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Schumer speaks at cannabis rally (Newsletter: May 3, 2021)

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TX House passes marijuana decrim; RI legalization hearing; ME drug decrim support; MN legal cannabis advances; LA polls; Another vets research bill

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) spoke at a marijuana rally in New York City and slammed the government’s “bigoted” laws against cannabis. He also talked about his forthcoming federal bill, saying it will legalize “the right way.”

The Texas House of Representatives gave its final passage to a bill to decriminalize marijuana, sending it to the Senate. The body also approved separate legislation last week to expand the state’s limited medical cannabis system.

The Minnesota House Health Finance and Policy Committee approved the majority leader’s marijuana legalization bill, which has now cleared 10 panels so far. A floor vote is coming up later this month.

The Rhode Island House Finance Committee held a hearing on Gov. Dan McKee’s (D) marijuana legalization proposal—with discussion focusing on how, not whether, to enact the reform. Top lawmakers have said legal cannabis is “inevitable” in recent days, but there’s uncertainty about whether it can get done this year.

The Maine House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee held a hearing on a bill to decriminalize all drugs—and the Maine Medical Association and Maine Council of Churches testified in support.

Two new Louisiana polls—including one personally commissioned by the House speaker pro tempore—show strong support for legalizing marijuana as the reform advances in the legislature.

Reps. Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R-IA) and Nancy Mace (R-SC) filed a bill to require the Department of Veterans Affairs study the benefits of medical cannabis for military veterans—one day after a separate bipartisan measure on the issue was introduced.

/ FEDERAL

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) tweeted, “For decades, young Americans—disproportionately Americans of color—have been arrested and jailed for carrying even small amounts of marijuana. I’m working to end the federal prohibition and undo harms caused by the War on Drugs.”

Sens. Ed Markey (D-MA), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), and Cory Booker (D-NJ) filed a bill to provide a health-focused response to fentanyl.

Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) tweeted, “Ending the failed War on Drugs begins with legalizing marijuana which has locked up too many for decades. Enough. It’s time to end this sad chapter in our history and focus on undoing the discriminatory policies that have ruined lives and communities.”

The scope of the federal investigation into Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) reportedly reaches back to his work on medical cannabis legislation as a Florida state lawmaker.

Rep. Lou Correa (D-CA) inserted comments about his new veterans medical cannabis research bill into the Congressional Record.

The Senate marijuana banking bill got two new cosponsors for a total of 36.

/ STATES

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) tweeted that regulators are accepting applications to serve on the Cannabis Regulatory Advisory Committee.

Alabama’s lieutenant governor tweeted, “I support legalizing medical marijuana to help those with cancer and other serious medical issues ease their pain.  The majority of the medical community agrees.  The Alabama House should pass this important bill before the session ends.”

Kentucky’s agriculture commissioner announced 2021 hemp licensing data.

Colorado lawmakers sent Gov. Jared Polis (D) a bill to transfer $100 million in marijuana tax revenue to the Building Excellent Schools Today program.

Tennessee lawmakers sent Gov. Bill Lee (R) budget legislation that includes funding for a state commission to study medical cannabis, the subject of a separate bill that has not yet been approved.

The Montana Senate rejected last-minute changes to a bill to redirect marijuana revenue and restrict medical cannabis access.

The Puerto Rico House of Representatives debated a bill to provide employment protections for medical cannabis patients.

The Wisconsin legislature’s Joint Committee on Finance is poised to remove marijuana legalization and medical cannabis provisions from Gov. Tony Evers’s (D) budget proposal on Thursday.

A Maryland appeals court ruled that police officers can no longer stop people based on the smell of marijuana alone.

New Jersey regulators are accepting public comment on fairness and social equity in the marijuana industry.

Texas regulators released an updated list of approved hemp varieties.

The Washington State Social Equity in Cannabis Task Force’s Disproportionately Impacted Communities Workgroup will meet on Monday.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,100 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.

/ LOCAL

The death of a man in a Collin County, Texas jail after being arrested for possessing marijuana has been ruled a homicide.

The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission will no longer test cab and livery drivers for marijuana.

Columbia, Missouri is being sued by a medical cannabis dispensary over claims that its development rules conflict with the state’s law.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Iceland’s national commissioner of police is opposing a drug decriminalization bill proposed by the health minister.

Australia’s health department announced that patients with Dravet syndrome will have access to the CBD drug Epidyolex.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A review concluded that “cannabis along with the naturally occurring endocannabinoids has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that can support healing and restoration as an adjunctive therapy.”

A study found that “cannabidiol reduces withdrawal symptoms in nicotine-dependent rats.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

A poll found that 60% of Icelanders support decriminalizing drugs.

/ BUSINESS

Tilray, Inc. shareholders approved a proposed merger with Aphria Inc.

Green Thumb Industries Inc. closed a $217 million senior non-brokered private placement financing through the issuance of senior secured notes.

Headset raised $1.8 million in new funding.

New MexiCann Natural Medicine had its medical cannabis license permanently revoked by New Mexico regulators in connection to an explosion and fire that injured employees.

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Marijuana Moment is made possible with support from readers. If you rely on our cannabis advocacy journalism to stay informed, please consider a monthly Patreon pledge.

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 Marijuana.com and MassRoots, and handled media relations and campaigns for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition and Students for Sensible Drug Policy. (Organization citations are for identification only and do not constitute an endorsement or partnership.)

Newsletter

Feds’ cannabis interference on Indian land (Newsletter: November 26, 2021)

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AGs push Congress for marijuana cooperation with states; Study looks at dogs getting high from THC in poop

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

The Pueblo of Picuris Indian tribe in New Mexico is accusing the federal government of a discriminatory double standard after a medical cannabis patient’s garden on tribal land was raided while marijuana businesses across many states operate without interference.

The bipartisan attorneys general of Arizona, Connecticut, North Dakota and Vermont sent a letter urging Congress to emphasize federal-state cooperation in any plan to legalize marijuana.

A study concluded that “ingestion of human feces containing THC may lead to marijuana toxicosis in dogs.”

/ FEDERAL

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) wrote in an op-ed that he discussed marijuana legalization and other issues with students at a youth summit.

Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) tweeted, “Including #SAFEBanking in the final NDAA will help safeguard our financial system, reduce the public safety risk & help support Veteran & minority-owned businesses now. It will help pave the way for broader, comprehensive cannabis reform & create a safer, more equitable industry.”

/ STATES

A New York senator sent a press release about his new bill to add transgender and non-binary people to the marijuana equity program.

A Tennessee representative tweeted about touring a hemp and CBD business.

Ohio regulators posted a draft resolution eliminating the medical cannabis tier system and setting a 90-day supply of plant material as nine ounces, regardless of THC percentage.

Alaska regulators will host working group meetings about marijuana products next month and in January.

Colorado regulators will host a work group meeting about changing marijuana business licensee designations on December 3.

Michigan regulators will hold a public meeting on marijuana issues on December 9.

The Tennessee Medical Cannabis Commission will meet on December 10.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,200 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.

/ LOCAL

Los Angeles, California regulators published a report about the city’s marijuana licensing program.

/ INTERNATIONAL

New Zealand lawmakers passed a bill to legalize drug checking services.

Lithuanian lawmakers defeated an amendment to decriminalize drugs.

Argentina’s government approved a research project on cannabis cultivation for medical and scientific purposes.

India’s Food Safety and Security Authority approved regulations for hemp seeds and oil as food ingredients.

Luxembourg is experiencing medical cannabis supply issues.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “recreational marijuana legalization increased the clearance rates for violent crime overall and aggravated assault” but that “the positive effect of legalization appears to shrink over time.”

A study suggested that “psychedelic-use may causally influence metaphysical beliefs—shifting them away from ‘hard materialism.’”

/ BUSINESS

Cresco Labs closed its acquisition of Bay, LLC.

Vaseline released a new hemp-infused soothing product.

/ CULTURE

Deftones launched a line of marijuana products.

CNN will air the sixth installment of its “WEED” series on Sunday.

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Marijuana Moment is made possible with support from readers. If you rely on our cannabis advocacy journalism to stay informed, please consider a monthly Patreon pledge.
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SD legal cannabis blocked by court (Newsletter: November 25, 2021)

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Germany to legalize marijuana; Taliban signs cannabis deal; Former TX gov talks psychedelics’ benefits

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Germany’s incoming government coalition officially announced plans to legalize marijuana. The plan also includes broader harm reduction measures such as drug checking services.

The South Dakota Supreme Court upheld a lower judge’s ruling that a voter-approved marijuana legalization measure is invalid. Activists are already working to put another initiative on the 2022 ballot, and lawmakers are considering the issue.

Afghanistan’s Taliban regime announced it signed a cannabis production deal with a company called Cpharm, though an Australian firm of that name later denied it is involved and said it has “no connection with cannabis or the Taliban” and has “no idea where the Taliban media release has come from.”

  • The project “will be officially launched soon and hundreds of people will get job opportunities,” the Ministry of Interior Affairs said.

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R)—who also served as U.S. energy secretary—spoke about his support for the therapeutic use of psychedelics to treat mental health conditions faced by military veterans.

  • “If you would have told me five years ago that Rick Perry, knuckle-dragging, right wing Republican governor of Texas, was going to be in the same sentence with the word ‘psychedelics,’ I would have bet you the farm, baby.”

/ FEDERAL

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency tweeted, “Hemp offers new economic opportunities for America’s farmers, and RMA is pleased to offer coverage to hemp producers.”

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) tweeted, “The War on Drugs has been a war on people—particularly people of color. We must end the federal prohibition on marijuana and make criminal justice reforms—I’m working with @SenBooker and @RonWyden to pass our Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act to do just that.”

Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) tweeted about his vote in favor of a psychedelics research amendment.

Former Rep. Mimi Walters (R-CA) spoke about assisting someone with obtaining psilocybin therapy for depression.

The House bill to deschedule marijuana and fund programs to repair drug war harms got one new cosponsor for a total of 101.

/ STATES

The Cayuga Nation, located within New York, began selling marijuana at tribal stores.

California generated $322.34 million in marijuana tax revenue last quarter.

Massachusetts regulators rescinded a recommendation that municipalities should prioritize approval for marijuana social equity applicants. Separately, they are accepting public comment on hemp guidance.

Virginia regulators finalized rules removing the requirement to report prior marijuana convictions for asbestos, lead and home inspectors.

Oregon regulators reviewed plans to begin accepting new marijuana business license applications and approved stipulated settlement agreements for violations.

Minnesota regulators released the results of a medical cannabis survey of healthcare providers.

Maine regulators are conducting a survey about the hemp program.

Connecticut regulators posted updated stats about the medical cannabis program.

West Virginia regulators will host medical cannabis patient signup events next week.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,200 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.

/ LOCAL

Pima County, Arizona officials are having issues processing marijuana expungements.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Luxembourg’s government gave an update on its marijuana legalization plans.

The Israeli Knesset created a new Cannabis Committee.

Ireland’s Medical Cannabis Access Program enrolled its first patient.

Mexico’s Senate hosted a forum on marijuana.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A review concluded that “all preclinic and clinic studies that have been reported show that, through the cannabinoid system, cannabinoids, particularly CBD, have many mechanisms that are effective in the treatment of patients infected by SARS-CoV-2.”

A study found that “adults who microdose psychedelics report health related motivations and lower levels of anxiety and depression compared to non-microdosers.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

A poll found that 61 percent of Massachusetts residents believe marijuana legalization has been positive for the state.

/ BUSINESS

Planet 13 Holdings Inc. reported quarterly revenue of $33 million and a net loss of $10.2 million.

An investor’s fraud and retaliation lawsuit against Bloom Farms was dismissed.

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Marijuana Moment is made possible with support from readers. If you rely on our cannabis advocacy journalism to stay informed, please consider a monthly Patreon pledge.
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VA ‘looking at’ cannabis policy change for veterans (Newsletter: November 24, 2021)

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Key senators push marijuana banking in NDAA; St. Louis decrim passes unanimously; Bipartisan AGs want federal cannabis clarity

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Veterans Affairs Sec. Denis McDonough said VA is “looking at” the possibility of a medical cannabis policy change and has discussed it with the White House after having a “profound” discussion with a veteran who says marijuana saved his life—but feels constrained by current federal law.

Five bipartisan members of the Senate Armed Services Committee sent a letter asking leaders to include House-passed marijuana banking language in the final version of the National Defense Authorization Act.

Bipartisan attorneys general from Arizona and Vermont talked about the need for “cooperative federalism” in marijuana policy that sets general guidelines but respects the rights of states to set their own legalization laws.

The St. Louis, Missouri Board of Aldermen gave unanimous final passage to a measure decriminalizing marijuana possession and cultivation of up to six plants under local law.

/ FEDERAL

A former U.S. attorney for South Carolina authored an op-ed endorsing a federal marijuana legalization bill.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) tweeted, “A majority of Americans – regardless of political party – support legalizing marijuana. It’s time to get this done on the federal level.”

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) tweeted, “Black and white Americans are about equally likely to use cannabis, but Black Americans are nearly four times more likely to be arrested for it. To start righting this wrong, I’m calling on President Biden to pardon everyone convicted of nonviolent federal cannabis offenses.”

Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) said Democratic-led marijuana legalization bills “will not pass both chambers” and that her new legislation is a good compromise.

Florida Democratic congressional candidate Jesse Philippe tweeted, “It is radical and authoritarian to support locking people away in prison for cannabis use.”

/ STATES

Massachusetts Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ben Downing tweeted, “Despite the history of embedded racism in cannabis criminalization, profits of the now-legal cannabis industry flow almost exclusively to white people. Those harmed by the era [of] criminalization must have access to opportunity within the industry… A Downing Admin will also ensure that no less than 50% of new marijuana licenses are reserved for social and economic equity applicants.”

Ohio Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Cranley, currently Cincinnati’s mayor, tweeted, “Ohio is in a rut and we deserve a comeback. I’ve got the plans to do it:… 🍃  Legalize marijuana & invest that tax revenue back into our communities…”

A former New Hampshire Senate minority leader authored an op-ed on the need to legalize marijuana.

An Illinois judge ruled that the smell of marijuana is not probable cause to search a vehicle.

Vermont regulators released proposed marijuana rules.

Michigan regulators are being sued over a recent recall of marijuana products.

Arizona regulators are facing a second lawsuit over the marijuana social equity program.

South Dakota regulators issued the state’s first medical cannabis patient cards.

New Jersey regulators published a list of impact zones and economically disadvantaged areas for marijuana licensing.

Colorado regulators released updated demographic information on marijuana business licensees.

Florida regulators posted a notice about a request from Trulieve, Inc. to waive a rule requiring medical cannabis drink powders to be individually wrapped.

New York misdemeanor and felony marijuana charges have fallen dramatically since legalization took effect.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,200 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.

/ LOCAL

The Billings, Montana City Council acted on medical cannabis rules.

Brattleboro, Vermont  police issued a warning about apparent fentanyl-laced marijuana.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Mexico’s Senate majority leader said he wants to have a draft of a marijuana legalization bill ready this week or next week and pass it by December 15.

Malawi’s agriculture minister appointed Mike Tyson as the country’s “cannabis branch ambassador.”

A UK member of Parliament is stepping up pressure on the government to reschedule psilocybin.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study concluded that “cannabidiol induces cell death in human lung cancer cells and cancer stem cells.”

A case series indicated that “titrated plant extract preparation of medical cannabis may be useful to control treatment-resistant pain and epilepsy in” pediatric palliative care patients.

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

Marijuana Moment, NORML, Marijuana Policy Project and others will participate in a BillTrack50 webinar on cannabis legislation on December 7.

/ BUSINESS

Organigram Holdings Inc. reported quarterly net revenue of $24.9 million and a net loss of $26 million.

Curaleaf Inc. is facing another lawsuit over allegedly selling mislabelled CBD drops that contained THC.

A California court ruled in favor of MedMen Enterprises Inc. in a lawsuit brought against the company by its former chief financial officer.

Flow Cannabis Co.’s founders are threatening not to pay increased California marijuana taxes.

/ CULTURE

Shaquille O’Neal is suing former partners in a marijuana business venture.

“Lady Buds” is a new documentary about women in the cannabis industry.

Make sure to subscribe to get Marijuana Moment’s daily dispatch in your inbox.

Marijuana Moment is made possible with support from readers. If you rely on our cannabis advocacy journalism to stay informed, please consider a monthly Patreon pledge.
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