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Biden SBA pick’s cannabis pledge (Newsletter: February 5, 2021)



NY lawmakers slam gov’s marijuana plan; WA drug decrim bill; MD Senate leaders’ cannabis bill; Cambridge decrims psychedelics; VA legalization moves

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Isabel Guzman, President Joe Biden’s pick to head the Small Business Administration, told Sen. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) in a hearing that she’ll commit to “further understanding” rules that block the marijuana industry from receiving aid and will partner to “serve all the small businesses who are in need.”

The Cambridge, Massachusetts City Council approved a measure to decriminalize psychedelics and urge police to end drug arrests more broadly. Meanwhile, a state lawmaker is planning to file a bill to create a commission to study psychedelics and drug decriminalization.

New York Assembly Majority Leader Crystal Peoples-Stokes (D) and other lawmakers held a press conference to slam Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s (D) marijuana legalization plan—saying it values revenue over justice and equity.

  • “We need to flex on the governor” by passing a separate cannabis bill, one Assembly member said.

Maryland’s Senate president and majority leader—along with key committee chairs—are sponsoring a new marijuana legalization bill.

Washington State lawmakers filed a bill to decriminalize possession of all drugs—similar to the measure that voters in neighboring Oregon passed in November.

Marijuana legalization bills in both the Virginia House and Senate cleared key procedural hurdles on the floor, setting them up for final third reading passage votes on Friday.


Acting Office of National Drug Control Policy Director Regina LeBelle discussed the Biden administration’s drug strategy.

A federal judge ruled against a metal casting worker’s discrimination lawsuit over being fired for a positive marijuana test.

Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) joked about how his girlfriend, actress Rosario Dawson, was more excited to vote for New Jersey’s marijuana legalization referendum than to support his reelection on the same ballot.

Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) wrote in a constituent letter that he is “concerned that legalizing marijuana will lead to an increase in use among children and teenagers.”

Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) said of his marijuana banking legislation that “I thought we were going to get it passed last [Congress], but I’m pretty confident we are going to get it passed this time, whether it’s as a standalone piece of legislation, or it could potentially be part of some bigger package.”


Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) tweeted, “My budget plan for this year—…Adult-use marijuana: Legalize it…”

A Virginia Republican lieutenant governor candidate tweeted, “I didn’t realize engaging in illegal activities could be so rewarding years later. Convicted of marijuana possession in the past? Apply for your set-aside marijuana retail license and low-interest taxpayer-funded business loan in 2023.” He also tweeted, “I never realized the way to get ahead in life was to break the law. Were you or a family member charged with marijuana possession in the past? Get ready to apply for your set-aside marijuana retail license and low-interest taxpayer-funded business loan. #CompaniesForConvictions”

Minnesota’s House majority leader did a radio interview about his new marijuana legalization bill.

New Jersey lawmakers are running out of time to advance measures to address concerns related to provisions about underage people in marijuana legalization enabling legislation, and are considering delaying an upcoming quorum to provide more time to resolve the issue.

South Dakota lawmakers filed legislation to regulate recreational marijuana.

Connecticut lawmakers introduced a bill to create a process for establishing an equity-focused marijuana task force, a permanent cannabis commission and a long-term jobs training program for the industry.

Wyoming lawmakers are considering several marijuana bills this session.

Arkansas regulators asked a court to dismiss a lawsuit challenging its medical cannabis business licensing decisions.

Michigan regulators sent an alert about social engineering attacks against marijuana businesses.

Colorado regulators are seeking applicants to serve on the Hemp Center of Excellence Advisory Committee.

North Carolina’s Department of Justice published a podcast about hemp issues for law enforcement.

Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 500 cannabis, psychedelics and drug policy bills in state legislatures and Congress this year. Patreon supporters pledging at least $25/month get access to our interactive maps, charts and hearing calendar so they don’t miss any developments.

Learn more about our marijuana bill tracker and become a supporter on Patreon to get access.


New Zealand’s medical cannabis supply is in jeopardy as strict new government rules come online.


A study of mice concluded that “CBD produced antidepressant-like effects.”

A study found that “psilocybin was well tolerated and produced positive changes in well-being.”


The Kansas Democratic Party tweeted about a newspaper editorial board’s endorsement of Gov. Laura Kelly’s (D) plan to fund Medicaid expansion with medical cannabis revenue.

Prohibitionist organization Smart Approaches to Marijuana’s new annual report falsely claims that restrictive marijuana amendments were “added to” congressional spending legislation when they were actually only filed and rejected in committee.


Leafly and Jane are partnering to offer e-commerce and inventory tools to marijuana dispensaries.

Delic Holdings Inc. is acquiring Ketamine Infusion Centers LLC.

Tilray, Inc. exported its first shipment of medical cannabis to Spain.

iAnthus Capital Holdings, Inc. closed an $11 million bridge financing.

Canopy Growth Corporation launched a new line of CBD products for dogs.


Ted Nugent said he rejected drugs offered to him by Jimi Hendrix, Keith Moon, John Belushi and others.

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Tom Angell is the editor of Marijuana Moment. A 20-year veteran in the cannabis law reform movement, he covers the policy and politics of marijuana. Separately, he founded the nonprofit Marijuana Majority. Previously he reported for and MassRoots, and handled media relations and campaigns for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition and Students for Sensible Drug Policy.


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