A deep dive into Michael Bloomberg’s cannabis record (Newsletter: November 28, 2019)

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Prohibitionists admit Schedule I blocks marijuana research; Study: ID car crashes dropped after WA legalization; Union pushes for cannabis worker protections

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) is embracing a plan to decriminalize marijuana possession in the short term ahead of an expected 2020 voter referendum on the question of more broadly legalizing cannabis sales.

Friends of the National Institute on Drug Abuse—a  group involving Kevin Sabet, Bertha Madras and other leading marijuana legalization opponents—admitted in a congressional submission that cannabis’s current federal Schedule I status blocks research.

A study found that drunk driving crashes dropped in Idaho after Washington State legalized cannabis next door.

  • “Alcohol-related traffic accidents decreased close to the border, but these decreases fade for counties further from nearby legal marijuana regimes… These findings are consistent with increased access to marijuana leading to substitution away from alcohol to marijuana.”

The United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) International Union is pushing Northeast governors to prioritize enacting marijuana industry worker protections as they coordinate regional legalization plans.

  • “America’s cannabis industry has the power to create thousands of good jobs that support hardworking families and the communities they serve. But we can only achieve this with strong labor peace agreements that set high standards that reward responsible businesses, strengthen worker voices, and put consumer safety first.”

/ FEDERAL

President Trump said he will designate Mexican drug cartels as terrorists.

Surgeon General Jerome Adams tweeted, “Help me spread the word🗣️: No amount of #marijuana is safe for pregnant women or our youth. We need EVERYONE –all Americans, all parents, and all healthcare professionals to take action to ensure a healthy next generation.”

Former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb tweeted, “FDA’s actions on CBD show any available pathway – FDA issuing a regulation, new dietary ingredient notification for supplements, or food additive petition for human or pet food – will require extensive studies and industry data to address serious safety concerns identified by FDA.” He also tweeted, “Strong indication that FDA is going to continue to vigorously enforce current law when it comes to risks from CBD in food products.”

Trans activist Angelica Ross said she spoke to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) about why marijuana decriminalization is a trans issue.

A spokesman for South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D), a presidential candidate, reacted to an analysis showing racial disparities in marijuana law enforcement in the city by saying that “mayors don’t make the law related to drug possession” and noting that he backs cannabis legalization and decriminalizing possession of other drugs.

Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), a presidential candidate, tweeted, “Don’t talk to me about legalizing marijuana if you’re not also talking about investing in the communities that have been ravaged by the failed War on Drugs. The end we seek is not just legalization—it’s justice.”

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), a presidential candidate, tweeted, “Last week, my bill to legalize marijuana passed through House committee with bipartisan support. I’ll say it again: we can’t legalize marijuana without addressing the injustices to people of color caused by the War on Drugs. My bill would do just that.”

Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) spoke about his work to pass marijuana banking legislation.

Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) tweeted, “A reminder that for the first time ever, a bill that would federally decriminalize marijuana passed through a House committee vote. I’m proud of my work to make reforming our discriminatory marijuana laws a top priority in Congress.”

/ STATES

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) signed a bill making the state’s hemp program permanent.

The California attorney general’s office filed a motion to join a lawsuit against a local ban on marijuana delivery services. Meanwhile, regulators sent warning letters to landlords whose property is being used to house unregulated cannabis businesses.

Iowa’s attorney general tweeted about federal CBD warnings.

Florida officials projected that a proposed mariuana legalization ballot measure would generate $190 million in new annual revenue.

Some Maryland lawmakers are aiming to pass marijuana legalization legislation in 2021.

New Jersey regulators are being asked to reconsider medical cannabis business license applications they rejected because file attachments could not be opened.

Michigan regulators announced additional cannabis social equity outreach sessions. They also sent a bulletin about a new tracking software category for vape cartridges.

Illinois regulators approved more medical cannabis businesses to begin selling recreational marijuana.

An Arizona senator filed a bill to let regulators inspect medical cannabis edible kitchens without notice.

Here’s a look at efforts place marijuana legalization measures on Arkansas’s 2020 ballot.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,000 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.

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

/ LOCAL

Boston, Massachusetts’s mayor signed legislation to overhaul the city’s marijuana business approval process.

The Chicago, Illinois mayor is urging the housing authority to use “latitude and discretion in how it handles applicants and residents who are found to be using or possessing marijuana.”

A Los Angeles, California City Council staffer filed a lawsuit alleging that his boss retaliated against him after he spoke to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about his suspicion the councilman attempted to extort money or solicit bribes from marijuana business operators.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Barbados lawmakers are taking up legislation to allow religious use of marijuana, while Prime Minister Mia Mottley said that no decisions on legalizing recreational use would be made without a referendum.

Colombian officials granted the country’s first medical cannabis export license to Khiron Life Sciences Corp.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study concluded that “larger declines in prescription-opioid misuse were found among marijuana users than non-users” but that “marijuana ever-use was significantly associated with prescription-opioid misuse.”

A study identified “no evidence of a causal association between medical or recreational cannabis legalization and changes in either alcohol or cigarette sales per capita.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

The Pennsylvania Medical Society is endorsing a pilot program for safe consumption sites for illegal drugs.

A Maryland Association of Counties conference included discussion on “human resource and liability issues posed by legalized cannabis.”

/ BUSINESS

MedMen Enterprises Inc. reported quarterly revenue of $44.0 million.

Organigram Holdings Inc. reported $80.4 million in quarterly revenue.

Cresco Labs announced quarterly revenue of $36.2 million. It also terminated a subsidiary’s planned acquisition of VidaCann Ltd.

Dama Financial launched a social equity program featuring free banking services for qualifying cannabis businesses.

Perry Ellis International, Inc. is entering a CBD product partnership with Sobe Organics, Inc.

Akerna made an $18 million majority stake investment in anti-counterfeiting technology company solo sciences inc.

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