Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana.
Most of the news this week concerns Congressional action. SAFE Banking made it into the NDAA, but will it stay there? We heard discussion of bills to decriminalize cannabis and release prisoners. On the state level, New York has new retail application rules. And finally, we’d like to do some horn-tooting.
Stop me if you’ve heard this before. The SAFE Banking Act passed the House of Representatives yet again. This time, it was as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act. Now, the House version of the NDAA must be reconciled with the Senate version. Could the seventh time be the charm?
Speaking of the Senate, lo and behold, the long-awaited Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act finally made its appearance. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), along with Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) have been promising this legislation for more than a year, and this week, they delivered. Further bulletins as events warrant.
As we reported last week, some Senators are unhappy over the Biden administration’s lack of action on cannabis. The President may have gotten their message. He told reporters this week that he’s working on a crime bill now, and that no one should be in prison for using marijuana. This is probably another “wait and see” situation.
Turning our attention to the state level, we see that New York’s cannabis regulators are gearing up for the state’s legal market. They finalized rules for retail licenses and accepted more applications for cultivation permits. The rules provide those negatively impacted by the War on Drugs the first shot at setting up shop, as part of the state’s social equity program.
We got a very gratifying bit of news this week, which we will share with our readers. Benzinga recently released its list of the 5 Best Cannabis Law Firms, and, you guessed it, Seyfarth made the list.
Stay safe and be well everyone – we’ll see you next week!