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Schumer touts cannabis research bill among “historic” wins (Newsletter: August 15, 2022)



CA psychedelics bill gutted; Colombian president talks legal marijuana exports; NAACP legal arm pushes state expungements; Record MI cannabis sales

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Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) touted the Senate’s passage of a marijuana research bill among the “historic progress” Democrats have made since President Joe Biden took office ahead of the midterm elections.

A California senator is giving up the effort to pass his psychedelics reform bill this year after the Assembly Appropriations Committee stripped it of legalization provisions and turned it into a study instead. He says he’ll try to pass the broader reform again next year.

Newly sworn in Colombian President Gustavo Petro talked up the possibility of legalizing marijuana, freeing current prisoners and exporting cannabis to other countries.

The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund published an analysis arguing that a new federal marijuana legalization bill from Senate Democrats won’t on its own do enough to repair the drug war’s past harms and that states must also pass legal cannabis laws with expungement provisions.

The Michigan Cannabis Regulatory Agency reported that retailers broke the state’s monthly marijuana sales record again in July—with $210 million worth of legal adult-use and medical cannabis products sold.

The Nebraska Lawyer’s Advisory Committee issued an opinion finding that attorneys can invest in state-legal medical cannabis businesses without violating their code of conduct.


Former White House Domestic Policy Council Director Joe Grogan said he is irritated by the smell of marijuana in public in major U.S. cities.

Pennsylvania Republican Senate candidate Mehmet Oz criticized Democratic opponent John Fetterman, currently the lieutenant governor, for not replying to a letter from sheriffs who urged him to reverse a stance on drug policy reform.

New York Democratic congressional candidate Brittany Ramos DeBarros said marijuana “saved me” after years of suffering from chronic pain, severe insomnia and PTSD.

The House bill to seal marijuana conviction records got one new cosponsor for a total of 18.


California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), who has long criticized the war on drugs, is reportedly having hesitations about signing a bill to allow safe consumption sites for illegal drugs.

Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon (R) and primary challenger Brent Bien discussed marijuana during a debate, with the incumbent saying he “would be willing to look at the research” on the benefits of medical cannabis.

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) announced that a third wave of marijuana social equity dispensary licenses were granted.

The Nevada Supreme Court ruled that employers can fire workers for off-duty marijuana use.

Iowa regulators are in discussions with Gov. Kim Reynolds’s (R) office about the best way to request a federal exemption for the state’s medical cannabis law.

Florida regulators issued an emergency rule on medical cannabis business websites and online purchasing.

Massachusetts regulators issued a bulletin about marijuana products containing Corydalis rhizome extract. Separately, the state’s  former top cannabis regulator is joining the board of medical marijuana app startup EO Care Inc.

Georgia regulators are asking the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit to dismiss an appeal from a company that is suing over the denial of its medical cannabis business license application.

Washington State regulators sent guidance about marijuana pesticide testing.

Arizona regulators are facing criticism over the robustness of the state’s marijuana testing rules.

The Oregon Oregon Liquor & Cannabis Commission’s Advisory Committee will discuss a marijuana licenses moratorium as well as issues related to human and sex trafficking on Tuesday.

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.

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Kansas City, Missouri’s mayor suggested he will support a marijuana legalization measure on the state ballot despite some activists’ concerns, tweeting, “Interesting debate. I hope we can get beyond a battle of which moneyed people will make the most money. I figure they all will find a way. Missourians want legal recreational marijuana. I’ll support whoever has the most viable path to us getting there.”

Norfolk, Virginia city planners are drafting recreational marijuana business rules.

Los Angeles County, California officials posted a video on how consumers can tell if the marijuana stores they shop at are licensed.

Denver, Colorado regulators sent a reminder about marijuana business surveillance video compliance.

Boston, Massachusetts’s Cannabis Board will meet on Wednesday.


Guyana’s Parliament approved a hemp bill.

Ontario, Canada’s government-owned cannabis distribution center ramped up shipments to stores following an outage caused by a cyberattack on its logistics partner.

Hong Kong officials are implementing a crackdown on CBD products.


A study found that “results from a quantitative survey distributed to Oregon residents reveal overall positive perceptions on cannabis legalization and cannabis tourism.”

A study’s results “lend support to therapeutic potential of psychedelics and highlight the influence of pharmacological and non-pharmacological factors in determining response.”


The American Civil Liberties Union tweeted, “Most Americans support marijuana legalization — yet there are more than 400,000 arrests for marijuana possession every year. These arrests disproportionately affect Black communities. It’s long been time to end the racist, ineffective war on drugs.”

Drug Policy Alliance and Decrim Poverty DC activists coauthored an op-ed calling on the Washington, D.C. Council to decriminalize drugs.


Curaleaf is being forced to remove thousands of medical cannabis products from New York dispensary shelves after the company switched to an unauthorized potency labeling method.

atai Life Sciences sent a letter urging federal health officials to form an interagency task force on psychedelics.


Former wrestler Bill Goldberg launched a partnership with CBD brand Hemp2Lab.

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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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