AG nominee reiterates cannabis enforcement pledge (Newsletter: Feb. 7, 2019)

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Bannon & Trump allies want hemp border wall; MD legal marijuana bills; Cannabis banking hearing scheduled; Legal marijuana more popular than senators

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

U.S. attorney general nominee William Barr reiterated his commitment not to go after legal marijuana operations in a meeting with Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO), the senator said.

The first marijuana hearing of the new Congress has officially been scheduled: A subcommittee of the House Financial Services Committee will examine cannabis businesses’ banking access issues next week.

Steve Bannon, Kris Kobach and other allies of President Trump are actively seeking private funding to build a Mexican border wall made of…hemp. “Do you understand the irony of using hempcrete to keep out marijuana?” Bannon said.

Maryland lawmakers filed marijuana legalization bills in the Senate and House.

A poll found that 54% of California voters feel that marijuana legalization has been “good” for the state. That’s higher than the approval ratings in the same survey for Sens. Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), or for Gov. Gavin Newsom (D).

/ FEDERAL

The U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania filed a lawsuit seeking to block the opening of a supervised consumption site for illegal drugs in Philadelphia.

Rep. Dina Titus (D-NV) said it is “good news” that a Nevada town is embracing hemp cultivation and tweeted, “hemp uses less water than alfalfa.”

Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) tweeted about an upcoming hearing on marijuana banking.

Rep. Denny Heck (D-WA) also tweeted about the hearing.

The Senate bill to require the Department of Veterans Affairs to study medical cannabis got one new cosponsor, for a total of two.

/ STATES

Connecticut Senate Democrats are touting marijuana legalization and hemp bills as part of an agenda to boost the state’s economy.

A Vermont representative who plans to file a marijuana sales legalization bill this week says he has enough votes to get it passed, but perhaps not enough to override a potential veto from Gov. Phil Scott (R).

The Colorado State, Veterans, & Military Affairs voted down a bill to allow medical cannabis patients to access guns legally under state law.

Florida legislative leaders are uncomfortable with a complete repeal of the state’s ban on smoking medical cannabis, instead proposing differing House and Senate plans that require patients to jump through extra hoops. Meanwhile, the House Health Quality Subcommittee held a hearing on medical marijuana. Separately, the state’s new director of cannabis spoke about the potential of hemp.

The Kentucky House Agriculture Committee held a hearing on hemp.

Rhode Island regulators held a hearing on adding opioid dependency as a medical cannabis qualifying condition.

Arkansas regulators announced that medical cannabis patient cards will take effect on February 15.

Ohio regulators awarded a certificate of operation to another medical cannabis dispensary.

Michigan regulators announced another medical cannabis recall. Meanwhile, a representative wants to require warning labels for pregnant women or breastfeeding women on marijuana products.

Tennessee lawmakers are optimistic about the prospects of medical cannabis legislation.

A Missouri House committee chairman passed out brownies with a “secret ingredient” at a hearing where state medical cannabis regulators are testifying. (It was parsley, not marijuana.)

Here’s a look at pending Arizona marijuana reform legislation.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 500 cannabis 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.

We followed more than 900 pieces of cannabis legislation in 2018. Learn more about our marijuana bill tracker and become a supporter on Patreon to get access.

/ LOCAL

The Boston, Massachusetts City Council is considering a bill aimed at fostering equity in marijuana business licensing.

/ ADVOCACY

The New York State Association of PBAs, which represents police unions across the state, is opposing marijuana legalization.

The New York State Parent Teacher Association is also urging lawmakers not to legalize marijuana.

The Republican Party of New York tweeted about legalization opposition.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “in the year following implementation of recreational cannabis sales, traffic fatalities temporarily increased by an average of one additional traffic fatality per million residents in both legalizing US states of Colorado, Washington and Oregon and in their neighbouring jurisdictions” but that the initial rise was “followed by a trend reduction of −0.06 per month.”

A study looks at the differences in national youth drug use surveys.

/ BUSINESS

ASTM International is developing standards for marijuana packaging and labeling, as well as disposal of raw materials.

Aphria Inc. rejected a hostile takeover bid from Green Growth Brands Inc.

A survey of Amazon shoppers found that 29.5% would be comfortable purchasing Amazon-branded medical cannabis.

A Connecticut drug treatment program clapped back at a Weedmaps billboard near the Massachusetts border that says, “Weed is legal in 60 miles,” with a giant ad of its own that reads, “Addiction treatment is closer.”

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