New Congressional Cannabis Caucus leader; NY marijuana tax break to gov; Fed official wants banking; MD psychedelics vote; Drug testing changes

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) announced he will not stand in the way of a bill to implement marijuana legalization if voters approve it on the ballot this November and is letting the reform legislation take effect without his signature.

The Congressional Cannabis Caucus announced that its new Republican co-chair is Rep. Brian Mast (R-FL). One of just three Republicans to vote for a marijuana legalization bill this month, he replaces Rep. Don Young (R-AK), who recently died.

New York lawmakers sent Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) budget legislation with provisions to decouple state tax policy from the federal 280E provision, thereby allowing marijuana companies to deduct business expenses in their state filings.

A federal official with the National Credit Union Administration is cheering state marijuana banking moves, but he’s calling on Congress to step in and act—even as he acknowledges it’s unconventional for a regulator to pressure lawmakers in this way.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration filed Federal Register notices proposing to clarify that having a doctor’s recommendation for medical cannabis is not a valid excuse for a positive drug test for federal workers. There’s also new broader language on passive exposure to, and foods infused with, marijuana and other illegal drugs.

The Maryland House of Delegates gave initial approval to a Senate-passed bill to create a fund to provide “cost-free” access to psychedelics like psilocybin, MDMA and ketamine for military veterans suffering from PTSD and traumatic brain injury. One more vote will send it to the desk of Gov. Larry Hogan (R).

/ FEDERAL

The Federal Aviation Administration posted a notice about employee drug testing, noting that marijuana is included and prohibited despite state legalization.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said in a letter to colleagues that the body’s passage of a federal marijuana legalization bill “advances historic criminal justice reform and opens the doors of opportunity for so many harmed by the consequences of cannabis criminalization.”

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) spoke about the benefits of medical cannabis and said “the effects don’t seem, you know, a lot more harmful than the effects of alcohol.”

Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) said she has never used marijuana but that the “people of Michigan voted to legalize it and so, you know, that certainly is something people in Michigan have supported.”

Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) said he doesn’t use cannabis because he’s “had family members who have had a lot of drug issues, and so I’m not going to do it.”

Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) said there’s “increasing medical evidence that the potency of cannabis that’s currently used has been associated with an increase incidence of serious mental illness among adolescents.”

Rep. Michael Burgess (R-TX) said he voted against a federal marijuana legalization bill because he is concerned about impaired driving.

Rep. Josh Gotthiemer (D-NJ) tweeted, “Law enforcement should have all the resources they need to keep our roads safe. That’s why the House just passed my bipartisan legislation to invest in technologies & methods to determine if a driver is impaired by marijuana in their system.”

Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) tweeted, “Yesterday I got to meet Weldon Angelos. Weldon was fully pardoned by President Trump after being sentenced to 55 years for cannabis related offenses.”

Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME) tweeted, “We voted to decriminalize marijuana on the federal level to correct historical injustices of our failed 50-year War on Drugs.”

Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA) tweeted, “The Medical Marijuana Research Act allows work to be done to understand marijuana’s medical properties, how it could help people, and potential long-term negative effects.”

/ STATES

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) said his administration is looking at ways it can jumpstart medical cannabis business licensing.

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) tweeted, “It’s been one week since we legalized the sale of recreational cannabis. We’re excited for the future of cannabis and what this means for New Mexico.” She also tweeted, “Cannabis is open for business across New Mexico and it’s already making a splash. Legalized cannabis means new opportunities and good-paying jobs. I can’t wait to see what’s next for cannabis in the Land of Enchantment!”

Pennsylvania Democratic gubernatorial candidate Josh Shapiro, currently the attorney general, tweeted, “Here’s a plan that would deliver billions of dollars in revenue to Pennsylvania: Legalize marijuana. Tax it. Regulate it. Expunge records. Boost the economy.” Separately, senators announced they plan to file legislation to ban delta-8 THC products.

Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried, currently the agriculture commissioner, tweeted, “Even though Black people make up only 17% of our state’s population, nearly half of those arrested for cannabis possession were Black. This blatant discrimination is something we have the ability to rectify through decriminalization, and morally we must.”

The Washington, D.C. Council chairman spoke about the failure of his bill to let adults self-certify as medical cannabis patients and crack down on unlicensed marijuana “gifting” businesses.

The Iowa House Judiciary Committee chairman said he would “never support” legalizing marijuana.

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court heard oral arguments in a case about municipal marijuana licensing jurisdiction.

Mississippi regulators released draft medical cannabis rules for public comment.

Arizona regulators held a lottery to award marijuana social equity business licenses.

Maine regulators defended that state’s residency requirements for medical cannabis business ownership in arguments before a federal appeals court.

Connecticut’s Social Equity Council rejected a proposal to loosen tax disclosure requirements for investors who want to partner with marijuana equity business applicants.

Oregon regulators published a bulletin on a new marijuana license moratorium.

Louisiana’s medical cannabis program is seeing huge growth in patient counts and purchases.

New Jersey regulators are expected to consider measures to allow recreational marijuana sales to begin at a meeting on Monday.

Vermont regulators will vote on marijuana business pre-qualification recommendations on Monday.

Alaska regulators will consider marijuana business issues on Wednesday and Thursday.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,000 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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/ LOCAL

Sacramento, California is being sued for allegedly exceeding its authority in applying a 1 percent fee on cannabis businesses.

Los Angeles, California officials are hosting several webinars for cannabis businesses this month.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Six terminally ill Canadian cancer patients received the country’s first legally produced psilocybin as part of therapy to treat end-of-life anxiety.

New Zealand’s government awarded a $13 million grant to a medical cannabis company.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that CBD “can prevent methylglyoxal-mediated cellular damage through enhancement of the neural glyoxalase pathway and extend the lifespan and survival of C. elegans, including a transgenic C. elegans strain modeling Alzheimer’s disease.”

A study found that “lifetime psilocybin use was associated with lowered odds of” opioid use disorder.

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

A poll found that Pennsylvania voters support legalizing marijuana, 49 percent to 36 percent.

The New Mexico Democratic Party tweeted. “Recreational cannabis will grow the New Mexico economy, bringing in an expected $318 in sales in its first year alone. This money will be felt throughout the state, helping to boost small businesses and local economies!”

The Boston Globe editorial board is calling on President Joe Biden to embrace marijuana reform.

U.S. Hemp Roundtable officials met with members of Congress during Capitol Hill visits last week.

/ BUSINESS

Amazon is seeking to overturn the results of a union victory at a New York warehouse, saying that
organizers’ distribution of cannabis to workers was inappropriate and the National Labor Relations Board “cannot condone such a practice as a legitimate method of obtaining support for a labor organization.”

Oregon regulators are seeking to fine Curaleaf $200,000 over mislabeled products that resulted in consumers who thought they bought a CBD product ingesting THC.

Green Dragon workers who said they were fired for supporting union organizing efforts were reinstated by the company.

New Mexico retailers sold $6.1 million worth of recreational marijuana products in the first week of legal sales.

/ CULTURE

Idris Elba said he used to sell marijuana to Dave Chappelle.

Oscar Isaac spoke about taking psilocybin with Ethan Hawke.

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