Hawaii AG back cannabis legalization (Newsletter: April 14, 2023)

NH 4/20 marijuana hearing; WA psilocybin; NV athletic officials’ cannabis proposal; USDA hemp & cows study; NC psychedelics

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

Hawaii’s attorney general said she switched her department’s position on marijuana legalization from opposing it to instead proactively working with lawmakers and stakeholders to craft reform legislation.

  • “That train has left the station.”

New Hampshire senators are offering their thoughts on the prospects of enacting a House-passed marijuana legalization bill ahead of a 4/20 hearing that the chamber’s Judiciary Committee will hold on several pieces of cannabis legislation.

The Washington State House and Senate have both passed a psilocybin bill, but differences regarding a potential pilot program for therapeutic access need to be resolved before it can head to Gov. Jay Inslee’s (D) desk.

The Nevada State Athletic Commission is considering a rules change to formally codify that it “does not classify cannabis or cannabis derived products as prohibited or banned substances” and won’t punish marijuana use by fighters regardless of other states’ laws.

A U.S. Department of Agriculture study found that cows fed with “highly nutritious” hempseed cake have very low levels of THC and CBD in their meat. An official said it would be “very difficult” for a person to consume enough beef to exceed dietary cannabinoid exposure guidelines.

Virginia lawmakers approved Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s (R) amendments to a hemp product regulation bill.

North Carolina representatives are preparing to file legislation to create a psychedelics advisory board and fund research on the therapeutic benefits of psilocybin and MDMA.

/ FEDERAL

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration issued sources sought notices for contractors to evaluate the effectiveness of media campaigns to deter impaired driving and to evaluate strategies to improve drug recognition experts’ performance.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture said that retail hemp ad totals “saw another major increase from last week and were up by 123%.”

Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) said he hopes to insert provisions into the 2023 Farm Bill to provide oversight of foreign entities buying agricultural land in the U.S., which he says has been a problem in Oklahoma under his state’s medical cannabis law.

Rep. Jared Huffman (D-CA) tweeted about a “cannabis/psilosybin-worshiping” church that can’t get a federal religious exemption, saying, “That’s wrong. If it embraced MAGA GOP politics the IRS would give rubber stamp approval. Just ask the Family Research Council ‘church.’”

/ STATES

Arkansas lawmakers sent Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders (R) a bill to shift medical cannabis tax revenue from supporting the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences’s pursuit of recognition from the National Cancer Institute to addressing food insecurity and public health needs.

The Illinois Senate passed a bill to bar courts from preventing people from using marijuana or alcohol as a condition of probation, conditional discharge or supervision.

The Oklahoma House Alcohol, Tobacco and Controlled Substances Committee approved eight bills to revise medical cannabis rules.

The Alabama House Health Committee approved a bill to tax delta-8 and -10 THC products and restrict sales to people over 21.

The Virginia Senate Rules Committee appointed members to the Cannabis Oversight Commission and other panels.

The Nevada Assembly Judiciary Committee held a hearing on a bill to increase fine caps for trafficking illegal marijuana and to incentivize whistleblowing about cannabis industry violations. Separately, regulators will hold a workshop to solicit comments on proposed cannabis regulations on Friday.

Colorado regulators issued health and safety advisories about potentially unsafe levels of yeast, mold, Aspergillus and elemental impurities in marijuana products.

Florida regulators are withdrawing a previously proposed hemp rule.

California regulators sent a reminder about reporting theft or criminal activity targeting marijuana businesses.

The New York Cannabis Advisory Board 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

Denver, Colorado officials published guidance on marijuana hospitality and unlicensed consumption businesses ahead of a 4/20 festival.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador continued to criticize former President Vicente Fox over his involvement in the cannabis industry, calling it “immoral.”

Germany’s health minister spoke about the new marijuana legalization plan he announced. Separately, the Christian Democratic Union opposition party criticized the proposal.

The Czech Republic government’s forthcoming marijuana legalization plan will reportedly require consumers to be registered in a database.

A Philippine representative discussed his support for legalizing marijuana.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study of rats concluded that “CBD represents a promising therapeutic perspective in the pharmacological treatment of chronic [neuropathic pain] and associated comorbidities such as depression and memory impairments.”

A study of marijuana products in Colorado found that “the average observed THC potency was 23.1% lower than the lowest label reported values and 35.6% lower than the highest label reported values.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America published an op-ed on the need for Congress to pass a bill directing the Department of Veterans Affairs to study medical cannabis.

An Americans for Prosperity-South Carolina official coauthored an op-ed calling on state officials to pass a medical cannabis legalization bill.

/ BUSINESS

Curaleaf’s application to renew its license to sell recreational marijuana in New Jersey was rejected by regulators.

iAnthus Capital Holdings is being sued by a former employee who claims she was illegally fired while recovering from a hysterectomy.

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Photo courtesy of Chris Wallis // Side Pocket Images.

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