In this week’s edition: Virginia becomes the first Southern state to legalize cannabis Connecticut, Louisiana, and North Carolina advance legalization bills South Dakota Supreme Court to consider constitutionality of voter-approved legalization House committee chairs challenge DEA’s proposed hemp rules And more… Federal
Koch-backed group joins marijuana push after Zoom with Snoop Dogg – A new cannabis advocacy coalition, The Cannabis Freedom Alliance, recently launched and includes among its membership organizations the Koch brothers founded Americans for Prosperity, the Reason Foundation, the Global Alliance for Cannabis Commerce and The Weldon Project. The alliance has expressed plans to reach out to libertarian-leaning Republicans such as Senators Rand Paul (R- KY) and Mike Lee (R – UT) and advocate for, among other things, removing penalties for cannabis criminal offenses, free market regulatory frameworks and low tax rates.
Where weed is legal – More than 40 percent of Americans now live in states that have fully legalized cannabis. Recently, this has included Virginia which passed a recreational legalization bill in February, followed by adult-use legalization in New York in March and New Mexico in April. Meanwhile, attempts to legalize medical and/or recreational cannabis have fallen short in a few states including Maryland, Hawaii, Wyoming and North Dakota.
CA – A study showed that California’s licensed cannabis retailers have been successful in preventing sales to minors, a key promise by cannabis advocates for legalization. The study consisted of randomized visits by “young-looking” individuals posing as customers to shops throughout California, testing the identification and age verification processes of retailers.
CT – Connecticut’s Judiciary Committee voted to narrowly advance Gov. Ned Lamont’s (D-CT) bill to legalize recreational cannabis statewide. The state legislature made several changes to the proposed bill, including allowing patients in the medical cannabis program to grow up to six plants