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These Ohio cities will vote on cannabis decrim in November (Newsletter: Oct. 3, 2018)

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Study: Legalization doesn’t increase problematic cannabis use; Utah oppo outraising medical marijuana supporters; DEA raids Michigan dispensary

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  • Kathy F.: “I have smoked cannabis since 1970, making me a criminal for most of my life. I’m just thrilled that it is becoming legal in many places and I enjoy skimming through your very comprehensive newsletter.”

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

A Marijuana Moment analysis of Utah campaign finance filings for committees on both sides of the state’s medical cannabis ballot measure show that opponents have more overall funds to play with, but supporters have broader support from a much larger pool of individual donors.

A study found that state marijuana legalization laws do not lead to increased levels of problematic cannabis use.

At least six Ohio municipalities will vote on marijuana decriminalization measures in November.

/ FEDERAL

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration raided a Michigan medical cannabis dispensary.

The U.S. Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control held a hearing on fentanyl trafficking from China.

Activists smoked marijuana outside of Congressman Andy Harris’s (R-MD) Capitol Hill office, an incident from which both the congressman and the advocates claimed minor physical injuries.

Louisiana Democratic congressional candidate Rob Anderson supports legalizing marijuana.

/ STATES

Utah medical cannabis supporters have reached a tentative agreement with opponents on potential compromise legislation.

Michigan lawmakers sent Gov. Rick Snyder (R) a bill to ban marijuana-infused alcoholic beverages. Separately, the House Agriculture Committee will consider an industrial hemp bill on Wednesday.

Guam senators debated medical cannabis implementation bills.

Rhode Island gubernatorial candidates debated legalizing marijuana.

Here’s a look at where Oklahoma gubernatorial candidates stand on marijuana.

Idaho Democratic gubernatorial candidate Paulette Jordan called for marijuana decriminalization during a debate.

Here’s a look at where Colorado attorney general candidates stand on marijuana.

A Montana judge reinstated a medical cannabis business’s license that he said was improperly revoked.

Massachusetts regulators are poised to approve final licenses for two recreational marijuana retailers on Thursday.

Missouri’s competing medical cannabis campaigns released statements on why their proposed measure is preferable to the others.

/ LOCAL

San Francisco, California’s mayor is still considering authorizing safe injection facilities for illegal drug consumers despite the governor’s veto of legislation to provide state protections.

The Grand Haven, Michigan City Council passed a resolution opposing the state’s marijuana legalization ballot measure.

A medical cannabis tax proposed by Phoenix, Arizona’s mayor was unanimously defeated by the City Council.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Canada’s transport minister confirmed that people will be allowed to carry small amounts of marijuana with them on domestic flights, but not on international ones.

A UK member of Parliament is calling for a Royal Commission to study the impacts of drug prohibition.

/ ADVOCACY

Here’s a look at the finances of prohibitionist organization Smart Approaches to Marijuana.

Prohibitionist group National Families in Action announced that Mahmoud A. Elsohly, who directs the University of Mississippi’s marijuana farm, joined its science advisory board.

/ OPINION & ANALYSIS

The Boston Herald editorial board is concerned about marijuana stores being located near schools.

/ BUSINESS

PepsiCo’s CFO said the company has no plans to produce cannabis products but that it will look “critically” at doing so in the future.

Marijuana industry executives are hopeful about the growth of the European market.

/ CULTURE

The Onion had a little fun with the news that Coca-Cola is considering producing CBD beverages.

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Photo courtesy of Brian Shamblen.

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 15-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

Surgeon general says Schedule I blocks cannabis research (Newsletter: Dec. 7, 2018)

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Marijuana’s biggest wins of 2018; Advocates say don’t give NY legalization revenue to subways; Report: Former AG considered as Sessions replacement

Subscribe to receive Marijuana Moment’s newsletter in your inbox every weekday morning. It’s the best way to make sure you know which cannabis stories are shaping the day.

Your support makes Marijuana Moment possible…

This issue of Marijuana Moment, and our original reporting that is featured in it, are made possible by the generous support of 344 Patreon sponsors. Cannabis industry professionals receive valuable rewards for pledges of $25 and up.

Check out the perks of being a sponsor on our Patreon page.
https://www.patreon.com/marijuanamoment

/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams criticized marijuana’s Schedule I status, saying that it creates unnecessary “difficulty” for scientists who want to research cannabis.

Marijuana had several huge political victories in 2018, including:

  • Legislatures passing legalization for the first time
  • Red states approving medical cannabis
  • President Trump backing reform
  • Longtime prohibitionists in Congress flipping
  • Canada legalizing and Mexico moving  to do so
  • Hemp legalization being included in the Farm Bill

Check out Marijuana Moment’s overview of the ten biggest wins for cannabis this year.

The Drug Policy Alliance and other advocates are pushing back on plans to fund subways with potential New York marijuana tax revenue and instead want the money to go to communities harmed by prohibition.

/ FEDERAL

Former U.S. Attorney General William Barr is reportedly being considered for the job again by President Trump. Also in the running is Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-TX).

/ STATES

Texas’s agriculture commissioner called on Congress to legalize hemp.

The New York Assembly Republican leader launched a Twitter poll about legalizing marijuana.

Maryland regulators voted to ban most advertising by cannabis companies.

Colorado cannabis reform advocates hope that under Gov.-elect Jared Polis (D) they can pass legislation allowing marijuana social use areas, delivery services and broader investments in the industry. Meanwhile, lawmakers and the state’s attorney general-elect are pushing for legislation to clear past marijuana convictions.

The Washington State Supreme Court blocked a proposed local ballot measure that would have banned public funding for safe injection sites.

Michigan regulators released information about the implementation of legalization and changed their agency’s name to the Bureau of Marijuana Regulation. Also, regulators will consider several medical cannabis license applications on Friday.

Connecticut’s House Progressive Caucus plans to push for legalizing marijuana in 2019.

Massachusetts marijuana regulators are set to take over control of the state’s medical cannabis program from the Department of Public Health this month.

A member of the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission plans to resign prior to the end of his term.

Ohio’s Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee will meet on Thursday.

The Hill looks at the growing push to legalize marijuana through state legislatures.


Marijuana Moment is currently tracking more than 900 cannabis bills in state legislatures and Congress. 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

Cincinnati, Ohio City Council members want to place a marijuana decriminalization question before voters. 

The Appleton, Wisconsin Common Council endorsed a resolution calling on the state to legalize medical cannabis.

Denver, Colorado is punishing a landlord for his tenant’s marijuana cultivation violations.

/ INTERNATIONAL

A top Israeli lawmaker said the nation will likely allow medical cannabis exports by the end of the year.

Uruguay regulators will accept applications for additional marijuana production and distribution licenses in February.

Dominican President Charles Savarin is asking Israel to assist the Caribbean nations with research on marijuana as the region considers decriminalization.

Politico looks at European countries’ moves to allow medical cannabis. 

/ ADVOCACY

The Connecticut Republican Party included legalizing marijuana in a survey about “the most important issues” people want lawmakers to address in 2019.

Fire It Up Kansas launched a marijuana legalization billboard campaign.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A report found that “supervised injectable [heroin-assisted treatment] — with optional oral methadone — can offer benefits over oral methadone alone” and that “scientific evidence about the effectiveness of [supervised consumption sites] is limited in quality and the number of locations evaluated.”

/ BUSINESS

Wiz Khalifa and Supreme Cannabis are partnering on a line of marijuana products.

MedMen is facing a class action lawsuit from former employees alleging labor law violations by the company.

Canopy Growth Corporation is acquiring vaporizer company Storz & Bickel.

The Lansing City Pulse newspaper handed out free joints on the first day of Michigan marijuana legalization.

/ CULTURE

Singer Toni Braxton spoke about how she uses cannabis products to treat pain associated with lupus.

Seth Meyers joked about using marijuana tax revenue to fund the New York City subway.

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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NY might use cannabis taxes to fund subway repairs (Newsletter: Dec. 6, 2018)

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New Missouri marijuana legalization bill; Cannabis org wants crackdown on unlicensed dispensaries; Feds block tribe’s medical marijuana policy

Subscribe to receive Marijuana Moment’s newsletter in your inbox every weekday morning. It’s the best way to make sure you know which cannabis stories are shaping the day.

Your support makes Marijuana Moment possible…

This issue of Marijuana Moment, and our original reporting that is featured in it, are made possible by the generous support of 342 Patreon sponsors. Cannabis industry professionals receive valuable rewards for pledges of $25 and up.

Check out the perks of being a sponsor on our Patreon page.
https://www.patreon.com/marijuanamoment

/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

New York lawmakers are considering using legal marijuana tax revenue to fund repairs to the New York City subway system.

Missouri voters only approved medical cannabis one month ago, but now a state representative has already prefiled a bill to legalize marijuana in 2019.

The United Cannabis Business Association is calling on the Los Angeles, California city attorney to crack down on unlicensed marijuana dispensaries.

/ FEDERAL

Farm Bill compromise language would reportedly prevent people with felony drug convictions from participating in the hemp industry for a period of 10 years after being convicted, instead of permanently.

The Bureau of Indian Affairs moved to block a Montana tribe’s legalization of medical cannabis.

President Trump tweeted, “One of the very exciting things to come out of my meeting with President Xi of China is his promise to me to criminalize the sale of deadly Fentanyl coming into the United States. It will now be considered a ‘controlled substance.’ This could be a game changer on what is considered to be the worst and most dangerous, addictive and deadly substance of them all. Last year over 77,000 people died from Fentanyl. If China cracks down on this “horror drug,” using the Death Penalty for distributors and pushers, the results will be incredible!”

The U.S. attorney for the Southern District of West Virginia tweeted, “Looking forward to invite-only marijuana symposium next week. Facts not propaganda. Facts about Colorado. Facts about ecology & environment. Facts about health. Facts about black market. FACTS!Public deserves facts & policy makers, media, law enforcement should know the facts.”

Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) tweeted, “The SAFE Banking Act would ensure the #marijuana industry can access our banking system and reduce the public safety risk of having cash on our streets & in our communities. @RepDennyHeck and I plan to continue pushing our legislation in the next Congress.”

Rep. Scott Peters (D-CA) tweeted, “I cosponsored the SAFE Banking Act to ensure San Diego #marijuana businesses can safely operate, as permitted by California law. Thanks to @RepPerlmutter and @RepDennyHeck for continuing to advocate for this public safety fix.”

Former Rep. Allen West (R-FL) wrote about meeting mothers whose children use medical cannabis to treat autism.

/ STATES

Michigan’s legalization of marijuana possession and home cultivation went into effect on Thursday. Separately,  the House of Representatives advanced bills concerning disclosure of medical cannabis licensee information to financial institutions and making other changes.

Missouri’s medical cannabis law went into effect on Thursday.

Nevada Gov.-elect Steve Sisolak (D) is floating the idea of creating a new body to regulate marijuana.

Utah medical cannabis advocates filed a lawsuit against Gov. Gary Herbert (R) and the head of the state Department of Health over the “compromise” legislation lawmakers passed to replace the voter-approved ballot measure.

Pennsylvania regulators will open a second round of applications for the state’s medical cannabis research program after no clinical registrant approvals were issued in the first round.

Washington State regulators issued a reminder that cannabis-infused alcoholic beverages are illegal.

A Illinois senator said it is “rather inevitable” that the state will legalize marijuana next year.


Marijuana Moment is currently tracking more than 900 cannabis bills in state legislatures and Congress. 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 Statesboro, Georgia City Council approved a marijuana decriminalization ordinance.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Luxembourg’s governing coalition released details of a marijuana legalization plan.

Israeli lawmakers gave initial approval to a bill allowing medical cannabis exports.

The International Criminal Court said it is continuing to investigate extrajudicial killings in the bloody Philippine drug war. Meanwhile, a senator is calling on President Rodrigo Duterte to take a drug test after he joked about using marijuana.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A review concluded that “cannabidiol probably reduces seizures among children with drug‐resistant epilepsy.”

A study examining the differences between Canadian licensed marijuana producers and unlicensed dispensaries found that “rather than attempts to construct a credible shared identity for legitimacy, the emphasis is on building a distinct identity narrative in the face of market competition.”

A survey determined that “there was discordance among transplant centers in their perceived risks of marijuana use as opposed to complications actually observed.”

/ OPINION & ANALYSIS

The San Diego Union-Tribune editorial board is calling on Congress to increase marijuana businesses’ access to banks.

/ BUSINESS

The CEO of Philip Morris International Inc. said it’s not “our priority right now to consider cannabis.”

/ CULTURE

Former NBA Commissioner David Stern says that marijuana may have been “unfairly demonized.”

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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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Hemp felony conviction ban scaled back in Farm Bill (Newsletter: Dec. 5, 2018)

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Marijuana stores increase home values, study finds; Top House Ag Dem considers growing hemp; DEA slams Denver’s safe injection move

Subscribe to receive Marijuana Moment’s newsletter in your inbox every weekday morning. It’s the best way to make sure you know which cannabis stories are shaping the day.

Your support makes Marijuana Moment possible…

This issue of Marijuana Moment, and our original reporting that is featured in it, are made possible by the generous support of 342 Patreon sponsors. Cannabis industry professionals receive valuable rewards for pledges of $25 and up.

Check out the perks of being a sponsor on our Patreon page.
https://www.patreon.com/marijuanamoment

/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Congressional Farm Bill negotiators reached a “compromise” on a controversial Senate-passed provision that would bar people with felony drug convictions from participating in the legal hemp industry.

Incoming U.S. House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson (D-MN) says he is considering growing hemp on his own farm after it is legalized through the Farm Bill.

Two new studies indicated that nearby marijuana shops increase the value of homes and rentals.

/ FEDERAL

The Colorado U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Drug Enforcement Administration’s Denver Field Office released a statement criticizing local moves to allow safe consumption facilities for people who use illegal drugs.

Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) said he thinks Acting U.S. Attorney General Matthew Whitaker “is at odds with the president” on marijuana policy.

Sens. Charles Grassley (R-IA) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) were asked about the prospects for federal marijuana reform at an event. (About 14:30 into the video.)

Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) discussed the need to ensure equity in the marijuana industry for communities harmed by the war on drugs.

Rep. James Comer (R-KY) spoke about the economic benefits of legalizing hemp.

/ STATES

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin (R) reiterated his willingness to sign a medical cannabis bill and opposition to legalizing marijuana.

Utah medical cannabis advocates plan to file a lawsuit over the legislature’s “compromise” bill that replaced the voter-approved ballot measure.

Oklahoma legislative leaders said they anticipate considering bills on medical cannabis reform in 2019.

New York regulators are now accepting applications to grow hemp and process CBD.

The Illinois Republican Senate minority leader said he has “grave concerns” about marijuana legalization. Separately, regulators released new rules on medical cannabis as an opioid alternative and marijuana business ownership.

A Maryland delegate said he thinks marijuana legalization is going to pass “if not this year, maybe next year.”

Colorado regulators issued guidance on the definition of kief.

Maine’s Marijuana Advisory Commission is taking shape.


Marijuana Moment is currently tracking more than 900 cannabis bills in state legislatures and Congress. 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

Denver, Colorado’s mayor is moving to vacate low-level marijuana convictions. Meanwhile, the city’s top cannabis official will host a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” session on Wednesday.

New York City councilmembers are pressing the NYPD on why it continues to arrest people for THC oil.

The Boston, Massachusetts City Council held a lengthy hearing on marijuana licensing.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Mexico will begin importing cannabis products within the next two weeks. Separately, former President Vicente Fox said he thinks marijuana legalization will be approved in the country “in the first semester of 2019.”

Canada’s border security and organized crime reduction minister has been put in charge of enforcing the country’s marijuana legalization law.

A two-year-old girl is believed to be the first child to be prescribed medical cannabis in UK.

Welsh lawmakers are pressing the government to provide medical cannabis access to a teenager with epilepsy.

The Bahamian health minister said the country will move ahead on marijuana reform “with all deliberate haste.”

/ ADVOCACY

The CEO of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture spoke about the benefits of legalizing hemp.

The Parkinson’s Foundation is hosting a conference on medical cannabis.

Prohibitionist organization Smart Approaches to Marijuana is upset that a Marijuana Policy Project staff member is serving on a transition team committee for Illinois Gov.-elect J.B. Pritzker (D).

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

The Migraine Research Foundation is funding a study on the effects of medical cannabis on migraines.

/ OPINION & ANALYSIS

The Denver Post editorial board wants marijuana convictions to be expunged across Colorado.

/ BUSINESS

Morningstar analysis suggests that marijuana cultivation, charging electric cars and powering data centers will drive rising power demand over the next decade.

Eaze is matching donations to the Marijuana Policy Project, up to $20,000, for the remainder of 2018.

Two Massachusetts retailers sold more than $2.6 million worth of marijuana products in the second week of legalization.

Mexican cannabis businesses are forming an industry association.

/ CULTURE

Here’s a look at the rise of marijuana use among people who live in senior housing.

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

Photo courtesy of Chris Wallis // Side Pocket Images.

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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