Connect with us


CDC says cannabis prohibition slows feds’ vape crisis response (Newsletter: November 14, 2019)



SCOTUS talks marijuana enforcement; New Mexico lawmakers consider 2020 legalization; Groups push Congress to respect DC cannabis laws

Subscribe to receive Marijuana Moment’s newsletter in your inbox every weekday morning. It’s the best way to make sure you know which cannabis stories are shaping the day.

Your support makes Marijuana Moment possible…

By starting a $10 per month pledge on Patreon—or about 45 cents per issue of this newsletter—you can help us rely less on ads to cover our expenses, hire more journalists and bring you even more marijuana news.

  • Scot Carlson of Slang Worldwide: “As part of a cannabis company that operates globally, I read Marijuana Moment daily to stay on top of the latest political, business, cultural, and technological news in our rapidly evolving industry. The addition of the Cannabis Legislation Tracking Tools brings the perfect blend of industry news and legislation updates into one, easy-to-read source. Keep up the great work!”


A top Centers for Disease Control and Prevention official testified before the Senate that one reason federal officials are taking so long to investigate the cause of vaping-related lung injuries is that marijuana’s restrictive Schedule I status slows down the transfer of samples for testing.

U.S. Supreme Court justices raised questions about federal marijuana enforcement policy during oral arguments in a case concerning protections for immigrants.

  • “There’s an entire industry in a lot of states involving marijuana that would argue they’re relying on memos issued by the attorney general that we will not enforce marijuana laws… They have a lot of economic interests at stake [and] they would say our economic interests are very real, billions of dollars are at stake, we’ve relied on the attorney general’s guidance memos.”

The New Mexico legislature’s Interim Economic & Rural Development Committee began consideration of the marijuana legalization report prepared by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s (D) working group in advance of the short 30-day session beginning in January.

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Competitive Enterprise Institute, R Street Institute, Drug Policy Alliance, ACLU of D.C., NORML and other groups sent a letter urging congressional leaders to let Washington, D.C. spend its own local tax money to legalize marijuana sales.


The Environmental Protection Agency said it will remove Superfund protections from a site if it is purchased by a marijuana cultivation company.

The Center for Substance Abuse Prevention’s Drug Testing Advisory Board will discuss the impact of marijuana laws on drug testing on December 3.

Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo (R-ID) further discussed the kinds of changes he wants to see to House-passed marijuana banking legislation.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), a presidential candidate, tweeted, “No more cash bail. No more death penalty. No more ‘war on drugs.’ No more mandatory minimums. No more private prisons and detention centers. We are going to fundamentally reform our broken and racist criminal justice system.”

Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) tweeted, “Decriminalization of marijuana does not go far enough because people — mostly communities of color — will still be disproportionately arrested for marijuana possession. We must provide restorative justice to those communities affected by the failed #WarOnDrugs.”


Michigan regulators moved to allow existing medical cannabis business to transfer up to half their inventories to the recreational market, meaning that adult-use sales will begin on December 1.

California’s attorney general said he thinks the federal government is “not too far away” from catching up to states on marijuana policy.

Alaska’s top marijuana regulator was fired.

The Maryland legislature’s marijuana working group will not recommend passing a legalization bill in 2020.

Connecticut Senate Democrats are proposing legalizing marijuana and sports betting to fund transportation programs.

An Illinois House committee approved legislation making changes and fixes to the state’s marijuana legalization law.

The Washington, D.C. Council’s Health and Education Committees held a hearing on a bill to let students use medical cannabis in schools.

A proposed Florida marijuana legalization ballot measure has collected enough signatures to trigger a state Supreme Court review of its language.

Another group of Arizona cannabis businesses filed a second proposed marijuana legalization ballot measure.

Two more members of the U.S. Virgin Islands Cannabis Advisory Board received committee approval.

New Mexico regulators received petitions to add substance abuse disorder, ADD/ADHD, anxiety, and Tourette’s syndrome as medical cannabis qualifying conditions, and to allow its use to treat seizures in animals.

Pennsylvania’s Medical Marijuana Advisory Board met, and officials reported that sales topped $500 million in the past two years.

Washington State regulators published hemp and CBD FAQs.

Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,000 cannabis 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.


The Chicago, Illinois mayor wants to lower fines for public marijuana use and end the practice of impounding vehicles found with cannabis inside.

The Santa Cruz, California City Council referred a measure to decriminalize certain psychedelics to its Public Safety Committee.

Denver, Colorado officials are conducting a study on creating equitable access to and participation in the cannabis industry.


The Philippine House of Representatives Health Committee is expected to take up medical cannabis legislation next month.

Estonian lawmakers discussed marijuana legalization but decided that the country is not ready to pursue it.

The Wall Street Journal looks at how Chinese farmers are taking advantage of global interest in hemp and CBD despite the country’s strict ban on marijuana.


A study found that when “comparing marijuana use before and after the legalization of recreational marijuana in the United States, the proportion of respondents aged 12 to 17 years reporting cannabis use disorder increased from 2.18% to 2.72%, while the proportion of respondents 26 years or older reporting frequent marijuana use increased from 2.13% to 2.62% and those with cannabis use disorder, from 0.90% to 1.23%.”

A review concluded that CBD is “recommended as both a preventative and therapeutic intervention in the management of traumatic brain injury, providing the anti-inflammatory and neuroregenerative mechanisms necessary for cerebral homeostasis.”

A study found that “despite restrictions that prohibit cannabis advertising on social media, adolescents are exposed to cannabis marketing via social media, and this exposure is associated with recent cannabis use.”


The California Medical Association adopted a resolution saying its members “oppose policies of health plans, health systems, and hospitals that have pain management programs that automatically eliminate patients who use therapeutic cannabis.”

The New York Times editorial board says that prohibiting vaping devices is not a solution to the outbreak of lung injuries.

The Albuquerque Journal editorial board is urging New Mexico not to pursue covering medical cannabis through Medicaid.


Tests by CannSafe found formaldehyde, hydrogen cyanide and illegal pesticides in illicit cannabis vaping products but not those purchased from licensed dispensaries.

Charlotte’s Web Holdings, Inc. reported quarterly revenue of $25.1 million.

Eaze announced the winners of $50,000 grants it is issuing through an accelerator program to underrepresented cannabis business founders.

PAX Labs rolled out a new feature of its app that gives consumers access to information about the products they are vaping.

Southern Illinois University refers black students to disciplinary proceedings for drug offenses at a rate twice as high as that for white students.

Here’s a look at how the Boston Globe thinks about covering marijuana news.

The Winnipeg Free Press’s cannabis vertical The Leaf News is closing down.


Cirque du Soleil cofounder Guy Laliberte was detained for allegedly growing marijuana.

Make sure to subscribe to get Marijuana Moment’s daily dispatch in your inbox.

Marijuana Moment is made possible with support from readers. If you rely on our cannabis advocacy journalism to stay informed, please consider a monthly Patreon pledge.

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.


Marijuana News In Your Inbox

Support Marijuana Moment

Marijuana News In Your Inbox

Marijuana Moment