New England’s Largest Cannabis Business Convention Returns To Rhode Island

Industry event set to draw over 2,000 for the emerging cannabis economy

RHODE ISLAND: NECANN returns to Providence for the 4th annual Rhode Island Cannabis Convention on October 20 & 21, at the RI Convention Center. This event is the final event in NECANN’s six-city schedule for 2018, making it the largest cannabis industry series in the United States.

As Rhode Island continues to edge towards legalizing recreational marijuana, the RI Cannabis Convention will explore how laws might be shaped, what business opportunities are available, and most importantly, how Rhode islanders can ensure that local economies benefit from this multi-billion-dollar industry. There will also be a large focus on the RI Medical Marijuana program, including opportunities and education for prospective patients. The convention will be the largest ever in Rhode Island, drawing more than 2,000 attendees, 125+industry exhibitors and more than 50 local and national speakers.

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The two-day convention highlights include former Patriots 2014 Super Bowl champ Eric Martin, a vocal medical marijuana advocate as keynote, as well as sessions on will feature a programming track for Cannabis Business, Careers & Medicine, and a track for DIY Cannabis. Session topics include: Legal & Compliant Cannabiz, Micro-dosing & cooking with Cannabis, how to maximize yields, Medical Cannabis Uses, and much more.

“The goal of this convention is to get everyone in Rhode Island who is in the cannabis industry, or would like to be, in one room for a weekend of networking, education, and relationship building,” said Marc Shepard, co-founder and president of NECANN. “The faster Rhode Island businesses get up and running, and the more local connections they make, the higher the % of cannabis revenue will stay in the state,”

Registration for the event can be purchased online at www.necann.com. A limited amount of tickets will also be sold on-site on the days of the shows. The full programming schedule is available online.

Must be 21+ to attend NECAN unless accompanied by an adult. NO smoking, vaping, dabbing, etc. ANYWHERE at the venue.

What:   2018 Rhode Island Cannabis Convention presented by NECANN

When:  Saturday, October 20- Sunday October 21, 2018

Where:Rhode Island Convention Center

Who:    Cannabis enthusiasts, doctors, lawyers, master growers, entrepreneurs, security experts, home growers, etc.

Tickets: One-day general ticket- $20.00 | Two-day admission ticket- $30.00

Marijuana Legalization Could Come To These 12 States This Year

By Eric Weisbrot

Despite strong efforts to maintain the criminalization of marijuana use in the United States, many individuals and lawmakers have taken a step in the direction of legalization over the last several years. Currently, there are 29 states that allow for medical marijuana use, under particular limitations, and a smaller percentage that give residents the ability to use marijuana on a recreational basis under state law. The federal government has been slow to end prohibition of the drug, but recent research shows growing support for legalization on a state level for many reasons.

One of the strongest components of marijuana legalization support revolves around the well-documented success of states that have eliminated prohibition for residents. The states that allow for recreational use of marijuana have systems in place to ensure the tax revenue and economic growth is regulated, mostly through the use of bonding and licensing requirements for dispensaries, growers, and distributors. Based on the positive outcomes legalized states have generated, there are 12 more states considering legalizing marijuana use on some level in 2018.

Michigan: In the state of Michigan, there is a current initiative to gather the 250,000 signatures needed to include a marijuana legalization bill on the ballot in the 2018 election cycle. If approved, the bill would allow for recreational use of the drug for those over the age of 21 who are also residents of the state.

Delaware: In late 2017, a legislative task force was formed in order to analyze the impact marijuana use has on state residents from a recreational standpoint. A bill was shot down in 2017, but the hope is that an opportunity remains in 2018 after the findings of the task force are made public.

New Jersey: With a Democratic-led legislature, New Jersey is poised to legalize the use of marijuana for recreational purposes in 2018. A skyrocketing criminal justice cost along with proven racial injustices in the state are the prime motivators behind passing such legislation this year.

Vermont: A bill legalizing the recreational use of marijuana was approved in Vermont in May 2017, but it was vetoed by the governor at the time. A commission tasked with studying the issues surrounding recreational marijuana use, including health concerns and driving impairment statistics, was created at that time. Based on the results of the commission’s work, legislation is set to pass in Vermont in 2018 allowing adults over the age of 21 to possess up to one ounce of marijuana and cultivation of two mature plants.

Oklahoma: During either the June or November elections, Oklahoma is set to add a bill to the ballot for medical marijuana use legalization for state residents.

Ohio: Lawmakers in Ohio failed to get a bill passed to legalize recreational marijuana use in the last three years, but a ballot proposal is intended to be included during the midterm election cycle this year.

Connecticut: Thanks to local efforts from lawmakers in Harford, Connecticut legislature is set to include a statewide ballot vote for recreational marijuana legalization in November 2018.

Rhode Island: After forming a legislative commission in 2017, Rhode Island may be one of the next states to legalize recreational marijuana use in 2018. The commission sought to research the impacts of the drug on its community, based on neighboring studies in Massachusetts and Maine.

Kentucky: A bill for the legalization of medical marijuana may be on the docket in 2018 for residents of Kentucky. Although there is little support from the current governor, advocates for the drug’s medical use may beat the odds during the midterm election cycle.

Utah: Medical marijuana may be legalized in Utah, following in the footsteps of several other states nearby. The ballot for the midterm elections should include a bill for Utah voters to weigh in on in 2018.

South Dakota: South Dakota may also be close to legalizing medical marijuana, as signatures are currently being gathered for a ballot initiative slated for 2018 election inclusion.

Missouri: Similar to South Dakota, signatures are currently being collected for a medical marijuana bill in Missouri which would allow voters to make the decision in this election cycle.


Eric Weisbrot is the Chief Marketing Officer of JW Surety Bonds. With years of experience in the surety industry under several different roles within the company, he is also a contributing author to the surety bond blog.  

NECANN Returns To Rhode Island Convention Center October 28 & 29

RHODE ISLAND: Following up on recent events in Boston, MA and Portland, ME (the two largest Cannabis Industry conventions ever on the east coast), NECANN will return to Providence for the third annual Rhode Island Cannabis Convention on October 28 & 29,  at the RI Convention Center.

As Rhode Island continues to edge towards legalizing recreational marijuana, the RI Cannabis Convention will explore how laws might be shaped, what business opportunities are available and most importantly, how Rhode islanders can ensure that local economies benefit from this multi-billion-dollar industry. The convention is expected to be the largest ever in Rhode Island, drawing more than 2,000 attendees, 90+ industry exhibitors and more than 70 local and national speakers.

The two-day convention will feature a programming track for Cannabis Business, Careers & Medicine, and a track for DIY Cannabis. Session topics include: Careers in Cannabis, Legal & Compliant Cannabiz, Micro-dosing & cooking with Cannabis, Medical Cannabis Uses and much more. Attendees will also be able to register for a six-hour business course offered through Clover Leaf University.

“The goal of this convention is to get everyone in Rhode Island who is in the cannabis industry, or would like to be, in one room for a weekend of networking, education, and relationship building,” said Marc Shepard, co-founder and president of NECANN. “The faster Rhode Island businesses get up and running, and the more local connections they make, the higher the % of cannabis revenue will stay in the state,”

Registration for the event can be purchased online at www.necann.com. A limited amount of tickets will also be sold on-site on the days of the shows. The full programming schedule is available at  www.necann.com/ri.

Must be 18+ to attend NECAN unless accompanied by an adult. ID is required. NO smoking, vaping, dabbing, etc. ANYWHERE at the venue.

 

What:    2017 Rhode Island Cannabis Convention presented by NECANN

When:   Saturday, October 28- Sunday October 29, 2017

Where: Rhode Island Convention Center

Who:     Cannabis enthusiasts, doctors, lawyers, master growers, entrepreneurs, security experts, home growers, etc.

Tickets: One-day general ticket- $20.00  |  Two-day admission ticket- $30.00

 

Police Fine Church Member Who Brought Marijuana To Park

RHODE ISLAND:  Three members of a church that uses marijuana in its ceremonies have been ticketed for possessing a controlled substance at Roger Williams National Memorial.

Police moved in Tuesday and issued $100 citations after members of the West Greenwich-based Healing Church lit a glass pipe they referred to as a chalice.

Anne Armstrong, deaconess of church, says they believe the police action was akin to “storm troopers bursting into a Catholic church while they were distributing Holy Communion.”

Church members have been praying at the memorial this week and have received a permit to hold a service there on Saturday.

Cannabis Sect Worshiping At Providence’s Roger Williams National Memorial

RHODE ISLAND:  Leaders of The Healing Church of West Greenwich, which uses marijuana for prayer and anointing, said they have been holding daily novenas since Thursday at the Roger Williams National Memorial and that they were questioned but not arrested Sunday by a park ranger and Providence police.

Anne Armstrong and Alan Gordon, who live at 99 Hudson Pond Rd., West Greenwich, where the church meets, said they plan to continue the novenas until a service at the federal property at 8 p.m. Saturday, for which they  have a permit from the National Park Service to allow a gathering of up to 100 people.

Cannabis, which they consider “sacred matter,” is part of prayer.

Armstrong said the hour-long novenas, starting at 5:20 p.m. on weekdays, are being held for the nine days before Pentecost, which for most Christians falls on May 24 this year. They have been meeting at the well to a spring that Roger Williams and the first European settlers in Providence used, which has religious significance for Armstrong.

 

Rhode Island Considers Recreational Marijuana Legalization

RHODE ISLAND:  Rhode Island state lawmakers introduced legislation Thursday that would end marijuana prohibition and establish a system to regulate and tax the weed.

Marijuana prohibition is an ineffective and wasteful policy, and we cannot afford to ignore it any longer,” state Sen. Joshua Miller (D), sponsor of a Senate bill, said in a statement. “The legislature is perfectly capable of creating a system that will work for Rhode Island.”

Rhode Island legalized medical marijuana in 2006, and recreational marijuana appears to be supported by a majority of the state’s voters. A 2014 poll found 52 percent in favor of changing marijuana laws, mirroring national trends. This is the fourth year that legislation to regulate and tax recreational marijuana has been introduced. It’s unclear whether state lawmakers will support the new measure.

Rhode Island’s First Medical Marijuana Vapor Lounge To Open In Providence

RHODE ISLAND:  Two Johnson & Wales University graduates are ready to open the state’s first medical marijuana vapor lounge in downtown Providence Saturday.

Named Elevated,  the small storefront lounge on Peck Street does not intend to sell marijuana, but offer licensed medical marijuana patients a casual space to consume their medication in vapor form, said owner Kevin Cintorino Friday. Pipes and accessories for marijuana “vaping” will be available to rent.

“A lot of landlords don’t let you use medicine in your apartment, so people have to go to their friends’ houses and other places that aren’t convenient,” said Cintorino, who is also a medical marijuana patient. “Here they can relax and talk about what works best with other people who know about it.”

Unlike smoking the drug, vaping marijuana, like vaping tobacco, avoids Rhode Island’s indoor smoking ban.

At Brown University Forum, Proponents Discuss Legalizing Marijuana In Rhode Island

RHODE ISLAND:  A community forum at Brown University Tuesday night on regulating and taxing marijuana was opened with a statistic contending that more African-American men are in prison, jail or on parole or probation than were enslaved in 1850.

The forum, organized by Regulate Rhode Island, a statewide coalition of citizens and organizations dedicated to “ending the failed policy of marijuana prohibition and replacing it with a system in which marijuana is regulated and taxed similarly to alcohol,” brought together two panels of four to discuss legalizing marijuana in Rhode Island.

One panelist, state Sen. Joshua Miller, whose district includes part of Cranston and Providence, is the primary sponsor of the Marijuana Regulation, Control, and Taxation Act. He said his motivation is steering people away from overdosing on opiates, which he said claim as many lives as a plane crashing at T.F. Green Airport every year. So far this year in Rhode Island, 188 people have died from accidental drug overdoses.

A brief history of prejudice and prohibition was provided by Dr. David C. Lewis, founder of Brown University’s Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies. He traced prohibitions from opium to alcohol to marijuana to prejudices against Asians, Mexicans and African-Americans.

R.I.’s Third Medical Marijuana Dispensary To Open In Warwick On Monday

RHODE ISLAND:  Following a series of fits and starts that date to 2011, the state’s third and final dispensary, Summit Medical Compassion Center, is set to open its doors on Monday to sell medical marijuana to patients registered with the state.

The dispensary is a low-key facility in a commercial plaza at 380 Jefferson Blvd., just off Route 95 south.

The Warwick dispensary comes about a year and a half after the first two dispensaries opened, in spring 2013.

The first was the Thomas C. Slater Compassion Center, at 1 Corliss St., Providence. It was followed about six weeks later by Greenleaf Compassionate Care Center, at 1637 West Main Rd., Portsmouth.

 

 

Write-In Candidate Smokes What She Says Is Marijuana In Political Ad

RHODE ISLAND:  A medical marijuana advocate turned write-in candidate for Rhode Island governor has garnered instant social media attention by smoking what she says is pot in a campaign video.

But her media stunt comes with a more serious political message about pot legalization.

“I’m Anne Armstrong, and I’m going to be the next governor of Rhode Island,” she says in the minute-and-a-half-long video. “And I hope that during my tenure, I will be able to dispel a number of misconceptions about cannabis use.”

Armstrong, who said she smokes cannabis every day, uses it for medicinal purposes, and also argues that it helps her focus and communicate with people around her. In the video, she takes a hit off a pipe after insisting that pot users “shouldn’t be ostracized or marginalized.”