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Interstate cannabis commerce bill in Congress (Newsletter: December 8, 2023)



HHS marijuana docs; Psychedelics in NDAA; GOP chair: Let DC legalize sales; Latest on OH legalization; NY medical cannabis focus; FL ballot challenge

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The Department of Health and Human Services released 250+ pages of highly redacted documents detailing its rationale for recommending that marijuana be rescheduled based on a determination that cannabis has a currently accepted medical use.

The National Defense Authorization Act conference report negotiated by House and Senate leaders contains provisions funding clinical trials on the benefits of psychedelics such as psilocybin and MDMA for active duty military service members with PTSD and traumatic brain injuries.

  • However, the final NDAA legislation removes a House-passed provision to create a medical cannabis pilot program for veterans as well as a Senate-passed section to protect people from being denied security clearances due to marijuana.

House Oversight and Accountability Committee Chairman James Comer (R-KY) said local officials in the District of Columbia should be allowed to legalize marijuana sales in the nation’s capital without congressional interference “if that’s what Washington D.C. wants.”

A bipartisan group of members of Congress led by Rep. Dave Joyce (R-OH) filed a bill to end federal marijuana prohibition in legal states while also legalizing interstate cannabis commerce.

Marijuana possession and home cultivation is now legal in Ohio as of Thursday—though certain provisions could still change as lawmakers continue to consider amendments to the voter-approved legalization law.

Cannabis justice advocates are raising concerns that provisions of an Ohio Senate-passed bill to amend the state’s legalization law could perpetuate criminalization and undermine equity—even as it adds expungements and maintains home grow rights.

Cleveland, Ohio Mayor Justin Bibb (D) announced that as statewide marijuana legalization takes effect, the city is ending pre-employment cannabis testing for most municipal job applicants.

My Florida Green, which connects patients seeking medical cannabis cards to doctors, is asking the state Supreme Court to block a recreational marijuana legalization initiative from the ballot—saying it would “significantly impact our business operations and the well-being of our clients.”

As New York prepares to expand its adult-use marijuana market, the Office of Cannabis Management is putting some focus on patient access by accepting applications for new medical dispensaries and inviting people to share their stories about therapeutic use.

The Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission has been hearing presentations this week from companies seeking vertically integrated medical marijuana business licenses, with the expectation of making awards next week.


The Biden administration is delaying a proposed ban on menthol cigarettes.

A former Department of Justice senior policy analyst said that restrictions on previous marijuana and other drug use by law enforcement harms efforts to recruit young people to apply.

Rep. Morgan McGarvey (D-KY) tweeted, “I’ve long supported the full legalization of marijuana at the federal level, and as we continue working toward that goal, we have to make sure our laws aren’t holding legitimate businesses—and our economy—back. It’s time for Congress to pass the SAFER Banking Act.”

The House bill to federally legalize marijuana got three new cosponsors for a total of 76.


A Washington, D.C. lawmaker filed a bill to give unlicensed marijuana businesses more time to transition into the legal medical cannabis market.

A Missouri senator prefiled legislation to add marijuana to a law that reduces or eliminates workers compensation eligibility for injured employees found to be under the influence of alcohol or nonprescribed controlled drugs.

A South Carolina senator said he plans to reintroduce a medical cannabis bill in 2024.

Virginia lawmakers discussed the prospects for passing legislation to legalize marijuana sales.

Wisconsin representatives discussed a pending marijuana decriminalization bill.

Colorado regulators sent a bulletin about marijuana product labeling requirements.

Oklahoma medical cannabis regulators plan to ask lawmakers to give them authority to oversee intoxicating hemp products.

Alabama regulators are facing another lawsuit over their medical cannabis business licensing process.

Marijuana Moment is tracking more than 1,000 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.


Several Ohio municipalities are moving to enact moratoriums on marijuana businesses.

The Sussex County, Delaware Council is considering marijuana business regulations.


A European Parliament member from Greece is pressing the European Commission to create a legislative framework for medical cannabis.

A German lawmaker tweeted, “The #Cannabisgesetz should be decided in the Bundestag as quickly as possible. A quick conclusion must not fail due to coordination problems within the @spdbt . Consumers, the judiciary and the police finally need legal certainty and clarity.”


A study found that “there was an associated improvement in self-reported anxiety, sleep quality, and [health-related quality of life] in patients treated with” cannabis-based medicinal products.

A study of mice found that “CBD promotes cardiomyocyte proliferation and heart regeneration after [myocardial infarction].”


Martin Luther King III spoke at a Diversity In Cannabis & Equity event.

The Colorado Springs Gazette editorial board criticized Gov. Jared Polis (D) for pushing for federal marijuana reform.


Curaleaf Holdings Inc. received conditional approval to list on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

CBD American Shaman was fined by the Environmental Protection Agency over an alleged failure to register six antimicrobial pesticides.

Parallel is facing a shareholder lawsuit challenging its proposed restructuring.

Aegis Sciences Corporation is updating its urine testing products for marijuana and other cannabinoids to include delta‐8 carboxy‐THC and cannabidiol, in addition to delta‐9 carboxy‐THC.


Seth Rogen posted a video purporting to show himself being depicted smoking marijuana on the Las Vegas Sphere.

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Photo courtesy of Brendan Cleak.

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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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