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FDA accepting comments on rescheduling cannabis globally (Newsletter: August 29, 2019)



Study: Dispensaries reduce local crime; Bernie Sanders says he’s not on board with drug decrim; POTUS candidate Joe Walsh on marijuana

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The Food and Drug Administration opened a new public comment period to solicit input on pending proposals to reschedule marijuana under international treaties.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), a presidential candidate, again said he is not on board with decriminalizing drugs beyond marijuana.

  • “I’m not there yet.”

Marijuana Moment’s latest presidential candidate overview takes a comprehensive look at the cannabis record of former Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL), who is running against President Trump in the GOP primary.

A study found that opening marijuana retail stores reduces local crime rates by 19%.

  • “The results show no evidence supporting theories that marijuana dispensaries increase local cannabis crimes (since we do not find increases in marijuana crimes such as cultivation, possession, or sales nearby) or that dispensaries increase crimes through increased intoxication (since there is essentially no change in the number of crimes with marijuana as a ‘contributing factor’ near locations that gain dispensaries).”


Surgeon General Jerome Adams criticized efforts to legalize marijuana.

Under Secretary of Agriculture for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Greg Ibach toured a Nebraska hemp farm.

Former White House Office of National Drug Control Policy Director John Walters suggested that the marijuana industry should be sued for the alleged harms it causes.

The office of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) tweeted, “Thank you @USDA for moving forward with implementing @senatemajldr McConnell’s provision to ensure access to #hemp crop insurance through whole farm revenue policies. This will serve as an important tool for #Kentucky farmers.”

The House Foreign Affairs Committee tweeted about the incarceration of a Philippine lawmaker who has criticized that nation’s bloody “war on drugs,” saying, “@SenLeiladeLima is spending her 60th birthday in detention on politically-motivated charges due to investigating #Du30’s drug war. For 915 days she has been unable to fulfill her obligation to the people as a legislator. Her efforts to speak truth to power should be celebrated.”

Sen. Kirsten Gilibrand (D-NY) ended her run for the Democratic presidential nomination. The senator has cosponsored several marijuana reform bills in Congress and during her campaign released a proposal that would have required all health insurance plans, including Medicare, Medicaid, and the VA to cover medical cannabis.

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) said he supports medical cannabis and rescheduling but opposes marijuana legalization.

Rep. Lou Correa (D-CA) tweeted, “After years of calling for the @DEAhq to reform cannabis research permits, we finally have some good news—change is coming.  Scientists across the country need access to cannabis for breakthrough medical research. This change finally opens the door.”

Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) tweeted, “I sent 2 bipartisan letters to @DEAHQ about allowing for the production of #marijuana to enable better scientific and health research. After much delay, it has promised it would do just that. This is a huge win for #publicheath, #science and #research.”


New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said a new expanded marijuana decriminalization and expungements law that took effect Wednesday “is long overdue, and it is a significant step forward in our efforts to end this repressive cycle and ultimately mend our discriminatory criminal justice process once and for all.”

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s (D) marijuana legalization working group held its third meeting.

Pennsylvania’s agriculture secretary announced that the state will host a hemp summit in October.

Kentucky’s agriculture commissioner tweeted a video of how hemp flooring is made.

A Texas assistant agriculture commissioner and other officials are scheduled to speak at a marijuana conference this weekend.

A previously unknown group is mailing cards to Nebraska voters with misleading claims about the consequences of signing a medical cannabis ballot petition.

Michigan regulators will hold a public meeting on Thursday.

Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,000 cannabis 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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The Jefferson County, Kentucky attorney will no longer prosecute possession of marijuana cases involving one ounce or less. The Louisville police chief said officers will still seize cannabis but will not routinely write citations for it. The mayor said he respects the moves.

The Alexandria, Virginia commonwealth’s attorney announced a diversion program through which people facing misdemeanor marijuana possession cases can get their charges dismissed by completing a diversion program.

The Kansas City, Missouri City Council is considering a proposal to decriminalize possession of 100 grams of marijuana.

Los Angeles, California officials touted enforcement efforts against unlicensed marijuana businesses, with the mayor tweeting that “the next chapter is about social equity — opening the doors of opportunity to communities that were hit hardest by the war on drugs” and the police chief saying the “focus remains on working together to support legal businesses & target illegal establishments.”

A judge ordered Warren, Michigan officials not to issue medical cannabis licenses after he determined they broke state open meetings laws to secretly interview dozens of companies seeking approval.


Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the leader of the Zehut party spoke about legalizing medical cannabis.

Australia’s health minister visited a medical cannabis facility.


A review found that “cannabis and synthetic cannabinoids, both acting on the endocannabinoids system, may have a potential therapeutic use for improving PTSD symptoms, e.g., reducing anxiety, modulating memory-related processes, and improving sleep” but that “there is currently limited evidence regarding their safety and efficacy.”

A study found that “∆9-tetrahydrocannabinol impairs performance on several tasks at two recreationally relevant doses, but raises question about the feasibility of designing a phone application as a sensitive field sobriety test for cannabis.”


The Republican Party of Kentucky tweeted, “During @RyanQuarlesKY’s tenure as Ag. Commish, we’ve seen hemp sales go from $16.7M in ’17 ➡️ $57.75M in ’18, & he’s predicting sales to hit $100M in ’19! To keep this momentum going for hemp & all of our ag. industries, we need to re-elect Ryan this Nov!”

The Kansas City Star editorial board is endorsing a local marijuana decriminalization proposal.

The Drug Policy Alliance suggested a series of harm reduction steps for policymakers to consider in advance of International Overdose Awareness Day on Saturday.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals tweeted, “Hemp is pretty much the miracle plant. You can make a tote bag from the fibers and use the oil to make lotion. Go vegan!”


Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. reported quarterly revenue growth of 231% from a year ago but a net loss of $24.4 million.

iAnthus Capital Holdings, Inc. announced 100% quarterly revenue growth since last quarter and a net loss of  $9.3 million.

Green Thumb Industries Inc. reported 228% year-over-year quarterly revenue growth with a net loss of $22.2 million.

TILT Holdings Inc. announced revenue is up 13% from last quarter, with a net loss of $48.9 million.


Rapper Too Short is launching a line of pre-rolled joints.

Former football player Chris Long said, “I’m a good person and I smoke weed.”

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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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