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Cannabis banking bumped to 2023, key chair indicates (Newsletter: December 16, 2022)

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Colombian legalization bill approved; OH lawmakers pass marijuana paraphernalia reform; NY biz verification tool; Final KS medical cannabis meeting

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Senate Banking Committee Chairman Sherrod Brown (D-OH) seemed to indicate that marijuana banking legislation will have to wait until 2023 instead of being included in the omnibus appropriations bill, saying that “there’s interest in the Republican House” in passing it next year. Meanwhile, Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT), who is a lead sponsor of the standalone SAFE Banking Act, said on Thursday that he is talking to leadership about using the omnibus as the vehicle to enact the legislation but that it will be “an uphill climb” to get an agreement on it.

  • Brown’s office later told Marijuana Moment that he “would support SAFE Plus in the omnibus bill” because it has provisions he backs, including “clarity for [community development financial institutions] and for cannabis workers regarding mortgages.”

Colombia’s Senate and Chamber of Representatives agreed to a final, reconciled version of marijuana legalization legislation that each had passed in recent weeks. More votes are needed in 2023, and a key senator expects it to become law by June.

Ohio lawmakers sent Gov. Mike DeWine (R) a large-scale criminal justice reform bill that has provisions making it so possession of marijuana paraphernalia won’t qualify as a criminal record. There’s also broader expungements and record sealing measures included.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) announced a new marijuana business and product verification tool involving QR codes for retailers and a universal symbol label for authorized cannabis products. Meanwhile, New York City officials touted a crackdown on unlicensed sellers.

The Kansas legislature’s Special Committee on Medical Marijuana held its final hearing, one day after lawmakers toured a cannabis grow facility in neighboring Missouri. The chairman plans to file a reform bill in 2023 but said it will not allow homegrow.

The Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs awarded nearly $19 million in grants partially funded by medical cannabis tax revenue to help substance misuse treatment professionals pay down their student loans.

/ FEDERAL

The U.S. Forest Service touted a study it helped conduct on surface water contamination below illegal cannabis grow sites.

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) said he is “hearing that some top Republicans are blocking” marijuana banking provisions from being included in the omnibus appropriations bill.

Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) spoke about her efforts on marijuana reform.

In a House floor speech, Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) cited a retiring Belmont city councilmember’s work to restrict where cannabis businesses can operate.

Former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD) tweeted, “As the year draws to a close, I am thrilled by the strong movement toward a federal regulatory framework for #cannabis this year. We at @CPEARcoalition are looking forward to continuing our hard work and leading with science and data in 2023.”

/ STATES

Maryland Gov.-elect Wes Moore (D) spoke about plans to implement marijuana legalization.

Florida’s agriculture commissioner tweeted, “If anyone wants a history lesson on how we got here in regards to marijuana/hemp, check out Grass is Greener on Netflix. Amazing documentary!”

Kentucky’s Senate majority floor leader said he doesn’t support medical cannabis but won’t block legislation on it, and the longtime House sponsor of reform legislation said that the effort should start in the Senate next session.

Missouri’s Senate majority leader said that “the recent passage of recreational marijuana, which you know I oppose, maybe indicates it’s a little too easy to get things through initiative petition.”

The Arkansas Legislative Council’s Marijuana Oversight Subcommittee heard testimony about concerns over unreliability of the state’s medical cannabis track and trace system.

California regulators filed emergency rulemaking to implement legislation requiring that information about cannabis products in delivery vehicles be recorded in the statewide track and trace system.

Colorado regulators issued a health and safety bulletin about potentially unsafe levels of yeast and mold and Aspergillus contamination in cannabis products produced by Rivus Fine Cannabis. Separately, the Retail Marijuana Public Health Advisory Committee will meet on Monday.

Washington State regulators suspended the marijuana producer/processor license of Dank Incorporated after finding “serious violations.”

Connecticut’s Social Equity Council selected Oaksterdam University to create and operate a cannabis business accelerator program.

Pennsylvania regulators posted a revised form to apply for approval of new forms of medical cannabis products or devices.

The Louisiana Employment and Medical Marijuana Task Force met.

Alaska’s Advisory Task Force on Recreational Marijuana will meet on Monday.


Marijuana Moment is tracking more than 1,500 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.

/ LOCAL

Chicago, Illinois’s mayor announced the launch of a new Cannabis Research Institute.

The Queens, New York district attorney charged two men with allegedly operating an unlicensed marijuana dispensary out of a converted school bus.

The St. Louis, Missouri City Council Ways & Means Committee held a hearing on a proposal to enact a three percent tax on retail sales of non-medical marijuana.

Campaign committees supporting and opposing Colorado Springs, Colorado ballot measures to allow and tax recreational marijuana sales spent a combined total of more than $2.3 million.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Paraguayan President Mario Abdo Benítez is being accused of expanding the number of available cannabis production licenses to benefit his ex-wife’s company.

Mexican drug cartel members are reportedly lobbying lawmakers in support of legalizing marijuana.

Quebec, Canada is the first province in the country to cover the costs of psilocybin-assisted therapy.

The director-general of the Thai Traditional and Complementary Medicine Department said that people will have to present ID cards when purchasing cannabis starting next month.

Costa Rican Drug Control Police officials said marijuana legalization will not reduce illicit trafficking.

Argentina’s secretary of health quality spoke at an event about cannabis-infused foods.

The governor of Ifugao, Philippines said abandoned rice terraces could potentially be used to grow medical cannabis.

North Rhine-Westphalian, Germany’s interior minister said he thinks the federal government’s marijuana legalization plan is “insane.”

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “in many patients with [multiple sclerosis], [medical cannabis] was well-tolerated, eased pain and spasticity, improved sleep and other symptoms, and reduced use of concomitant opioid analgesics.”

A study found that “treatment with hemp-derived CBD gel caps was associated with significant improvements in pain scores and several quality-of-life measures for patients with lumbar spinal stenosis.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

A poll of Michigan voters found that 60 percent said that when considering moving to another state, its laws on social issues legal marijuana, abortion and gay rights would be an important factor.

The Drug Free America Foundation launched a Florida Department of Health-funded project aimed at “reducing the number of women using marijuana while pregnant and breastfeeding.”

/ BUSINESS

RIV Capital Inc. completed its acquisition of Etain, LLC.

HEXO Corp. reported quarterly net revenue of C$35.8 million and a net loss of C$52.1 million.

Three former CannTrust Holdings Inc. executives were acquitted on charges related to alleged cultivation of marijuana in unlicensed rooms.

After Curaleaf laid off more than 200 staff members, it reportedly sent them a survey asking why they left the company.

Concerns are being raised about potential conflicts of interest surrounding marijuana industry financial support for cannabis research at Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and University of California San Diego.

The Scott Miracle-Gro Co. is being sued by a cannabis cultivator who claims grow lamps sold by the company spontaneously exploded.

Innovative Industrial Properties, Inc. issued a quarterly dividend of $1.80 per share.

/ CULTURE

Wiz Khalifa said he smoked marijuana with Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps.

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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 Marijuana.com and MassRoots, and handled media relations and campaigns for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition and Students for Sensible Drug Policy.

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