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Congressional cannabis “omnibus” bill details emerge (Newsletter: June 13, 2022)

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Senate to hold marijuana & tribes meeting; Congressional researchers: Legalization hurts cartel profits; Feds want to analyze dispensary cannabis

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Marijuana Moment obtained new details about issues being discussed for inclusion in a sort of incremental “marijuana omnibus” bill being negotiated by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and other congressional leaders—including provisions on banking, expungements, research, veterans, small cannabis business loans and broader drug sentencing reform.

The Senate Indian Affairs Committee has scheduled a meeting for Friday titled “Cannabis in Indian Country.” It’s an opportunity for tribes to share their perspective on marijuana issues with senators’ staff.

The Congressional Research Service said in a new report that U.S. and Canadian legalization of marijuana is “reducing its value as part of Mexican trafficking organizations’ portfolio.”

The National Institute on Drug Abuse is looking to identify research labs that can analyze marijuana samples—including cannabis products from state-legal dispensaries.

/ FEDERAL

The National Institutes of Health’s Intramural Research Program  published a blog post examining how researchers are investigating the role of the human body’s cannabinoid system to combat diabetes-related heart failure.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published a notice of  its intent to issue a sole source contract to a company for laboratory support services to analyze an allergen from the cannabis plant.

Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) told Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen at a hearing that he would like to work with her staff on cannabis  banking issues.

Rep. James Comer (R-KY) said during a House Oversight and Reform Committee hearing that he believes people who are “in prison for little things like marijuana possession” should be released.

Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) tweeted, “Thank you @ICBA for your ongoing support of the #SAFEBankingAct! The conflict in state & federal law has created a serious public safety issue for communities & I echo your call for the conference cmte to include #SAFEBanking in the final package of the Bipartisan Innovation Act.”

/ STATES

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) signed a bill to streamline the process for sealing marijuana and other convictions.

An analysis of a border-related law enforcement operation launched by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) found that nearly one out of five of its arrests has been for a low-level marijuana offense.

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) pardoned more people for marijuana and other drug offenses.

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R) compared the legalization of sports betting to cannabis, saying, “without a legal way to do this, it’s a little bit like the marijuana issue. You just leave the black market there, and you don’t sort of bring it out of the shadows and make it part of the regular crime.”

Pennsylvania Democratic gubernatorial candidate Josh Shapiro, currently the attorney general, tweeted, “It’s time to legalize recreational marijuana in Pennsylvania. Tax it, regulate it, and expunge the records of those who have served time for nonviolent marijuana-related offenses. I’m going to build a path to justice, and It’ll boost the economy.”

Wyoming Democratic gubernatorial candidate Rex Wilde spoke about his support for legalizing marijuana.

The U.S. Virgin Islands Senate Committee on Rules and the Judiciary approved a Cannabis Advisory Board nomination.

Missouri regulators are requiring several medical cannabis businesses to destroy products and give up licenses over various alleged violations.

Montana regulators adopted rules on the marijuana packaging and labeling application and approval process.

The Connecticut Social Equity Council set rules for its decision process on marijuana social equity applicants in a closed session.

Illinois regulators announced plans to issue new marijuana dispensary licenses.

Vermont regulators published guidance on marijuana packaging rules.

New York regulators published a fact sheet about marijuana and young people.

Oregon regulators will hold a public meeting and town hall on cannabis issues on Wednesday.

California regulators will host a webinar on the Cannabis Appellations Program on Thursday.


Marijuana Moment is already 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.

/ LOCAL

The Stevens Point, Wisconsin City Council is considering lowering the fine for marijuana possession to $5.

/ INTERNATIONAL

A Uruguayan lawmaker plans to file a bill to legalize the sale of marijuana to foreigners.

Kenyan presidential candidate George Wajackoyah is pledging to legalize medical cannabis if elected.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “extracellular vesicles of cannabis with high CBD content induce anticancer signaling in human hepatocellular carcinoma.”

A study “adds to the growing body of psilocybin research with promising results showing the safety, feasibility, and efficacy of simultaneous psilocybin treatment in patients with cancer with” major depressive disorder.

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

A poll found that 83 percent of Nebraskans support legalizing medical cannabis.

Elon Musk tweeted, “Psychedelics and MDMA can make a real difference to mental health, especially for extreme depression and PTSD. We should take this seriously.”

/ BUSINESS

A California judge ruled that High Times must pay more than $4.9 million in back rent for a would-be dispensary location in San Francisco’s Union Square.

INSA workers are contesting the result of a failed unionization vote.

Colorado retailers sold more than $153 million worth of legal marijuana products in April.

/ CULTURE

Ed Begley Jr. tweeted, “I believe in medical cannabis safe access for those that might benefit.”

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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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