NJ cannabis ‘clean up’ revived (Newsletter: February 22, 2021)

Lawmakers push Biden on marijuana clemency; CA legal psychedelics bill; NFL studies CBD & cannabis for pain; State regulators ask Congress for reforms

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Thirty-seven members of Congress, led by Reps. Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), called on President Joe Biden to issue mass marijuana pardons. They say the general cannabis clemency can be modeled after President Jimmy Carter’s aid for people who avoided the Vietnam War draft.

  • “Until the day that Congress sends you a marijuana reform bill to sign, you have a unique ability to lead on criminal justice reform and provide immediate relief to thousands of Americans.”

The North Dakota House Human Services Committee approved a bill to legalize marijuana that seems to be primarily motivated at discouraging activists from pursuing a more far-reaching cannabis legalization plan via a ballot initiative.

California lawmakers filed a bill to legalize possession and social sharing of psilocybin, LSD, MDMA, DMT and other psychedelics.

A group of marijuana regulators from across the U.S. told Congress that several areas of cannabis policy “warrant additional consideration,” including protecting state legalization laws from federal interference, banking, taxes, equity and testing.

The National Football League and NFL Players Association are launching a process to explore whether marijuana and its components such as CBD are better alternatives to opioids for treating pain.

/ FEDERAL

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) tweeted, “We must end the federal prohibition on marijuana, make criminal justice reforms, and ensure equity for communities—especially those of color—impacted by the War on Drugs. This is why I’m working with @SenBooker and @RonWyden on legislation for comprehensive marijuana reform.”

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said marijuana legalization is “an issue that should be decided by the states.”

/ STATES

The South Dakota House of Representatives defeated a bill to let doctors issue medical cannabis recommendations via telehealth. Meanwhile, the House State Affairs Committee approved legislation to delay the program’s launch.

The North Dakota House of Representatives approved bills to allow medical cannabis edibles and restructure the program’s advisory board, while defeating another to let more patients qualify.

New Jersey’s Senate president is reportedly whipping votes for a renewed effort to resolve disagreements with Gov. Phil Murphy (D) over provisions related to underage people in marijuana legalization enabling legislation, and the Senate Judiciary Committee scheduled a Friday meeting to address the issue. Separately, a court lifted a stay that had prevented regulators from issuing new medical cannabis business licenses.

Alabama’s House speaker said he will wait to see if the Senate approves a medical cannabis bill, and in what form, before deciding what to do in his chamber.

Florida’s Senate president said THC caps for medical cannabis are up for consideration this session.

The Utah Senate Health and Human Services Committee approved a bill to license more medical cannabis dispensaries and make other changes.

Wisconsin Republican lawmakers continued to criticize Gov. Tony Evers’s (D) inclusion of marijuana legalization in his budget request.

New York regulators began accepting applications for cannabinoid hemp processor licenses.

Alaska regulators are considering doubling the THC limit for marijuana edibles.

Missouri regulators published a summary of activity in the state’s hemp program for 2020.

Nevada regulators will consider marijuana rules changes on Tuesday.


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/ LOCAL

Denver, Colorado officials prepared a map of where marijuana social use areas could open in the city.

Minneapolis, Minnesota’s mayor tweeted that a state House committee approving a marijuana legalization bill is “an encouraging step for racial justice. Safe and reliable access to cannabis in Minnesota cities should be the expectation. And with more and more states moving in that direction, any further delay is unacceptable.”

/ INTERNATIONAL

Malta Prime Minister Robert Abela said the government is close to finalizing legislation to let people use and potentially grow marijuana without fear of arrest.

Malaysian Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said the country will not legalize marijuana.

Hungary is being sanctioned for voting against internationally reclassifying marijuana in contravention of the European Union’s position.

Barbados officials are considering raising funds through the Barbados Stock Exchange to fund development of the medical cannabis industry.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “CBG can destroy therapy-resistant glioblastoma stem cells, which are the root of cancer development and extremely resistant to various other treatments”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

The American Civil Liberties Union sent a letter urging attorney general nominee Merrick Garland, if confirmed, to reinstate guidance protecting state marijuana laws from federal interference and to initiate proceedings to reschedule cannabis.

The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture will consider a resolution next week calling on the federal government to increase the allowable THC concentration in hemp to 1%.

/ BUSINESS

The U.S. Tax Court ruled that Harborside Inc. can’t claim depreciation and charitable contribution deductions due to the 280E tax provision.

A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit that claimed Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. misled investors about the legality of its CBD products.

Trulieve Cannabis Corp.’s Form S-1 became effective with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

TILT Holdings Inc. hired a former Massachusetts regulatory official as a compliance officer.

Arkansas retailers have sold $242 million worth of medical cannabis products since sales began in mid-2019.

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