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VT gov may veto cannabis sales bill (Newsletter: October 1, 2020)



CA gov signs marijuana banking & labelling bills; NJ gov campaigns for legalization referendum; AZ polls show differing ballot results

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The fate of a bill to legalize marijuana sales in Vermont is in question after Gov. Phil Scott (R) cited new racial justice and equity concerns during a debate.

  • “In terms of the pot bill, I haven’t made up my mind about that. I have received a lot of groups—racial equity groups—that are asking me to veto it. I was leaning towards letting it go, but I’m really questioning that at this point. I want to hear and listen from them.”

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) sent an email blast urging voters to support the marijuana legalization referendum on the November ballot.

  • “Black residents are 3.5 times more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession than White residents. Legalization would right those wrongs while also spurring massive economic development opportunities, job creation, and new tax revenue.”

One day after a poll showed Arizona’s marijuana legalization measure virtually tied, the cannabis campaign shared a separate newly conducted internal survey finding the measure ahead, 57%-38%. They also say the other poll boosted fundraising bigtime.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) signed bills on marijuana banking and to create a system of labeling for cannabis appellations of origin. He also acted on marijuana testing legislation, signing two proposals and vetoing one.


The Senate sent President Trump a short-term funding bill, which he signed, that continues state medical cannabis protections through December 11 and extends the hemp pilot program for another year.

The Drug Enforcement Administration proposed rules on hearing procedures for revoking registrations to handle controlled substances.

Rep. Michael Waltz (R-FL) tweeted, “Speaker Pelosi & House Dems’ latest bill is riddled with flaws. Their “skinny” $2T bill mentions the word ‘cannabis’ more than ‘jobs’ & includes legislation to:  ❌ Defund police ❌ Give illegal immigrants stimulus checks ❌ Bail out Planned Parenthood with PPP funds”

The House bill to require the Food and Drug Administration to allow CBD as a dietary supplement got two new cosponsors for a total of five.

Texas Democratic congressional candidate Russell Foster tweeted, during the presidential debate, “Tonight is the reason we need to Legalize Cannabis & #LegalizeIt this minute!”


Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) tweeted, “Other states are pushing to legalize adult-use marijuana. Tell your legislator: Let’s legalize in Pennsylvania and keep those profits here, in our own backyard.”

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said that people who use illegal drugs in public deserve to be arrested.

Mississippi’s secretary of state host the first in a series of public hearings on the state’s medical cannabis ballot measures.

The Connecticut House of Representatives approved a bill to align the state’s hemp program with federal law.

The Illinois Senate Criminal Law Committee and Special Committee on Public Safety held a hearing on drug penalties.

New Mexico regulators are being sued over medical cannabis reciprocity rules.

Oregon regulators suspended a marijuana testing lab’s license.

Michigan regulators completed a phaseout of allowing products produced by medical cannabis caregivers to be sold in retail marijuana dispensaries.

Maryland medical cannabis regulators will meet on Thursday.

Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,500 cannabis 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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New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern admitted she used cannabis “a long time ago” but continued to refuse to say how she plans to vote on the country’s marijuana legalization referendum.

Brazil’s minister of justice sent a letter to lawmakers criticizing a bill to legalize medical cannabis cultivation.

A UK member of Parliament filed a bill to decriminalize drug possession.


A study found that “unlicensed dispensaries were more likely than licensed dispensaries to sell products in packaging designed to be attractive to children and in non–child-resistant packaging and were more likely allow on-site consumption” and that “licensed dispensaries showed high compliance with regulations, regardless of whether they were in areas of high or low health advantage.”

A case study provided evidence that “a lower than previously reported dose of a phytocannabinoid in the form of a cannabidiol-based extract may be capable of aiding in autism spectrum disorder-related behavioral symptoms, core social communication abilities, and comorbid anxiety, sleep difficulties, and weight control.”


A poll found that New Zealanders oppose the country’s marijuana legalization referendum, 51%-38%.

The American Psychiatric Association opposes Oregon’s ballot measure to legalize psilocybin therapy.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette editorial board says Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) should stop “wasting time” on the “lost cause” of pushing marijuana legalization.

The University of Mississippi Medical Center is opposing the state’s medical cannabis ballot initiative.


MedPharm Holdings announced that it is not moving forward with its planned acquisition by Schwazze, Inc.

Green Growth Brands Inc.’s interim CEO resigned.

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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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