Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

Welcome also to a new year of Week in Weed; after the many cannabis-related events of 2018, one can only imagine what will be occupying our attention in 2019…

This week, saw the release of a disappointing report on the possibility of cannabis banks in California.  Not feasible, as they would face insurmountable hurdles.  Read the full report for yourself here.

Meanwhile, in Florida, the procedure for licensing medical marijuana businesses has come under question.  In addition to the constitutional issues, the dispute between the Department of Health and a circuit court judge centers around how many licenses can be issued and whether vertical integration should be required.  Stay tuned for more on this issue, as the case has been appealed.

And in Massachusetts, a state Senator has plans to introduce legislation that would prevent employers from firing workers for off-duty cannabis use.  We’ll be keeping our eyes on this as well.

After Michigan legalized marijuana, we speculated that Illinois or Wisconsin might be next.  A state that seems unlikely to follow their neighbor’s lead is Indiana, where the governor is not a fan.

One big state that hasn’t made a move on cannabis is Texas.  Could that change in the new year?  Only time will tell.

In international news, St. Vincent and the Grenadines has decriminalized marijuana.  And what about Ireland?  They’ve made noises about legalizing medical marijuana before; could 2019 be the year?

We’ve got a lot to look forward to in 2019 – see you next Friday!

Welcome to our end of the year wrap-up post for The Week in Weed; it’s hard to believe another year has come and (almost) gone, but the calendar doesn’t lie.  In what we are calling an homage to Dave Barry and his always hilarious Year in Review, we’ll organize these stories by month.

Without further ado, here’s a look at the stories that grabbed our attention in 2018. Continue Reading The Week, No Make that the Year, in Weed: 2018

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

The big news this week, at least on the federal level, is that hemp legalization appears to be coming sooner rather than later.  Nothing like having an important Senator on your side to smooth the way.

In state news, marijuana stores in Massachusetts opened last week (after WIW went to press) with many customers eager to purchase their wares.  Remember, Massachusetts voters opted to legalize cannabis in 2016.  Voters in Michigan may want to keep that timeframe for stores to open in mind, as legalization takes effect there December 6.  Possession and home cultivation will be legal next week, but it will probably be a while before shops open.

Remember when it seemed as if New Jersey was the last place you thought would legalize cannabis?  Times have changed!  Granted, this newest proposal may not go anywhere, but these bills are no longer dead on arrival.

And add North Carolina to the list of states considering legalization.  Theirs is an interesting idea, that I’ve not seen before, where each county would be able to decide to legalize or not.  Like wet and dry counties, but with cannabis rather than alcohol.

And in our continuing series on politicians who have changed their mind on marijuana, Joe Kennedy III has now joined this club.

In international news,  South Korea has legalized medical marijuana, the first country in East Asia to do so.

And finally, for our Chicagoland readers, please join us at our Chicago Willis Tower office on Thursday, December 6th, for breakfast along with a Seyfarth Legal Forum and Continuing Legal Education (CLE): 2018 Highlights and a Look Ahead to 2019.  Among the topics under discussion is cannabis in Illinois.

While there is no cost to attend, registration is required and space is limited.  If you have any questions, please contact Fiona Carlon at fcarlon@seyfarth.com and reference this event.

See you next week!

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

You may recall that the Food and Drug Administration is asking for comments on rescheduling cannabis.  Many times, agency requests for comments are met with a deafening silence.  This is not one of those times.

It’s not every day that the federal government requests public input on international marijuana laws, but that’s exactly what the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) did last week. And the comments are pouring in.

In Massachusetts, there’s finally been some movement towards setting up recreational sales.

Massachusetts regulators on Thursday issued final licenses to two marijuana-testing laboratories, paving the way for the launch of the Bay State’s much-delayed recreational cannabis program.

And in Seattle, the city is vacating convictions for marijuana possession, citing concerns about disparate impact.

Critics of drug-possession prosecutions often argue that they unfairly target people of color. Seattle, where recreational use of marijuana was legalized in 2012, is doing something about it.

Finally, the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in Canada.

A 9-year-old Canadian girl quickly sold out of the cookies she was selling for the Girl Guides by setting up shop outside a marijuana store.

On March 9, 2018, the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission (“CCC”) filed its much anticipated recreational marijuana Regulations with the Massachusetts Secretary of State.  According to the CCC, the Regulations are on track to be published in the Massachusetts Register on March 23, 2018.  The Regulations will become effective upon publication.  While the Regulations are comprehensive in many ways, for most employers the Regulations are most notable for what they lack, namely guidance regarding employer-employee rights and responsibilities. Continue Reading Massachusetts Recreational Pot Regulations Offer Little Guidance To Employers

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

Massachusetts has promulgated final rules for cannabis regulation.  Look for TBT’s analysis of those new regulations shortly.  Until then, here’s some news coverage:

The Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission has finalized the regulations for the state’s voter-approved recreational cannabis industry, four months before the program is set to go live, according to a WBUR report.

Massachusetts got closer Tuesday to making recreational marijuana sales in the state a reality this summer after the approval of final regulations for MJ companies.

Massachusetts just got a whole lot closer to welcoming its first-ever recreational marijuana shops, and it looks like they’ll be in business on schedule at the beginning of July.

Continue Reading The Week in Weed: March 9, 2018

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

New Gallup Poll Finds Record Support for Marijuana Legalization.

Medical marijuana companies in Massachusetts could see a hike in business once regulators implement several improvements to the state’s MMJ program.

A St. Louis bill allowing the use and growth of marijuana aims to reduce disproportionate penalties for existing violations and free up time and resources for police.

Something we missed that everyone needs to know?  Give us a shout in the comments.

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

Senior Canadian police officials tell MPs studying the government’s marijuana legalization legislation that police won’t be ready to enforce new laws by next summer and they ask the government for more time.

Future Massachusetts marijuana meetings to be held across state; one of the first orders of business is giving chair Steven Hoffman an additional job title.

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee wants to establish national marijuana testing protocols, according to a new report. However, it’s not exactly a pro-cannabis industry move.

And because it’s never too early to think about your next vacation:

Nipton is one of a growing list of communities in the Mojave Desert and throughout California that are turning to cannabis to save them.

Something we missed that everyone needs to know?  Give us a shout in the comments.

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.

When career business executive Steve Hoffman was appointed the state’s marijuana czar last week, pot proponents reacted with immediate skepticism. But Hoffman, it turns out, isn’t quite the caricature of a corporate stiff they imagined.

Texas has given the green light to one of three planned CBD producers in the state, but the program remains severely constricted.

The GOP-led House Rules Committee rejected a number of marijuana-related amendments from a federal appropriations bill, most notably Rohrabacher-Blumenauer.

And those traveling to Nevada for some cannabis tourism will have to wait until they’ve left the airport.

Recreational marijuana may be legal in Nevada, but add McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas to the list of places including casinos where pot is still banned.

Something we missed that everyone needs to know?  Give us a shout in the comments.

On July 17, 2017, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”), the highest state court in Massachusetts, held that an employer could be liable for disability discrimination by declining employment based on an individual’s off-duty medical marijuana use. This is a landmark decision, which has major implications for employers with drug testing programs and drug-free workplace policies. Continue Reading Is Medical Marijuana A Reasonable Accommodation? Mass. Court Says … Possibly