GOP senator skeptical cannabis banking advances this summer (Newsletter: July 12, 2023)

CA psychedelics; NC medical marijuana; MD equity cannabis biz assistance; MA record sales; Study on rolling better joints; AL licenses; RI labor suit

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) said in a Senate floor speech that Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s (D-NY) plan to advance a marijuana banking bill and other legislation this summer is “wishful thinking”—saying he doesn’t think the top Democrat himself even believes he can get it done.

The California Assembly Health Committee approved a Senate-passed bill to legalize possession of psychedelics like psilocybin, DMT, ibogaine and mescaline while adopting an amendment to initiate a study on a regulatory framework for therapeutic use in facilitated settings.

North Carolina’s House majority leader said he’s “very sure” a Senate-passed medical cannabis legalization bill won’t advance in the House this session, though he said legislators would likely return to the issue during next year’s short session.

The Maryland Department of Commerce is launching a $40 million program aimed at helping marijuana social equity businesses launch their operations.

The Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission reported that retailers sold nearly $152 million worth of legal marijuana products in June—a record monthly high. The state has now seen $4.74 billion in adult-use sales since the market launched.

A new study revealed how the size of ground marijuana flower in joints affects their potency or how long they burn for.

The Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission voted to delay the awarding of medical marijuana business licenses until an auditor reviews how applications were initially scored.

A Rhode Island marijuana business filed a federal lawsuit seeking to overturn a portion of the state’s legalization law that requires dispensaries to enter into labor peace agreements with workers.

/ FEDERAL

The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy published a plan to “fight the dangerous and deadly combination of xylazine mixed with fentanyl.”

The National Institute on Drug Abuse updated a funding opportunity announcement that includes studies on “responses to emerging marijuana trends and topics related to the shifting policy landscape” as a research priority area.

/ STATES

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) signed budget legislation on marijuana business background checks and cannabis event organizer licenses.

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) held a ceremonial signing for a bill to streamline marijuana expungements that he previously formally signed.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear (D) tweeted, “You’ve got to be able to bring folks together to get things done for Kentucky, and that’s what I’ve done for my entire career. From medical marijuana to legalized sports betting, I have a record that proves I’ll continue delivering big results as your governor.”

The Minnesota senator who sponsored a now-enacted marijuana legalization bill discussed provisions of the new law concerning where marijuana can be smoked and grown.

A New York judge dismissed a lawsuit that sought to block a Harlem marijuana dispensary from opening.

Washington State regulators sent an update about contaminants found in cannabis and soil.

Montana regulators sent an update on changes to rules on marijuana concentrates and synthetic cannabinoid products.

Ohio regulators will consider approving new medical cannabis qualifying conditions on Wednesday.

The New Mexico Cannabis Control Division will host a rapid hire event on Thursday.


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.

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/ LOCAL

New York City police raided unlicensed marijuana businesses.

An Amsterdam, New York wastewater treatment worker who was fired after testing positive for marijuana as a result of legal medical cannabis use was awarded $191,762 by a jury.

The Washoe County, Nevada Board of Commissioners defeated a move to allow marijuana consumption lounges.

Minnesota cities are considering enacting moratoriums on marijuana businesses.

The Boston, Massachusetts Cannabis Board will meet on Wednesday.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Germany’s Federal Constitutional Court ruled that challenges to the constitutionality of cannabis criminalization are inadmissible.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A review concluded that “it became evident that Cannabinol, Cannabidiol, Cannabigerol, Cannabidivarin and Cannabichromene may act in novel therapeutic targets, presenting high potential in the pharmacotherapy of” depression and Alzheimer’s disease.

A review concluded that “there is evidence to suggest that there are benefits of CBD as a therapeutic in terms of inflammation.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

Americans for Safe Access published a report on disparities in state cannabis testing programs.

/ BUSINESS

Owners of Club Castaway in Whatley, Massachusetts are no longer focusing on opening a topless cannabis retail outlet in the strip club.

Maryland retailers sold nearly $21 million worth of legal marijuana products during the first week of recreational sales.

Arkansas dispensaries sold $23.4 million worth of medical cannabis products in June.

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Photo courtesy of Chris Wallis // Side Pocket Images.

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