State of the Union is a monthly series curated by regional regulatory teams at Fyllo that recaps important cannabis regulatory activity across the U.S. This edition covers activity in March 2021 across California, Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma and Virginia.
The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) has partnered with the Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC) to provide $15 million in grant funding to the Cannabis Equity Grants Program for Local Jurisdictions. This builds upon the $40 million in cannabis equity funding previously awarded by the state to help those caught in the sightlines of the war on drugs.
National City, CA is planning to allow commercial cannabis businesses (including consumption lounges) to operate. They might be the first city in the county to have cannabis consumption lounges. In early April, the City Council introduced the ordinance and could adopt the ordinance into law in May. If approved by the City Council, National City’s cannabis ordinance would allow up to six businesses to open up shop in the city, including lounges where people 21 and older can buy, smoke, eat, or even drink cannabis.
Colorado’s Department of Public Health and Environment issued regulations for Hemp / CBD end products in wholesale food. The regulations add packaging and labeling, testing, and other production requirements.
Gov. Jared Polis (D) signed a measure establishing a program within the state Office of Economic Development and International Trade intended to support cannabis businesses owned by people who qualify as social equity licensees. This is primarily for those most impacted by the war on drugs and intended to support minority cannabis entrepreneurs.
Detroit faces legal action over licensing rules prioritizing Detroit Legacy applicants, who are longtime residents of the City. An aspiring cannabis business owner who claims she has lived in or around Detroit most of her life is suing the city for allegedly discriminating against cannabis business license applicants who do not meet the definition of who qualifies as a resident.
Minnesota lawmakers are considering a major change to the state’s medical cannabis program to allow patients to smoke the flower itself. Enacted in 2014, the current law is one of the nation’s most restrictive and only allows for the delivery of medical cannabis in liquid form. The Senate Health and Human Services Finance and Policy Committee approved this new amendment for the medical program and sent it to the floor for discussion.
A bill to legalize cannabis in Minnesota cleared a fourth House committee, bringing it another step closer to a floor vote in the chamber. It would allow adult-use businesses and allow adults 21 and older to purchase and possess up to 1.5 ounces and cultivate up to eight plants at home.
The Las Vegas City Council voted 6-0 to rescind a citywide restriction on drive-thru retail cannabis operations, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported. Cannabis business advocates and other industry stakeholders welcomed the move to promote safety and commerce during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, Las Vegas cannabis retailers that want to add drive-thru operations will have to follow regulations under which all other drive-thru facilities in the city currently operate, regardless of the business.
The New Mexico legislature approved an adult-use bill in a special session, legalizing recreational cannabis. The bill was signed into law by the Governor and will allow for adult-use cannabis businesses.
New York legalized cannabis via the legislative process, allowing adult use of cannabis in the state. Localities have until the end of this year to opt out of retail sales and consumption establishments. However, cultivation and processing facilities cannot be banned by local jurisdictions. Read more in the latest installment of State Spotlight: New York.
Oklahoma is working to make it a bit more challenging for businesses to enter the medical cannabis industry. The Oklahoma House of Representatives passed a bill to put a temporary license cap on medical cannabis businesses (HB 227) with a 69-21 vote. The measure would “direct the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority (OMMA) to cap the number of dispensary, processor and grower licenses beginning Sept. 1, 2021.” This would include the total number of active licenses and pending applications submitted before that date.
Gov. Ralph Northam had asked the Virginia General Assembly to speed up the legalization of marijuana in the state. This push would make it lawful for an adult to possess up to one ounce on July 1, 2021, instead of early 2024. Since then, the state has accepted the changes and legalized recreational adult use.
To receive more important cannabis regulatory activity recaps on a weekly basis, subscribe to Fyllo’s weekly Cannabrief newsletter. To learn how Fyllo can help you keep pace with important cannabis regulatory activity in real-time, schedule a demo today.