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IRS walks back cannabis tax deduction comment (Newsletter: February 15, 2022)



MD legalization process gets underway; NY marijuana licensing bill; Sha’Carri Richardson calls out sports double standard

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Internal Revenue Service National Taxpayer Advocate Erin Collins suggested in a C-SPAN interview that medical cannabis purchases might be tax deductible—but when contacted by Marijuana Moment she clarified that that’s not actually the case.

The Maryland House Judiciary Committee took the first step toward putting a marijuana legalization referendum on the November ballot by holding a hearing on two companion bills sponsored by the panel’s chairman.

New York’s Assembly majority leader and other lawmakers filed legislation that would grant temporary marijuana business licenses to hemp growers and processors to help the state prepare a timely launch of the adult-use market. Participating businesses would need to meet certain equity, labor and sustainability requirements.

U.S. runner Sha’Carri Richardson, who was suspended from the Olympics over marijuana, is suggesting there may be a racist double standard after a Russian skater who tested positive for a performance enhancing drug is being allowed to compete.

Washington State lawmakers are being accused of reneging on promises to back legislation to expand marijuana business licensing to address equity concerns. Some existing cannabis operators  have opposed the proposal.

Winery president Doug Frost—who says he is one of only three people in the world to be certified as both a master sommelier and a master of wine—writes in a new Marijuana Moment op-ed that if bars and restaurants can sell the “more hazardous drug” alcohol, they should also be allowed to serve cannabis.


The Department of Veterans Affairs posted a podcast excerpt explaining its policies on marijuana.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) sent a letter to constituents, saying he is “committed to making federal marijuana reform a priority” and is “working to finalize this legislation and to pass the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act in the near future.”

Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) tweeted about how officials reacted differently to U.S. runner Sha’Carri Richardson’s marijuana test and a Russian skater testing positive for a performance enhancing drug, saying, “Cannabis use needs to be destigmatized and federally legalized, especially when it’s used to hinder Black people due to unequal standards like this.”

Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) tweeted, “Cannabis businesses & employees are put in harm’s way everyday despite being recognized as legal, legitimate businesses in 47 states. It’s long overdue to fix this problem, get cash off our streets & protect our communities.”

Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA) discussed his support for “reducing barriers to research of cannabis and Schedule I drugs” in a newsletter.

Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) said marijuana legalization is an issue that doesn’t need to be partisan.

Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) encouraged South Carolina lawmakers to pass a medical cannabis bill this year.

Ohio Democratic congressional candidate Nina Turner tweeted, “Legalizing cannabis without making the cannabis market equitable for Black and brown communities would be an injustice. This country has spent years locking Black and brown people up for cannabis at much higher rates than white people. Communities have been destroyed.”

Kentucky Democratic congressional candidate William Compton tweeted, “This may be controversial, but I truly believe we should legalize Marijuana nationwide, and that is something I will fight for in congress.”


Maryland Democratic gubernatorial candidate John King, a former federal education secretary, tweeted, “Black Marylanders are disproportionately incarcerated for cannabis possession to a massive extent. We must legalize recreational cannabis in Maryland, but we also have to expunge records, and ensure opportunity for Black owned businesses.” Separately, Democratic attorney general candidate Katie Curran O’Malley testified in favor of a legalization bill before state lawmakers.

The Virginia Senate is expected to vote on marijuana sales legislation this week.

The South Dakota House of Representatives declined to take up a bill on medical cannabis recommendations via telehealth. Separately, the House Taxation Committee will hear a bill to set  up a taxation structure for recreational marijuana sales on Tuesday.

The New Mexico Senate Judiciary Committee approved a bill to increase production limits for microbusinesses and to make other changes to the marijuana law.

The West Virginia House Judiciary Committee approved a bill allowing no more than two licensed laboratories to perform medical cannabis testing.

The Alabama Senate Judiciary Committee will consider a bill to decriminalize marijuana and expunge past records on Wednesday.

A Nebraska senator is working to expand his limited medical cannabis bill.

A Georgia senator filed a bill to allow people with certain past convictions to participate in the hemp market.

A Pennsylvania senator tweeted, in response to someone’s suggestion that legalizing marijuana can raise revenue, “Dumbasses like you actually think that selling weed would bring in the billions we need every year to pay for outrageous spending.”

Arkansas regulators proposed rules changes to allow doctors to issue recertification of medical cannabis recommendations via telehealth.

Missouri’s top medical cannabis regulator said his department doesn’t have authority to regulate delta-8 THC products.

Marijuana Moment is already 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.


Denton, Texas activists are launching an effort to place a marijuana decriminalization measure on the local ballot.

Chicago, Illinois’s mayor tweeted about a program to help people with past cannabis convictions.

Albany, New York’s mayor tweeted about a marijuana discussion being hosted by state regulators on Tuesday.


The UK Labour Party’s shadow justice secretary said his party would consider enacting a policy of “naming and shaming” people convicted of buying illegal drugs if it were to control the government.

A New Zealand lawmaker posted pictures of himself touring a hemp facility.


A study of patients with insomnia suggested that “the formula CBD-melatonin could be competitive with the classic hypnotic synthetic drugs” and that “CBD, reducing chronic pain perception, helps to complete the neuromuscular relaxation and to relieve anxiety fulfilling a very balanced sensation of wellbeing during the sleep.”

The New Jersey State Policy Lab at Rutgers University released a baseline report on marijuana ahead of the launch of legal sales in the state.


The Maine Democratic Party tweeted about a federal hemp reform bill from Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME).

The executive director of the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association authored an op-ed expressing concerns about legalizing marijuana.


Safe Harbor Financial is going public through a merger with Northern Lights Acquisition Corp.

Ascend Wellness Holdings, Inc. has a new president.

The CEO of Dr. Bronner’s spoke about the company’s support for psychedelics reform.


Snoop Dogg was, unsurprisingly, seen appearing to smoke marijuana just prior to his Super Bowl halftime show performance.

Tim Heidecker tweeted, “Legalize drugs you monsters.”

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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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