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.
Georgia: A Georgia board overseeing the state’s efforts to get patients access to medical marijuana has approved production licenses for two companies, a step to getting patients access to medication after a seven-year wait.
The Georgia Access to Medical Cannabis Commission on Wednesday unanimously approved licenses for Botanical Sciences and Trulieve Georgia, reports The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Specifically they’ll be able to sell medical marijuana oil that contains no more than 5% of the THC compound that is found in marijuana and that makes users high.
Kentucky: Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear indicated he will take executive action to authorize medical cannabis in the state. Beshear plans to issue the order because legislation to legalize medical marijuana stalled in the Senate in March after it cleared the Kentucky House.
Texas: A cannabis dispensary on wheels will roll through Texas this October with the goal of teaching Texans about medical marijuana laws.
The ‘CannaBus’, a 36-foot bus operated by the Austin-based company goodblend, will have a private consultation room, products on display and an outdoor education exhibition. Goodblend, one of just three licensed medical marijuana dispensaries in the state, says they hope “Ride For Your Rights” Tour can show Texans the process to get a medical marijuana prescription.
Wisconsin: The governor of Wisconsin is asking lawmakers to give the people the right to put citizen initiatives on the ballot—and advocates are hopeful that the move could open the door to finally letting voters decide on marijuana legalization.
Gov. Tony Evers (D) signed an executive order last week to convene a special legislative session starting on October 4 for the purpose of passing a joint resolution that would start the process of amending the state Constitution to allow citizen initiatives and legislature-passed referendums on the ballot.’
Connecticut: Connecticut regulators selected six applicants for retail permits and two for micro-cultivation permits from a general lottery to advance to the next phase of the state’s adult-use marijuana business licensing process. The approved applicants and their backers must submit more information for required background checks and the provisional license application, which the DCP indicated will take several weeks to process.
After the review is complete, qualifying applicants are required to pay corresponding fees and move to the next the next phase of licensing, including establishing business operations.
Nevada: Cannabis consumption lounges are coming to the city of Las Vegas. In a 5-1 vote, the City Council on Wednesday denied Councilwoman Victoria Seaman’s motion to opt out of allowing such businesses. Councilman Stavros Anthony, who wasn’t at the meeting, did not vote.
By not responding to a letter from the Nevada Cannabis Compliance Board earlier this month, the city automatically opted in to the licensing process, but still had an opportunity Wednesday to change course.
Rhode Island: Beginning Dec. 1, dispensary owners in Rhode Island will be able to legally sell marijuana for recreational use, following the national trend of legalization in states across the country.
Before Gov. Dan McKee signed legislation in May legalizing recreational marijuana sales, Rhode Island allowed sales of medical marijuana. Erica Ferelli, principal economic and policy analyst for Rhode Island’s Office of Cannabis Regulation, said that most of the current regulations around marijuana sales will remain in place, but currently licensed dispensaries will be allowed to sell recreationally.
Vermont: A late start for both outdoor and indoor growers, compounded by supply chain and testing problems, will mean a limited supply of recreational cannabis available in retail stores when they start opening for business on Oct. 1, according to growers, regulators and retailers.
“We’re looking at probably 20, maybe 30 outdoor licensees with product this year,” said Geoffrey Pizzutillo, executive director of the Vermont Growers Association. “That’s nothing.”
In retrospect, James Pepper, chair of the Cannabis Control Board, said the board should have started to issue outdoor growing licenses in February, allowing growers to plant their seedlings in seedling pots ahead of the growing season.
Washington: Today, Mayor Bruce Harrell signed three bills into law to address equity in the cannabis industry by helping foster a more diverse industry and supporting cannabis store workers.
Mayor Harrell was joined by Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda, who helped develop the legislation and sponsored the bills in council. The bills were also developed in partnership with cannabis industry stakeholders and employees.
- CB 120391 – Expresses the City of Seattle’s intent to: engage in cannabis equity, expungement of cannabis convictions, equity work and funding, and develop a needs assessment for needs within the workforce and cannabis industry
- CB 120392 – Advances equity in cannabis licensing and expands licensed activities
- CB 120393 – Requires employers to take action to develop job retention, security, and stability within the cannabis industry
While cannabis licenses are regulated and distributed at the state level, the new legislation allows the City to take tangible steps to improve fairness and opportunity in the industry both now and as additional licenses are awarded. As the state begins to allocate social equity cannabis licenses across Washington, this legislation would ensure Seattle is situated to best enhance local equity efforts.
Alabama: Hundreds of people in Alabama are interested in going into the medical cannabis business. As of Thursday, 270 have requested an application. The numbers are as followed, provided by the Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission:
State Testing Laboratory: 2
Secure Transporter: 42
Integrated Facility: 54
Following the evaluation of applications, the Commission, per the statute, may award up to twelve cultivator licenses, four processor licenses, four dispensary licenses, five integrated facility licenses and an unspecified number of secure transport and state testing laboratory licenses.
The Commission is slated to vote on the award of licenses at its meeting on June 12, 2023.
Arkansas: Recreational marijuana use will be on Arkansas’ November election ballot. The Arkansas Supreme Court on Thursday (Sept. 22) overturned a State Board of Election Commissioners (SBEC) decision to deny certification of the constitutional amendment legalizing marijuana use for adults.
The SBEC on Aug. 3 denied certification of a proposed constitutional amendment – Issue 4 – to legalize recreational marijuana for adults over the age of 21. The panel cited concerns regarding sufficient background checks for dispensary owners and limits on THC, tetrahydrocannabinol, a chemical found in marijuana. The SBEC review is part of a new process for ballot petitions.
In a 5-2 opinion, the Arkansas Supreme Court rejected the panel’s concerns about ballot sufficiency.
Oklahoma: A proposed state question on whether to legalize the recreational use of marijuana in Oklahoma won’t appear on the November ballot, the state Supreme Court ruled Wednesday, dealing a blow to Democrats who hoped the question would energize liberal voters.
The high court rejected a request by supporters of State Question 820 to require the State Election Board to print the question on the general election ballot.