Marijuana News Roundup: Cities and States Gearing Up

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The biggest bit of marijuana industry news in the week ending August 12 was that the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) rejected a call to loosen federal restrictions on marijuana. In the end, marijuana will remain on the government’s list of the most highly regulated and dangerous drugs as a Schedule I drug. Still, the DEA has opened the door for research on marijuana for medical uses.

Marijuana prices might have spiked 8.1% to $1,742 per pound, but there may be more. 24/7 Wall St. recently featured the cities have the most expensive legal marijuana and the ones that have the least expensive legal marijuana for the public.

Another issue, particularly ahead of the elections with so many states having some form of cannabis efforts on ballots, is the next 14 states expected to legalize marijuana. And from the prior weekend’s report, it turns out that Hillary Clinton was considered the more friendly candidate to the cannabis industry.

This last week brought a serious issue for legalizing cannabinoid drugs for the U.S. pharmaceutical industry. A company named GW Pharmaceuticals PLC (NASDAQ: GWPH) was given two totally opposite views by a bull and a bear analyst. One sees upside of over 70% and one sees it being cut in more than half.

Scotts Miracle-Gro Co. (NYSE: SMG) has become a budding company investors see upside for. Its fertilizer business is apparently catching the halo-effect from growing operations in need of fertilizers, and the company recently spent $136 million to acquire a Dutch company making hydroponic garden lights. Scotts Miracle-Gro hit an all-time high of $83.28 on Friday, and its shares are now up almost 30% so far in 2016.

Everyone now knows that the legalized marijuana shops are cash cows. They effectively cannot keep cash at banks, so they are sometimes targeted by robbers. This week a marijuana store in the Greenwood neighborhood of Seattle was robbed at closing time, but a store employee was watching on video real-time and called the police. The two robbers were arrested at the scene.

Seattle was also busy in news elsewhere, when one of the legal grow-house buildings in Seattle caught on fire. They did not say how many people were partying down-wind from the fire.

TIME also ran a feature covering the seven scientific effects of marijuana that experts want to study. This gave detail on studies about use in cancer, brain effects, dosage and strains, anxiety and more.

The Marijuana Show is now two full seasons into being the “Shark Tank for Cannabis,” with entrepreneurs lining up for season 3.

Marijuana Business Daily reported that a company called Tuatara landed a record capital raise of $93 million for investments in marijuana businesses. Also, Canopy Growth is now the first cultivating company to be public in North America, via the Toronto Stock Exchange.

If you thought drinking and driving were a bad mix, New Mexico just rejected a proposed medical cannabis dispensary with a drive-thru. Organtica was aiming to open the drive-thru later in 2016 at its first dispensary location in Albuquerque. Should you believe the notion that PTSD patients are too uncomfortable in crowds in the retail stores? Amazingly, some states apparently allow drive-thrus.