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Cuomo reiterates legal cannabis pledge in inaugural speech (Newsletter: Jan. 2, 2019)



Federal marijuana cases fell by a fifth last year; UT hemp program paused due to fed gov’t shutdown; OH medical cannabis sales could start soon

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A report from Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts shows that federal marijuana cases dropped by almost a fifth during the last fiscal year while more states began implementing their legal cannabis laws.

Regulators in Utah and presumably other states can’t process hemp cultivation and processing applications until the federal government shutdown is over and the FBI resumes background checks.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) reiterated his pledge to legalize marijuana during his inaugural address, saying the move will bring “justice and new economic opportunity not for rich corporations, but for the poor communities that paid too high a price for too long.” He also pardoned several people convicted of cannabis and other drug offenses.


President Trump tweeted, “One thing has now been proven. The Democrats do not care about Open Borders and all of the crime and drugs that Open Borders bring!”

Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) tweeted, “The Brooklyn DA’s office has just expunged 1,400 low-level marijuana offenses. Earlier this year, Seattle erased 15 years of low-level marijuana convictions and San Francisco expunged 4 decades of misdemeanors. Legalizing marijuana must include a push for restorative justice.”

Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) included “Legalize Marijuana & Explore Reparations” in a list of ways for public servants to gain traction.


Outgoing Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval (R) wants to earmark more marijuana tax revenue for education programs.

Ohio medical cannabis sales could start within days.

A New Hampshire representative filed a bill to allow physician assistants to recommend medical cannabis.

A Maryland delegate plans to work on marijuana legalization legislation in the upcoming session.

Texas police associations are raising concerns about pending marijuana decriminalization legislation.

Idaho activists say they will work to put a marijuana legalization measure on the state’s 2020 ballot.

An Arizona man is seeking to qualify measures for the 2020 ballot that would eliminate all drug penalties and eliminate all marijuana penalties.

Marijuana Moment is tracking key cannabis bills in state legislatures and Congress. Patreon supporters pledging at least $25/month get access to our interactive maps, charts and hearing calendar so they don’t miss any developments.

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A review of Baltimore, Maryland police records shows that although marijuana arrests have fallen under decriminalization, racial disparities still persist.

Challengers to district attorneys in three Virginia counties are pledging to to stop prosecuting low-level marijuana possession if elected.

An incoming Clark County, Nevada commissioner says the county needs marijuana social use lounges to capitalize on cannabis tourism.

The mayor of Brick, New Jersey is being criticized because a marijuana company executive attended his election night party.


New Zealand’s police minister endorsed the idea of using independent drug testing booths at music festivals so attendees can know what they are consuming.

Indian police sent an…interesting press release after seizing marijuana products allegedly imported from the U.S.


A study found that “CB1 positive allosteric modulation is a novel approach to treat cannabinoid dependence and gastric inflammation.”

An Israeli company is developing a cannabis-based drug to treat a rare form of skin cancer.

Here’s a look at the nuances researchers face in tracking the effects of marijuana legalization.


The New York Daily News editorial board is skeptical of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to keep the legal marijuana market out of the hands of large corporations.

The Santa Cruz Sentinel editorial board is calling on California regulators to bring “sense and overall organization to the patchwork of rules and regulations” governing marijuana.


Facebook is deleting more CBD retailers’ pages.

An analysis in Gaming Law Review looks at marijuana legalization’s impact on the gambling industry.

John Sinclair, whose imprisonment for marijuana inspired John Lennon and other top musicians to hold a benefit concert for him in 1971, is opening a cafe in Detroit.

The Economist’s podcast makes predictions for marijuana stocks in 2019.


Former NBA player John Salley is starting a marijuana company.

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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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