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April 9th Marijuana Weekly Updates: States to Watch for Marijuana Legalization

by Faith Fidura April 09, 2018

Movement for Marijuana Legalization

As states continue to introduce legislation and initiatives to legalize marijuana, the Dispensary Permits team will keep you informed with our Weekly State Updates. If you missed last week’s updates, you can view them here. Since then, the following legislation has been introduced in the United States: 

 

Medical Marijuana

The following states introduced legislation to allow qualified patients to possess and consume medical marijuana.

Colorado – House Bill 18-1263, a bill to add autism spectrum disorders to the list of disabling medical conditions to allow for medical marijuana use, passed its first hurdle in a vote in the House Health, Insurance, and Environment Committee. (Session ends May 9)

Florida – House Bill 6049 - a bill to remove the provision that a black farmer must be a member of the Florida chapter of the Black Farmers and Agriculturalists Association to be eligible for a medical marijuana license - has been signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott. The state's issuing of new licenses has been held up since a black farmer filed a lawsuit after he was unable to join the BFAA. The farmer has now dropped the lawsuit in response to the bill passing. 

Hawaii House Bill 2729 passed with amendments in the Senate Ways and Means Committee. The House of Representatives must now vote on the bill.

Louisiana – House Bill 579 to add glaucoma, severe muscle spasms, and PTSD as qualifying conditions for medical marijuana has moved on to the full House for a vote. House Bill 627 to add autism as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana has also moved on to the full House for a vote.

Maryland – The House approved a compromise measure that would allow for 20 new licenses for growing or processing medical marijuana, issued in such a way that ensures racial diversity among the companies that win them. The Senate is expected to ratify the proposal on Monday, sending it to the Governor’s desk for a signature.

Montana – The Department of Health and Human Services filed proposed new rules for the state’s medical marijuana program on April 3, 2018. Once the Secretary of State’s office reviews the proposed rules they will be made public for commentary.

New Mexico – New Mexico's medical cannabis patient count has reached 50,000. Limits on the number of plants a business can grow is putting a strain on supply and causing prices to rise. 

Pennsylvania – The state's Medical Marijuana Advisory Board is scheduled to vote Monday on allowing dried leaf marijuana in the medical marijuana market.

South Carolina – Former U.S. attorney for South Carolina Bill Nettles is calling for a public referendum on medical marijuana.

Utah – A medical marijuana initiative collected enough signatures to make it to the November ballot, but the state’s medical association has launched its own campaign to oppose it - and is challenging the validity of the petition drive.

 

Recreational Marijuana

The following states introduced legislation to allow individuals 21 years of age and older to possess and consume marijuana.

Connecticut – The state’s Appropriations Committee voted in favor of House Bill 5394, a bill to legalize the recreational use of marijuana.

Maine – A legislative committee voted to boost the minimum residency requirement for a marijuana business license from 3 years to 4 years. The bill, LP 1719, will now head to the floor of the House for a vote. 

Massachusetts – The Cannabis Control Commission announced that 23 companies and entrepreneurs have submitted requests for expedited marijuana business licensing, while another 167 have started the process to do so.

Michigan – Lawmakers are considering legislatively approving recreational marijuana before the November 2018 ballot.

Oregon – On April 3, 2018, officials in an Oregon county who have tried to restrict commercial marijuana production sued the state in federal court, declaring the state laws that made cannabis legal are trumped by federal law that criminalize marijuana. 

 

Interested in Opening a Marijuana Business in One of These States?

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