Out and Imbibing
in West Hollywood

Courtesy Serge Esteve on UnSplash

West Hollywood is set to have as many cannabis lounges as the rest of the country. Half of the city's 16 licensed sites, poised to open this year, will be edibles only, while the other half will allow smoking and vaping as well.

  • Recruitment for the lounges began in 2017 when the city first asked applicants for innovative approaches to their pot-based businesses. “[T]heir connection to West Hollywood, proposed operations, social equity and product offerings” were also considered.
  • A score sheet was developed and applicants' numbers were publicly posted. Flore West Hollywood scored the highest, the city revealed in December. It will feature a farm-to-table approach and a photographic history of marijuana's role in West Hollywood history.
  • The state NORML office calls the Southern California city's move a win for normalization. "It’s not legal enough to me until people can use cannabis in the way they might go into a bar to socialize and consume,” said deputy director Ellen Komp.

Industry Salaries Eclipse
National Median,
Hiring Rate Jumps 76%,

Courtesy of Getty Images

Cannabis jobs pay well and are plentiful, according to a new industry study. In spite of risks related to legality, a 76% increase in hiring occurred in 2018. The median starting yearly salary of $58,511 is 10.7% more than the national median salary.

  • A slight majority of the openings are professional and tech gigs. According to the report's author, "arket trends are driving increased demand for a wide variety of skills and backgrounds from marketing to plant sciences to accounting."
  • Glassdoor calls hiring a leading indicator of business confidence because it demands a "long-term investment of time, effort and money."
  • According to Glassdoor's research, the cities with the most legal weed workers are, S.F., L.A., and Denver, in that order.

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Ten SoCal Dispensaries
Shuttered as Illicit Market
Clampdown Escalates

Photo by Daniel Tafjord on Unsplash

Will 2019 go down as the year California came down hard on the illicit market? Law enforcement activites on the Inland Empire suggest it will.

  1. On January 24, 10 allegedly unlicensed dispensaries in Hemet, Thousand Palms, Lake Elsinore, Temecula, Jurupa Valley and Banning were served with search warrants following months of investigation by the Riverside County cannabis regulation task force.
  2. Ninety pounds of bud and a large, unspecified amount of edibles were confiscated by law enforcement.
  3. In concert with proposed tax cuts in Sacramento, less freedom for the illicit market is thought to be a panacea for the sluggish REC market.

Are New WHO Designations
in the Offing for Marijuana?

Courtesy of Getty Images

If proposals put forth in an as-yet-unreleased World Health Organization memo are adopted later this year, future international treaties concerning marijuana will show the drug's status reclassified.

  • Whole-plant marijuana and resin would be taken off of Schedule 4, the most restrictive category of the 1961 Unitied Nations convention. THC and its isomers would also be rescheduled to less restrictive categories.
  • CBD-based products with no more than 0.2% percent THC would not be under international control.
  • The recommendations are to be voted on by the UN’s Commission on Narcotic Drugs as soon as March.

Pot's Future in
States' Hands

Courtesy of Getty Images

A swarm of lobbyists representing cannabis have descended upon D.C. and the new Congressional Cannabis Caucus has begun begin to manuever. However, 2019's D.Washington issue to watch for is the STATES Act, a bipartisan bill introduced in the Senate last year.

The STATES Act would leave control of marijuana to individual states. Cannabis Trade Assocation leader Neal Levine believes the President could sign the bill into law.

  • Senators Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-co-authored the bill. If signed, STATES would pave the way for banking, as compliance would be explicitly not be considered trafficking.
  • Levine said that in addition to US states moving toward legalization, the international embrace of marijuana is pressuring the Capitol to act. "We got an issue here that people are starting to care passionately about that can swing elections," he said.
  • Meanwhile, the first Congressional Financial Services Committee banking vote is scheduled to take place next week.

L.A. Enters
Phase 2 of Licensing

Photo by sydney Rae on Unsplash

L.A. reached a long awaited milestone , when the city's Department of Cannabis Regulation issued its first temporary licenses.

  • Growers, edibles makers and other nonretail companies are being licensed in Phase 2. Only retailers in business since 2007 were elligible for Phase 1 licenses..
  • Phase 2's application process drew 600 applicants. Thus far the city has authorized 34 applicants and about 400 more are still under consideration.
  • L.A.'s Phase 3, a window open to newcomers, could begin as early as spring.

Mexico's Fox: Legalize MED First, Then REC, Then Everything

Courtesy of Getty Images

Former Mexican President Vincente Fox reiterated that legalization can end the cycle of violence created by prohibition, as well as enhance our species' notions of personal freedom. Fox would like to see all drugs made legal.

  • Fox called America's federal policy a freedom violation, arguing that humans were made to be free and that language enshrined in the U.S. Constitution underscores this. "[W]e deserve to manage our own consciences and beliefs, and to make our own, responsible decisions.”
  • Fox is on the Board of Directors of High Times, owners of Dope Magazine.


  1. Conflicting rules about edibles issued by the state last month resulted in a number of infused products being rejectedfailed unexpectely. Now those rules have been clarified.

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Director of UCLA's Cannabis Research Initiative Has Lots to Say

The woman in charge of UCLA's Cannabis Research Initiative, Ziva Cooper, recently talked about some of her newest projects, including an effort to discover whether opiod users can lower their pain relief dosages by combining them with marijuana.

  • Cooper said the research is taken from animal science, which indicates that THC may lower the doses of opioids needed to alleviate pain.
  • Women have come to make up about half of cannabis users. Men used the substance twice as much, according to Cooper. "But what we’re seeing now is that with the legislation passing related to medical cannabis laws is that there is increased numbers of women who are seeking medical cannabis specifically to alleviate pain. So now the ratio is about 1 to 1."
  • Cooper also explained why she tweeted about the new anti-pot book "Tell Your Children," by Alex Berenson (an upcoming guest on the WeedWeek podcast). "He actually stated that we concluded that cannabis causes schizophrenia, which we didn’t. So I was prompted to speak up, because I don’t have time to write a New York Times editorial in response, and Twitter seems like the fastest way to get my message out."


  1. Jeff Bridges steered clear of Mary Jane while filming The Big Lebowski because he wanted the timing of each F-bomb The Dude dropped to be impeccable.
  2. Delivery drivers in Contra Costa County are being regularly robbed, and the police blame the industry's cash economy.
  3. And of course the trendy gift this year is cannabis-infused chocolates. Happy Valentine's Day!

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