Stay up to date with the latest legalization and cannabis news with the C.B. Advisors. Every week, we will release a snippet of what’s happening with each state in the cannabis industry. Did you miss last week? No worries – click here for last week’s cannabis news.
South Carolina: A bill prefiled in the South Carolina Senate would legalize recreational marijuana despite ongoing federal cannabis prohibition on the same.
Sen. Mia S. McLeod (D) prefiled Senate Bill 211 (S211) on Nov. 30 The bill would create a program to license and regulate the possession, cultivation and distribution of marijuana for personal use. Under current law, doctors in South Carolina can prescribe CBD oil no more than .9% THC for patients suffering from certain forms of epilepsy.
SB211 will be officially introduced when the South Carolina legislative session begins on Jan. 10. The bill will be referred to the Committee on Medical Affairs where it must receive a hearing and pass by a majority vote before moving forward in the legislative process.
Connecticut: The Department of Consumer Protection has opened the process for selected applicants to proceed with the next steps in the license application review process for all remaining licenses selected through the lottery.
All license types available through the lottery process have been selected. Information about the next lottery will be announced by the Department of Consumer Protection next year.
Illinois: The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) has announced it will begin accepting applications for 55 additional conditional cannabis dispensary licenses on Monday, Jan. 30, 2023.
Applicants must register as a business and provide basic information such as the name of their organization, a list of principal officers, contact information and a $250 fee. During the license lottery process, principal officers cannot be included on more than one lottery entry and applicants cannot have more than one lottery entry across all 17 regions.
While the rules for the lottery process provide flexibility on timing, IDFPR anticipates accepting applications for two weeks, through Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2023. IDFPR will then publish a list of lottery participants by Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2023.
New Jersey: Now, startups can procure some capital after New Jersey announced a $10 million program called the Cannabis Equity Grant.
The New Jersey Economic Development Authority says awardees can use the money for early-stage expenses and technical training. Out of the $10 million allotted to the program, $6 million will go to social equity applicants — people with prior cannabis convictions and those who live in economically disadvantaged areas as defined by the state.
New Mexico: State regulators have expended the pool of patients eligible to access medical cannabis products to include those with anxiety disorders. Members of the New Mexico Medical Cannabis Advisory Board approved the policy expansion, which takes effect on January 1, 2023.
A pair of physicians petitioned regulators to expand the scope of the program, opining that alternatives to conventional medications are needed to address the needs of those with treatment-resistant anxiety disorders.
New York: The delay is over! New York’s legal adult-use market will officially launch next week with the opening of the state’s first licensed dispensary.
Located in a downtown Manhattan neighborhood commonly known as the East Village, the dispensary will be run by Housing Works, a nonprofit that supports formerly incarcerated New Yorkers, the homeless and people living with HIV/AIDS. Retail sales will commence on December 29, 2022. So far, the New York State Cannabis Control Board has approved 36 adult-use retail dispensary licenses, which include 28 for qualifying businesses and eight for nonprofits.
Washington: A new bill prefiled in Washington State this week represents the latest effort to expand U.S. cannabis markets across state lines. With similar laws already on the books in Oregon and California, passage would set the stage for marijuana products to travel legally up and down the West Coast and beyond.
Even if the interstate cannabis commerce bill becomes law in the coming session, however, actual cross-border marijuana deals couldn’t commence without approval from the federal government.
Senate Bill 5069, prefiled Monday by a bipartisan group of four state senators led by Sens. Ann Rivers (R) and Karen Keiser (D), would give Washington’s governor the authority to enter into agreements with other states to allow business between state-licensed cannabis companies. Any products delivered from out-of-state businesses would still need to be tested in accordance with Washington regulations and comply with state packaging and labeling rules.