Legislative and Licensing Update: October 14, 2021

All eyes continue to be on New Jersey and New York for movement on new cannabis programs there. Plus, rumblings of new programs for the 2022 election cycle.


New Jersey regulators announced that physician assistants and nurse practitioners can now issue medical cannabis recommendations. Separately, they will announce winners of medical cannabis cultivation and vertically-integrated licenses on Friday, October 15th, with the public portion of the meeting starting around 1:00 Eastern Standard Time.


New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) cannot say when marijuana sales may begin. Separately, the Assembly majority leader Crystal Stokes said she is hopeful that people will be able to apply for recreational cannabis business licenses by this upcoming March. However, it is important to remember this is subject to change and this is another example of the fluidity of cannabis regulation.


Illinois regulators filed emergency action changes to cannabis rules whereby the responsible vendor program was removed which is detailed in section 1291 of the Illinois Register’s Rules of Governmental Agencies. Illinois regulators are also being sued by marijuana business license applicants who allege there was collusion to approve politically connected operations which may provide an opportunity to applicants who did not get licenses due to the alleged corruption.


In Michigan, As of October 11th, it became illegal to sell delta-8 THC without proper marijuana business licensing.


Mississippi’s lieutenant governor said lawmakers sent Governor Tate Reeves (R) a revised draft of a medical cannabis bill that includes changes he requested. A representative said he thinks a special session to pass the measure could be called “very soon.”


Montana regulators adopted rules on marijuana cultivation canopy tier size increases and limitations on advertising.


Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts (R) said medical cannabis should not be legalized unless approved by the Food and Drug Administration.


Oklahoma activists filed two initiatives they hope to qualify for the 2022 ballot: One to legalize adult-use marijuana and another to strengthen the existing medical cannabis program.


Pennsylvania Senator Mike Regan spoke about his forthcoming marijuana legalization bill, which he said will pass through the Law and Justice Committee he chairs “at some point.”


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