Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.
This week, we start off in Nevada, where a judge determined that marijuana should no longer appear on the state’s Schedule I, and where a lot of people would like to open cannabis lounges. Then we travel to Mississippi, where medical marijuana sales will begin in January 2023. In federal news, we see OSHA putting the cannabis industry on notice after the death of a worker. And finally, Chuck Schumer is not working to allow marijuana on Amtrak.
A Nevada district court judge ordered the Nevada State Board of Pharmacy to remove cannabis from its Schedule I. The ruling stated that the board has no authority to regulate cannabis and thus it must be de-scheduled. The fact that marijuana is illegal at the federal level is not relevant, said the executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada, a party to the suit.
“The notion that a state agency is able to engage in unlawful actions because it’s happening at the federal government – it’s just not the way it works.”
In other Nevada news, the state’s Cannabis Compliance Board released figures showing over 100 applicants for 40 consumption lounge licenses. The process of awarding the licenses involves different types of establishments and different types of applicants, but state officials anticipate that lounges will open in early 2023.
Speaking of 2023, that’s when sales of medical cannabis will begin in Mississippi. The state issued licenses to cultivators, dispensaries, processors and various other entitles involved in the process of bringing marijuana to market. To start, all these people will be serving only 406 patients, but the industry is expected to grow significantly in a few years.
Following the death of a cannabis industry worker in Massachusetts (see our report here), the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a hazard alert letter to the facility, citing “occupational quantities of whole and ground cannabis.” Marijuana may be illegal on the federal level, but OSHA holds those in the industry to federal safety standards.
If you have a mental list of clearly satirical stories that people somehow believe are true, we have another item to add to your file. The Buffalo Chronicle (ironically) reported that Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) is working on a bill to allow the sale and use of cannabis on Amtrak’s “slow-moving routes.” This is NOT, repeat NOT, true.
Stay safe and be well everyone – we’ll see you next week!