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DOJ launching cannabis pardons certificate application (Newsletter: December 14, 2022)



Marijuana banking is “this close to a deal”; TX local decrim signatures submitted; AMA study: Legalization reduces arrests more than decrim

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U.S. Pardon Attorney Elizabeth Oyer discussed Justice Department plans to launch a simple webform that people can fill out in 10 minutes to get certificates showing that they received a marijuana pardon from President Joe Biden.

As congressional lawmakers work to craft an omnibus appropriations bill that advocates hope can be the vehicle for marijuana banking and other reform provisions, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Sherrod Brown (D-OH) said “it absolutely could still happen” and that negotiators are “this close to a deal.”

  • Meanwhile, Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) spoke about his ongoing efforts to attach SAFE Banking to moving legislation before he retires, and Senate Minority Whip John Thune (R-SD) said he doesn’t think it will be included in the omnibus.

Harker Heights, Texas activists submitted signatures for a ballot initiative to reverse the City Council’s repeal of a voter-approved marijuana decriminalization measure.

  • Meanwhile, Ground Game Texas is criticizing the Hays County district attorney for requesting that the state attorney general issue an opinion on a separate marijuana decriminalization initiative that San Marcos voters passed.

The Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners is temporarily halting enforcement actions against doctors who recommend medical cannabis via telemedicine, a move that comes after senators criticized the agency for refusing to lift an in-person requirement.

Marijuana prohibitionists have tried to argue that simple decriminalization of possession is enough to end arrests—but a new study published by the American Medical Association shows that full legalization drives down arrests even more in states that had already decriminalized.


President Joe Biden issued a notice continuing a national emergency regarding the “unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States constituted by global illicit drug trafficking.”

Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) tweeted, “My bipartisan SAFE Banking Act is about public safety. Let’s get it done.”

Sen. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) tweeted, “In NV, legal cannabis small businesses have created jobs & boosted our economy, but they still lack access to basic banking services. I’ll continue fighting to get the bipartisan SAFE Banking Act passed, which will increase safety & create more opportunities for these businesses.”

Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) celebrated the lack of marijuana banking provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act in a Senate floor speech.

Sen. John Hickenlooper  (D-CO) tweeted, “Everyone’s talking about marijuana legalization, so let’s make sure we get it right.”

In an op-ed about his bid to become House speaker, Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) criticized House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) for not fighting harder against marijuana banking provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act.


Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear (D) is pushing lawmakers to legalize medical cannabis, pointing to public support for the reform and defending the legality of his recent executive order on the issue.

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte’s (R) budget proposes ending the allocation of marijuana revenue to an environmental conservation program.

A spokesperson for New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu (R) said that if lawmakers pass a marijuana legalization bill he would “review any such legislation and determine whether it’s in the best interests of New Hampshire’s citizens.”

A Florida marijuana legalization campaign received another $5 million contribution from Trulieve.

Minnesota’s outgoing House majority leader spoke about the benefits of legalizing marijuana.

Georgia’s House Study Committee on Cannabis Waste Disposal and Recycling will meet on January 5 and 6.

Missouri’s top marijuana regulator said that half of current medical cannabis businesses have already submitted applications for licenses to sell to the recreational market.

Michigan regulators posted guidance on environmental rules for the cannabis industry.

Guam regulators approved applications for “responsible individuals” for marijuana businesses, but none have yet applied for licenses.

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation is adding lessons about cannabis impairment to driver’s education programs.

The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission is hiring investigator trainees.

Oregon regulators will consider marijuana business issues 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.

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A New York City nonprofit is planning a soft launch for sales at its licensed marijuana dispensary on December 29 after it was approved by a Manhattan community board.

Kansas City, Missouri’s mayor announced that the Municipal Court dismissed more than 500 marijuana cases over the past week.

The Mobile, Alabama City Council voted to allow medical cannabis dispensaries to operate.


The Colombian Senate approved a revised marijuana legalization bill that reconciles differences between earlier versions that it and the Chamber of Representatives advanced.

New Zealand lawmakers approved a phased-in ban on cigarettes and tobacco products.

The Philippine Senate health and demography subcommittee held a hearing on a medical cannabis bill.

Saskatchewan, Canada’s government filed legislation to give First Nations authority to regulate cannabis sales.


A review concluded that “cannabinoids have a role in treating chronic neuropathic pain as evidenced by significant improvements in sleep quality, pain intensity, and” patients’ global impression of change.

A study suggested that “psilocybin-assisted therapy facilitates psycho-social-spiritual growth.”


Americans for Prosperity included a federal marijuana legalization bill in its “Pathway to Prosperity” recommendations for the new Congress.

VS Strategies’ Mason Tvert discussed his work in the reform movement, including helping to lead Colorado’s successful marijuana legalization campaign.


Fire & Flower Holdings Corp.reported C$43.8 million in quarterly revenue and a net loss of C$28.1 million.

Green Thumb Industries Inc. announced appointments of four executive positions and one new board member.

Michigan retailers sold $203.4 million worth of legal marijuana products in November.

Colorado retailers sold $142 million worth of legal marijuana products in October.


Actor James Woods tweeted, “The open border policy of the Biden administration is rotting our Republic from within. With the unceasing invasion, witnessed yet ignored daily, comes the drug plague and its unadulterated horrors. Shame on this president and his cackling ‘drug czar’ VP.”

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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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