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CT legal cannabis deal ready for vote this week (Newsletter: June 7, 2021)

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Civil rights groups want vote on federal marijuana bill this month; MS medical cannabis hearing; Federal THC & driving study

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Connecticut lawmakers released an updated marijuana legalization bill following negotiations with Gov. Ned Lamont (D). Votes on this version, which equity advocates say is a major improvement, are expected Monday or Tuesday.

A coalition that includes ACLU, NAACP, AFL-CIO, National Organization for Women and hundreds of other groups sent a letter demanding that congressional leaders schedule a vote on a federal marijuana legalization bill by the end of this month.

The Mississippi Senate Public Health Committee held a hearing about medical cannabis in the wake of the state Supreme Court striking down the voter-approved program. Leaders are considering a special session to pass a new marijuana law.

A study funded by the National Institute of Justice, a federal agency, found that “THC levels in biofluids were not reliable indicators of marijuana intoxication”—raising questions about per se driving laws that punish people for certain levels of cannabis metabolites.

/ FEDERAL

The Department of Transportation issued a notice to commercial drivers about CBD products and drug testing.

Rep. Anthony Brown (D-MD) tweeted, “The MORE Act would eliminate criminal penalties that bar marijuana users, particularly in communities of color, from work. Congress, localities and the private sector must do their part. @Amazon’s new hiring policy is common sense and more in corporate America should do the same.”

Rep. Lloyd Smucker (R-PA) tweeted about visiting a hemp production facility.

The House bill to allow CBD as a dietary supplement got one new cosponsor for a total of 26.

/ STATES

Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak (D) signed a bill to reduce marijuana penalties for minors.

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott (R) signed a bill to legalize possession of buprenorphine.

North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum (R) is seeking applicants to serve on the Medical Marijuana Advisory Board.

Florida Republican leaders are requesting an investigation into Democratic gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried, currently the state’s agriculture commissioner, over an amended disclosure form showing substantially more marijuana industry income than she previously reported.

Members of the Washington, D.C. Council pushed back on a plan from D.C. Public Schools to require contractors and volunteers to undergo marijuana testing.

A Texas appeals court heard oral arguments about a temporary injunction in a case challenging the state’s ban on smokable hemp.

An Arkansas judge is considering a hospital system’s motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought by a man whose job offer was rescinded over medical cannabis use.

Colorado regulators submitted a revised hemp plan for federal approval.

California generated $245 million in marijuana tax revenue for the first quarter of 2021.

Alaska regulators published guidance on cannabis waste.

Michigan regulators released tips for marijuana businesses about common issues.

The Oregon Cannabis Commission’s Health Equity Subcommittee will meet on Tuesday.

/ INTERNATIONAL

The Czech Republic Chamber of Deputies approved legislation to increase access to medical cannabis.

The governor of Ondo, Nigeria said the country should legalize medical cannabis cultivation.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “hemp seed oil is effective for reducing oxidative stress at the cellular level.”

A review concluded that “medicinal cannabis is generally well tolerated when dosed appropriately.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

A poll found that 68% of UK adults support allowing psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy for terminal patients.

The Democratic Governors Association tweeted about how Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) signed medical cannabis into law.

The Alabama Democratic Party tweeted, “Ainsworth, Ivey, Marshall, & AL GOP politicians have done nothing to improve our lives. We need leaders who will raise the minimum wage to $15, legalize cannabis, & expand Medicaid. Republican politicians like Ainsworth refuse to take any action that will help Alabama.”

The Cleveland Plain Dealer editorial board cheered a federal marijuana legalization bill filed by Rep. Dave Joyce (R-OH).

/ BUSINESS

Akerna reported more than $234 million worth of legal marijuana sales on Memorial Day weekend.

Charlotte’s Web Holdings, Inc. asked a federal judge to pause a proposed class action lawsuit against it until Congress acts on a bill to allow CBD as a dietary supplement.

Cannabis extraction company WellgreensCA, Inc. pleaded guilty to federal charges of illegally transporting hazardous waste.

A California judge is allowing Kool cigarette maker ITG Brands LLP’s trademark infringement lawsuit against Bloom Brands to proceed.

LivWell Enlightened Health made a $57,000 donation to Mental Health Colorado.

Iterable co-founder Justin Zhu spoke about being ousted from the company over his microdosing LSD.

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Photo courtesy of Chris Wallis // Side Pocket Images.

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 Marijuana.com and MassRoots, and handled media relations and campaigns for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition and Students for Sensible Drug Policy. (Organization citations are for identification only and do not constitute an endorsement or partnership.)

Newsletter

DE legal cannabis vote delayed (Newsletter: June 11, 2021)

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WY marijuana ballot measures; RI speaker: cannabis could pass in summer; Congress advances bill study dispensary products; VA legalization site

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

A planned Delaware House of Representatives vote on a marijuana legalization bill was postponed as the sponsor works to build support with various amendments. Several of his floated changes would scale back equity provisions.

Rhode Island’s House speaker says marijuana legalization won’t be in the budget but that lawmakers may reconvene in the summer or fall to tackle the issue after details from three separate cannabis plans are reconciled. Gov. Dan McKee (D) also says he “wouldn’t be surprised” to see the bills move forward later this year.

Wyoming voters may get the chance to decide on two marijuana ballot initiatives in 2022. The Libertarian Party plans to file the measures—one on medical cannabis and the other on decriminalization—with the secretary of state on Friday.

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee approved legislation to let scientists study the actual marijuana that consumers are purchasing from dispensaries instead of researching only government-produced cannabis. It now heads to the House floor.

Virginia regulators launched a new website to educate people about what’s allowed—and what’s not—under the state’s new marijuana legalization law taking effect on July 1.

/ FEDERAL

The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy touted the reduction of poppy cultivation and potential heroin production in Mexico for the third consecutive year.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) asked a Politico cannabis reporter if she was stoned during an interview.

Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK) said he supports some federal marijuana policy reforms but not ending prohibition altogether.

Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-WI) asked a question during a House hearing about whether the legalization of marijuana is causing cartels to smuggle other drugs.

Rep. Mike Simpson (R-ID) wrote about his opposition to legalizing marijuana in a constituent letter.

/ STATES

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) dodged a question about whether he would sign a bill to enact cannabis restrictions that’s on his desk. Separately, regulators sent a bulletin about the Friday expiration of policies enacted during the coronavirus pandemic, including the allowance of remote sales transactions and suspension of fingerprinting for license renewal applications. They also sent a bulletin warning about fraud against marijuana businesses.

New York lawmakers are likely to delay the appointment of members to the new cannabis regulatory body, though a former assemblyman is reportedly likely to be named chairman.

A Pennsylvania appeals court ruled that a man who was fired after failing a drug test due to medical cannabis use can receive unemployment benefits.

The Washington State Social Equity in Cannabis Task Force’s Disproportionately Impacted Communities Workgroup will meet on Wednesday.

Michigan regulators will host a marijuana social equity education and outreach session on Thursday.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,100 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

New York City Democratic mayoral candidates debated restrictions on where marijuana can be smoked.

The Gwinnett County, Georgia Police Citizens Advisory Board is finalizing a recommendation in support of decriminalizing marijuana.

A Polk County, Iowa attorney candidate said resources should be redirected to violent crime and sexual assault by shifting focus away from prosecuting non-violent low level misdemeanors like marijuana possession.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Spain’s Congress approved the creation of a subcommittee to examine medical cannabis issues.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study concluded that “patients find cannabis treatment effective for a broad range of medical conditions.”

A review concluded there are a “rising number of publications with substantial results on the valuable therapeutic innovation of CBD for treating” substance use disorders.

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

The Drug Policy Alliance hired a lobbying firm to help pressure Congress to remove the ban on Washington, D.C. spending its own money to legalize marijuana sales.

AMVETS is hosting a forum about the benefits of medical cannabis for military veterans on June 27.

/ BUSINESS

Columbia Care Inc. launched an online cannabis discovery tool that suggests curated products depending on desired mood and experience, and syncs with local dispensaries inventories and pricing to enable online orders.

Harborside Inc. settled a lawsuit brought by a former employee for approximately $1.5 million.

CURE Pharmaceutical Holding Corp. and Biopharmaceutical Research Company launched a partnership to produce cannabis-based medical products.

Terra Tech Corp. is acquiring SilverStreak Solutions Inc.

The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company’s Hawthorne Gardening subsidiary announced that the first recipients of its social justice grant fund are Last Prisoner Project, Marijuana Policy Project Foundation, Minorities for Medical Marijuana and United Returning Citizens and NuLeaf Project.

Merida Capital Holdings is seeking to raise $250 million in funding.

Colorado retailers sold more than $206 million worth of marijuana in April.

/ CULTURE

Sarah Silverman spoke to Conan O’Brien about the time she smoothed over a traffic dispute by buying the other driver some marijuana.

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Photo courtesy of Kyle Jaeger.

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.
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Newsletter

CT legal cannabis vote pushed to special session (Newsletter: June 10, 2021)

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Poll: US voters back drug decrim; New TX effort to put marijuana on local ballots; Cannabis prisoner says MORE Act falls short

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Signing up for a $25/month subscription will help keep us digging, interviewing and reporting on all the cannabis news that’s fit to print. And in return, you’ll gain access to our Bill Tracker tool, too, so you can have the most up-to-date information on the drug policy reform efforts around the U.S.

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Connecticut’s House speaker decided to take up marijuana legalization in a special session in the coming days after Republicans threatened to run out the clock on debate until the end of the regular session at midnight on Wednesday.

A new poll from the ACLU and Drug Policy Alliance found that two-thirds of American voters support decriminalizing drugs. The survey is timed to coincide with the 50th anniversary of President Richard Nixon declaring the war on drugs.

The new organization Ground Game Texas is planning to put marijuana and other progressive issues on local ballots across the state after the Republican-controlled legislature blocked reform this session.

A man who received clemency from President Donald Trump says a pending federal marijuana legalization bill would leave many cannabis prisoners behind with its resentencing provisions. He’s asking lawmakers for amendments.

/ FEDERAL

The Department of Energy is funding research and development projects, including one on hemp fiber insulation.

Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) tweeted, “Thank you, @DrugPolicyOrg, for leading a letter urging Congress to remove the rider prohibiting DC from spending local funds on commercializing recreational marijuana. The letter was signed by 44 local, state + national justice reform, liberty + public health organizations.”

/ STATES

Puerto Rico Gov. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia (NPP) signed a bill preventing medical cannabis from being considered a violation of probation.

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) issued a proclamation declaring Hemp Week, and a U.S. flag made out of hemp is flying over the state capitol.

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott (R) made an appointment to the Cannabis Control Board Advisory Committee.

Pennsylvania’s lieutenant governor posted to Facebook about visiting a marijuana exhibition at the Philadelphia Flower Show.

Wyoming’s attorney general is defending a police officer whom the state Supreme Court found lied on the stand during a case accusing hemp farmers of growing marijuana.

New Mexico Senate leadership said, in response to a complaint from the state’s health secretary, that the body will not investigate a senator’s involvement with a medical cannabis business.

The Delaware representative sponsoring a marijuana legalization bill up for a vote on Thursday says he is “uncertain” if it has enough support to pass.

The Alabama senator who sponsored a successful medical cannabis bill spoke about the implementation of the program.

Ohio regulators added Huntington’s disease, terminal illness and spasticity as medical cannabis qualifying conditions.

Montana’s top marijuana regulator said she hopes to release draft legalization implementation rules by September.

New Jersey officials discussed cannabis research with scientists from Israel.

Tennessee regulators sent a reminder about the need to renew hemp licenses.

Oklahoma regulators reported new medical cannabis tax revenue data.

/ LOCAL

The Sioux Falls, South Dakota City Council is moving to put medical cannabis business applications on hold until state officials issue regulations.

Denver, Colorado’s official Twitter account posted, in response to a discussion about people’s desire for a cannabis dispensary at the airport, “Come downtown! Denver’s A-Train departs the airport on a regular basis.😉 It’s federally illegal to transport marijuana in a plane. Thus, @DENAirport’s policy on not allowing marijuana consumption or possession.”

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “prolonged medical cannabis treatment is associated with quality of life improvement and reduction of analgesic medication consumption in chronic pain patients.”

A study found that “drivers in states that legalized medical marijuana self-reported driving after marijuana use slightly more than drivers in states where both medical and recreational were illegal” but that “marijuana users in states that legalized [recreational marijuana] self-reported driving after marijuana use less than their counterparts [in states that haven’t enacted legalization]” and that “no predominant pattern suggesting that those in states with liberal marijuana policies were more tolerant of driving after marijuana use.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

Students for Sensible Drug Policy chapters sent a letter calling on congressional leaders to vote on a federal marijuana legalization bill this month.

The National Cannabis Industry Association published an overview of the science, history and uses of medical cannabis.

/ BUSINESS

Freshly Baked made Massachusetts’s first legal recreational marijuana delivery.

Jushi Holdings Inc. reported quarterly revenue of $32.3 million and a net loss of $156.7 million.

Goodness Growth Holdings, Inc’s subsidiary Resurgent Biosciences is expanding its intellectual property development and clinical research efforts into psychedelic medicine.

HEXO Corp won dismissal of a shareholder class action lawsuit.

Mydecine Innovations Group said it has discovered more than 40 compounds with pharmacological potential in various species of mushrooms, including varieties of psilocybe cubensis.

Cresco Labs asked a federal judge to dismiss a breach of contract claim from a proposed class action lawsuit alleging it did not pay workers for the time spent putting on and taking off required personal protective equipment during the coronavirus pandemic.

Watco Companies is being sued by a former employee for allegedly improperly firing him over medical cannabis use.

Arkansas dispensaries have sold more than $330 million worth of medical cannabis since the program began.

/ CORRECTION

Wednesday’s issue incorrectly reported Illinois’ total year-to-date medical cannabis sales as the tally for May. The correct figure is $34.2 million.

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Photo courtesy of Chris Wallis // Side Pocket Images.

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.
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CT House has votes for legal cannabis bill (Newsletter: June 9, 2021)

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NFL funds marijuana research; CTT gov signs psilocybin bill; Seattle officials push psychedelics reform; Poll: MS voters back legalizing cannabis

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont (D) signed a bill requiring the state to create a working group to “study the health benefits of psilocybin.”

Connecticut’s House majority leader said he has enough “solid yeses” to get a Senate-passed marijuana legalization bill to the governor’s desk by Wednesday—but Republicans are saying it should be slowed down and moved to a special session.

The National Football League plans to award up to $1 million in funding to support research into cannabis, CBD and other alternatives to opioids for treating players’ pain. A representative told Marijuana Moment that cannabis’s Schedule I status is impeding science.

A majority of the Seattle, Washington City Council signed a letter urging an opioid task force to investigate the role of psychedelics in treating addiction and mental health issues. One lawmaker said he plans to file a lowest law enforcement priority measure soon.

A new poll found that a majority of Mississippi voters support legalizing recreational marijuana. Last month the state Supreme Court overturned a medical cannabis measure that passed overwhelmingly—and voters say it’s the top issue that’ll determine their votes for political candidates.

/ FEDERAL

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) tweeted, “We must end the federal prohibition on marijuana while ensuring restorative justice for those harmed by the War on Drugs. I’m working with @SenBooker and @RonWyden on comprehensive marijuana reform legislation.”

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) cited racial disparities in arrests for marijuana and other low-level crimes in a letter urging the Department of Justice to investigate several Minnesota law enforcement agencies.

Rep. Mike Garcia (R-CA) accompanied law enforcement on a raid of an illegal marijuana cultivation operation.

/ STATES

Delaware Gov. John Carney (D) said he thinks marijuana is a “bad thing” and refused to say whether he would sign a legalization bill that’s up for a House vote this week. Meanwhile, the House speaker said he has concerns over the legislation and isn’t sure if it will pass his chamber or not.

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) authored an op-ed calling on Congress to end the sentencing disparity between crack and powder cocaine.

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) said the state is not ready to join Washington in allowing the gifting of marijuana to people who get coronavirus vaccines.

Colorado lawmakers sent Gov. Jared Polis (D) a bill to enact limits on marijuana concentrates, place restrictions on medical cannabis recommendations and require the state to study the impacts of marijuana on certain health outcomes, among other changes.

The Louisiana House of Representatives rejected the Senate’s changes to a bill that started out as taxing medical cannabis flower but evolved into a general sales tax extension.

The wife of the only Connecticut Republican senator to vote for a marijuana legalization bill works for cannabis company Curaleaf.

Nevada regulators will host a marijuana regulatory workshop on Tuesday.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,100 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

Denver, Colorado regulators will host a marijuana rulemaking work group meeting on Thursday.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Morocco’s House of Councilors passed a medical cannabis bill.

A Brazilian House committee approved a medical cannabis bill.

Canada’s Privy Council Office included questions about drug decriminalization in polling and focus groups.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “cannabidiol showed a promising therapeutic response in terms of ameliorating affect in a rat model of early-life stress during adolescence and up to adulthood.”

A study concluded that “implementation of the Cannabis Act in Canada in 2018 appears to have been associated with decreases of 55%–65% in cannabis-related crimes among male and female youth.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

The Tennessee Democratic Party tweeted, “Good morning to everyone except Rep. Brandon Ogles (R) who wanted to amend the Tennessee state constitution to forever prohibit recreational marijuana. Recreational marijuana should be legal. Period.”

AMVETS called for federal marijuana descheduling in testimony for a House Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing.

/ BUSINESS

Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. is partnering with Rolling Stone on a new line of marijuana products.

Vireo Health International, Inc. changed its name to Goodness Growth Holdings, Inc. and projected revenue in the range of $140 to $180 million in 2022.

Field Trip Health Ltd. applied to list on the NASDAQ Stock Market.

HEXO Corp announced a commitment to offset the carbon emissions of the company and its employees.

Tilray, Inc. launched a new brand called Symbios.

Innovative Industrial Properties, Inc. published an environmental, social and governance report.

Columbia Care Inc. appointed a new board member.

Maine retailers sold $5.4 million worth of recreational marijuana in May, a new record.

Illinois dispensaries sold $34.2 million worth of medical cannabis products in May.

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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.
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