This week, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker issued an executive order to extend the state’s deadline for its second phase of adult-use cannabis license applications due to coronavirus concerns. Elsewhere, in Virginia, lawmakers sent a cannabis decriminalization bill to Gov. Ralph Northam, who has vowed to sign the proposal into law this year.
Here, we’ve rounded up the 10 headlines you need to know before this week is over.
- Florida: An amendment that imposes a 10% THC limit on medical cannabis products for patients under the age of 21 has passed the Florida House in a voice vote. House Speaker Jose Oliva announced last month that he would like to pass legislation this year to limit the potency of medical cannabis products in the state, although the Senate has shown little interest in the issue; a proposal was introduced and then withdrawn in that chamber earlier during this year’s session after it failed to garner enough support. Read more
- Virginia: Lawmakers have sent a cannabis decriminalization bill to Gov. Ralph Northam, who has vowed to sign the proposal into law this year. The legislation reduces the penalty for simple cannabis possession of up to one ounce to a $50 fine or five hours of community service. Read more
- Washington: The Senate approved legislation March 9 that would allow regulators to bolster social equity in Washington’s cannabis licensing process. The bill, approved by the Senate in a 28-20 vote, would allow the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board to award previously revoked or canceled cannabis retail licenses to social equity applicants, which are defined as minority applicants who own at least 51% of a cannabis dispensary business. Read more
- Missouri: The Senate approved a bill March 9 that would ban cannabis-infused candy in the state’s medical cannabis program in an effort to protect children. The legislation would prohibit candy, lollipops, cotton candy, and fruit- and animal-shaped edibles that could appeal to children, and it would require that all cannabis-infused food or its packaging bear a stamp with dosage information. Read more
- Iowa: The Iowa House approved legislation this week that would change the THC cap in the state’s medical cannabis program. The bill, House File 2589, would replace the state’s current 3% THC limit for medical cannabis products with a limit of 4.5 grams of THC in a 90-day period. Read more
- South Dakota: The Ogala Sioux Tribe approved a referendum March 10 to legalize medical and adult-use cannabis on South Dakota’s Pine Ridge Reservation. The tribe is the first to establish a regulated cannabis market in the state, where both medical and adult-use cannabis remain illegal. Read more
- Tennessee: The Tennessee Senate approved a bill March 11 that would legalize medical cannabis in the state, after the legislation was amended to delay its implementation until the federal government shifts its policy on cannabis. Medical cannabis sales would have launched next year under the original version of the bill, but the new amendment, introduced by Sen. Bo Watson, delays the legislation’s enactment until if and when the federal government reclassifies cannabis from a Schedule I drug to Schedule II under the Controlled Substances Act. Read more
- Illinois: Gov. J.B. Pritzker has issued an executive order to extend the state’s deadline for its second phase of adult-use cannabis license applications due to coronavirus concerns. The deadline for businesses to apply for craft grower, infuser and transporter licenses has been extended from March 16 to March 30 to prevent the spread of the illness. Read more
- Alabama: The Alabama Senate approved legislation March 12 that would legalize and regulate medical cannabis in the state. Sen. Tim Melson introduced the bill, S.B. 165, last month to establish a regulatory framework for the cultivation, production, testing and sale of medical cannabis in Alabama, and the legislation now heads to the House for consideration. Read more
- International: Three Senate committees have approved a draft bill in Mexico that would create a legal, regulated market for medical, adult-use and industrial cannabis. The bill will now be debated in another meeting of the three Senate committees, as well as in a plenary session of the upper house, and a vote is expected as soon as next week. Read more