NY gov “fed up” with cannabis market launch (Newsletter: January 29, 2024)

DE medical marijuana expansion; VA legal sales; Ireland momentum; MD & HI psychedelics; Fetterman on cannabis freedom; Legalization poll

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

A majority of American likely voters—including most Republicans under the age of 55—support legalizing marijuana “in all 50 states,” according to a new poll from prominent GOP firm the Tarrance Group.

Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) says he opposes Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s (D-NY) proposed crackdown on Zyn nicotine pouches for the same “freedom and personal choices” reasons he backs legalizing cannabis.

  • “I made that same argument when I wanted to legalize marijuana.”

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) said she’s “fed up with how long it is taking” to expand the state’s recreational marijuana market and is asking regulators to “go back to the drawing board,” “work harder” and “get this done.”

  • “I’m not satisfied with the pace.”

The Delaware House of Representatives passed a bill to significantly expand medical cannabis access—including by allowing doctors to recommend marijuana for any condition they see fit and letting patients over age 65 self certify.

The Virginia Senate Rehabilitation and Social Services Committee approved a bill to legalize marijuana sales, advancing it on a quick path to additional panels and then the Senate floor where it needs to pass by February 13 to stay alive.

Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said criminalizing drugs “isn’t an effective policy” ahead of an upcoming hearing on a bill to legalize marijuana possession.

Maryland lawmakers filed a bill to create a Task Force on Responsible Use of Natural Psychedelic Substances that would issue recommendations on “systems to support statewide online sales of natural psychedelic substances with home delivery” and other issues.

Hawaii lawmakers introduced legislation to create a therapeutic psilocybin program and provide patients with an affirmative defense to being prosecuted for using the psychedelic in accordance with a mental health professional’s certification.

Douglas Fischer of Advanced Vapor Devices argues in a new Marijuana Moment op-ed that a recent federal court ruling on vaping sheds light on why federal cannabis legalization needs to include the right regulatory framework enforced by the right agency.

The South Dakota Senate Health and Human Services Committee killed a House-passed bill that would have placed restrictions on the ability of doctors to recommend medical cannabis to patients.

A Washington State Republican senator filed a bill to give cities and counties a higher share of marijuana tax revenue, which he said is an alternative to Democrats’ plan to triple annual property tax increases.

Kansas activists held a medical cannabis day of action, pressing lawmakers to finally pass legislation to allow patients to use marijuana without fear of arrest.

/ FEDERAL

The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health hosted a technical assistance webinar on a funding opportunity for a new Resource Center for Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research.

Former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD) spoke at an event hosted by the Coalition for Cannabis Policy, Education, and Regulation.

Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-WI) filed a bill to require the interior and agriculture secretaries to issue annual reports on waste collected on federal lands, including those “used for the illegal cultivation of narcotics, including the cultivation of cannabis, by aliens without lawful immigration status.”

The House bill to protect people from being denied security clearances or federal jobs due to past marijuana use got five new cosponsors for a total of eight.

The House marijuana banking bill got one new cosponsor for a total of 98.

/ STATES

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) cited the cannabis union organizing efforts of his appointee to the Employment Security Board of Review.

West Virginia lawmakers sent Gov. Jim Justice (R) a bill to decriminalize drug testing kits.

The Florida House Agriculture, Conservation and Resiliency Subcommittee will consider a bill to restrict hemp-derived products on Monday. Separately, the state Supreme Court declined to take up the case of a former correctional officer who claims he was improperly fired for medical cannabis use.

An Indiana representative spoke about his support for legalizing marijuana.

A West Virginia delegate discussed the prospects for marijuana legislation.

New York regulators are facing a lawsuit claiming that their marijuana business licenses process discriminates against white men.

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture is funding hemp research projects.

Michigan regulators published a monthly report on disciplinary actions taken against marijuana businesses.

Nevada regulators will hold a hearing on possible changes to cannabis rules on Wednesday.

The Virginia Cannabis Control Authority’s Board of Directors will meet on Wednesday.


Marijuana Moment is 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.

Learn more about our marijuana bill tracker and become a supporter on Patreon to get access.

/ LOCAL

The San Diego County, California Board of Supervisors voted to accept a state grant to help process marijuana business licenses.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Israel’s Ministry of Economy is investigating Canadian cannabis imports.

The mayor of Amsterdam, Netherlands is pushing for legalization of cocaine as the city hosts a conference and releases a manifesto about a new approach to drug policy.

The South Korean government is moving to ban references to marijuana and other drugs in food products and brand names.

A German lawmaker tweeted, “I am and remain confident that the Cannabis Act will be passed as agreed.”

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study’s results “extend the knowledge regarding the antimicrobial activity of CBD and demonstrate its ability to kill the human intracellular pathogen M. tuberculosis.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

The American Council on Science and Health published a post on the merits of rescheduling marijuana.

Fox News host Laura Ingraham suggested that marijuana is a “gateway drug.”

/ BUSINESS

BZAM Ltd.’s chief financial officer left the company.

SpringBig Holdings, Inc. announced it secured $8 million of debt financing with a syndicate of lenders.

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Photo courtesy of Mike Latimer.

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