Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.
Our top story this week is a bill that would allow cannabis companies to receive federal stimulus money, and the support it has attracted. Ballot issues continue in Florida and Montana. The FDA is cracking down on CBD companies making wild claims about their products. We’ll give you the latest from Massachusetts, and Tommy Chong is doing his part to help out those in need.
As we reported last week, Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) introduced the Emergency Cannabis Small Business Health and Safety Act (H.R. 6602) in the House of Representatives. So far, the bill has been referred to the Committee on Small Business, but no other action has been taken. Rep. Perlmutter has indicated that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi supports the bill, which currently has 16 co-sponsors.
Florida‘s ballot initiative to make adult-use cannabis legal is now before the state’s Supreme Court. A new law makes it more difficult for initiatives to appear on the ballot, and supporters of legal marijuana are arguing that it should not be applied retroactively to their initiative.
Things look brighter in New Jersey, where a new poll indicates that voters are likely to approve adult-use cannabis in November. 61% of voters surveyed in a Monmouth University poll said they supported legalization.
As promised last week, we have an update on the Montana situation. Advocates for a ballot initiative allowing recreational marijuana pleaded their case that electronic signatures should count in establishing support for their cause. State officials argued that there is not enough evidence that the signature gathering could be done securely.
What’s the latest from the Bay State? Recreational pot shops will be closed until May 18, under a new order from Governor Charles Baker. One solution for shuttered stores is to apply for a medical marijuana license. Applications for medical marijuana cards have risen quite sharply since the shutdown.
The Food and Drug Administration issued official warnings to several CBD companies over their claims that the product can cure opioid addiction or replace opioids. The agency also sent a letter to a UK company about claims that CBD can treat the coronavirus.
Among those stepping up in this time of crisis, add Tommy Chong‘s name to the list. The 81-year-old stoner icon is giving away medical marijuana to those in need.
Stay safe and be well everyone – we’ll see you next week!