Polly Washburn

Polly Washburn

Polly joined The Cannabist in December 2016 as a digital producer. She has been creating print, web and video content for a couple of decades. She returned to her home town of Denver in 2012 after living in eleven other cities in four countries, and not finding anything that could top living in the Rockies.

Recent posts by Polly Washburn

Los Angeles cannabis businesses concerned regs will shut them down

In the draft cannabis rules before the Los Angeles City Council, almost every cannabis business will be required to shutter their operation until they receive an official city license.

Northern California companies reconsider marijuana policies as more workers fail drug tests

A growing number of people in Northern California are failing drug tests required by their employers, prompting some local companies to rethink their drug-free workplace policies in an age of legal marijuana.

Massachusetts cannabis industry warns of “Colorado money” and “Pabst Blue Ribbon” weed

The president of the Massachusetts Grower Advocacy Council told state regulators he fears local residents could be shut out of the nascent industry.

Which Bay Area cities will allow recreational marijuana sales in January? (hint: not many)

Most cities around the Bay Area will not be ready to permit recreational cannabis sales early next year when a proposition legalizing pot use goes live.

DEA likely to get “a lot more aggressive” if California can’t shut down black market

The Drug Enforcement Agency has its eyes on California, which produced five times more cannabis than it consumes last year, much of it ending up in other states.

Where will out-of-towners consume weed in L.A.?

Los Angeles has so far held back on allowing cafes or lounges where customers could smoke or consume cannabis, which could cause problems for tourists.

Oregon cops get more complaints about marijuana grows than they can handle

When investigating complaints about cannabis grows, Medford Area Drug and Gang Enforcement has to determine whether they are for medical, retail, hemp or personal consumption.

Boston, other Massachusetts cities prepare to profit from cannabis sales

Cities and towns in Massachusetts that didn’t ban recreational marijuana shops are now looking at ways to extract revenue from the burgeoning industry.

Sessions reiterates distaste for marijuana legalization

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions took the opportunity Wednesday to once again express his opinion that legal sales of marijuana are not a positive development for the country.

Anti-legalization group urges feds to “systematically shut down” cannabis industry

On the fourth anniversary of the Cole Memo, Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) announced it had sent a report to Attorney General Jeff Sessions detailing how states that have legalized cannabis have failed to live up to that Obama-era guidance on enforcement priorities.

Oregon gov, police chief say Sessions’ marijuana claims based on flawed, leaked, draft report

Oregon’s governor and head of the state police have responded to a letter from U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, critiquing cannabis legalization in the state.

Sessions hits familiar, doubtful themes on cannabis regulation in letter to Alaska

Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ letter to Alaska’s governor took a similar tone to his letters to other legal recreational marijuana states.

Alaska and Washington govs push back on Sessions’ marijuana enforcement letters

The governors of Alaska and Washington are questioning the data cited by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions in recent letters he sent to their states regarding the efficacy of their respective marijuana regulatory regimes

State lawmakers group endorses descheduling of cannabis with eye on banking

An independent national organization that supports state legislatures has again voiced its support for federal descheduling of cannabis.

Public support for medical and recreational marijuana legalization hits all-time high

Latest numbers from Quinnipiac University Poll also show little support for a federal crackdown in states that have legalized cannabis.

Ann Coulter: Marijuana use is “destroying the country”

At the political panel marathon Politicon this weekend, columnist Ann Coulter made some remarkable claims about marijuana during a debate with Ana Kasparian.

Senate committee, rejecting request from Sessions, keeps protection for medical marijuana states

A Senate appropriations committee approved an amendment to protect state medical marijuana programs from interference from the Department of Justice.

GOP blocks amendment to allow VA doctors to recommend medical marijuana to vets

The House Rules Committee decided not to allow a medical marijuana amendment to the Veterans Affairs appropriations bill to proceed to a full vote.

Small-town Massachusetts cannabis advocates: “People are afraid to make their voices known”

About a dozen residents assembled at the Main Street park Tuesday, holding signs and smoking marijuana to garner support ahead of the Sept. 19 referendum, which will ask the town whether it should ban the sale of marijuana.

Anchorage Assembly asks state to allow marijuana consumption in retail stores

The Anchorage Assembly urged state marijuana regulators to pass laws allowing tourists and locals to smoke or consume marijuana in retail shops, saying it’s a problem that people can buy commercial pot products but can’t legally smoke it outside of private homes.

Cannabis cash conundrum: Some businesses bury money, others truck it to a federal vault

Cannabis and banking industry trade groups, attorneys, and regulators are working to bring the marijuana industry into the financial mainstream.

Next up for Vegas marijuana dispensaries: Competing for market share

Basic economics suggest dispensaries will now need to focus on gaining market share with early adopters in this growing market of consumable product.

UN Drug Office can’t find a single cannabis drug death, despite it being most widely-consumed drug on the planet

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime 2017 World Drug Report finds cannabis is the most consumed and widely cultivated drug but found zero deaths.

Cop who killed Philando Castile repeatedly blamed smell of marijuana for his fear of driver, newly-released transcript shows

A transcript released Tuesday revealed police officer Jeronimo Yanez told investigators the smell of marijuana from Philando Castile’s car was a major reason he considered the man a threat.

Federal bill introduced to protect medical marijuana states, provide access to veterans

The CARERS Act would not legalize medical marijuana federally; it would officially allow states to set their own medical marijuana policies. Additionally, Veterans Affairs physicians would be able to recommend medical marijuana to their veteran patients, which they are currently banned from doing.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein: “From a legal and scientific perspective, marijuana is an unlawful drug.”

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein stated before the Senate Appropriations committee that marijuana is properly scheduled as a Schedule I drug.

Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin says MMJ “may be helpful” but hands tied by federal law

Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin said federal law prevents the department from implementing any potential benefits of medical marijuana for veterans.

Here’s what just changed in Washington state marijuana laws

A week ago, Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed an omnibus marijuana bill, containing many changes to the regulations put in place in 2013, after Washington voters legalized recreational marijuana sales.

David Clarke, who says he’s taking a top post at Homeland Security, thinks marijuana is gateway to heroin

Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, who has built his career on talking tough on crime, drugs, and illegal immigration, says he’s accepted a job as an assistant secretary in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), The Associated Press has reported. Clarke said in an interview with WISN-AM on Wednesday that…

The 2017 Global Marijuana March: This weekend around the world

People in cities around the world will take to the streets on Saturday for the 2017 Global Marijuana March as a protest to end cannabis prohibition.

Homeland Security Sec. John Kelly now says his agency, ICE, TSA will “take action” against marijuana

In a speech Tuesday, John Kelly promised that DHS, TSA, ICE and CBP would all take a hard-line stance on what he called a “potentially dangerous gateway drug.”

AG Jeff Sessions directs task force to review federal marijuana policies

In a memo sent to the U.S. attorneys, Jeff Sessions indicated he created a task force to evaluate marijuana policy as part of a larger review of crime reduction and public safety.