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Cannabis Legalization Check-In: What’s New

Cannabis Legalization Check-In: What’s New

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It’s hard to believe that 2019 is almost halfway complete. Time is flying, and if one thing is true, it’s this: the cannabis industry is budding.

It seems like there’s a major cannabis legalization update with each week that passes. With that legalization (and cultural acceptance) comes dollar signs: it’s predicted that the global legal cannabis market will be worth $63.5 billion by 2024. Whether or not you’ve dipped your toes into the cannabis market, it’s important to stay informed, which is why we’ve compiled a mid-year cannabis legalization check-in. Discover what’s new in cannabis legalization in the U.S. and beyond below.

Cannabis Legalization: Where the U.S. Stands

At the time this blog post was written, the medical use of cannabis is legal in 33 states, four out of five permanently inhabited U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia. Meanwhile, the recreational usage of cannabis is legal in 10 states (Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington). And interestingly, a 2018 Gallup poll found that two-thirds of Americans feel marijuana should be made legal.

The following states have bills to legalize (and for the most part, regulate) adult marijuana use:

  • Alabama
    • Bill(s): SB 98; would legalize less than two ounces of cannabis, but does not include a regulated system
  • Connecticut
    • Bill(s): HB 7371, SB 1085, HB 5595, HB 6863, SB 496, SB 690 SB 744; on March 25, HB 7371 passed out of the General Law Committee
  • Florida
    • Bill(s): S. 1298; proposes a constitutional amendment that would go to voters for adults to grow, possess, and use cannabis
  • Hawaii
    • Bill(s): HB 1515, HB 1581, HB 708, SB 606, SB 686, SB 702; these bills did not advance out of committee before a deadline
  • Illinois
    • Bill(s): SB 7, HB 902, HB 2477
  • Indiana
    • Bill(s): SB 213; did not advance out of committee before a deadline
  • Iowa
    • Bill(s): SF 469; did not advance before a legislative deadline
  • Kentucky
    • Bill(s): SB 80; the legislature adjourned without voting on the bill
  • Louisiana
    • Bill(s): HB 509, HB 564, HB 462; HB 462 would create a constitutional amendment to allow cities to call elections to legalize and regulate adult use of cannabis
  • Maryland
    • Bill(s): SB 771 and SB 656; HB 632 proposes a constitutional amendment that would go to voters in 2020
  • Minnesota
    • Bill(s): SF 619 and HF 420; HF 265 and HF 465 propose a constitutional amendment that would go to voters in 2020; the Senate bills were voted down in committee in a 6-3 vote
  • Mississippi
    • Bill(s): SB 2349 died in committee
  • Missouri
    • Bill(s): HB 157, HB 551
  • Montana
    • Bill(s): HB 770
  • New Hampshire
    • Bill(s): HB 481, which the House voted 200-163 to pass on April 4, 2019, sending the bill to the Senate
  • New Jersey
    • Bill(s): S 830, A 1348, A 3819; the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and the Assembly Appropriations Committee voted on November 26, 2018 to advance S2703 and A4497; both bills carried over to 2019; the Senate Judiciary Committee reported a revised bill out on March 18, 2019
  • New Mexico
    • Bill(s): HR 356, SB 577; the House approved HR 356 in a 36-34 vote, then the bill died in the Senate Finance committee; the legislature has adjourned
  • New York
    • Bill(s): A. 1617, S. 1527, and S. 1509 and A. 2009, which are budget bills that include taxing and regulating cannabis for adult use
  • North Carolina
    • Bill(s): SB 58
  • Pennsylvania
    • Bill(s): HB 50
  • Rhode Island
    • Bill(s): H 5828 and H 5151; H 5151 is a budget bill that includes taxing and regulating cannabis for adult use
  • Texas
    • Bill(s): SB 460, SJR, 8, proposes a constitutional amendment that would go to voters in 2020
  • Virginia
    • Bill(s): HB 2371, HB 2373, both of which died in committee
  • West Virginia
    • Bill(s): SB 143, HB 2331, HB 2376, HB 3108; these bills did not advance before the legislature adjourned

Adult-use legalization bills are predicted in Delaware and Wisconsin, as well.

Where Other Countries Stand

Here is where some other countries stand in terms of legalization:

  • Argentina: CBD legalized/partially medically legalized/decriminalized
  • Australia: Medically legalized/partially decriminalized
  • Canada: Full federal legalization
  • Chile: Medically legalized
  • Colombia: Medically legalized/decriminalized
  • Croatia: Medically legalized
  • Czech Republic: Medically legalized
  • Germany: Medically legalized/decriminalized
  • India: Federally illegal, but legal in some states
  • Israel: Medically legalized
  • Italy: Medically legalized
  • Jamaica: Partially medically legalized/decriminalized
  • Macedonia: Medically legalized
  • Mexico: Medically legalized/decriminalized
  • Philippines: Medical cannabis legislation in progress
  • Poland: Partially medically legalized
  • Puerto Rico: Medically legalized
  • Turkey: Medically legalized
  • Uruguay: Legalized

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