Updates in Cannabis Legislation and Regulations Across the US

On Wednesday, February 22, 2023, the Minnesota House of Representatives approved a bill that would legalize cannabis for adult use by removing marijuana from the state's criminal code and providing oversight for the cultivation, sale, and product labeling. The bill, Senate Bill 211, has been sent to Senate committees for further vetting.[0]

Another House committee approved a bill to legalize marijuana in the state on Tuesday. House Bill 360 legalizes the possession and use of cannabis by persons over the age of 21 by striking most references to cannabis in the state’s Controlled Drugs Act.

In light of these developments, regulators in Vermont are now investigating the ties between multi-state cannabis operator Curaleaf and Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich.[1] A report by Vice found that Abramovich invested $130 million and provided $194 million in loans to US cannabis firms between 2016 and 2018, with Curaleaf being the main beneficiary.[2]

Additionally, a recent study presented at The Pregnancy Meeting of the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine found that early pregnancy cannabis use is associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes.[3] This has prompted caution regarding cannabis operations in the United States.

In response to these findings, Washington State has proposed a bill, SB 5123, sponsored by Sen. Karen Keiser (D-Des Moines), that would only apply to pre-employment cannabis testing.[4] However, certain jobs are excluded from the bill, including those in the airline and aerospace industries and those requiring a federal background investigation or security clearance.[5]

The cannabis industry continues to evolve rapidly, with New York City becoming one of the first cities in the country to open a legal recreational marijuana dispensary.[6] As states and cities across the country move forward with their cannabis legislation, it is important to stay up to date on the latest developments. To stay informed, subscribe to Marijuana Moment’s daily dispatch and view all of our newsletters.[1]

0. “State Policy Weekly Update 2/22/2023 – NORML” norml.org, 23 Feb. 2023, https://norml.org/blog/2023/02/22/state-policy-weekly-update-2-22-2023/

1. “New Biden exec order touts cannabis actions (Newsletter: February …” www.marijuanamoment.net, 23 Feb. 2023, https://www.marijuanamoment.net/new-biden-exec-order-touts-cannabis-actions-newsletter-february-20-2023/

2. “Vermont Cannabis Regulators Investigating Curaleaf's Ties to …” www.ganjapreneur.com, 23 Feb. 2023, https://www.ganjapreneur.com/vermont-cannabis-regulators-investigating-curaleafs-ties-to-russian-oligarch/

3. “Early Pregnancy Cannabis Exposure Tied to Adverse Pregnancy …” www.channel3000.com, 23 Feb. 2023, https://www.channel3000.com/news/health/early-pregnancy-cannabis-exposure-tied-to-adverse-pregnancy-outcomes/article_529be2a0-82ae-5254-97a7-13cd85f74f2a.html

4. “State senate passes bill that would ban pre-employment cannabis …” mynorthwest.com, 23 Feb. 2023, https://mynorthwest.com/3838085/state-senate-bill-ban-pre-employment-cannabis-tests/

5. “WA Senate passes bill to bar hiring discrimination for cannabis use …” www.seattletimes.com, 23 Feb. 2023, https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/wa-senate-passes-bill-to-bar-hiring-discrimination-for-cannabis-use/

6. “Cannabis News | Cannabis Blog | Herban Creative” herbancreativenj.com, 23 Feb. 2023, https://herbancreativenj.com/cannabis-news