Obesity Rates Fall for Many Young Kids in Federal Nutrition Program

THURSDAY, Nov. 21, 2019 — Forty-one states and territories have seen drops in obesity rates among young children enrolled in a U.S. nutrition program, a new study shows.

“Improvements in national, state and caregiver guidance around nutrition and physical activity may be contributing to this decline in childhood obesity,” said Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“We are moving in the right direction, and helping parents make healthy choices for their children is reducing the potential for complications posed by childhood obesity later in life,” he added in a CDC news release.

In the study, U.S. federal government researchers analyzed obesity trends from 2010 to 2016 among more than 12.4 million children, aged 2 to 4, in low-income families enrolled in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC). WIC helps provide supplemental foods and nutrition education.

In 2009, WIC state agencies started providing food packages more in line with the U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans and infant feeding practice guidelines of the American Academy of Pediatrics. This led to increased availability of healthier foods and beverages for WIC enrollees.

Between 2010 and 2016, obesity rates fell by more than 3% in seven WIC states and territories (New Jersey, New Mexico, Utah, Virginia, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, and Puerto Rico).

However, three states had increases in obesity: Alabama (0.5%), North Carolina (0.6%), and West Virginia (2.2%).

The study appears in the Nov. 21 issue of the CDC publication Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

A previous study found that 34 of 56 WIC state/territory agencies had decreases in obesity rates between 2010 and 2014.

Currently, the WIC program also helps establish successful long-term breastfeeding, provides participants with a wider variety of foods, and offers WIC state agencies flexibility in food packages for participants with cultural food preferences.

Despite these declines in obesity among children enrolled in WIC, rates remained high in most states in 2016.

“While we have seen some progress, obesity prevalence among young children remains too high,” said Dr. Ruth Petersen, director of CDC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity.

“We must persist in our efforts to support healthy eating and physical activity for this positive trend to continue,” Petersen said in the release.

More information

Advice on preventing childhood obesity can be found at healthfinder.gov.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: November 2019

Drugs.com – Daily MedNews

Federal Hemp Legalization Could Help Spur Rural Colorado Economy

Colorado, which has more acreage devoted to registered hemp farms than any other state under a pilot program, is better equipped for the predicted boom than most of the country. Appearing in a joint press conference on December 14 outside the cannabis law firm Vicente Sederberg, several key members of the Colorado Legislature and the hemp industry shared their enthusiasm over new opportunities opened up by the Farm Bill.

“I’m very excited about this decision we’re celebrating here today,” said state senator Kerry Donovan, upcoming chair of the Senate Agriculture, Natural Resources and Energy Committee. “So how do we take this industry that’s just sprouting, and take it to more communities?” Donovan suggested that the Colorado Department of Agriculture’s registration program for hemp farmers, in operation since 2014 and responsible for overseeing over 1,000 growing licenses, was a “successful test case for Washington, D.C., to look at.”

Marijuana Deals Near You

Dylan Roberts, state representative and upcoming chair of the House Rural Affairs Committee (formerly the House Agriculture, Livestock and Natural Resources Committee), expressed hope that the pending federal legalization will bring more jobs and tax dollars to Colorado’s rural areas. “This is a great day for rural Colorado,” he said. “We will see hundreds of more jobs and millions of more dollars pour in.”

Once legalized federally, industrial hemp farming will be regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture. States that have already legalized hemp research and pilot programs, including Colorado, Kentucky and Oregon, will continue operating under their own rules until the USDA finalizes its regulation, according to Vicente Sederberg attorney Shawn Houser.

Vicente Sederberg's Mason Tvert (middle) gathered members of the Colorado General Assembly and hemp industry to celebrate industrial hemp's impending federal legalization.EXPAND

Vicente Sederberg’s Mason Tvert (middle) gathered members of the Colorado General Assembly and hemp industry to celebrate industrial hemp’s impending federal legalization.

Thomas Mitchell

Houser, who chairs her law firm’s hemp and cannabinoids practice group, explained that states can operate under their own plans for up to a year after the USDA adopts federal regulations; if states wish to continue managing hemp farming under their own rules, they can submit a request for USDA approval.

According to Colorado Hemp Industry Association boardmember Rick Trojan, the state’s hemp trade accounts for anywhere from $ 100 million to $ 200 million annually, and that could be conservative. That number will undoubtedly increase after federal legalization, he added, and it won’t just be thanks to hemp-based foods and wellness products. Most of the American clothing, food and beverage, cosmetics and wellness companies that currently use industrial hemp import it from Europe, Canada and Japan, where the plant is regulated as an agricultural commodity and not as a drug, as hemp currently is in this country.

Patagonia environmental coordinator Mark Stevens and New Belgium Brewing spokesman Jesse Claeys both said that their respective companies were excited to increase their relationships with Colorado’s hemp industry, using the plant for textiles and even a brewing ingredient. Stevens, who oversees various grants for environmentally focused groups in the Rocky Mountain region, said that Patagonia may even fund hemp farming and research projects in the future.

Although Colorado is many steps ahead of the majority of the states in this country, Colorado’s hemp industry could still add some diversity to its business portfolio, Houser said. While the state leads the country in acreage for hemp farming, she believes that Colorado is still behind Kentucky as a leader in research and processing.

“We need more than just farmers here,” she concluded.

Toke of the Town

Pregnant Women Face Risk Despite Federal ER Law

An investigation by WebMD and Georgia Health News.

Nov. 29, 2018 — Jamie Larson had just been wheeled into a room at Sutter Roseville Medical Center in Roseville, CA, after the birth of her first child when a nurse popped in to tell her, “It’s a boy!”

Larson, a 30-year-old schoolteacher, had a more somber question on her mind.

“Is he alive?”

Larson had just given birth to him in the hospital parking lot. His birth came less than an hour after nurses at the same hospital had assured her that her back pain was from a urinary tract infection and sent her home.

Larson’s son was born at 24 weeks and 5 days — well before the end of a normal 40-week pregnancy and on the cusp of the age when the most advanced neonatal medicine can keep a premature infant alive.

At the time, a doctor explained to Larson that babies born this early have a 20% to 30% chance of survival, but only if they are delivered under ideal circumstances. Her son was not.

Larson’s case was cited by federal authorities as a violation of the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act, or EMTALA. It was one of at least 72 different violations committed by hospitals over a 27-month period ending in March 2018 involving the care of women who were pregnant or in active labor, according to federal records obtained through the Freedom of Information Act. The cases represent about 8% of the total number of violations investigated by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) over that period.

Lack of Birthing Services

Under federal law, labor is considered a medical emergency. Any hospital that accepts payments from federal programs such as Medicare or Medicaid is required to take care of patients who are in labor when they come to the ER, regardless of their ability to pay for that care. Because virtually all hospitals accept these payments, nearly all are covered by the law.

The law received its name, in part, because of a woman in labor in California who was refused treatment by two private hospitals even though medical tests showed her baby was in distress. The hospitals mistakenly thought she was uninsured. By the time she arrived at the public hospital, where doctors rushed to perform an emergency C-section, her baby had died.

Despite their special protection for pregnancy under the 1986 law, the records show that pregnant women remain vulnerable to violations, though not for all the same reasons.

Now, instead of not treating patients who don’t have insurance, a practice called patient dumping, some hospitals turn away women in labor because they no longer have dedicated obstetrical units or enough staff who are properly trained to handle pregnancy and labor complications.

A study published in 2017 in the journal Health Affairs found that between 1985 and 2002, 760 U.S. hospitals shuttered their obstetrical units. That trend has continued. The study also found that 9% of rural counties lost their OB services between 2004 and 2014. Counties with more black residents had nearly five times higher odds of losing their OB services than counties with more white residents.

“We know that those closures have continued. If we were to do an update, it would look I think even more dire than it does now,” says study author Carrie Henning-Smith, PhD, assistant professor in the division of health policy and management at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health in Minneapolis.

“Today, fewer than half of all rural counties have an obstetrical unit in a hospital,” Henning-Smith says.

‘We Do Not Deal with Babies’

Federal records show that the erosion of birthing services has created confusion about how to respond when a woman in labor arrives at the ER.

That’s what happened on July 11, 2017, when a man pulled up outside the 98-bed emergency room at Leonard J. Chabert Medical Center in Houma, LA. His wife was 36 weeks pregnant and bleeding. He requested a wheelchair from a nurse in the ER. Instead he was told, “We cannot help you here. We do not deal with babies,” according to a federal investigation report. The incident, captured by a hospital security camera, shows him driving away moments later. The report didn’t include names for privacy reasons and doesn’t document what happened to the couple or their baby.

In an emailed statement, Leonard J. Chabert Medical Center declined to comment on the specifics of this violation, citing patient privacy laws.

“Our physicians, leaders, nurses and employees participate regularly in ongoing education and training to ensure that they live our vision of changing and saving lives each day,” the statement says.

On Dec. 12, 2016, a man approached a nurse in the Deer Lodge Medical Center in Deer Lodge, MT. He told them that his girlfriend was in labor. A federal investigation report says that a nurse at the 16-bed hospital told him they didn’t deliver babies and suggested the couple travel to a hospital in either Anaconda or Butte, 27 or 39 miles away, respectively. The man drove away. His girlfriend was almost fully dilated by the time she reached the next hospital and delivered the baby immediately after arrival.

Tony Pfaff, chief executive officer of Deer Lodge Medical Center, pushed back against that description of events. “It’s not remotely accurate,” he says.

He says the man approached a nurse and a doctor in the ER. The man asked if the hospital delivered babies. They told him that they didn’t, but offered to evaluate his girlfriend. He asked which hospitals in the area did deliver babies. They told him, and he drove away. Pfaff says his staff never saw the woman in labor.

When asked if the hospital had tried to correct the version of events in the investigation report, Pfaff says “No.” “We just decided to take our beating and move on because you can’t win” against the federal government, he says.

In response to the violation, Pfaff says the hospital has given its staff additional EMTALA training. They also created a way to log patients and their representatives who come into the ER but refuse treatment or leave without being seen. Those two actions satisfied CMS, he says. Pfaff says if the same thing happened again today, they’ve instructed their staff to try to be a little more aggressive in trying to see the patient. He says the hospital knows its obligations under the law.

“We’ve delivered babies in our ER before. It’s unusual, but we do it,” he says.

CMS officials say their EMTALA investigations are thorough and include interviews with hospital officials, physicians, and nurses and reviews of medical records. If a violation is found, hospitals must submit a plan of correction, where they can address any objections or issues they have with the federal findings. Hospitals can also appeal any fines levied for violations, CMS says.

Federal investigators cited both Deer Lodge and Leonard J. Chabert Medical Center for failing to do proper medical screening exams for the women, which are required by law.

An ER’s Obligations Under EMTALA

Howie Mell, MD, an emergency physician in Chicago and spokesperson for the American College of Emergency Physicians, says no hospital should be confused about its obligations under the law.

“First of all, you can’t turn anyone away who asks for help, and who may either have an emergency medical condition or may be in active labor,” he says.

Even if a hospital doesn’t have a dedicated obstetrical unit, Mell says all board-certified emergency physicians are trained in residency to deliver babies.

That doesn’t mean all ER doctors are trained to do C-sections or to manage birth complications, Mell says. He says there are patients who may need a higher level of care, and in those cases, the hospital’s obligation is to stabilize and safely transfer a woman to a hospital where those services are available.

Those transfers, even when done correctly, can be fraught with problems.

On July 22, 2017, a woman went to the Methodist Hospital for Surgery in Addison, TX, with cramps and vaginal bleeding. She was in her second trimester of pregnancy. The doctor who examined her decided her case was more complicated than their hospital could handle. She called another hospital, which agreed to accept her.

Before they could load her on the ambulance, however, she delivered a preterm baby that was not crying and barely moving. As a further complication, the doctor did not deliver the placenta, an organ which supplies blood to the baby during pregnancy, an essential next step to stop bleeding and lower the mother’s chances of infection. The baby was placed on the mother’s chest and both of them were loaded into an ambulance. The two of them were left in the hospital’s ambulance bay for 100 minutes — almost 2 hours — according to the federal inspection report.

When the pair finally arrived at the receiving hospital, medical records documented that the mother was covered in blood, with 8 inches of umbilical cord protruding from her vagina. The baby was dead. Investigators cited the hospital for not stabilizing the patients before the transfer and for not providing an appropriate transfer. The investigation report doesn’t say what later happened to the mother.

Methodist Hospital for Surgery did not respond to a request for comment on this violation.

Missing Labor

In Jamie Larson’s case, a federal investigation found that when she arrived at Sutter Roseville Medical Center, she was seen by two nurses. One was still in orientation. The other was her supervisor. Doctors at that hospital relied on the nurses’ assessment to determine if a pregnant patient was in labor, according to the federal report.

The nurses hooked Larson up to a fetal monitor, a machine that monitors the baby’s heart rate and the mother’s uterine contractions. The monitor didn’t show anything out of the ordinary.

They didn’t perform a cervical exam, although Larson told the nurses she was bleeding. They also failed to take into account the fact that she was having regular painful cramps in her back that were getting closer and closer together. If a woman complains of contractions that don’t show up on a monitor, the nurses are supposed to move the monitor.

According to CMS guidelines, the nurses’ exam didn’t meet the federal criteria of an adequate medical screening exam. An exam for a pregnant woman should include a check of fetal heart tones, measuring contractions, determining the baby’s position and where it is in the birth canal, checking the woman’s cervix to see if it is dilated, and seeing if her water has broken.

Instead, the nurses asked her for a urine sample. Larson says that on her way back from the bathroom, she was having trouble walking. The pain was so bad, she asked for a wheelchair.

The results of the test came back positive for a urinary tract infection. Larson questioned the test result, telling the nurses that she wasn’t having any other symptoms of a UTI and that she’d had false positive results on the same test twice before.

Larson says the hospital sent her home with a prescription for antibiotics. Meanwhile, the pain was getting worse. Larson and her husband drove home, about 12 minutes away. On the way home, she vomited in the car. She remembers thinking “well maybe this is a normal part of a UTI.”

Larson was pregnant with her first child and says she had no idea what to make of what was going on with her body. She had scheduled birthing classes, but they were still a month away.

Her husband was worried, though, and wondered whether he should stay with her or go get her prescription filled.

She told him to go to the pharmacy. On the way out the door, he called his mother and told her something was wrong. Could she please come stay with Jamie? She was there within minutes.

“She said as soon as she walked in the door, she could tell I was in labor.”

The next time Larson went to the bathroom, she saw blood. Larson told her mother-in-law they needed to go back to the hospital. They jumped in her Toyota truck and called Larson’s husband, telling him to meet them there.

Larson’s contractions were constant, an intense period of labor known as transition. She felt a pop.

“I thought, ‘I’m having a miscarriage, this baby is dying.’”

As they pulled into the hospital parking lot, Larson says she felt enormous pressure on her abdomen. She tried to get out of the truck but got stuck, perched on the edge of the seat, with one foot on the floorboard.

Her mother-in-law flagged down a man in the parking lot who was getting into his car to leave.

“We think she’s having a baby!” she yelled.

The man was an obstetrician-gynecologist. He quickly walked back into the hospital and came back out with a cadre of nurses and a wheelchair for Larson.

She saw them come out of the hospital and yelled, “Run!”

She could feel the baby sliding out of her body. He was caught by her underwear and yoga pants. She couldn’t bring herself to look.

A nurse arrived and in one motion yanked her pants down and caught the baby.

“They pulled him out and he wasn’t moving. I thought he was dead. He was just so, so tiny,” Larson says.

The nurse scooped the baby up and ran with him back into the hospital.

Babies born at 24 weeks have immature lungs and lack a slippery chemical called surfactant in their lungs. This can lead to trouble breathing and potentially fatal lung damage if they are not treated and given oxygen.

They wheeled Larson back into the hospital. She was sobbing hysterically and covered in blood.

After what felt like an eternity, a nurse brought the baby in just briefly to say hello. It was the first time Larson had gotten a look at him. It was a short visit. They whisked the baby away to a different hospital for specialized neonatal care.

As they delivered the placenta and cleaned her up, Larson remembers the room was very, very quiet.

Her husband, who never cries, collapsed sobbing by her bed. He had pulled up to the hospital just in time to see the whole thing.

After its review of her case, CMS determined that none of the eight labor and delivery nurses at Sutter Roseville Medical Center were qualified to do a medical screening exam, a situation that placed patients in immediate jeopardy. A finding of immediate jeopardy is a serious federal violation that requires a hospital to submit and follow a plan of correction or risk losing federal funding.

Larson’s son spent 138 days in the neonatal intensive care unit. Even after he came home, he was fragile. Larson asked that his name not be used to protect his privacy.

Larson says she had to take 2 years off of work to care for him because they couldn’t put him in a normal daycare — his weak immune system put him at greater risk of getting sick. She now volunteers with the Aly and Izy Foundation, which supports parents of premature infants.

She spent a year in therapy being treated for posttraumatic stress.

In response to a request for comment, Erin Shaw, a spokesperson for Sutter Roseville Medical Center, emailed the following statement:

“Sutter Roseville Medical Center strives to provide the best in patient care. We took CMS’ findings seriously, and quickly identified opportunities for improvement and implemented actions to address them. Patient privacy laws prevent us from discussing the particulars of this situation.”

Larson says she hopes the nurses at the hospital will get more training and listen more carefully to their patients.

“I didn’t know what my rights were as a patient and how to advocate for myself,” Larson says. “I wish I had been better prepared.”

WebMD Article

Sources

SOURCES:

Jamie Larson, Citrus Heights, CA.

Freedom of Information Act Request, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Filed March 2018.

Carrie Henning-Smith, PhD, assistant professor, division of health policy and management, University of Minnesota School of Public Health, Minneapolis.

Emailed statement, Leonard J. Chabert Medical Center, Houma, LA.

Tony Pfaff, chief executive officer, Deer Lodge Medical Center, Deer Lodge, MT.

Howie Mell, MD, spokesperson, American College of Emergency Physicians, Chicago.

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services: “State Operations Manual, Appendix V—Interpretive Guidelines, Accessed November 20, 2018.”

Erin Shaw, spokesperson, Sutter Roseville Medical Center, Roseville, CA.

© 2018 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.


WebMD Health

Federal Cannabis Studies Panel to Tiptoe Around Prohibition

A federal agency is sponsoring a workshop in December 2018 that will touch on various aspects of marijuana research, specifically focusing on how to study cannabinoids under the “current regulatory framework” of prohibition. The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, part of the National Institutes of Health, recently posted a description of the workshop […]
Marijuana

Denver Mayor Leads National Mayors’ Coalition Calling for Federal Marijuana Reform

Mayor Michael Hancock wasn’t a fan of legal marijuana before Colorado voters approved it in 2012, but he’s since become a public defender of the plant — or at least, the actions taken by the City of Denver to comply with Amendment 64. On Sunday, June 10, Hancock’s office announced that he’s spearheading a coalition of mayors from around the country in an effort to push Congress to protect states with legal pot.

Although he originally opposed legalization efforts, Hancock was the mayor of the first major city to legalize marijuana, and since the first recreational sales on January 1, 2014, Denver has become into one of the nation’s capitals of legal weed, with over 200 dispensaries and 1,100 licensed pot businesses now operating in the city, according to the Denver Department of Excise and Licenses. Now, he and mayors of at least eight other cities are asking Congress to listen to them about their experiences so that legalization “can be done smoothly, safely and effectively.”

“With 46 states having some form of legalization, the reality is legal marijuana is coming to a city near you. As mayors of cities that have successfully implemented and managed this new industry, we have hands on experience that can help Congress take the right steps to support other local governments as they prepare to enter this new frontier,” Hancock said in an announcement of the coalition. “We all will face common challenges when it comes to legalizing marijuana, and those challenges need federal solutions so implementation can be done smoothly, safely and effectively.”

The group was established during the annual meeting of the United States Conference of Mayors, which ends June 11 in Boston. Hancock is the current head of the National Conference of Democratic Mayors.

His coalition wants more protection for an industry that has collected nearly $ 5 billion in revenue in Colorado alone since 2014, including clear and legal access to banking services and the removal of marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act.

According to the mayor’s office, the group’s official goals are as follows:

  • Removing cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act, which would allow banks and other financial institutions to work with state-compliant marijuana-related businesses, and allow employers in the cannabis industry to take tax deductions similar to those enjoyed by other businesses.
  • Providing updated guidance to financial institutions that are providing or seek to provide services to commercial cannabis businesses.
  • Approving the McClintock-Polis amendment to annual federal appropriations legislation to safeguard state and local government marijuana reforms.
  • Extending safe and legal access to medicinal marijuana to U.S. military veterans.
  • Maintaining the Rohrabacher-Joyce-Blumenauer amendment, which protects states’ rights by prohibiting the federal government from spending funds to interfere with the implementation of state medical marijuana laws.

Calls by the legal pot industry for amped-up state protection have been common since United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions revoked protective federal guidelines for state-legalized marijuana businesses and users in January; Hancock even released a statement of his own condemning Sessions for the move and calling on Congress to intervene. There haven’t been any reports of federal authorities cracking down on state-compliant pot businesses since Sessions’s move in January, though, and Robert Troyer, the U.S. Attorney for the District of Colorado, said his office wouldn’t change the way it approached marijuana enforcement.

Sessions, who was in Denver on June 8 to speak at the Western Conservative Summit, was mum on marijuana while in the Mile High City. But the same day he was at the Summit, President Donald Trump said he’d “probably” support a bill from Colorado Senator Cory Gardner and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren that would officially protect state-legalized and compliant marijuana businesses and users from prosecution by federal agencies.

Along with Hancock, coalition members include Mayor Heidi Williams of Thornton, as well as mayors Mark Farrell (San Francisco), Jenny Durkan (Seattle), Libby Schaaf (Oakland), Tedd Wheeler (Portland), Christopher Cabaldon (West Sacramento), Eric Garcetti (Los Angeles) and Carolyn Goodman (Las Vegas).

Although Thornton didn’t approve dispensaries until last year, the potshop ban was a city council decision, with the town’s first dispensary opening under Williams in November 2017.

Toke of the Town

Colorado Senator: Trump Plans on Fixing Federal Marijuana Problem ‘Once and for All’

Colorado Republican Sen. Cory Gardner has agreed on a deal with President Trump that would end his boycott of the Department of Justice (DOJ) nomination process over US Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ directive to prosecute cannabis-related offenses federally. Gardner responded to Sessions’ January memo that directed federal prosecutors to focus once again on enforcing federal […]
Marijuana

Appeals Court Says Feds Can Enforce Marijuana Law on Federal Land in Legal States

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A U.S. appeals court says a law that bans the Justice Department from prosecuting some medical marijuana users and dispensaries does not apply to marijuana operations on federal land. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday rejected an appeal by two men charged in federal court with growing marijuana […]
Marijuana

New York Judge Dismisses Challenge to Federal Marijuana Laws

NEW YORK (AP) — A judge on Monday dismissed a lawsuit challenging federal laws criminalizing marijuana as unconstitutional, saying the five plaintiffs had failed to pursue changes in the drug’s legal status by first going through the Drug Enforcement Administration. U.S. District Judge Alvin Hellerstein did not address the plaintiffs claim that marijuana has medical […]
Marijuana

Federal Spending Deal Keeps Medical Marijuana Protections in Place… For Another Few Weeks

After a government shutdown lasting only a few hours, Congress passed yet another temporary spending bill on Friday that will keep medical marijuana patients and providers safe for a little while longer. The bill includes the amendments that has been part of the spending budget since 2014, which prevents the Department of Justice from spending resources to prosecute people or businesses that are in compliance with state laws. This deal is set to expire on March 23.

Congress will need to pass another spending bill before then in order to continue keeping state medical marijuana programs safe. In the event of a government shutdown, there will be nothing to stop federal prosecutors from targeting medical marijuana programs around the country.

However, supportive lawmakers are using the temporary reprieves to push for even more comprehensive protections, including amendments that would extend protections to businesses in the adult-use market.

Please contact your lawmakers and ask them to support state marijuana protections in the final spending bill.

 

The post Federal Spending Deal Keeps Medical Marijuana Protections in Place… For Another Few Weeks appeared first on MPP Blog.


MPP Blog

Colorado Credit Union Gets Federal Approval to Serve Cannabis Industry

As states individually regain some of the freedom lost through decades of cannabis prohibition, one of the many roadblocks to a thriving legal market has been finding a reliable banking solution. Now, one credit union in Colorado may be on the brink of a breakthrough, after having received a conditional approval from a Federal Reserve […]
Marijuana

New Poll: Majority of Americans Oppose Federal Intervention on Marijuana

In the wake of Jeff Sessions rescinding the Cole memo and attempting to reignite the failing war on cannabis in America, many politicians and citizens alike have come out in defiance of the archaic approach to law enforcement. Now, we have tangible evidence Americans are not in favor of Sessions and the Department of Justice […]
Marijuana

Jeff Sessions is Rescinding Federal Marijuana Protections

Just days after California ushered in a new era for marijuana legalization by introducing a recreational market to the sixth largest economy on Earth, the Trump administration has positioned itself to undo years of progress by rescinding the integral federal protections that allow states to establish their own marijuana legislation. Two anonymous sources with direct […]
Marijuana

Canada’s Government Proposes Federal Tax at $1 per Gram of Cannabis Upon Legalization

Canada’s government is proposing a plan to tax a gram of legal weed at $ 1. According to a news report from the Canadian press, the public announcement took place within Ottawa Canada as one liberalist outlined a federal tax proposal for legalization within the marijuana industry. The liberalist is Bill Blair, former Toronto police chief and he’s also appointed as one of the leading authorities within Canada’s government.

What are the pros for putting a tax on legal pot?

Since the public announcement last week, there have been discussions of whether this is good or bad for the citizens of Canada. The tax revenues from each weed purchase will help put more money into education, research, enforcement, and other activities. Although this seems very promising to Canada’s government overall end goal, local states don’t seem to agree with the overall proposal.

What are the cons of taxation of legal pot?

States or provinces are in disagreement with the federal tax proposal as Canada’s government only wants to split half of the tax revenues. This seems illogical as there are more provinces than there is one government. Would they get less for the number of tax revenues within each province than the government?

In addition, the provinces will still have extra costs if cannabis becomes legal within Canada. This will make it harder for provinces to keep up with the cash flow. British Columbia Finance Minister Carole James outspoke his concerns on the matter:

“To look at a 50-50 split when we’re taking more of the share of responsibility here in B.C. just isn’t fair and certainly isn’t going to work for our province,” said James.

Estimates of Tax Revenues

The charge for each gram of weed is $ 8, but from the new proposal plan the taxes would spike it up. The initial $ 1 plus another $ 1.17 GST which results at $ 10.17.

It’s also predicted that the tax revenues when legalized weed becomes known, will reach $ 1 billion in one year.

Overall, it seems as though putting a tax on cannabis will ultimately either benefit or bring some drawbacks within Canada’s economy. However, the price is still underneath the black market price which is where it should stay. Otherwise, if taxes keep spiking in the near future for cannabis legalization than why legalize it at all?

The 420 Times