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Schumer & lawmakers talk cannabis as 4/20 approaches (Newsletter: April 18, 2024)



AG pressed on SAFE; OSHA marijuana worker safety; DeSantis slams legalization; DEA psychedelics suit; USDA hemp report; CBD for crack treatment

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Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and other Democratic lawmakers discussed the prospects for marijuana reform ahead of 4/20—with Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) saying it’s a cannabis holiday that should be celebrated “every day.”

Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI) pressed Attorney General Merrick Garland at a hearing about a section of a marijuana banking bill that he worried could “handcuff law enforcement” prior to being renegotiated by bipartisan lawmakers.

Federal officials with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration hosted a presentation about what the agency is doing to help ensure marijuana industry worker safety even under ongoing federal cannabis prohibition.

A new U.S. Department of Agriculture report shows that the hemp market started to rebound in 2023 after suffering significant losses in the prior year—but that there was a mix of economic trends across various uses for the crop.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) said the marijuana legalization initiative on the November ballot would be “not good for families”—claiming it will allow “toking up” by someone “walking by an elementary school.”

A coalition of 20 justice and drug reform advocacy organizations sent a letter calling on President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris to publicly support legalizing marijuana rather than merely moving it to Schedule III.

Researchers are suing the Drug Enforcement Administration over the process the agency is using to receive expert input about its proposed ban of two psychedelics.

A new study concluded that CBD is a “powerful and promising therapeutic tool” for people with crack use disorder—finding that those who used the cannabis component had better health outcomes and fewer adverse events than those who took more conventional pharmaceutical treatments.

The Minnesota Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party filed to challenge the major party status of the Legal Marijuana Now Party.


Rep. Tony Cárdenas (D-CA) discussed the prospects for federal marijuana reform.


New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) cheered the opening of the state’s 100th recreational marijuana dispensary.

The Alabama House of Representatives passed a bill to revise medical cannabis regulatory responsibilities.

A Wyoming representative criticized U.S. Sen. Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) for supporting marijuana banking legislation.

Illinois regulators published an update on changes to municipal and county cannabis tax rates.

Washington State regulators posted an updated list of pesticides allowed in marijuana production.

New Mexico regulators sent a press release “urging cannabis consumers to follow the laws and practice safe consumption this spring.”

Oklahoma regulators acknowledged technical problems with medical cannabis business license renewals.

Alaska’s Advisory Task Force on Recreational Marijuana will meet on April 23 and May 7.

Marijuana Moment is tracking more than 1,400 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.


A former New Orleans, Louisiana police chief said the federal government should reschedule marijuana.


The Brazilian Senate approved a proposed constitutional amendment to clarify that possessing drugs for personal use is a crime.

Bavaria, Germany officials are banning smoking cannabis at public Oktoberfest celebrations.


A study found that “CBD improved cognition in a rat model of Fragile X Syndrome, the leading monogenic cause of autism.”

A study found “preliminary evidence that therapeutic benefits obtained from psilocybin experiences may be linked to changes in psychological flexibility.”


Eaze and its workers reached a tentative agreement to avoid a strike ahead of 4/20.

Nature’s Miracle Holding Inc. is acquiring Agrify Corporation.

Illinois retailers sold $148.9 million worth of legal marijuana products in March.


Nick Offerman spoke about running from the police after smoking marijuana as a teenager.

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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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