Legislative & Licensing Update: August 3, 2022

Adult-Use License Wins in Illinois. Arkansas Confirms Ballot Vote.

Congrats to adult-use conditional license winners in Illinois — including several Canna Advisors clients who won licenses in this round.

Cannabis application clocks are ticking in Alabama, with anticipated licensing updates in New York and Mississippi. Adult-use confirmed for the November 2002 ballot in Arkansas. Plus multiple ballot watches for cannabis legalization at the state and local levels.

Active Application States

We’re anticipating some more news and updates from New York’s Cannabis Control Board in the coming days.

The Detroit, Michigan City Council voted to allow officials to deny medical cannabis licenses to people who have operated illegal marijuana businesses. However, a Michigan Judge said Detroit must halt these plans to accept applications for certain pot licenses. Detroit, along with ten other municipalities in the state, have or will soon have open application periods with Detroit’s open now until August 31. 


Ohio regulators published proposed medical cannabis rules changes specifically related to ownership and trade name. 


Illinois regulators approved another round of conditional recreational marijuana dispensary licenses, greatly expanding the state’s Social Equity market in the process. We also want to congratulate our clients who won licenses during this round.  


The next round of Mississippi licenses are rumored to be awarded within the next couple of weeks. 


In Alabama, the application request period opens in less than one month. 


Ballot Watch

Several Rhode Island municipalities are set to vote on local November ballot measures on whether to allow marijuana businesses to operate. 


Arkansas officials approved signatures for a recreational marijuana initiative with activities reaching the verified 90,000 signature threshold necessary to appear on the November ballot. The proposal’s name and ballot title must still be approved by the Board of Election Commissioners. Now that it is officially on the ballot, individuals are encouraged to register to vote and get others to vote in the state. Individuals in the state can register to vote on a paper Voter Registration Application which can be printed at the Secretary of State’s website.  


Missouri has indicated that the unofficial signature count for a legalization measure is just shy of the signatures necessary to qualify for the November ballot. Activists are hoping to gather more signatures and correct any errors before the verification deadline of August 9th. This comes as a new poll found that Missouri voters support legalizing marijuana, 62%-26%.


The Killeen, Harker Heights Denton, and San Marcos, Texas City Councils opted to place marijuana decriminalization initiatives on their respective local November ballots rather than immediately enact the reforms. 


States to Watch

A new poll in Hawaii finds that voters overwhelmingly support legalizing cannabis with 70% of voters approving legalization. Hawaii is now the only state along the western seaboard that hasn’t legalized and regulated cannabis for adults. While the Hawaii Senate passed a legalization bill in 2021, it stalled in the House and was never called for a hearing. Every state office is on the ballot in 2022, giving voters an opportunity to elect a new, more responsive legislature


General News 

Maryland regulators cut fees to renew medical cannabis patient ID cards and made them valid for six years instead of three


New Louisiana cannabis laws went into effect at the start of this month. These laws include police not being allowed to use the odor of cannabis as probable cause to search a person’s home without a warrant and additional employment protections for state workers who use medical cannabis.


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