medical marijuana

kento via Flickr CC /

In states all across the country, the days of pot prohibition are coming to an end. Today, critics say new regulations favor so-called the "Walmart weed" industry and put the squeeze on home growers.

Plus, Derrick Hamilton has never been to law school - but that hasn't stopped him from filing federal complaints against inhumane treatment of inmates, and helping others obtain hearings. He also fought the wrongful that put him in jail for 21 years. We'll talk with a jailhouse lawyer who was set up, but still believes in the power of the law.

Weekly N.H. News Roundup - August 12, 2016

Aug 12, 2016

After visiting the state, Donald Trump continues to stir up controversy for himself and for Republicans in downticket races, including Senator Kelly Ayotte.  In the race for U.S. Senate, Governor Maggie Hassan lays out her goals for keeping New Hampshire and the country safe in a foreign policy address.  And the state's fourth medical marijuana dispensary opens for business in Merrimack.  


New Hampshire’s medical marijuana program finally got off the ground in April, with the opening of the state’s first cannabis treatment center. Three of the four state-licensed dispensaries are now operating, and more than 1,100 people with serious illnesses are approved to use the drug.

But many, if not most, of the New Hampshire residents who could potentially benefit from medical marijuana won’t be able to legally obtain it.

Mark via Flickr CC /

New Hampshire’s third medical marijuana dispensary opened Sunday in Lebanon.

Temescal Wellness, the company operating the dispensary, opened up another dispensary in Dover a little over a week ago. 

Wikimedia Commons

 Less than a week after New Hampshire’s first medical marijuana dispensary opened in Plymouth, another is poised to open on Thursday in Dover.

The Department of Health and Human Services has officially certified Temescal Wellness, which was selected to operate two of the state's New Hampshire’s four medical marijuana dispensaries, to start serving patients at its Dover location. The company says it plans to open its doors at noon on Thursday.

Sharon Morrow

 A proposal to use marijuana to battle opioid addiction is being processed by the Maine Department of Health and Human Services.

Tuesday marks the deadline for public comments on the proposal to add opioid addiction to the list of conditions that qualify for medical marijuana in Maine. 

Casey McDermott, NHPR

By the time Sanctuary ATC opened its doors in Plymouth — around 11 a.m. Saturday morning — about a dozen people were already huddled around on the porch or hanging out in the parking lot outside, hoping to get in.

The state gave the medical marijuana dispensary the green light to open Friday afternoon. And by the end of its first day, the dispensary ended up served 45 people in all, according to its director.

Dank Depot via Flickr CC /

It’s official: Nearly three years after the state legalized medical marijuana, New Hampshire’s first dispensary will start serving patients Saturday morning in Plymouth.

Dank Depot via Flickr CC /

New Hampshire residents hoping to get access to medical marijuana are still waiting for the state’s dispensaries to open

Right now, those new facilities still have to go through a few more rounds of inspections before they can open their doors and start serving patients. Once they do open, patients will only be able to visit one dispensary at a time. And for residents in the northernmost region of the state, the nearest dispensary could be at least two hours away.

Prosecutors have dropped some charges against a New Hampshire couple accused of growing marijuana in their home. 

Sixty-five-year-old Robert Zdrada and his wife, 60-year-old Valerie Zdrada, were arrested in October after police say they found seven and a half pounds of marijuana and other items used to grow the plants indoors.

Even though medical marijuana is legal in many states across the country, it’s still a federal offense, and a recently expired directive prohibited Veterans Administration doctors from recommending the treatment to veterans.

Flickr/Grape Crush, Indica-4

Three out of four of New Hampshire's medical marijuana dispensaries are now approved to start cultivating cannabis. 

Temescal Wellness just got approval from the Department of Health and Human Services to start growing marijuana. The Manchester company will operate two dispensaries, one in Dover and another in Lebanon. Their grow site will be in Manchester.

One of the companies planning to dispense medical marijuana in New Hampshire is one step closer to offering the substance to patients.

The Department of Health and Human Services issued a conditional registration certificate to Sanctuary ATC, which plans to open a dispensary in Plymouth, to start growing medical marijuana at a designated cultivation site in Rochester.


The president of Thomas More College of Liberal Arts in Merrimack is threatening legal action if the town approves a proposed medical marijuana dispensary across the street from the school.

Town officials gave conditional approval to the dispensary this week, which would be located in a former credit union on Daniel Webster Highway.

Wikimedia Commons

When New Hampshire legalized medical marijuana in July 2013, no one expected the program to be up and running overnight.

Two and a half years later, however, none of the dispensaries envisioned under the new law are open, and the only patient who has received medical marijuana had to file a lawsuit for the right to travel out of state to get it.

So what’s taken so long?

Jack Rodolico

Last Friday, Linda Horan sat in front of a bank of reporters in the back room of a medical marijuana dispensary in Portland, Maine. She was beaming.

"My god, I’m over the moon – completely over the moon," she said.

The New Hampshire Attorney General is advising the Department of Health and Human Services to start issuing medical marijuana ID cards to eligible patients. In theory, patients could soon access medical marijuana, even though they can't yet buy it legally in the state.

Casey McDermott

A judge has ruled the state can no longer stop an Alstead woman’s effort to get medical marijuana.

The legislature passed a medical marijuana law three years ago, but state-approved dispensaries are more than a year behind schedule.

Linda Horan was diagnosed with stage four terminal lung cancer this summer. Tuesday’s ruling out of Merrimack Superior Court means the state must issue Horan a registration card immediately, allowing her to access medical marijuana in Maine.

Wikimedia Commons

Just 23 people have applied for the state’s medical marijuana program since a pre-registration period opened Nov. 2. That's according to Department of Health and Human Services division director Mary Castelli, who spoke Friday at a meeting of the state’s Therapeutic Cannabis Advisory Council.

Dispensaries aren't set to open for several months, but DHHS offered people a chance to pre-register as a way to access medical marijuana as quickly as possible once the substance is available.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

A judge heard arguments Thursday in a case challenging the state's decision to hold off on issuing medical marijuana identification cards to patients.

Casey McDermott, NHPR

A 64-year-old New Hampshire woman with terminal lung cancer has sued the Department of Health and Human Services over the state’s rollout of its medical marijuana program.

Wikimedia Commons

The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services has started accepting applications to provide medical marijuana to potentially qualifying patients and designated caregivers.

This is a pre-registration period for the Therapeutic Cannabis Program, giving people time to prepare before medical marijuana dispensaries are opened in the state.

DD via Flickr Creative Commons

A little less than three dozen people showed up to a forum last night in Dover to discuss a proposed medical marijuana dispensary in town – but, for the most part, the crowd didn’t come to push back on the plans.

DD via Flickr Creative Commons

State officials will hold a public forum tonight in Dover about plans to open a medical marijuana dispensary.

Dank Depot via Flickr CC /


The New Hampshire Health Department has scheduled a public forum in Dover to discuss setting up a medical marijuana dispensary.

Temescal Wellness, a nonprofit, was selected by the department to operate the alternative treatment center, serving patients in Strafford, Rockingham and Belknap counties.

Awaiting N.H.'s Medical Marijuana Program

Sep 24, 2015
Brett Levin / Flickr/CC

The therapeutic use of cannabis has been legal  for about two years now, but the process of establishing cultivation centers, dispensaries, and ID cards is still underway. While many praise the state for its careful approach, others suffering from conditions they hope to treat with the drug are becoming impatient. 


DD via Flickr Creative Commons

The city of Dover is being eyed for one of the state’s four medical marijuana dispensaries.

The dispensary would be located in a Dover industrial park and would serve patients in Rockingham, Strafford and Belknap counties.

But before doors can open, Temescel Wellness, the company that would operate the dispensary, must submit detailed floor plans to the city, and get police to sign off on a security plan.

The city must also hold a public hearing, as required by state law.

Mark via Flickr CC /

New Hampshire’s first medical marijuana dispensaries are getting closer to opening.

Officials in Plymouth, Lebanon, and Merrimack have been holding hearings, gathering public input on proposals to locate dispensaries in those communities.

But federal law and tax codes could complicate things for the companies that will run the state’s dispensaries and marijuana grow centers.

Mark via Flickr CC /

Sanctuary Alternative Treatment Center plans run its cannabis dispensary in Plymouth, and its cultivation center – where plants are grown and processed --  in Rochester.  The cultivation center already complies with Rochester’s zoning ordinances, and does not need any further approval. Nevertheless, the Department of Health and Human Services held a public hearing there on Tuesday.  

Sanctuary CFO Josh Weaver began the evening in a defensive stance, promising the site will be secure and inconspicuous.

Residents of Rochester will have a chance to weigh in a proposed medical marijuana cultivation site being proposed in the city.

A hearing will be held Tuesday evening at 7 at Rochester City Hall to gather public input on the proposal.

Sanctuary ATC is looking to open a grow center in one of the city’s mill buildings, with the product being distributed at a dispensary in Plymouth to serve the state’s North Country residents.

In its application, the company said the facility would be highly secured to prevent theft and diversion.