalizing recreational cannabis after breakthrough on taxing (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Chart: Most California municipalities ban commercial cannabis activity (Marijuana Business Daily)

// MedMen Is Already Praised as the ‘Apple Store of Weed’ But Its Rapid Trajectory Is Getting Sticky (Esquire)

These headlines are brought to you by Curaleaf, one of the leading vertically-integrated cannabis operators in the U.S. With legal medical marijuana dispensaries, cultivation sites, and processing facilities all over the United States, Curaleaf has served more than 100,000 medical cannabis patients and looks forward to helping many more long into the future. Swing over to to learn more about this very cool company!

// New York bodega owners want in on selling legal marijuana (SF Gate)

// Marijuana-themed Cheba Hut opening more sub joints in Colorado across the country (Denver Post)

// ND House bill to expand conditions for medical marijuana qualifications passes (KFYR TV NBC)

// Bill to allow medical marijuana in schools passes New Mexico Senate (KRQE News)

// Proposed bill would let first-time marijuana offenders have conviction dismissed (East Idaho News)

// New York City councilman wants companies to stop testing for marijuana (Fox 8 Cleveland)

// Study Shows That Bees Like Hemp, And That’s Great News For The Environment (Marijuana Moment)

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Can Weed Cause Paranoia? • High Times

One of the interesting and sometimes strange things about marijuana is that in some cases it helps people feel less stressed, anxious, and worried, and in other cases it seems to make people feel ultra stressed out to the point of extreme paranoia.

It’s actually pretty common to experience both ends of this spectrum. And as anyone who’s experienced the paranoid side of things knows, weed paranoia can be very intense.

So what’s the deal with weed and paranoia? What causes weed paranoia? And what can you do to deal with paranoia from weed? Here’s everything you need to know.

Effects of Weed on Paranoia

As with most things related to cannabis, research into weed and paranoia is fairly limited. Research exists, but because of prohibition laws, it’s not as thoroughly researched as it should be.

But from what we do know, it appears that marijuana can certainly be a contributing factor to feelings of paranoia.

In 2014, a group of scientists at Oxford studied paranoia from weed. In the experiment, they gave 121 adults between the ages of 21 and 50 an injection of either real THC or a placebo. The THC dose was the same as an average joint.

After all participants were injected, they answered a series of questions about their experiences and feelings. At the conclusion of the study, researchers found that 50% of those with THC reported feelings of paranoia. Meanwhile, only 30% of those with the placebo had feelings of paranoia.

Interestingly, researchers did not conclude that cannabis causes paranoia outright. Instead, they said that weed probably produces a range of other experiences that could add to a heightened sense of paranoia.

For example, they said that when people are high and they experience sensory changes, those changes can make some people feel nervous, uneasy, and in some cases, paranoid.

So weed paranoia does seem to exist—kind of. But only in the sense that the experience of an altered state of mind tends to freak some people out.

Does Weed Make Paranoia Worse?

In many ways, it’s more accurate to describe the relationship between weed and paranoia as one in which weed exacerbates what’s already there.

To be more clear, if you’re already prone to feelings of anxiety and paranoia, you may be more likely to feel even more paranoid when you’re high.

And, as evidenced in the above study, the same is true of how much a person enjoys the experience of being high. If a temporarily altered state of mind is enjoyable to you, then you probably won’t feel paranoid.

But if that altered state of mind makes you feel weird or scared, you might feel paranoia from weed. Simply put, the connection between weed and paranoia differs based on a number of variables. These include:

  • personality
  • genetic predisposition
  • your body’s endocannabinoid system
  • potency of weed
  • how much THC you consume
  • the full spectrum of cannabinoids you consume
  • whether or not you enjoy the sensation of being high
  • how often you get high
  • THC tolerance levels

How to Deal with Paranoia When You’re High

Since there are so many factors that impact whether or not you feel weed paranoia, it’s likely that you could experience it at some point or another.

Even if you usually don’t feel paranoia from weed, we’ve all found ourselves in those situations where you just get way too high. When that happens, you might start feeling paranoid.

Since weed and paranoia can hit anyone, you should know how to deal with it. Here are some good ways to deal with paranoia from weed:

  • Force yourself to relax. Breath deep. Sit down and take it easy. And remind yourself that is literally impossible to overdose and die from cannabis.
  • Drink some soothing lemon tea. Squeeze lemon into hot water. Maybe add some fresh ginger root and honey. Drink it slowly and try to calm yourself down.
  • Pepper contains terpenes that tend to have soothing effects. Try crushing a few peppercorns and gently smelling it.
  • Take a warm shower and focus on calming yourself down.
  • Take a nap and sleep it off.

Of course, another approach is trying to avoid getting to the point where you’re experiencing weed paranoia. Here are some tips to avoid getting paranoid:

  • Take smaller doses of THC.
  • If you can, try smoking or vaping. It’s easier to dose than edibles or oils.
  • Consume strains with more CBD, since CBD counteracts the psychoactive effects of THC. If you’re prone to paranoia, CBD could hep smooth out your experience.

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New Mexico Health Secretary Balks at Medical Marijuana Expansion

SANTA FE, NM — New Mexico’s Health Secretary Lynn Gallagher has agreed to proposed changes in the state’s medical cannabis law that would permit patients with obstructive sleep apnea to access marijuana; but she rejected calls to expand access to patients with other debilitating conditions, including Tourette’s syndrome (TS) and opioid dependency.

“I cannot say with any degree of confidence that the use of cannabis for the treatment of opioid dependency and its symptoms would be either safe or effective,” Secretary Gallagher opined in a signed decision.

She also rejected recommendations to permit the use of cannabis for the treatment of eczema, muscular dystrophy, psoriasis, or Tourette’s syndrome. A number of case reports and clinical trials report that THC can mitigate symptoms of TS. Cannabis use has also been associated with improved outcomes in opioid-dependent subjects undergoing outpatient treatment.

Among chronic pain patients enrolled in medical cannabis programs, the use of opioids typically is reduced or eliminated over time.

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South Africa’s Highest Court Upholds Right to Consume Marijuana in Private

Port Elizabeth, South Africa (Wikimedia/Kay-Africa)

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA — The nation’s highest court has upheld a 2017 decision finding that the use of marijuana by adults in private is constitutionally protected behavior.

Judges unanimously ruled that privacy protections encompass an adult’s right to possess and grow cannabis in a private space.

It is not “a criminal offense for an adult to use or be in possession of cannabis in private for his or her personal consumption,” the court determined.

Public cannabis use and marijuana sales remain prohibited under the ruling.

South African politicians first outlawed marijuana in 1908. Annually, some 13 percent of all arrests in the nation are marijuana-related.


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Activist Charged With Felony Wiretapping After Streaming Marijuana Justice Rally

Last October, the cannabis legalization advocacy group Maryland Marijuana Justice organized a protest outside of state Rep. Andy Harris’s congressional office in Salisbury. Six months earlier, ex-Colorado residents Adam Eidinger and Kris Furnish founded the group to accomplish one primary object: remove Rep. Andy Harris, a politician the group calls “one of the worst concerning cannabis reform laws,” from Maryland’s 1st Congressional District.

20-year-old Jake Burdett, a student at Salisbury University, attended the October protest. It brought him face to face with one of Rep. Harris’s staffers, an encounter the young activist briefly livestreamed on Facebook Live. And on Valentine’s Day, Burdett was charged with multiple felony wiretapping charges for recording and posting that meeting online for a day. The charges brought against Burdett were filed by Rep. Harris’ office.

Maryland Marijuana Justice Demonstrator Faces Felony Charges for Livestreaming a Meeting

These days, members of the cannabis advocacy group Maryland Marijuana Justice (MDMJ) are a regular fixture outside Maryland’s Congressional offices. The group has been organizing demonstrations and protests to support cannabis reform efforts and challenge the lawmakers opposing them. Lawmakers like Republican state Rep. Andy Harris, who in 2014 worked to block the full legalization of marijuana in D.C.

Rep. Harris has been in the news recently. Not for his opposition to drug reform, but for a meeting he took with white supremacist and Holocaust denier Chuck Johnson, who Twitter banned for threatening the Baltimore civil rights activist DeRay Mckesson. But Maryland Marijuana Justice want the press surrounding Jake Burdett’s indictment to stay focused on Harris’ views on cannabis, not just his racist scandals.

MDMJ activists have long-protested Harris’ backwards views on cannabis and refusals to meet with cannabis reform advocates. At the October protest, Burdett was streaming to Facebook Live. When one of Harris’ congressional staffers offered to meet with a handful of demonstrators, Burdett made the cut and kept the camera running for a short while into the meeting.

But Burdett didn’t obtain the staffer’s consent to film inside the office where the meeting was occurring. He didn’t know he had to. Or that it wasn’t just illegal, but a felony to film the staffer without permission. Burdett found out it was illegal the next day and immediately took down the video. He also personally apologized to the staffer. But Congressman Harris threw the book at him anyway. And on February 15, prosecutors charged Burdett with felony wiretapping.

Maryland Rep. Andy Harris Keeps Calling the Cops on Marijuana Justice Activists

This isn’t the first time Andy Harris has gone after marijuana reform activists demonstrating outside his office. At a MDMJ protest last year, Harris had Rachel Donlan arrested for “bruising his wrist.” Prosecutors later charged Donlan with consumption of marijuana in a prohibited public space—i.e., being high in public. Donlan filed a complaint against Harris herself, alleging Harris slammed a door on her leg.

For MDMJ, Rep. Harris’ recent effort to make an example out of Mr. Burdett “shows how partisan and petty Congressman Harris has become,” the organization said in a press release. “Rep. Harris wants to pretend to be victimized by a 20 year old’s deleted livestream, while he supports the racist war on drugs that actually victimizes thousands of people a day by locking them up for the victimless crime of smoking marijuana, a non-addictive substance with many medicinal benefits.”

The group also pointed out that while Rep. Harris has been smearing cannabis reform activists and vehemently opposing legalization, he has accepted $42,200 from the pharmaceutical lobby in the 2017-2018 election cycle alone.

Burdett’s plea deal will require him to complete community service and go on probation. But if Burdett complies with court orders for three years, the case will be dropped. For his part, Burdett said he is upset that citizens and constituents are not allowed to record conversations with public officials’ paid staffers in a taxpayer-funded space.

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Canadians Involved in Legal Marijuana Industry to Be Barred Entry to the United States

WASHINGTON, DC — A top official from the US Customs and Border Patrol has affirmed that the agency will enforce a federal policy prohibiting those involved with the Canadian marijuana industry from entering the United States.

Section 212 of the US Immigration and Nationality Act states that foreigners are ineligible to enter the US if they are “determined to be a drug abuser” or if they have assisted in the trafficking of an illicit substance. A US Custom representative told Politico that the agency is broadly interpreting the statute to include those who work or have financially invested in Canada’s legal marijuana industry, or who acknowledge personal use of the substance.

Canada legalized the regulated production and distribution of medical cannabis nearly two decades ago. In June of this year, Canadian lawmakers gave final approval to separate legislation regulating the adult use marijuana market. The new law takes effect on October 17, 2018.

NORML Deputy Director Paul Armentano strongly criticized the US enforcement policy, stating: “This is an irrational and discriminatory policy that unduly penalizes tens of thousands of Canadians who pose no health or safety risk to the United States. At a time when public opinion and the culture surrounding marijuana is rapidly shifting, not just in the United States but around the world, it is inane for US border officials to maintain such a draconian and backward-looking policy.”

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Are You Defying The Limits? This Hemp Clothing Brand Is! • High Times

Hemp is finally federally legal in the United States, thanks to the recent passing of the Farm Bill this past December of 2018. The bill now enables farmers to grow and cultivate hemp in US soil for the first time in generations. From here on out growers, brands and consumers will be able to take advantage of hemp’s 50,000+ sustainable uses.

Greenz, a premium hemp clothing brand, is proud to support the industry following the awaited end of hemp prohibition. Co-Founders Hunter Bjork, Skylar Lysaker, and Jared Gobler have joined forces to create a brand that believes in defying the limits, using hemp as the leading fiber in all of their goods.

Are You Defying The Limits? This Hemp Clothing Brand Is!


“Hemp is simply superior to cotton and mainstream textiles,” says Bjork the CEO of Greenz. “I’ve spent years studying hemp’s industrial uses and benefits. Specifically, I’ve focused on its overwhelming list of advantages, and have discovered that cannabis and hemp prohibition was a direct result of propaganda and law reform funded by the early cotton industry.”

Not only does hemp yield more fiber with less land than cotton, it also requires 3 times less water to yield the same amount of usable dry fiber suitable for production.

“Most people are unaware of hemp’s many industrial benefits,” say’s Lysaker the CSO of Greenz. “Hemp fibers are antimicrobial, moisture wicking, and extremely durable. Unlike most garments, hemp clothing wears in over time, resulting in a softer feel with each wear and wash.”

Are You Defying The Limits? This Hemp Clothing Brand Is!


Humans have been growing, harvesting, and processing hemp for thousands of years, but it wasn’t until the late 1930s that hemp production was halted by prohibition. Even the original United States constitution was made of hemp paper before it’s outlawing.

Greenz is focused on defying the limits, and that tagline holds true across their entire brand. “From our sweatshop-free manufacturing to the people we sponsor, we aim to inspire and empower people to defy their limits.” say’s Gobler the COO of Greenz.

Are You Defying The Limits? This Hemp Clothing Brand Is!


The brand actively supports artists, extreme sports athletes, creators, and those who defy the limits by providing the platform and resources they need to grow. You can check out Greenz, the team, and their premium hemp clothing via their website and social media channels below.

Greenz is also offering a discount to those of you learning about them through High Times Magazine. Use the code HIGH TIMES at checkout, and receive 15% off your order!

Follow Greenz on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter

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