NEW YORK (AP) – As marijuana legalization spreads across the United States, the debate over whether to enforce potential policies is growing.
Under a law signed last month, New York will tax recreational marijuana based on the amount of THC, the main intoxicating chemical in cannabis. Last year, sales of recreational boilers began in Illinois with a potential tax floor. Vermont is limiting THC levels when its legal market opens next year, and in some other states, the U.S. Senate Drug Control Group has imposed restrictions or taxes.
Proponents say such measures will protect public health by tearing or at least discouraging what they see as dangerous concentrated cannabis.
“This is not your Woodstock weed,” said Kevin Sabet, chairman of Marijuana Intelligence, an anti-law enforcement group pushing for potential restrictions. “We have to put some restrictions on the goods sold.”
Opponents argue that THC restrictions could push people to shop illegally, and are re-banning boilers because of concerns critics say are overblown.
“It’s Barrier 2.0,” said Christina Bucola, a New York cannabis business lawyer. “When they start putting hats on it, what do they not put on?”
THC levels have been rising in recent decades. For example, marijuana seized by federal agents rose from 4% in 1995 to 12% in 2014. According to state reports, cannabis concentrates sold in the Colorado legal market average about 69% THC and some major 90%.
Cannabis-Health 2017 by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine The detailed study listed the growing strength among the factors that “create a high risk of adverse health effects.”
Some studies have linked high THC boilers, especially when used daily, to psychology և certain other mental health issues. But it is debated whether one causes the other.
Dr. Rachel Knox, an Oregon physician who advises patients to use cannabis in a variety of conditions, says she does not see an increased risk of psychosis for people who use such products under medical supervision. He opposes coverage capacity, but suggests that products containing more than 70% THC should be reserved for medical users while research continues.
“I think we have to deal with that with both freedom and baby gloves,” said Knox, a former chairman of the Oregon Cannabis Commission and a member of the Minority Cannabis Business Association, a trade group.
But Colorado pediatrician Yadira Caravo says she has seen the dangers of high THC cannabis.
One of his teenage patients, who used a high-powered boiler every day, was repeatedly hospitalized with severe vomiting due to heavy marijuana use; another needed psychiatric hospitalization after the drug exacerbated his mental health problems. He is thinking of offering a potential hat.
“I’m not interested in going back to criminalization,” said the Democrat, “but the reason I was nominated is that what I continue to do with the legislature is to protect public health every day.”
Different states have regulated how many milligrams of THC can be in one batch, package or retail, at least for some products. Vermont took a different approach, limiting the percentage of chemicals in any recreation basket to 30% for flower marijuana and 60% for concentrates.
Virginia’s new legalization law gives its future cannabis management body the power to set THC limits, and the Florida legislature has paid some attention to the proposal to block THC in medical marijuana. At the national level, the U.S. Senate Committee on International Drug Control of Bipartisan Drugs last month suggested that federal health agencies investigate whether potential capacity should be limited.
Proponents of her case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online.
“Consumer demand for these products will not go away, their reclassification will only push these consumers to search for similar products in the unregulated illegal market,” wrote Paul Armenanto, NORML Deputy Director. Published in Denver: Westword.
Instead of banning high-potential boilers, some states are simply raising the price.
Marijuana is taxed at the sale price or weight in states where it is legal. But boiler tax taxes depend in part on THC content in Illinois and New York.
The California Bureau of Legal Analysts offered a potential tax cut in 2019, saying the approach “could reduce harmful use more effectively.” But in the same year, the Liquor and Cannabis Board in Washington declared that this was not feasible, citing uncertainty over how the state sales tax cut affected consumption, public health revenues.
Potential taxes have a positive effect on states. More stable income than sales taxes, says Carl DGis of the Institute for Tax and Economic Policy, a leading think tank. This is because the total sales tax amount may fall along with the prices in the maturing market.
There is a downside to small cannabis companies, says Amber Littlejon, executive director of the Minority Cannabis Business Association. He worries that they will lose if THC taxes push customers into underground dealers or large, multi-layered firms that could lower prices.
Instead, Littlejon says potential policy should focus on the rigorous requirements of research, labeling, marketing, and industry.
“It’s absolutely an emerging issue,” he said. “It’s something that needs to be addressed.”
Associated Press writer Sarah Rankin in Richmond, Virginia, contributed to this report.