Tuesday, February 6, 2018

National POT Conference Coming to New Jersey in May 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
For more info, contact: Ken @ (609) 394-2137

National POT Conference Coming to New Jersey in May 2018

WHO:      “Patients Out of Time” http://www.medicalcannabis.com/
WHAT:    12th national conference, “Cannabis: Alleviates Pain, Treats Addiction”
WHEN:     May 10 – 12, 2018
WHERE:   Loew’s Movie Palace, 54 Journal Square Plaza, Jersey City, NJ
WHY:       Accredited educational program for healthcare professionals, patients and advocates

Mary Lynn Mathre, RN, MSN, the President of “Patients Out of Time” (POT), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization, is bringing her highly regarded cannabis/marijuana conference to New Jersey this year. POT’s 12th national conference, “Cannabis: Alleviates Pain, Treats Addiction” will be held May 10 – 12, 2018 at Loew’s Movie Palace, 54 Journal Square Plaza, Jersey City, NJ. Registration information is available at: http://patientsoutoftime.org/the-twelfth-national-clinical-conference-on-cannabis-therapeutics/

The POT conference is an excellent way for physicians to earn CMEs, and nurses and other healthcare professionals to earn contact hours (CEUs) for their continuing education requirements, while learning about the science that supports the use of marijuana/cannabis. POT conferences bring together some of the top marijuana researchers from across the country and from around the world.  Medical marijuana patients and activists are also represented at these conferences.

The theme of the conference is particularly relevant to New Jersey this year. Governor Phil Murphy signed Executive Order #6 on January 23, 2018 directing the Department of Health and the Board of Medical Examiners to review the Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) and make recommendations to expand it and ease access to it. The governor said that expanding the MMP will “ensure that (patients) are receiving (medical marijuana) tailored to their medical needs, and make them less likely to turn to potentially more harmful and less medically appropriate drugs such as opioids, the use of which was declared a public health crisis.” See: http://nj.gov/infobank/eo/056murphy/pdf/EO-6.pdf

Ken Wolski, RN of the Coalition for Medical Marijuana--New Jersey and on the Board of Advisors of Patients Out of Time, has attended eight (8) POT conferences since 2004. “It has been fascinating to watch the developments in the science of the Endocannabinoid System—how marijuana actually works in the human body—as more discoveries about this amazing system are made every year,” he said.

Ken Wolski, RN, MPA
Executive Director, Coalition for Medical Marijuana--New Jersey, Inc. www.cmmnj.org
219 Woodside Ave., Trenton, NJ 08618
609.394.2137
ohamkrw@aol.com
info@cmmnj.org

CMMNJ Feb. 13, 2018 Public Meeting Agenda



Monthly Public Meeting Agenda
Lawrence Township Library, Room #3
Tuesday, February 13, 2018 7:00 PM -- 9:00 PM


Approve January 2018 minutes. Discuss:

Governor Phil Murphy signed Executive Order #6 to expand and improve access to the Medicinal Marijuana Program at a Press Conference in Trenton on 1/23/18. DOH & BME given 60 days to come up with new rules. "I'm very pleased the governor has taken such a strong stand to expand the program," Wolski said in NJ.com.

NJ’s legalization bill re-introduced in new legislative session (S830/A1348): Support home cultivation, address concerns.

The Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) Review Panel said 43 petitions should be added to the MMP; the DOH commissioner must act by 4/25/18. CMMNJ urges extensive amendments to CUMMA.

Marijuana Justice Act of 2017 (S1689): Urge support in Congress: Capwiz from DPA and NORML.

Political Prisoner Ed (NJWeedman) Forchion in jail nearly one year; found guilty of nothing!
Free him!

CMMNJ joined MIDJersey Chamber of Commerce.

Upcoming Events: “CMMNJ TV” taping at Princeton TV studio, February 15, 2018 with ACLU NJ.
Cannabis: Alleviates Pain, Treats Addiction” Patients Out of Time conference, Jersey City, NJ    May 10–12, 2018.

Treasury report: Checking: $3101; PayPal: $3162 (1000 new ECS brochures purchased).

CMMNJ's meetings are the 2nd Tuesday of each month from 7 - 9 PM at the Lawrence Twp. Library, 2751 Brunswick Pike, Lawrence Twp., 08648. All are welcome. (Meeting at the library does not imply Mercer County’s endorsement of our issue.)

More info: Ken Wolski, RN, MPA (609) 394-2137 ohamkrw@aol.com http://www.cmmnj.org
Facebook: Friends of CMMNJ: https://www.facebook.com/groups/62462971150/

CMMNJ, a 501(c)(3) public charity, is a non-profit educational organization.


Monthly Public Meeting Minutes
January 9, 2018


December 2017 minutes approved. Discussion:

Governor-elect Phil Murphy plans to legalize marijuana in the first 100 days of 2018. Advocates urged to work with the new Administration and NJUMR.org to sign petitions, write lawmakers, and pass resolutions about patient access, decriminalization, expungement, etc. to help make this happen.
Gov. Christie finishes his second term at noon on Jan. 16, followed by Murphy inauguration.
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinds Cole memo on 1/4/18—implications for marijuana reform?

California rolls out legal marijuana 1/1/18.

CMMNJ Press Conference at Statehouse, Trenton, 1/9/18 at 11:00 am in support of home cultivation.

NJ’s legalization bill (S3195)
: Facebook’s “Friends of CMMNJ” letter template, addressing concerns.

The Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) Review Panel recommended on 10/25/17 that 43 petitions be approved to add conditions to the MMP (chronic pain, anxiety, migraines, Tourette’s syndrome, and Opioid Use Disorder). The DOH commissioner has 180 days to act. CUMMA amendments urged by CMMNJ. Contact the DOH transition team? Stigma still affects how health care professionals learn about marijuana.

Marijuana Justice Act of 2017 (S1689): Urge support in Congress: Capwiz from DPA and NORML.

CMMNJ Year End Report 2017 completed; detailed financial report sent to CMMNJ Board members.

Political Prisoner Ed (NJWeedman) Forchion remains in jail awaiting retrial on hung jury charge.

Upcoming Events: “CMMNJ TV” taping at Princeton TV studio, January 23, 2018.
Patients Out of Time conference, Jersey City, NJ, May 10 – 12, 2018.

Treasury report: Checking: $3264; PayPal: $3292.

More info: Ken Wolski, RN, MPA (609) 394-2137 ohamkrw@aol.com http://www.cmmnj.org
Facebook: Friends of CMMNJ: https://www.facebook.com/groups/62462971150/

CMMNJ, a 501(c)(3) public charity, is a non-profit educational organization.


Recent Media Coverage and Blogs:


NJ Marijuana Legalization: Some Shore Towns Say 'No Sales Here'
https://patch.com/new-jersey/brick/nj-marijuana-legalization-some-shore-towns-saying-no-sales-here

Bipartisan fury greets Trump administration decision to rescind marijuana protections
http://www.philly.com/philly/business/cannabis/trump-administration-to-end-policies-that-let-legal-marijuana-flourish-20180104.html

Jeff Sessions’s Endless War on Marijuana
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/07/opinion/jeff-sessionss-war-marijuana.html?emc=edit_tnt_20180107&nlid=17961243&tntemail0=y

Asbury Park Council Would Support Marijuana Dispensaries Here
https://patch.com/new-jersey/asbury-park/asbury-park-council-would-support-marijuana-dispensaries-here

VA Clears The Air On Doctors Talking To Veterans About Marijuana Use
https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2018/01/09/576577596/va-clears-the-air-on-doctors-talking-to-veterans-about-marijuana-use

NORML: Marijuana Regulation: Impact on Health, Safety, Economy
http://norml.org/marijuana/fact-sheets/item/marijuana-regulation-impact-on-health-safety-economy

NORML: Marijuana and Psychomotor Impairment
http://norml.org/marijuana/fact-sheets/item/marijuana-and-psychomotor-impairment

Beware of bogus marijuana studies | Editorial
http://www.nj.com/opinion/index.ssf/2018/01/beware_of_bogus_marijuana_studies_editorial.html

Howell Mourns Jake 'The Tank,' 7, Who Fought Brain Cancer
https://patch.com/new-jersey/howell/howell-mourns-jake-tank-7-who-fought-brain-cancer

The moral case for legal pot | Editorial
http://www.nj.com/opinion/index.ssf/2018/01/the_moral_case_for_legal_pot_editorial.html

Welcome to Drug War Facts
http://drugwarfacts.org/

New governor signs executive order aimed at expanding New Jersey’s medical marijuana program
https://planetprinceton.com/2018/01/23/new-governor-signs-executive-order-aimed-at-expanding-new-jerseys-medical-marijuana-program/

New Jersey Governor Orders Review of Medical Marijuana Program
https://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/local/NJ-Murphy-Executive-Order-Medical-Marijuana-470740043.html

Phil Murphy moves to expand access to medical marijuana in New Jersey
http://www.nj.com/politics/index.ssf/2018/01/hold_murphy_expands_medical_marijuana_program_adds.html

Should N.J. expand access to medical marijuana?
http://www.nj.com/opinion/index.ssf/2018/01/should_nj_expand_access_to_medical_marijuana.html

Murphy's marijuana audit moves NJ closer to legalization
http://www.dailytargum.com/article/2018/01/murphys-marijuana-audit-moves-nj-closer-to-legalization

NJ marijuana legalization: 5 weed lessons from the New Jersey Cannabis Symposium
https://www.app.com/story/news/local/public-safety/2018/01/26/new-jersey-marijuana-legalization-cannabis-symposium-phil-murphy-2018/1066220001/

Medical marijuana program needs fixes after Christie sabotage | Editorial
http://www.nj.com/opinion/index.ssf/2018/01/medical_marijuana_program_needs_fixes_after_christ.html

Failing to move for emergency vehicle leads to drug arrest of Hopatcong driver
http://www.njherald.com/20180130/failing-to-move-for-emergency-vehicle-leads-to-drug-arrest-of-hopatcong-driver#

What does N.J. say to legal recreational weed? New poll has answers
http://www.nj.com/politics/index.ssf/2018/01/what_does_nj_say_to_legal_recreational_marijuana_a.html

New bill could legalize home-grown marijuana in New Jersey
http://newjersey.news12.com/story/37398412/new-bill-could-legalize-home-grown-marijuana-in-new-jersey

New FDU marijuana poll highlights continued divisions
http://www.njbiz.com/article/20180201/NJBIZ01/180209990/new-fdu-marijuana-poll-highlights-continued-divisions

N.J. Assembly majority whip sitting out marijuana legalization | Philly 420
http://www.philly.com/philly/business/cannabis/n-j-assembly-majority-whip-sitting-out-marijuana-legalization-philly-420-20180123.html

Monday, January 8, 2018

NJ Medical Marijuana Patients for Home Cultivation

         
                                         
New Jersey Medical Marijuana Patients for Home Cultivation

Registered medical marijuana patients in New Jersey call on New Jersey legislators and Governor-elect Phil Murphy to allow home cultivation of cannabis.

Caregivers and patients were expecting home gardens until the provision was removed in 2009 from the Compassionate Use of Medical Marijuana Act. Now, almost a decade later, the promise of a robust medical marijuana program is broken.

Home Cultivation is STILL needed for three reasons:
1) Cost - the cost of medical marijuana exceeds half the income of 50% of patients who are on disability;
2) Consistent supply - many patients need specific strains for their conditions, but the dispensaries have trouble maintaining their supplies, often dropping production of the most effective strains;
3) Empowerment - allowing patients to grow their own medicine lets them take control of their disease.

The recreational marijuana bill will likely make the medical strain supply issue worse, to the detriment of patients. Home cultivation is one way of alleviating this issue.

Ken Wolski RN, Executive Director of CMMNJ, stated, “Home cultivation empowers patients to take charge of their own healthcare, to grow their own medicine for pennies and to choose the specific strains that best helps their medical conditions.”

Peter Rosenfeld of CMMNJ added, “As New Jersey moves on to full legalization of marijuana, we want our legislators and Governor-elect Murphy to consider the needs of our state's medical marijuana patients.”

CMMNJ extends an open invitation to Governor-elect Murphy to attend the free, monthly CMMNJ public meeting: Lawrence Township Library, Room #3, Tuesday, January 9, 2018 7:00 PM -- 9:00 PM

Ken Wolski, RN, MPA, Executive Director
Coalition for Medical Marijuana--New Jersey, Inc.
(609) 394-2137
www.cmmnj.org  
ohamkrw@aol.com

For more info, contact: Peter @ (856) 495-5824
                                      jprosenfeld@yahoo.com

CMMNJ, a 501(c)(3) public charity, provides education about the benefits of safe and legal access to medical marijuana.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

CMMNJ 2017 Year End Report


Year End Report 2017

The Coalition for Medical Marijuana New Jersey, Inc. (CMMNJ) is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) educational organization, incorporated in the State of New Jersey.  The mission of CMMNJ is to educate the public about medical marijuana.  The goal of CMMNJ is to have safe and legal access to medical marijuana for qualified New Jersey patients.

In 2014, CMMNJ’s Board of Directors endorsed legalization of marijuana. The Board recognized legalization as the most efficient and effective way to get the therapeutic effects of marijuana to the vast number of patients who can benefit from this plant. Legalization of marijuana is also an important step in undoing the harms to our society that are caused by our current policy of drug prohibition.

In 2017, CMMNJ held ten free public meetings at the Lawrence Township Library in Mercer County.  At the meetings, Board members and volunteers planned upcoming events and educational programs.  CMMNJ sent the agenda and minutes of these meetings via e-mail to over 1000 supporters each month and posted the agendas on Facebook, Twitter and on the CMMNJ blog.  There was no March meeting because of a snowstorm and no July meeting due to a schedule conflict at the library. 

CMMNJ’s public meetings for 2018 will continue to be held on the second Tuesday of each month from 7 - 9 PM at the Lawrence Twp. (Mercer County) Library, 2751 Brunswick Pike, Lawrenceville, NJ, 08648.  All are welcome at these meetings and there is never a charge to attend.

New Jersey Highlights of 2017:
Election Day, Tuesday, November 7, 2017 was a big win for Phil Murphy and marijuana reform in New Jersey! Governor-elect Murphy plans to legalize marijuana in the first 100 days of 2018!

CMMNJ pursued marijuana legalization in New Jersey throughout 2017. The January 2017 monthly meeting asked the questions: What strategies should we pursue to advance the support for legalization of marijuana in New Jersey in 2017? Our usual answers applied:
Educational efforts, Coalition building, Demonstrations, Media & Social Media outreach.

Our Goals were: Legalization, with home cultivation, and expungement of prior non-violent marijuana records.  Rescheduling or descheduling of marijuana from its Schedule I status in New Jersey. Help to inner city communities devastated by the War on Marijuana.

Meanwhile, Gov. Christie hammered backers of legalizing marijuana, calling it “beyond stupidity.” Governor Christie leaves office on 1/16/18.

CMMNJ began working locally in Trenton with the Trenton Cannabis Community Awareness organization.

New Jersey State Senator Nick Scutari introduced a legalization bill (S3195) on 5/15/17 at State House press conference. CMMNJ issued a press release in support of the bill, calling Legalization “the best way to get the right medicine to the most people.” An informational hearing on Sen. Scutari’s legalization bill was held at the Senate Judiciary Committee on 6/19/17. CMMNJ testified in support of the bill and called for public use of marijuana. CMMNJ also called for CUMMA amendments—repeal 7% medical tax; add home cultivation; & reschedule marijuana.

Scutari's bill, (S3195) based on visits to Colorado's thriving recreational program, would:
Legalize possession and personal use of small amounts of marijuana for persons age 21 and over; creates Division of Marijuana Enforcement and licensing structure;
http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2016/Bills/S3500/3195_I1.HTM
Decriminalize marijuana possession of up to 50 grams "immediately" and allow people who have been arrested for pot possession to expunge their records;
Establish a Division of Marijuana Enforcement in the state Attorney General's Office which would create the rules used to govern the legal market of growers and sellers;
Allow people to possess up to one ounce of dried marijuana, 16 ounces of edible products infused with cannabis, 72 ounces in liquid form and seven grams of marijuana "concentrate;
Impose a sales tax on recreational sales beginning at 7 percent in the first year, climbing to 10 percent in the second year and jumping five percent more each year until it reaches 25 percent;
Taxes on medical marijuana would be abolished;
Give the five existing medical marijuana dispensary nonprofit groups first crack at selling adult use marijuana.

Marijuana legalization may well be an idea whose time has come. Forbes magazine reports that Total Marijuana Demand Tops Ice Cream In the U.S.:
https://www.forbes.com/sites/debraborchardt/2017/05/17/new-report-says-total-marijuana-demand-tops-ice-cream/#2e396df75b5e

Marijuana rescheduling in New Jersey:
The New Jersey Superior Court Appellate Division heard oral arguments for marijuana rescheduling in New Jersey on 11/29/16 in Trenton. Arguing pro bono to reschedule were Joseph L. Linares, Esq. and Marc Haefner, Esq. from the Newark Walsh law firm. The lawsuit was initiated by an inmate at New Jersey State Prison at Trenton, Steven Kadonsky, #807236B.

Nearly a year later, in November 2017, the Appellate Court ruled that the Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the NJ Attorney General’s office erred when he said he lacked the authority to reclassify/reschedule/de-schedule marijuana. The Director must reconsider his decision in the “post-CUMMA era” the court said. New Jersey must recognize marijuana's medicinal value, the court insisted.

The AG’s office is considering an appeal of the decision to the NJ Supreme Court. CMMNJ told KYW Newsradio 1060 that appealing the Appellate ruling would prove to be “an exercise in futility.”
 http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2017/11/04/appeals-court-orders-new-jersey-to-rethink-designation-of-marijuana-as-dangerous-drug/

New Jersey Department of Health (DOH) Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP):
The fifth anniversary of legal sales of marijuana in New Jersey was on 12-6-17.  The 8th anniversary of New Jersey’s Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act becoming law will be on 1-18-18. Five Alternative Treatment Centers (ATCs) are currently open and dispensing medical marijuana to qualified patients.

 Acting Commissioner Christopher Rinn began leading the Department of Health on November 9, 2017. Mr. Rinn said, in the Nov./Dec. 2017 Newsletter, “NJ Health Matters,”  the DOH “created a Medicinal Marijuana Program that now serves 16,000 patients and developed a protocol for testing to ensure the product is free of contaminants.” http://www.nj.gov/health/newsletter/documents/2017/Health%20Matters%20Nov-Dec%202017.pdf

Susan Carson is the Director of the NJ DOH MMP. She continues to be a good source of information about the program, and she appears to have the best interests of New Jersey patients always in mind.

Harmony Foundation was issued a permit to grow marijuana as the 6th ATC in New Jersey on 7/27/17. As of the end of 2017, Harmony has not yet opened. Harmony was one of the original nonprofit organizations to be approved to grow, process, and sell medical marijuana in the state, but it reportedly had ongoing problems with the state’s vetting process.

NJ DOH MMP process to add qualifying conditions for marijuana therapy:
The New Jersey Department of Health accepted Petitions to add qualifying conditions to the state’s MMP between 8-1-16 and 8-31-16. A total of 45 Petitions were accepted by the NJ DOH for consideration by a panel of health care professionals --five physicians, two pharmacists and one RN, who were appointed by the DOH.

For a list of the conditions, see: http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/01/petitions-to-nj-doh-panel.html;
for links to each Petition, see: http://www.nj.gov/health/medicalmarijuana/review-panel/petitions2016.shtml

The Review Panel held a Public Hearing in Trenton on 2/22/17 for additional testimony on the 45 Petitions. Additional comments were accepted by the Panel through 3/8/17. Thanks to all those who came out to testify. The Panel heard compelling stories from patients, patients’ families and advocates. These were the stories that the Medical Review Panel needed to hear! The Review Panel gave initial approval to 43 of 45 petitions to add conditions to the MMP (only Asthma and Chronic Fatigue were denied). The DOH posted the Review Panel’s initial approval to add conditions to the MMP on 7/25/17. See: http://www.nj.gov/health/medicalmarijuana/documents/Initial%20Recommendation%20Letter.pdf

After the Panel’s initial recommendations to the DOH Commissioner, there was a 60-day public comment period, followed by the Panel’s final recommendations. 

A Public Hearing was held on 9/18/17 at the Trenton War Memorial on the Medicinal Marijuana Program Review Panel’s initial approval of 43 petitions. The 60 day public comment period ended 9/25/17, followed by final recommendations.  Panel was thanked and urged to speed up the process. DOH Commissioner Cathleen Bennett announced her resignation.

The Review Panel gave their final approval on October 25th for the use of marijuana for 43 of the 45 petitions. These additional medical conditions include chronic pain, anxiety, migraines, and Tourette's syndrome.

The panel should be congratulated for its research, its thoroughness and its courageous adherence to evidence-based criteria in its decision making. When the science is objectively pursued, the therapeutic potential of medical marijuana is found to be enormous.

Now the DOH Commissioner/Acting Commissioner has 180 days from 10/25/17 to make the final decision on what, if any, conditions to add to the MMP. No word has come from the DOH on this by the end of 2017.

Ed “NJWeedman” Forchion Update:
Ed Forchion’s restaurant, the "Joint" and his church, the "Liberty Bell Temple," both located across the street from Trenton’s City Hall, were visited by law enforcement officers (LEOs) on 3-5-16. This was followed by a request for an injunction to stop police harassment of these facilities. However, the facilities were instead raided by LEOs on 4-27-16 with multiple arrests and property confiscated. 

Mr. Forchion was subsequently arrested again and charged with harassing a Trenton police officer. Mr. Forchion was arrested on 3/3/17 on witness tampering charges and held without bail. He remains incarcerated nine months and counting, though he has not been found guilty of any charges.

At trial on the witness tampering charge, he was found not guilty of the more serious charge, but the jury was hung on the less serious charge. Incarcerated without bail awaiting retrial, Mr. Forchion considers himself a political prisoner, who is being harassed because of his outspoken advocacy for marijuana reform. Mr. Forchion uses marijuana medicinally to control the pain associated with tumors that he has on the bones in his legs. He is also a Rastafarian who uses marijuana as a part of his sincere religious beliefs.

Marcel “Leo” Bridgewater, a Veteran who was instrumental in getting PTSD added as a condition that qualifies for marijuana therapy in New Jersey, is now president of NJ Chapter of “Minorities for Medical Marijuana” a national organization. He is also affiliated with NJ CannaBusiness Association.

For the first time ever, a New Jersey Judge of Compensation Orders Employer To Pay Costs Of Medical Marijuana Program And Costs Of Filling Prescriptions:
http://njworkerscompblog.com/new-jersey-judge-of-compensation-orders-employercarrier-to-pay-costs-of-medical-marijuana-program-and-costs-of-filling-prescriptions-for-marijuana/

NORML: Action Alert List - Find Your Elected Officials: http://norml.org/


Marijuana Bills in New Jersey’s 2016-2017 Legislative Session:
January 2018 will be the start of a new, 2-year legislative session in New Jersey.  All bills reintroduced in the legislature will be given new bill numbers. There were 22 marijuana-related bills in the 2016-2017 Legislative Session. Information about these bills can be found on the web site of the New Jersey Legislature: http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/

A416: Dedicates sales and use tax collections from sales of medical Marijuana to the "Medical Marijuana for a Cure Fund" for medical research grants on certain debilitating medical conditions.
A457: Authorizes Medical Marijuana for qualifying patients with post-traumatic stress disorder.
Identical Bill Number: S2345   
A861: Requires registered qualifying patient's authorized use of medical Marijuana to be considered equivalent to use of any other prescribed medication. Identical Bill Number: S1294   
A2068: Legalizes possession and personal use of small amounts of Marijuana for persons age 21 and over. Last Session Bill Number: A3094   S1896
A2116: Extends "Right to Farm" protections to cultivation or production of Marijuana for medical use; permits such activity on preserved farmland; prohibits county or municipal interference with such activity.
A2482: Establishes protection from adverse employment action for authorized medical Marijuana patients. Identical Bill Number: S2161   
A3443: Authorizes transfer of excess medical Marijuana inventory between alternative treatment centers.
A3664: Authorizes Medical Marijuana for treatment of dysmenorrhea. Identical Bill Number: S2139   
A3852: "Children's Caregivers Act"; revises requirements for primary caregivers for medical Marijuana patients who are minors. Identical Bill Number: S2954   
A3942: Places question on ballot allowing Atlantic City to adopt resolution to legalize Marijuana in Atlantic City; establishes regulatory scheme for Marijuana controlled by State Department of Law and Public Safety; increases penalties for driving under influence of Marijuana.
A4026: Revises various requirements concerning State Medical Marijuana program, including facilitating access to medical Marijuana for children with debilitating medical conditions and their caregivers.  Identical Bill Number: S2794   
A4193: Legalizes Marijuana and provides for records expungement for certain past Marijuana offenses; treats Marijuana products similar to tobacco products, including use of civil penalties for providing Marijuana to persons under 19 years of age.
A4793: Prohibits restrictions on patient receiving organ transplant based on Marijuana use.
A4872: Legalizes possession and personal use of small amounts of Marijuana for persons age 21 and over; creates Division of Marijuana Enforcement and licensing structure. Identical Bill Number: S3195   
ACR149: Determines that certain medical Marijuana program regulations are inconsistent with legislative intent.
S1294: Requires registered qualifying patient's authorized use of medical Marijuana to be considered equivalent to use of any other prescribed medication. Identical Bill Number: A861   
S2139: Authorizes Medical Marijuana for treatment of dysmenorrhea.
S2161: Establishes protection from adverse employment action for authorized medical Marijuana patients. Identical Bill Number: A2482   
S2345: Authorizes Medical Marijuana for qualifying patients with post-traumatic stress disorder.
Identical Bill Number: A457   
S2794: Revises various requirements concerning State Medical Marijuana program, including facilitating access to medical Marijuana for children with debilitating medical conditions and their caregivers. Identical Bill Number: A4026 w/c   
S2954: "Children's Caregivers Act"; revises requirements for primary caregivers for medical Marijuana patients who are minors. Identical Bill Number: A3852 w/c   
S3195: Legalizes possession and personal use of small amounts of Marijuana for persons age 21 and over; creates Division of Marijuana Enforcement and licensing structure. Identical Bill Number: A4872   

National Events:
New Jersey U.S. Senator Cory Booker introduced The Marijuana Justice Act of 2017 (S1689) at a press conference in Linden, NJ on August 4, 2017.  CMMNJ members were invited guests at the press conference. Supporters of the bill are looking for national co-sponsors of Booker’s bill.

On Election Day, in November 2016, four states OK’d legal marijuana (California, Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada); four states OK’d medical marijuana (Arkansas, Florida, Montana and North Dakota). But advocates were left wondering: What can we expect from President-elect Trump? Now, a year later, we are still wondering. Mr. Trump has supported states rights and medical marijuana on the campaign trail, but he appointed Jeff Sessions as Attorney General, and Mr. Sessions has spoken out against marijuana reform on numerous occasions and seems to want to roll back reform efforts.

On 12/22/17 in Washington, D.C., Congress voted to extend protections for state medical marijuana programs through January 19. The provision, known as the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment, was continued in legislation to fund the government for a month.

Representative Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), co-chair of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus and champion of the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment, released the following statement:
“Patients around the country who rely on medical marijuana for treatment and the businesses that serve them now have some measure of certainty. Our fight, however, continues to maintain these important protections in the next funding bill passed by Congress.”

A federal bill to resolve the conflict between state and federal medical marijuana laws is the Compassionate Access, Research Expansion and Respect States Act (CARERS Act). Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), and Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), teamed up for S. 683, which now has a mix of cosponsors, 14 Democrats and three Republicans. It has been referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee but has not yet come up for a vote.   The identical House version H.R. 1538, introduced by Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN9) has evenly-bipartisan cosponsors, 19 Democrat and 12 Republican, but also has yet to receive a vote.

100th 2017 Statehouse Podcast:
CMMNJ sponsored and participated in a series of Statehouse demonstrations and Podcasts every Thursday, rain or shine, from April through November, going back to 2014. 

The final 2017 Statehouse Podcast (the 100th ) concluded with Thanksgiving Day lunch/clothing giveaway outside the Annex. Wayne Burrini (http://www.burrinis.com/) generously donated many delicious food items. Other advocates and patients donated food and clothing. Jim Miller and Lefty Grimes were recognized at the December 2017 CMMNJ meeting for their heroic efforts in completing 100 podcasts outside the New Jersey Statehouse in all kinds of weather. Permits were obtained from the State Police each week for the demonstrations.  The podcasts and demonstrations called attention to the deficiencies of the MMP and the need for legalization of marijuana. 
Sample Podcasts:
SativaCross.com Podcast from Chris Christie's Office
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ALaEBYKW78g&feature=push-lsb&attr_tag=WEdnMp0uNnilwc59-6
Sativa Cross.com Potcast from the Statehouse 5/31/17
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ypdv4M8fMgI
SativaCross.com Podcast from Chris Christie's Office
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=liJiWCyUsm8
Sativa Cross Podcast
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vWIdWGsQ1Bg
Sativa Cross .com Potcast From The NJ Statehouse
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=5924&v=et-Qc8mjTcQ

2017 CMMNJ Publications:
CMMNJ Monthly Agendas and Minutes also contain links to published reports by and about CMMNJ Board members and friends. 
For the 2017 CMMNJ Agendas and Minutes, see:

December 2017: 
CMMNJ Minutes for December 12, 2017 Meeting
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/12/cmmnj-minutes-for-december-12-2017.html
CMMNJ: Proposed improvements for the NJ Medical Marijuana Program
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/12/cmmnj-proposed-improvements-for-nj.html
NJ Medical Marijuana Patients to Governor-elect Murphy: We need home cultivation
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/12/for-immediate-release-coalition-of.html
CMMNJ Meeting Agenda for December 12, 2017
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/12/cmmnj-meeting-agenda-for-december-12.html
November 2017: 
NJ Panel OKs marijuana for more conditions
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/11/nj-panel-oks-marijuana-for-more.html
November 14, 2017 Meeting Agenda and October Minutes
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/11/monthly-public-meeting-agenda-lawrence.html
September 2017: 
CMMNJ Meeting Agenda for October 10, 2017 and September Minutes
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/09/cmmnj-agenda-for-october-10-2017.html
Public comment period on adding qualifying conditions to the Medicinal Marijuana Program
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/09/219-woodside-ave.html
CMMNJ Public Meeting Agenda for September 12, 2017 and August Minutes
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/09/cmmnj-public-meeting-agenda-for-sept-12.html
August 2017: 
CMMNJ Public Meeting Agenda for August 8, 2017 and June Minutes
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/07/cmmnj-public-meeting-agenda-for-august.html
June 2017: 
S3195: Legislation to Legalize Marijuana in New Jersey and CMMNJ’s Proposed Amendments to the Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/06/s3195-legislation-to-legalize-marijuana.html
Legislation to Legalize Marijuana in New Jersey
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/06/legislation-to-legalize-marijuana-in.html
CMMNJ Public Meeting Agenda for June 13, 2017 and May Minutes
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/06/cmmnj-monthly-meeting-agenda-for-june.html
May 2017:  
CMMNJ Public Meeting Agenda for May 9, 2017 and April Minutes
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/05/cmmnj-public-meeting-agenda-for-may-9.html
April 2017: 
CMMNJ Public Meeting Agenda for April 11, 2017 and February Minutes
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/04/cmmnj-april-11-2017-meeting-agenda.html
March 2017:
CMMNJ Public Meeting Agenda for March 14, 2017 and February Minutes
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/03/march-14-2017-cmmnj-monthly-public.html
February 2017: 
CMMNJ Public Meeting Agenda for February 14, 2017 and January Minutes
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/02/cmmnj-public-meeting-agenda-for-feb-14.html
January 2017: 
CMMNJ Public Meeting Agenda for January 10, 2017 and December 2016 Minutes
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/01/cmmnj-meeting-agenda-for-jan-10-2017.html
Petitions to the NJ DOH Panel
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/01/petitions-to-nj-doh-panel.html
CMMNJ Year End Report 2016
http://cmmnj.blogspot.com/2017/01/cmmnj-year-end-report-2016.html

CMMNJ TV: “CMMNJ TV” began at Princeton Community TV on 11/11/14 and continued throughout 2017.  Episodes run twice a week for two weeks—on Tues., at 10 pm & Fri., at 10:30 am on Comcast Ch. 30 & Verizon FIOS Ch. 45.  Episodes of “CMMNJ TV” are taped one day each month at the Princeton Community TV Studio.  “CMMNJ TV” episodes also include footage shot outside the studio.

2017 Episodes–CMMNJ TV: 
Zoe Patchell /INE Tour: Parsippany
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ICUOU3JLHA&t=144s
CMMNJ TV: Dana Beal
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tdN63pIBCg8
Audrey and Kevin Byrnes discuss medical marijuana, laws and uses.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6dKk5byTFFk
CMMNJ TV: Women's Veterans Collective
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQWBZ_S_h7I
CMMNJ TV: Chris Conrad & Mikki Norris
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1NQwip4SK8&t=166s
CMMNJ TV: Honeyb Thomas Ignorance Is No Excuse Wheelchair Video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k-P-9j7FWRk
CMMNJ TV Dave Borden
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zq00hYwhu6g

CMMNJ members participated in or attended the following events in 2017:
Medical Cannabis Conference, Montego Bay Jamaica, Nov. 10 -15, 2017.
Princeton psychiatrist Dr. David Nathan gave a presentation at the August CMMNJ meeting on the organization he founded, Doctors for Cannabis Regulation, http://dfcr.org/.
Ken Wolski and Dr. David Nathan were interviewed on NJTV News: http://watch.njtvonline.org/video/2365918193/
There Are Big Benefits In Medical Marijuana For Seniors
http://advocateformomanddad.com/medical-marijuana-seniors/
What Nurses Need to Know about Medical Cannabis; University Medical Center at Princeton (UMCP) 2/18/17.
ASA Unity Conference, The Role of Cannabis in Modern Medicine, Washington, D.C., 4/7-11.
http://www.nationalmedicalcannabisunityconference.org/
“Nursing Medical Cannabis Conference” at Monmouth Medical Center, 7/15/17.
Medical Cannabis Conference at Princeton Medical Center In Plainsboro NJ, 6/10/17, CEUs.
420 Statehouse Smokedown/Podcast; Party at NJ Weedman’s Joint, Trenton, NJ 4/20.
Community Fest; The College of New Jersey, 9/23/17 10 -4 pm.
Perspectives on Cannabis Legalization on Youth and Emerging Adults, Rutgers U., 9/6.
NORML’s 2017 Conference and Congressional Lobby Day, Washington, DC, 9/10-12.
Medical Marijuana, Holistic Moms Network, 211 Broad St, Red Bank, NJ, 9/8/17.
Trenton Cannabis Community Awareness: Part 2, Mill Hill Park, Trenton, 9/24/17.
Fully Baked Radio educational event at Trenton’s Mill Hill Park, 8/12/17 at 4:20 pm.
CMMNJ TV taping with Riley Cote, 7/31/17.
Global Cannabis March -Rehoboth Beach, DE, 5/6/17, Surfside Park & North Boardwalk.
Pennington Day, 5/20/17.
Ken Wolski’s “Grand Rounds” at Trinitas Hospital, Elizabeth, NJ, 5/11/17 for CMEs.
“Medical Marijuana” at Montclair’s Center for Healthy Living, 5/31/17 for CEUs.
New Jersey Cannabusiness Association (NJCBA): Trade association focused on supporting the growing legal cannabis industry. http://www.newjerseycannabusiness.com/
Meet and Greet Social, Help Not Handcuffs, Asbury Park, NJ, 10/28/17.
NJ CannaBusiness April Seminar Video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p81pLu1DeRw
New Jersey CannaBusiness Association: Updates on Cannabis Laws and Business Opportunities in NJ. Kenilworth, NJ 07033, 4/19/17.
Pot groups: Let NJers smoke marijuana in public
http://nj1015.com/pot-groups-let-njers-smoke-marijuana-in-public/?trackback=tsmclip
Trenton PD shares their thoughts on medical marijuana with Trenton Cannabis & Community Awareness
https://www.facebook.com/thelightersideoftrenton/posts/772617489576377
Cannabis Nurses Magazine, September/October 2017
https://issuu.com/hempnation/docs/cnm_sept-oct_2017fin
Tatyana ‘Tuffy’ Rivera and her New Jersey Cannabis Activist Family
http://www.ladybud.com/2017/09/11/tatyana-tuffy-rivera-and-her-new-jersey-cannabis-activist-family/
New website touts NJ reform: https://www.3fronts.org/

Thanks to CMMNJ Volunteers: 
On behalf of the Board of Directors of CMMNJ, I would like to thank all of our supporters for their tireless efforts and contributions throughout the year.  As we are an all-volunteer organization, we are nothing without you! 
Special thanks go to:
The volunteer administrators on Facebook’s Friends of the Coalition for Medical Marijuana-NJ who ably moderate the many discussions at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/62462971150/
Laura Carter who has selflessly volunteered her time coordinating CMMNJ activities with the Trenton Community, Veterans, and others.

CMMNJ 2017 Board Update:
Formal meetings of the CMMNJ Board of Directors were held on February 8, and June 5, 2017.
Vanessa Maria resigned from the CMMNJ Board in May 2017.
At the close of 2017, the CMMNJ Board consists of the following 10 people: Kenneth R. Wolski, RN, Executive Director; James Miller, Senior Director; Edward R. Hannaman, Esq., Secretary; Nick Mellis, Peter Rosenfeld, Vanessa Waltz, Larry Vargo, Amanda Hoffman, Jo Anne Zito and Philippe Dume. 
CMMNJ’s Honorary Board Member is Allan Marain, Esq.
Jim Price continues in his role as Communications Director for CMMNJ.

Treasury Report: 
A detailed treasury report was forwarded to CMMNJ Board members.  In summary, in 2017 CMMNJ had expenditures of $2,652.42 and income of $3,445.03.  CMMNJ finished the year with a checking account balance of $3,264.85 and a PayPal account balance of $3,292.76, for a grand total of $6,557.61.
 
CMMNJ still has almost 50,000 all hemp wristbands and necklaces that were donated recently.  The multicolored bands were made in Romania. The suggested price is $1 apiece.  Wholesale prices are available.

CMMNJ purchased from Royal T’s 70 t-shirts at a wholesale cost of $490. The t-shirts have the familiar CMMNJ logo and are available for resale at $15 each.

CMMNJ is grateful for the generous financial support of all who contributed to our mission to educate the public about the benefits of medical marijuana.

CMMNJ’s 2018 Recommendations:
Continue to build support for legalization of marijuana in New Jersey.
Implement a timely legalization program that brings affordable, high quality marijuana to New Jersey adults in an appropriately regulated fashion.
CMMNJ renews its annual call for national clinical trials of marijuana for MS and PTSD.
Reschedule or deschedule marijuana, both in New Jersey and nationally.
Expand New Jersey’s Medicinal Marijuana Program by adding qualifying conditions; also, improve the program in ways that bring access of high quality and affordable marijuana to patients who can benefit from it.
Attend the Patients Out of Time conference being held in New Jersey for the first time ever on May 10 – 12, 2018 at Loew’s Jersey Theater in Jersey City.

Schedule of CMMNJ 2018 meetings: 
CMMNJ’s free, public meetings will continue to be held on the second Tuesday of each month in 2018 from 7 - 9 PM at the Lawrence Twp. Branch of the Mercer County Library, Room #3.
(Meeting at the library does not imply the county’s endorsement of our issue.)

Follow CMMNJ on Facebook, Friends of the Coalition for Medical Marijuana-NJ at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/62462971150/

Ken Wolski, RN, MPA, Executive Director
Coalition for Medical Marijuana—New Jersey, Inc. www.cmmnj.org
219 Woodside Ave.
Trenton, NJ 08618 
(609) 394-2137
ohamkrw@aol.com
kenwolski@gmail.com

January 2, 2018


CMMNJ Meeting Agenda for January 9, 2018


Monthly Public Meeting Agenda 
Lawrence Twp. Library, Rm. #3 
Tuesday, January 9, 2018 
7:00 PM -- 9:00 PM

Approve December 2017 minutes. Discuss:

Governor-elect Phil Murphy plans to legalize marijuana in the first 100 days of 2018. Who is contacting whom in the new Administration about patient access, decriminalization, expungement? Gov. Christie finishes his second term at noon on Jan. 16, followed by Murphy inauguration at War Memorial: https://www.njinaugural2018.com/tuesday

California rolls out legal marijuana 1/1/18.

Press Conference at Statehouse, Trenton, 1/9/18 at 11:00 am in support of home cultivation.

NJ’s legalization bill (S3195): Facebook’s “Friends of CMMNJ” letter template in support of home cultivation, addressing concerns.

The Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) Review Panel gave final approval to 43 petitions to add conditions (chronic pain, anxiety, migraines, and Tourette’s syndrome) to the MMP on 10/25/17. The DOH commissioner has 180 days to follow those recommendations. CUMMA amendments? Contact the DOH transition team?

Marijuana Justice Act of 2017 (S1689): Congressional co-sponsors sought for Sen. Cory Booker’s federal bill.

CMMNJ Year End Report 2017 completed; detailed financial report sent to CMMNJ Board members.

Political Prisoner Ed (NJWeedman) Forchion remains in jail awaiting retrial on hung jury charge.

Upcoming Events:
“CMMNJ TV” taping at Princeton TV studio, January 2018.
Patients Out of Time conference, Jersey City, NJ, May 10 – 12, 2018.

Treasury report: Checking: $3264; PayPal: $3292.

CMMNJ's meetings are the 2nd Tuesday of each month from 7 - 9 PM at the Lawrence Twp. Library, 2751 Brunswick Pike, Lawrence Twp., 08648. All are welcome. (Meeting at the library does not imply Mercer County’s endorsement of our issue.)

More info: Ken Wolski, RN, MPA (609) 394-2137 ohamkrw@aol.com http://www.cmmnj.org
Facebook: Friends of CMMNJ: https://www.facebook.com/groups/62462971150/

CMMNJ, a 501(c)(3) public charity, is a non-profit educational organization.


Monthly Public Meeting Minutes 
December 12, 2017

November 2017 minutes approved. Discussion:

Governor-elect Phil Murphy reaffirms plans to legalize marijuana in the first 100 days of 2018! Who is contacting whom in the new Administration about moving forward with advances for patient access and decriminalization/expungement? Jim Miller working with Bill Caruso and he is willing to accompany any patient in legislative meetings; Ken working with Doctors for Cannabis Regulation; Peter & Bob Kane working with S. Jersey legislators; patients/advocates urged to contact individual legislators.

Gov. Christie finishes his second term at noon on Jan. 16.

CMMNJ held a Press Conference in the State House Annex on 12/7/17 where patients and advocates explained the need for home cultivation—keeps it affordable; guarantees strain specific availability, etc.

NJ’s legalization bill (S3195): “Friends of CMMNJ” letter template in support of home cultivation, addressing concerns.

Expect marijuana use uptick of 3% with new law; 97% of current marijuana users will just change vendors from illegal market to legal market. Teen use down in legal states.

The Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) Review Panel gave final approval to 43 petitions to add conditions (chronic pain, anxiety, migraines, and Tourette’s syndrome) to the MMP on 10/25/17. Now the DOH commissioner has 180 days to act. CUMMA amendments recommended. LTEs urged.

Marijuana Justice Act of 2017 (S1689): Congressional co-sponsors sought for Sen. Cory Booker’s federal bill. Take action: Capwiz from DPA and NORML.

Final 2017 Statehouse Podcast (100th) concluded with Thanksgiving Day lunch/clothing giveaway outside the Annex. Wayne Burrini (http://www.burrinis.com/) generously donated many delicious food items. Other advocates and patients donated food and clothing. Jim Miller and Lefty Grimes recognized for their heroic efforts in completing 100 podcasts outside the NJ Statehouse in all kinds of weather.

Political Prisoner/Veteran Ed (NJWeedman) Forchion remains in jail awaiting trial on hung jury charge.

Upcoming Events: “CMMNJ TV” taping at Princeton TV studio, January 2018.
Patients Out of Time conference, Jersey City, NJ, May 10 – 12, 2018.
Garden State Cannabis Consultants, LLC (Nick & Leo) buying a video switcher to produce more videos.

Recent Events: 5th year anniversary of medical marijuana availability in NJ—12/6/17.
Medical Cannabis Conference, Montego Bay Jamaica, Nov. 10 -15, 2017. Atecam.com
Medical Marijuana: There are big benefits for seniors; Plainsboro Senior Center, 12/8/17.

Treasury report: Checking: $3264; PayPal: $3292.

2018 CMMNJ meetings were approved for the 2nd Tuesday of each month from 7 - 9 PM at the Lawrence Twp. Library, 2751 Brunswick Pike, Lawrence Twp., 08648. All are welcome. (Meeting at the library does not imply Mercer County’s endorsement of our issue.)

More info: Ken Wolski, RN, MPA (609) 394-2137 ohamkrw@aol.com http://www.cmmnj.org
Facebook: Friends of CMMNJ: https://www.facebook.com/groups/62462971150/

CMMNJ, a 501(c)(3) public charity, is a non-profit educational organization.

Recent Media Coverage and Blogs:

                 



'Let Us Home Grow,' New Jersey Marijuana Advocates Say
https://patch.com/new-jersey/bloomfield/let-us-home-grow-new-jersey-marijuana-advocates-say

NJ marijuana legalization: When will weed be legalized?
http://www.app.com/story/news/politics/new-jersey/2017/12/08/marijuana-legal-new-jersey-when-timeline-2018/931192001/

Legal marijuana in N.J.! Hip, Hip, ... Hurrah? | Opinion
http://www.nj.com/opinion/index.ssf/2017/12/legal_marijuana_in_nj_hip_hip_hurrah_opinion.html

Fact Check: Chris Christie Claims He Has ‘No Problem’ With Doctor Regulated Marijuana Use
https://www.weednews.co/fact-check-chris-christie-claims-he-has-no-problem-with-doctor-regulated-marijuana-use/

Marijuana Job Workshop In New Jersey Will Train 'Budtenders'
https://patch.com/new-jersey/maplewood/marijuana-job-workshop-new-jersey-will-train-budtenders

V.A. Issues New Medical Marijuana Policy For Military Veterans
https://www.marijuanamoment.net/v-issues-new-medical-marijuana-policy-veterans/

Summit on drugged driving urges state to slow down marijuana legalization
https://www.njtvonline.org/news/video/summit-drugged-driving-urges-state-slow-marijuana-legalization/

NJ marijuana legalization: Point Pleasant Beach bans medical, recreational weed sales
http://www.app.com/story/news/local/public-safety/2017/12/26/nj-marijuana-weed-legalization-point-pleasant-beach-phil-murphy/982249001/

Weed goes legal in California. Here's how the program will work
http://www.nj.com/marijuana/2017/12/weed_goes_legal_in_california_heres_how_the_progra.html

What Weedman thinks about weed legalization might surprise you
http://www.nj.com/mercer/index.ssf/2017/12/i_want_legalization_but_we_are_being_excluded_says.html

How will legalizing marijuana impact police work?
http://www.northjersey.com/story/news/new-jersey/2017/12/31/how-legalizing-marijuana-impact-police-work/985299001/

How to grow your own marijuana. (If N.J. legislators allow it, of course.) | Philly 420
http://www.philly.com/philly/columnists/philly420/how-to-grow-your-own-marijuana-if-nj-legislators-allow-it-of-course-philly-420-20171229.html

Recreational Pot Is Officially Legal in California
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/01/us/legal-pot-california.html?_r=0

NORML Blog, Marijuana Law Reform »
Working to reform marijuana laws
http://norml.org/

Former DEA Spokeswoman: Marijuana is Safe and The DEA Knows It
https://patients4medicalmarijuana.wordpress.com/2017/12/24/former-dea-spokeswoman-marijuana-is-safe-and-the-dea-knows-it/

As recreational marijuana becomes legal in California, Jewish advocates are ready
https://www.jweekly.com/2017/12/22/recreational-marijuana-becomes-legal-california-jewish-advocates-ready/

As Marijuana Industry Grows, Workers Begin to Unionize
https://ww2.kqed.org/news/2017/12/19/as-marijuana-industry-grows-workers-begin-to-unionize/?utm_source=social&utm_medium=Hootsuite&utm_campaign=UFCW

Legalization Activists Bring Advice, Weed to Lavallette Council Meeting
http://lavallette-seaside.shorebeat.com/2017/12/legalization-activists-bring-advice-weed-to-lavallette-council-meeting/

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

CMMNJ Minutes for December 12, 2017 Meeting

Monthly Public Meeting Minutes
December 12, 2017


November 2017 minutes approved. Discussion:

Governor-elect Phil Murphy reaffirms plans to legalize marijuana in the first 100 days of 2018! Who is contacting whom about advances for patient access, decriminalization, expungement, etc? Jim Miller is working with Bill Caruso and Jim is willing to accompany any patient in legislative meetings; Ken is working with Doctors for Cannabis Regulation on proposed legislative and regulatory language; Peter & Bob Kane are working with S. Jersey legislators; patients/advocates are urged to contact individual legislators to tell them what we want.

Gov. Christie finishes his second term at noon on January 16, 2018.

CMMNJ held a Press Conference in the State House Annex on 12/7/17 where patients and advocates explained the need for home cultivation—keeps it affordable; guarantees strain specific availability, etc.

NJ’s legalization bill (S3195): “Friends of CMMNJ” letter template in support of home cultivation, addressing concerns. Expect marijuana use uptick of 3% with new law; 97% of current marijuana users will just change vendors from illegal market to legal market. Teen use down in legal states.

The Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) Review Panel gave final approval to 43 petitions to add conditions (chronic pain, anxiety, migraines, and Tourette’s syndrome) to the MMP on 10/25/17. Now the DOH commissioner has 180 days to act. CUMMA amendments recommended. LTEs urged.

Marijuana Justice Act of 2017 (S1689): Congressional co-sponsors sought for Sen. Cory Booker’s federal bill. Take action: Capwiz from DPA and NORML.

Final 2017 Statehouse Podcast (100th) concluded with Thanksgiving Day lunch/clothing giveaway outside the Annex. Wayne Burrini (http://www.burrinis.com/) generously donated many delicious food items. Other advocates and patients donated food and clothing. Jim Miller and Lefty Grimes recognized for their heroic efforts in completing 100 podcasts outside the NJ Statehouse in all kinds of weather.

Political Prisoner/Veteran Ed (NJWeedman) Forchion remains in jail awaiting trial on hung jury charge.

Upcoming Events:
“CMMNJ TV” taping at Princeton TV studio, January 2018.
Patients Out of Time conference, Jersey City, NJ, May 10 – 12, 2018.
Garden State Cannabis Consultants, LLC (Nick & Leo) buying a video switcher to produce more videos.

Recent Events:
5th year anniversary of medical marijuana availability in NJ—12/6/17.
Ken spoke at "Medical Cannabis Conference," Montego Bay Jamaica, Nov. 10 -15, 2017, Atecam.com & "Medical Marijuana: There are big benefits for seniors;" at the Plainsboro Senior Center, 12/8/17.

Treasury report: Checking: $3264; PayPal: $3292. Multicolored hemp wristbands available.

2018 CMMNJ meetings were approved for the 2nd Tuesday of each month in 2018 from 7 - 9 PM at the Lawrence Twp. Library, 2751 Brunswick Pike, Lawrence Twp., 08648. All are welcome. (Meeting at the library does not imply Mercer County’s endorsement of our issue.)

More info:
Ken Wolski, RN, MPA (609) 394-2137 ohamkrw@aol.com http://www.cmmnj.org
Facebook:
Friends of CMMNJ: https://www.facebook.com/groups/62462971150/

CMMNJ, a 501(c)(3) public charity, is a non-profit educational organization.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

CMMNJ: Proposed improvements for the NJ Medical Marijuana Program

The Coalition for Medical Marijuana New Jersey, Inc. (CMMNJ) has identified issues to make the NJ Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) more effective.

The amendments CMMNJ proposes to NJ’s Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act would bring comprehensive changes to the MMP. These needed improvements to the MMP would:


Eliminate the physician registry (This is a major stumbling block to an effective program, and it was not called for in the law.  A voluntary registry would be OK to help patients find physicians who will recommend medical marijuana in the event a patient cannot locate a doctor, but any licensed NJ healthcare professional with prescriptive privileges, including Advanced Practice Nurses, should be allowed to recommend marijuana for patients);

Expand qualifying conditions (Immediately add to the NJ MMP the 43 petitions to add qualifying conditions that were given final approval by the NJ DOH MMP Review Panel);

Restore home cultivation of 6 (six) plants for qualified patients with a NJ MMP ID card;

Eliminate the tax on medical marijuana;

Include explicit employee workplace protections;

• Eliminate background check and fee for caregiver ID card, and reduce ID card fees;

• Eliminate the requirement for psychiatric clearance for minors;

• Require initial and ongoing training for all state, county and local Law Enforcement Officers;

Eliminate the two ounce/month limit;

Honor out-of–state ID cards and allow patients to obtain medical marijuana from out-of-state, if necessary;

• Cut permit fees for ATCs and impose no upper limit on the number of ATCs;

Permit any edible form of marijuana for any age and establish dosage units for all forms (The current prohibition on edibles for adults while allowing them for minors is simply absurd);

Require testing in licensed laboratories on each batch of marijuana (and on request);

• Forbid the DOH to issue overly restrictive or unduly burdensome regulations for this law;

• Eliminate the need for marijuana to be the last resort drug and establish it as a potential treatment of first resort;

• Broaden the definition of caregiver to allow for more than one child and eliminate the background check for the Primary Caregiver;

• Establish secondary caregivers who will be permitted to assist qualifying patients with the use of medical marijuana at schools, facilities for the developmentally disabled and LTC facilities. These secondary caregivers can be adult employees of the patient’s school or facility, and a person may serve as secondary caregiver to more than one qualifying patient at the school or facility at a time. Eliminate the fees for both caregivers.

(Ideally, nurses at the facilities would automatically qualify as secondary caregivers. Nurses should have no problem administering standardized doses of medical marijuana, as long as the typical prescribing information accompanies the drug—side effects, adverse effects, usual dosage, precautions, drug interactions, etc.  This info is already available. While the federal government still considers marijuana a Schedule I drug, the feds have promised not to interfere with the state medical marijuana programs, and indeed they have not.  Besides, the federal government has no power over the actions of nurses in NJ.  NJ determines what appropriate actions for nurses to perform are.)

Deschedule marijuana in NJ—remove it entirely as a Scheduled Drug since marijuana will soon be legalized in the state;

• Consider medical marijuana the same as any other medication used at the direction of a physician, and a patient may not be disqualified from receiving any medical care, including an organ transplant, based on the authorized use of medical marijuana;

• Block local governmental units of this state from enacting or enforcing any ordinance or other local law or regulation conflicting with, or preempted by, any provision of this law;

• Establish no upper limits on the number of ATCs in the state;

• Get the Board of Medical Examiners (BME) actively involved in educating physicians about the Endocannabinoid System and advising physicians of the availability of the standardized dosage unit information;

(The BME should insist that every physician in the state be required to take 1 – 3 hours of Continuing Medical Education on the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) as a condition for continued licensure in the state.  The ECS is an important emerging science, developed within the last 25 years, that explains how marijuana works in the human body and how it can be effective for so many diverse diseases, symptoms and conditions.  Even today, the ECS is only mentioned in about 13% of medical schools, despite its many implications for healthcare. Moreover, the DOH has an MMP which many physicians are completely ignorant of, and have no incentive to learn about.  These physicians refuse appropriate care to qualified patients in NJ, and often belittle and insult attempts by patients to receive this care.)

• Complete prescribing information, developed by the NJ DOH, should be available to NJ physicians when standardized doses of edible marijuana are available (currently lozenges and oils are available at one of the ATCs in NJ);

• Expand the time period that physicians may provide written instructions for to 60 days, which may include multiple written instructions up to 6 months.

(Once a patient with a chronic condition is established on medical marijuana, it should not be necessary to be routinely seen more frequently than this.)

• Allow edible medical marijuana products for qualified patients in all state institutions including psychiatric hospitals and state prisons.


Ken Wolski, RN, MPA

Executive Director

Coalition for Medical Marijuana--New Jersey, Inc.

609.394.2137

www.cmmnj.org

December 12, 2017