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Feds to reconsider cannabis conviction histories (Newsletter: October 31, 2022)



Schumer shoots down marijuana on Amtrak fake news; DE gov vetoes cannabis & guns bill; NJ 280E bill approved; AZ nears $1B sales in 2022

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The U.S. Sentencing Commission has made it a priority to reconsider whether and how past marijuana conviction records can be used against people in sentencing decisions for new crimes.

  • The cannabis criminal history review was not included in an initial list of the commission’s proposed priorities circulated last month, but President Joe Biden issued mass marijuana pardons the next day and now it’s being included.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s (D-NY) office is shooting down a fake news report that claimed he has been working “for months” on a policy to allow marijuana use and sales on Amtrak trains.

Delaware Gov. John Carney (D) vetoed a bill to codify medical cannabis patients’ gun rights under state law. Earlier this year, he vetoed separate legislation to legalize recreational cannabis.

The New Jersey Assembly approved a bill to decouple state tax policy from the federal 280E provision, which would allow marijuana companies to deduct business expenses in their state filings.

New Arizona Department of Revenue data indicates that the state is about to surpass $1 billion in legal marijuana sales in 2022.


The National Institute on Drug Abuse extended the due date for proposals to produce cannabis for research.

Conservatives seized on reports that the man who allegedly assaulted the husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) sold hemp jewelry at one point and lived at a home that has a flag with a marijuana symbol hanging from a tree.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) tweeted, “Cannabis linked psychosis is a serious problem that we can not ignore. I’ve talked to many police that say they have seen a rise in crime since marijuana has been legalized in many places.”

Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R-NY) held a press conference to press New York City officials to crack down on unlicensed marijuana businesses.

Rep. Teresa Leger Fernandez (D-NM) and Republican challenger Alexis Martinez discussed cannabis policy during a debate.

Wisconsin Democratic Senate candidate Mandela Barnes, currently the lieutenant governor, spoke about his support for legalizing marijuana.


South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) defended her decision to challenge a marijuana legalization measure that voters approved in 2020 but said that if a new cannabis initiative on the November ballot passes, “it’s going to be implemented.”

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) tweeted, “The will of the people should be the law of the land. Nearly two-thirds of Wisconsinites support legalizing marijuana. It’s time for us to join red and blue states across the U.S. by legalizing and taxing marijuana, much like we already do with alcohol.”

Arkansas Republican gubernatorial candidate Sarah Huckabee Sanders, a former White House press secretary, tweeted, “Fentanyl, heroin and meth are killing Arkansans, and as governor I will aggressively combat the severe drug crisis in our state. I’m voting no on recreational marijuana because I don’t believe adding to our state’s drug problem is good for our kids and their future.”

Iowa Democratic gubernatorial candidate Deidre DeJear tweeted, “It’s time to legalize cannabis in Iowa.”

Colorado’s attorney general,  several state lawmakers and the mayors of Denver and Colorado Springs, among other current and former officials, signed a letter opposing the psychedelics legalization initiative on the November ballot. Separately, a representative authored an op-ed urging voters to reject the measure.

New Jersey’s attorney general issued a directive on drug testing of law enforcement personnel.

Florida Democratic chief financial officer candidate Adam Hattersley tweeted, “It’s time to legalize recreational cannabis in Florida.  As your next Chief Financial Officer, you can count on me to work to get it done.”

Pennsylvania lawmakers sent Gov. Tom Wolf (D) a bill to legalize fentanyl testing strips, but separate legislation to allow syringe exchange services stalled in the House Judiciary Committee.

Missouri’s House speaker and speaker-elect urged voters to reject the marijuana legalization initiative on the November ballot.

Here’s a look at where North Carolina House and Senate candidates stand on medical cannabis.

New York regulators published guidance for recreational marijuana dispensaries.

Texas regulators voted to allow licenses in the limited medical cannabis program to open satellite locations and are hiring a consultant to advise about potential broader expansion.

Mississippi regulators gave an update on steps to implement a medical cannabis program, including forcing one business to destroy nearly $1 million worth of marijuana plants due to compliance issues.

The Connecticut State Police tweeted, “This Halloween, beware! Some THC product packages closely resemble candy… Parents or guardians, take note, carefully inspect ALL treats before allowing children to consume.”

The California Department of Public Health posted a warning about “the dangers of gummies, brownies, lollipops, and other candies, food, and drink products infused with cannabis.”

Virginia regulators conducted a survey to explore attitudes and behaviors about marijuana and driving.

Massachusetts officials are accepting applications to serve on the Cannabis Social Equity Advisory Board.

Oregon regulators posted information from a psilocybin business forum they hosted.

Washington State regulators are hosting a series of events to mark the 10-year anniversary of voters approving marijuana legalization.

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.

Learn more about our marijuana bill tracker and become a supporter on Patreon to get access.


New York City’s mayor said he will ask state lawmakers to pass legislation allowing the city to more swiftly crack down on unlicensed marijuana sales.

The Huntsville, Alabama City Council approved an ordinance allowing medical cannabis dispensaries.

The Richfield, Minnesota City Council approved a one-year moratorium on the sale of THC-infused edibles.

Virginia Beach, Virginia police posted a Halloween-themed warning about driving under the influence of marijuana.


Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro claimed during a final debate before losing reelection that challenger Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, a former president, wants to legalize drugs.

Thailand’s Department of Agriculture published rules allowing the import of cannabis and hemp seeds.

The Isle of Man’s government said there will be further delays to the launch of medical cannabis dispensing.


A study “demonstrated that 1% CBD cream has potential effects for analgesia and anti-inflammation.”

A review concluded that “marijuana can cause bronchitis, but a moderate body of literature suggests that distal airway/parenchymal lung disease does not occur; marijuana does not cause chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and probably does not cause lung cancer, distinctly different from tobacco.”


Americans for Prosperity Missouri is urging the state’s voters to reject the marijuana legalization initiative on the November ballot and calling on lawmakers to pass an alternate plan to legalize cannabis.

The Missouri Hospital Association is opposing the marijuana legalization initiative on the November ballot.

The Seattle Times editorial board is calling on Washington State lawmakers to enact a potency cap on marijuana products.

Common Cause Rhode Island is calling on Gov. Dan McKee (D) to reject Cannabis Control Commission nominees suggested by the House speaker after a top staffer of his resigned amid reports he was involved in a marijuana business that was shut down by regulators and shared not-yet-public details about cannabis policy developments, including with a mob associate.

The U.S. Cannabis Council circulated a letter that dozens of New York and New Jersey cannabis equity businesses and applicants sent asking Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) to allow a vote on marijuana banking legislation.


Coachella Music Festival LLC is suing a cannabis-focused business park for alleged trademark infringement over its use of the term “Coachillin.”

Texas State University is being sued for refusing to release demographic data about students who are punished for marijuana.

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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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