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Cannabis banking & fed employment votes in Congress (Newsletter: September 18, 2023)



DOJ issues marijuana pardon certificates; Fed agencies discuss cannabis research; CA employment protection to gov; MD equity; MT sales

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The House Oversight and Accountability Committee will vote Wednesday on a bill to protect people from being denied federal employment or security clearances due to marijuana use—and to provide relief for people who lost opportunities in the past.

The Senate Banking Committee has officially scheduled a vote on a marijuana banking bill for September 27.

The Department of Justice has begun issuing certificates to people whose marijuana possession convictions were pardoned by President Joe Biden.

Federal officials with the Food and Drug Administration, National Institute on Drug Abuse, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other agencies discussed marijuana research barriers under Schedule I, efforts to create a regulated pathway for CBD, state initiatives to promote social equity and other cannabis issues at a National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine meeting.

California lawmakers sent Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) a bill to prohibit employers from asking job applicants about prior marijuana use.

The Maryland Cannabis Administration and Office of Social Equity announced details of a technical assistance program to support marijuana social equity applicants for a business licensing round that opens in November.

The Kansas City, Missouri City Council approved a plan to use $458,000 in local marijuana tax revenue to fund a violence prevention program.

The Montana Cannabis Control Division reported that retailers sold $28.7 million worth of legal marijuana products in August—a new monthly record.

Ohio activists behind a marijuana legalization initiative on the November ballot are drawing on lessons learned from an earlier measure that voters in the state rejected in 2015.


Two witnesses at a House Financial Services Subcommittee on Digital Assets, Financial Technology and Inclusion hearing briefly mentioned cannabis banking issues.

A former Marine is suing over his dishonorable discharge for marijuana use.

Rep. Summer Lee (D-PA) tweeted about the federal marijuana rescheduling recommendation, saying, “It’s about damn time! Despite similar usage rates, Black folks are STILL nearly 4x’s more likely to get arrested for marijuana possession. This move is long overdue & is a much needed step towards righting the wrongs of our racist criminal legal system.”

The House bill to ease regulations on hemp growers got one new cosponsor for a total of eight.


U.S. Virgin Islands Gov. Albert Bryan Jr. (D) approved discounted access for a cannabis industry training program.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear (D) tweeted, “When someone says it can’t be done, I take that as a challenge. After years of fighting, we legalized medical marijuana for the folks who need it right here in Kentucky.”

A former Michigan House speaker allegedly received “thousands of dollars worth of commercial sex”as bribes during his time as chair of the Medical Marihuana Licensing Board.

Massachusetts’s top cannabis regulator was suspended from her role by the state treasurer.

New York regulators are being sued over rules on third-party marijuana advertising.

Alabama regulators canceled a Tuesday meeting as lawyers continue negotiations to potentially settle litigation about their medical cannabis licensing decisions.

Colorado regulators released average market rates for retail marijuana.

New Jersey regulators hosted a webinar on new marijuana wholesale, distribution and delivery licenses.

Oregon’s top psilocybin services regulator said the program has received “hundreds of thousands of inquiries from all over the world.”

Georgia regulators will consider medical cannabis production licenses on Wednesday.

Marijuana Moment is tracking more than 1,000 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.


A Chicago, Illinois alderman is proposing to restrict where intoxicating hemp products can be sold.

Denver, Colorado officials sent guidance about common issues that lead to failed inspections for marijuana businesses.


Thai Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin said he opposes marijuana legalization but supports medical cannabis access.

Tilburg and Breda, Netherlands will launch regulated cannabis sales experiments on December 15.

The German Green Party is pushing for “Europe-wide legalization and controlled distribution of cannabis.”

British Columbia, Canada municipalities are restricting where drugs can be possessed under the province’s decriminalization policy.


A study found that “CBD inhibits structurally dissimilar viruses, suggesting that this phytochemical has broad-spectrum antiviral effect, representing a valuable alternative in emergency situations during viral outbreaks, like the one caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 in 2020.”

A study found that “patients with tobacco use (alone or with cannabis) were at greater odds of 90-day adverse events following ankle fracture [open reduction internal fixation], but cannabis only users were not.”


A poll found that Americans support sending U.S. military personnel to Mexico to fight against drug cartels, 52 percent to 26 percent.

The Washington Post editorial board said marijuana should be rescheduled but it “isn’t a slam dunk for Schedule III” and that “another strong option is a move to Schedule II alongside cocaine and Adderall.”

The New York Daily News editorial board is concerned that regulators’ move to expand marijuana business licensing will hurt equity operators.


Curaleaf workers in Phoenix, Arizona went on strike.

High Tide Inc. reported quarterly revenue of C$124.4 million and a net loss of C$3.6 million.

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


Method Man’s TICAL Official cannabis brand is launching in New York.

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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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