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Congress considers ending cannabis tests for military recruits (Newsletter: May 15, 2024)



FL legalization TV ads; Study on psilocybin, God & consciousness; Pushback on NY gov firing marijuana regulator; NE medical cannabis signatures

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The House Armed Services Committee is set to consider National Defense Authorization Act legislation next week that would prohibit military branches from testing recruits for marijuana as a condition of enlistment. It would also ask the Department of Defense for an update on psychedelics research.

The Florida marijuana campaign seeking to pass a legalization initiative on the November ballot released four new TV ads as it works to educate voters following a series of recent polls showing the measure without enough support to be enacted.

Nebraska activists say they’ve met a key requirement to qualify a pair of medical cannabis initiatives for the November ballot, collecting enough signatures from at least 38 of the state’s 93 counties.

A new study found that using psychedelic mushrooms is not associated with an increased belief in God but it can make people more likely to think that plants, animals, rocks, robots and even the universe as a whole have consciousness.

The Cannabis Regulators of Color Coalition authored a new Marijuana Moment op-ed decrying New York Gov. Kathy Hochul’s (D) “unjust and untimely” ouster of the state’s top marijuana official, saying it is “unconscionable” that he was “scapegoated for all the challenges” in the state’s legal market.

Massachusetts marijuana social equity business owners say they’ve been set up to fail, with some pushing to increase the cap on how many licenses a single company can hold so that struggling entrepreneurs can sell their operations to bigger firms.

An Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration official said the state now has far more registered medical cannabis patients than regulators expected when legal access launched five years ago.

Alabama’s medical cannabis business licensing process continues to be held up by ongoing litigation after several bills attempting to address the issue died when the legislature adjourned last week.


A former Drug Enforcement Administration official was sentenced to  three years in prison for bribing a colleague to leak intelligence to defense lawyers seeking to profit off the timing of indictments and other sensitive information about drug investigations.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Dick Durbin (D-IL) discussed his support for marijuana rescheduling and cannabis banking legislation.

Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) authored an op-ed and spoke on Fox News about his opposition to drug decriminalization.

Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) tweeted, “Chinese criminal organizations are buying up OK farmland and partnering with Mexican cartels to grow and distribute marijuana. I’m leading the fight to stop it.”

Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX) tweeted, “Biden’s decision to reclassify marijuana is strictly political. Ignoring research-based fact to push a woke agenda is reckless and jeopardizes public safety.”


Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont (D) signed legislation to restrict intoxicating hemp products, establish requirements for marijuana testing and create a task force to study allowing social equity applicants to grow cannabis in lots and facilities that are used for hemp cultivation.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) touted the state’s efforts to combat illegal marijuana operations.

Louisiana lawmakers sent Gov. Jeff Landry (R) legislation to extend the state’s medical cannabis program until 2023 and make changes to the licensing structure. Separately, the House Administration of Criminal Justice Committee approved a Senate-passed bill to ban hemp-derived THC products.

Massachusetts lawmakers and regulators participated in an annual “State of Cannabis” briefing.

A Nebraska legislature candidate said she wants the state to consider legalizing and taxing marijuana.

New York regulators reportedly approved a chemical for cannabis extraction without notifying a processor whose facility was shut down for using the solvent and who has alleged she was retaliated against for leaking a conversation she had with a top official.

Vermont regulators published guidance on marijuana business license renewals.

Oregon regulators will consider hemp rules changes and the implications of federal marijuana rescheduling on Thursday.

New Jersey regulators will host a listening session on the marijuana business permitting and licensing process on Thursday.

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.


New York City’s mayor touted the results of the first week of an initiative to close unlicensed marijuana businesses.

El Paso County and Pueblo County, Colorado police seized cash from multiple dispensary locations of a marijuana company.


German lawmakers are expected to consider cannabis-related changes to driving laws on Thursday. Separately, the health minister spoke at a youth-focused event on marijuana legalization.


A study found that Department of Veterans Affairs health care providers “were more likely to agree than disagree that cannabis can be beneficial.”

A review concluded that “CBD also possesses anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and neuroprotective properties, making it a viable candidate for [Alzheimer’s disease] treatment.”


The Florida Sheriffs Association and Florida Police Chiefs Association have not yet taken a position on the marijuana legalization initiative on the state’s November ballot.

Fox News host Laura Ingraham accused Democrats of being “cynical and condescending” in pursuing marijuana legalization allegedly to activate the youth vote.


iAnthus Capital Holdings, Inc. reported quarterly revenue of $41.6 million and a net loss of $14 million.

Glass House Brands Inc. reported quarterly net revenue of $30.1 million and a net loss of $18.3 million.

Organigram Holdings Inc. reported quarterly net revenue of C$37.6 million and a net loss of C$27.1 million.

SHF Holdings, Inc., d/b/a/ Safe Harbor Financial reported quarterly revenue of $4.1 million.

CV Sciences, Inc. acquired Elevated Softgels, LLC.


Willie Nelson is publishing a cannabis cookbook.

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Photo courtesy of Chris Wallis // Side Pocket Images.

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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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