SD Senate votes to legalize cannabis (Newsletter: February 24, 2022) – Marijuana Moment

Colorado Officials Clear Psychedelics Legalization Ballot Language, Bringing Activists Closer To Signature Gathering
South Dakota Governor Won’t Rule Out Vetoing Marijuana Legalization Bill That Passed The Senate
New Jersey Governor Says Adult-Use Marijuana Sales Will Start ‘Within Weeks’
South Dakota Senate Approves Marijuana Legalization And Expungements Bills, While House Defeats Tax Measure
Top New Jersey Marijuana Regulator Says Rushing Adult-Use Licensing Will Imperil Small Businesses
College Students Who Use Marijuana Show Signs Of Greater Motivation Compared To Non-Users, Study Finds
Top Federal Drug Agency Funds Research On Differing Legal Marijuana Regulatory Models
Don’t Feed Marijuana Buds To Donkeys, New Study Warns
Banking Activity Increases In States That Legalize Marijuana, Study Finds
Young People Who Use Marijuana Have Better Orgasms and Sexual Function, Study Says
Sha’Carri Richardson, Suspended Over Marijuana, Suggests Racist Double Standard After Olympics Lets Russian Skater Compete Amid Doping Scandal
Marijuana Icon Willie Nelson Pushes For The Legalization Of ‘Comfort’ In Super Bowl Ad…For Shoes
Twitch Says Marijuana-Themed Usernames Are Exempt From New Ban, Just Like Alcohol And Tobacco
Weedmaps Ad Satirizes Plight Of Broccoli Emoji As Marijuana Stand-In On Social Media
NFL Awards $1 Million To Study Marijuana Pain Management And Concussion Protection For Players
Nearly Half A Million Americans Work In The Marijuana Industry, New Leafly Report Finds
Arizona Marijuana Sales Topped $1.4 Billion In 2021
New Mexico Marijuana Company Pushes Insurers To Cover Medical Cannabis Under State Law
Wells Fargo Analyst Says Federal Marijuana Testing Mandate To Blame For Trucker Shortages And Rising Costs
Weedmaps Ad Satirizes Plight Of Broccoli Emoji As Marijuana Stand-In On Social Media
South Dakota Governor Won’t Rule Out Vetoing Marijuana Legalization Bill That Passed The Senate
Maryland Lawmakers Vote To Put Marijuana Legalization Referendum On November Ballot
Congressional Committee Discusses Challenges Marijuana Businesses Face In Economic Recovery From COVID
Hawaii Senate Committee Approves Bill To Legalize Marijuana For Senior Citizens 65 And Older
Hawaii Senators Approve Psilocybin Task Force Bill In Committee, With Decriminalization Measures Still Pending
SD Senate votes to legalize cannabis (Newsletter: February 24, 2022)
SCOTUS wants cannabis case input from DOJ (Newsletter: February 23, 2022)
Feds fund research on cannabis laws’ impact (Newsletter: February 22, 2022)
MD & DE legal cannabis bills advance (Newsletter: February 21, 2022)
Congressional cannabis biz hearing (Newsletter: February 18, 2022)
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MD legalization amendments rejected; HI psilocybin bill advances; Marijuana jobs report shows huge growth; NJ regulator: don’t rush licensing
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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

The South Dakota Senate approved bills to legalize marijuana and facilitate expungements. This comes as activists have separately been collecting signatures to put an initiative to legalize cannabis on the November ballot.

The Maryland House of Delegates debated bills to put a marijuana legalization referendum on the November ballot and begin implementation if voters approve. The body defeated several Republican-led amendments to add restrictions, and votes on final passage are expected this week.

The Hawaii Senate Commerce and Consumer Protection Committee unanimously approved a bill to create a working group to study the therapeutic benefits of psilocybin mushrooms and develop a plan to ensure that the psychedelic is accessible for medical use.

New Jersey’s top marijuana regulator said that rushing into licensing recreational businesses will allow large multi-state operators to “dominate” while locking out small, local entrepreneurs from communities targeted by the drug war—even as some find the delay frustrating.

A new Leafly report found that there are now 428,059 people employed in the U.S. cannabis industry and that 107,059 new marijuana jobs were created in 2021 alone. There are now more cannabis workers than dentists, firefighters, bank tellers or hairstylists, according to the analysis.

/ FEDERAL

Rep. Dave Joyce (R-OH) tweeted, “If a conservative like myself and a progressive like @RepAOC  can find some common ground, it begs the question, why hasn’t  @POTUS acted? The bipartisan solutions for #cannabis reform are there. To #passprogress, it’s just a matter of political will.”

The House bill to deschedule marijuana and fund programs to repair drug war harms got two new cosponsors for a total of 108.

/ STATES

A spokesperson for Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) said he supports increasing criminal penalties for fentanyl. Separately, the attorney general discussed harm reduction strategies for drugs.

Guam’s attorney general approved marijuana regulations.

Texas Democratic attorney general candidate Lee Merritt tweeted, “Legalizing cannabis alone is only a half measure. We have to couple that with pardoning and expunging the records of those convicted for marijuana-related crimes and ensure communities most harmed from criminalization benefit the most from legalization.” He also tweeted, “Marijuana legalization checks all the boxes ✅ Ends a racist policy ✅ Brings in vital tax revenue ✅ Lowers opioid usage rates ✅ Has majority support nationwide How could you NOT support it?”

The New Mexico Supreme Court ruled that medical cannabis should not be subject to the state’s gross receipts tax. Separately, regulators held a hearing on proposed marijuana rules changes.

An activist’s lawsuit challenging New Jersey’s marijuana legalization law received a hearing in a federal court.

The Utah Senate approved several medical cannabis bills, with another advancing in committee.

The Kansas House of Representatives passed a hemp testing and seed bill.

The West Virginia House of Representatives gave initial approval to a bill allowing no more than two medical cannabis testing laboratories to operate.

Minnesota’s House majority leader said cannabis-focused third parties have “potent power” but that it “should be used to advance the issue of legalization rather than get in its way” by making sure to back candidates who actually support reform and not those that merely seek to detract support from Democrats.

The New Hampshire House Criminal Justice and Public Safety rejected bills to put marijuana legalization on the ballot and to decriminalize psilocybin.

The Illinois House Human Services Committee Committee held a hearing on a bill to allow safe consumption sites for illegal drugs.

The California Legislative Analyst’s Office reported that “cannabis tax revenue growth has slowed.”

A Pennsylvania senator asked the director of the Independent Fiscal Office about the possibility of paying for a tax cut with new revenue from legalized marijuana.

A New York assemblymember tweeted, “I have introduced a bill where medical professionals can prescribe Psilocybin for those suffering with mental health ailments including depression, PTSD, anxiety, and substance abuse disorders. Every treatment option must be on the table.”

A Wisconsin representative tweeted, “While Wisconsin Republicans twiddle their thumbs, Illinois raked in $400 million in tax revenue from recreational marijuana sales in 2021. Michigan collected nearly $250 million.”

Oregon’s Measure 110 Oversight and Accountability Council is facing questions over its process for awarding grant money authorized by the voter-approved drug decriminalization measure.

The Washington State Social Equity in Cannabis Task Force’s Licensing Workgroup will meet on Thursday.


Marijuana Moment is already 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.

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SCOTUS wants cannabis case input from DOJ (Newsletter: February 23, 2022)
Tom Angell is the editor of Marijuana Moment. A 20-year veteran in the cannabis law reform movement, he covers the policy and politics of marijuana. Separately, he founded the nonprofit Marijuana Majority. Previously he reported for Marijuana.com and MassRoots, and handled media relations and campaigns for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition and Students for Sensible Drug Policy. (Organization citations are for identification only and do not constitute an endorsement or partnership.)
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NY gov signs marijuana licensing bill; UT psychedelics study advances; FL legalization poll; NM insurers pressed to cover medical cannabis; AZ sales
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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

The U.S. Supreme Court is asking the solicitor general to weigh in on two medical cannabis workers compensation cases it is considering taking up. State courts have reached differing decisions on the issue.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) signed a bill to give temporary marijuana business licenses to hemp growers and processors to help the state prepare for a timely launch of the adult-use market. There are equity, labor and sustainability requirements for participants.

The Utah Senate Health and Human Services Committee approved a bill to create a task force to study and make recommendations on the therapeutic uses of psychedelics such as psilocybin for treating mental health disorders. The legislation has already passed the full House.

A new poll found that three out of four Florida voters support legalizing marijuana—including majorities across party, age, sex and racial demographic groups.

New Mexico cannabis company Ultra Health sent a letter urging insurance companies to cover the cost of medical cannabis for certain patients, a move it argues is required under a new state law.

The Arizona Department of Revenue reported that consumers purchased more than $1.4 billion worth of marijuana products in 2021, the first year of legal adult-use sales. The new figures include sales of medical cannabis as well.

/ FEDERAL

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) tweeted, “Legalizing cannabis and expunging non-violent convictions isn’t just a criminal justice issue — it’s a health and economic issue too. I’m fighting alongside @CPeoplesStokes to ensure communities which were disproportionately harmed are able to benefit from this growing industry.”

A spokesperson for Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) said there needs to be more research on “the potential public health consequences of legalization.”

Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) tweeted, “Today, 81% of the cannabis industry is dominated by white business owners— yet thousands of people of color serve time for marijuana-related offenses. It’s long past time for my colleagues in Congress to join me in the fight to right this injustice.”

Rep. Dave Joyce (R-OH) tweeted, “It’s time for Congress to act on achievable, incremental #cannabis reform that can build the bipartisan consensus necessary to become law and improve millions of lives.”

/ STATES

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt (R) cheered law enforcement actions against medical cannabis businesses that officials say were diverting products to the illegal market. The state’s top medical marijuana regulator said the raids should serve as a “warning.”

Colorado Republican gubernatorial candidate Danielle Neuschwanger said Gov. Jared Polis (D) “belongs in a jail cell” for “taking money out of your pockets and lining marijuana companies’ pockets.”

Ohio Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Cranley, a former Cincinnati mayor, tweeted, “If we want to talk about government overreach, let’s talk about decades of locking up Black and brown men for smoking marijuana. It’s time we legalize it and invest that revenue back into good-paying jobs for Ohioans.”

Pennsylvania Democratic gubernatorial candidate Josh Shapiro, currently the attorney general, tweeted, “1. Legalize recreational marijuana. 2. Expunge the records of those serving time for non-violent marijuana offenses. 3. Boost our economy. It’s that simple.”

South Carolina Democratic gubernatorial candidate Joe Cunningham, a former congressman, discussed his support for legalizing marijuana.

Here’s a look at where Texas gubernatorial candidates stand on marijuana reform.

A Nebraska medical cannabis campaign committee reported that as of the end of January, it had received $68,000 in cash contributions and spent about $38,000.

The Kansas House of Representatives approved a hemp testing and seed bill.

The Oregon Senate Committee on Finance and Revenue Committee approved a bill to allow municipalities to increase local marijuana taxes. Separately, the Senate Committee on Judiciary and Ballot Measure 110 Implementation voted to divert at least $26 million from substance misuse treatment and toward police to combat illegal cannabis cultivation, but lawmakers say the move will be reversed.

The West Virginia House Judiciary Committee approved a bill to allow regulators to require medical cannabis businesses to maintain motion activated video surveillance.

The Wyoming Senate Labor, Health & Social Services Committee rejected a bill that would have allowed prosecutors to bring felony charges against pregnant women who consume illegal drugs.

Washington State lawmakers unveiled a budget plan that directs $125 million to reinvestment grants for communities harmed by the war on drugs.

Maryland’s House Judiciary Committee chairman spoke about his marijuana legalization legislation that’s expected to get floor votes this week.

A Missouri representative who is sponsoring a marijuana legalization bill says the policy change “is coming whether we want to do it this way or not.”

A California senator tweeted, “Harm reduction — including safe needle & paraphernalia programs — is a proven strategy to reduce infections & overdose deaths. Yet conservatives continue to work to criminalize them & prop up the failed War on Drugs. How about we just follow the science?”

Florida regulators are asking a judge to permanently ban a doctor from recommending medical cannabis following an undercover investigation that involved undercover agents posing as patients.

Nevada regulators met to act on marijuana business issues.

Utah regulators sent an update on the medical cannabis program.

The Tennessee Medical Cannabis Commission will meet on Friday.


Marijuana Moment is already 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.

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OR psilocybin equity bill advances; Study: Drug arrests continue at high levels even as incarceration drops; CO marijuana research fairness
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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

The National Institute on Drug Abuse is funding research on the “effects of changing cannabis laws and policies in the U.S. and globally” with a focus on understanding which components of legalization laws best protect public health.

The Oregon Senate Human Services, Mental Health and Recovery Committee approved a bill to create a task force on ensuring the state’s legal psilocybin services program centers equity for psychedelic business owners, session facilitators and participants.

A new Pew Charitable Trusts analysis shows that police are continuing to make drug arrests at a high rate even while incarceration rates are dropping.

At a Colorado House Public and Behavioral Health and Human Services Committee hearing, a lawmaker pressed on whether an ongoing review of the science on marijuana products would look fairly at benefits as well as at harms.

/ FEDERAL

The U.S. Department of Agriculture posted a short podcast about hemp innovation and research.

Sen.. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) spoke about the need for equity in the legal marijuana industry.

Rep. Dave Joyce (R-OH) and former Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) coauthored an op-ed calling on Congress and President Joe Biden to enact marijuana reform.

Kentucky Democratic Senate candidate Charles Booker tweeted, “Seriously, cannabis should be legal.”

/ STATES

Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke, a former congressman, uploaded a page on his campaign site about his support for legalizing marijuana. He also tweeted, “When I’m governor, we will legalize marijuana. We will stop locking up Texans for a substance that’s legal in much of the rest of the country while generating nearly $1 billion a year in new revenue and taxpayer savings. It’s the right thing to do.”

Massachusetts Democratic gubernatorial candidate Sonia Chang-Diaz is expected to tour a cannabis facility.

Wisconsin Republican attorney general candidate Eric Toney tweeted, “WI won’t go the way of California and Illinois in legalizing marijuana and eliminating cash bail. Public safety is on the ballot.”

Kentucky’s Senate majority floor leader said he doesn’t support legalizing recreational or medical marijuana but won’t block a bill from advancing if it has sufficient support from Republican colleagues.

The Oregon House of Representatives approved a bill to make it harder for unlicensed marijuana growers to access water, and the Senate passed legislation to place a moratorium on issuing hemp cultivation licenses in some counties.

The Minnesota House Agriculture Finance and Policy Committee approved a bill to allow hemp-derived cannabinoids as food additives.

The Michigan House Regulatory Reform Committee will hold a hearing on a kratom regulation bill on Tuesday.

An Alabama senator said the prospects for his marijuana decriminalization bill are “not bright” this year even though it already advanced through committee.

A Georgia representative filed a bill to grant medical cannabis business licenses to companies that are protesting their rejection in the first round of awards.

A Kentucky representative introduced a bill to legalize safe consumption sites for illegal drugs.

An Illinois representative filed a resolution urging Congress to remove marijuana from Schedule I.

Connecticut’s Social Equity Council wants lawmakers to take steps to prevent marijuana market saturation.

The Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe, located in South Dakota, says police are arresting people who buy medical cannabis at the tribe’s dispensary.

New Mexico regulators will hold a public hearing on proposed amendments to marijuana licensing rules on Tuesday.


Marijuana Moment is already 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.

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Top NY lawmaker’s PAC has marijuana focus; KY legalization bills; Wells Fargo: Fed cannabis policy hurts workforce; Canadian drug decrim momentum
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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

The Maryland House Judiciary Committee approved bills to put a marijuana legalization referendum on the November ballot and begin setting up details for the program if voters approve. Floor votes are expected this week.

The Delaware House Appropriations Committee advanced a bill to legalize marijuana. It’s now cleared for a House floor vote as its next stop.

New York’s Assembly majority leader is leaching a new PAC that will focus in part on electing candidates that support equity-centered marijuana reform.

Kentucky Democratic lawmakers, including the Senate minority floor leader, filed new bills to legalize marijuana.

A Wells Fargo analyst said federal marijuana criminalization and resulting drug testing mandates are a major driver of rising costs and worker shortages in the transportation sector.

A bill to decriminalize drugs in Canada is gaining momentum as more localities, police officials and lawmakers express support for the policy—with one member of Parliament saying it has a real chance of becoming law.

/ FEDERAL

Federal judge Michelle Childs, a top contender to be nominated to the U.S. Supreme Court by President Joe Biden, once sentenced a man to 12 years in prison for selling less than nine ounces of marijuana. The White House reacted by saying it was just one of “thousands” of decisions she made on the bench.

Congress passed, and President Joe Biden signed, legislation again extending the classification of fentanyl-related substances under Schedule I.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) tweeted, “Comprehensive federal cannabis legalization with justice for the communities most impacted by the War on Drugs—especially communities of color—is a Senate priority. This is long overdue, and we will move forward.”

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) said making it hard for licensed marijuana businesses to access bank accounts is “perfect for organized crime.”

Rep .Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) called out Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), tweeting, “One US Senator ‘heard stories; about people allegedly using the Child Tax Credit ‘for drugs’ without any evidence or data to back it up. He then used that as justification to nuke the entire national program, causing millions of kids to fall into poverty in weeks. Horrifying.”

Louisiana Democratic Senate candidate Gary Chambers tweeted, “Kim Potter getting 2 years for murdering a Black man is America’s latest example of an inequitable criminal legal system, it is NOT justice for all. There are people serving more time for cannabis than this woman will serve for murder. This is America. It’s shameful.”

Virginia Republican congressional candidate Heerak Christian Kim tweeted, “Let’s illegalize marijuana & get rid of drugs from the streets & form USA public schools & save American children from drug overdose death & unemployment & broken marriages!”

/ STATES

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) signed several medical cannabis reform bills into law. Separately, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved legislation to let people clear certain marijuana records.

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) nominated a member of the Medical Cannabis Commission. Separately, the House of Delegates approved a bill to add a representative of the hemp industry to the state Agricultural Commission.

South Carolina Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mia McLeod, currently a state senator, tweeted, “Every day South Carolinians like me live with chronic conditions and experience excruciating pain. We must recognize that medical marijuana is a safe alternative to opioids. It’s time to vote in favor of our residents.”

Texas Democratic attorney general candidate Lee Merritt tweeted, “Cannabis use should never be a reason for arrest and imprisonment. Its criminalization is nothing more than another way for law enforcement to harass and arrest Black and Brown communities. It’s time we legalize it.” He also tweeted, “The War on Drugs is and always has been nothing more than a war on communities of color.”

The Utah Senate approved a bill to allow medical cannabis for acute pain post-surgery, let students receive cannabis medications at school from a nurse and make other changes to the program.

The Georgia Senate Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee approved a bill to remove certain limitations on hemp grower licenses.

A New Mexico bill to increase marijuana production limits for small businesses and to make other changes to the legalization program failed to pass by the end of the session.

California’s Senate majority leader tweeted about his bill to eliminate the marijuana cultivation tax, saying, “We can’t continue to tax family farmers based on the product’s weight — because when prices fall, the taxes remain disproportionately high. It’s simply not sustainable.”

Washington State Senate Republicans tweeted, “Cannabis stores are falling victim to armed robbery. Senator Jim Honeyford, R-Sunnyside, filed legislation (SB 5927) to halt this trend. The bill would increase the penalty for these heinous acts and it passed the Senate.”

A Michigan representative filed a bill to allow Indian tribes to sell recreational marijuana on tribal lands.

A Pennsylvania representative tweeted, “Any conversation on decriminalizing #cannabis must have an emphasis on equity and correcting the harms to communities that have been most affected by the enforcement of cannabis laws. #HB2050 enacts the Cannabis Clean Slate that will expunge non-violent cannabis-related charges.”

Connecticut regulators increased monthly medical cannabis purchase limits.

Arizona regulators are threatening to revoke medical cannabis testing labs’ licenses over inflated potency reports and other issues.

New York regulators published hemp licensing guidance.

Vermont regulators posted information about the prequalification process for marijuana business licenses. They will also meet on Tuesday.

Oregon regulators reduced a backlog of marijuana business violation cases.

New Jersey regulators will hold a public meeting on marijuana issues on Thursday.


Marijuana Moment is already 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.

Make sure to subscribe to get Marijuana Moment’s daily dispatch in your inbox.

All the cannabis news you need, all in one place. Copyright © 2017-2021 Marijuana Moment LLC ® and Tom Angell

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