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Chronicle AM: MD Task Force Studying Legalization, ID MedMJ Init Underway, More... (6/26/19)

Maryland legislators begin studying the path to marijuana legalization, New York legalization advocates look to next year, an Idaho medical marijuana initiative campaign gets underway, and more.

Dispensaries like this one could be coming to Idaho if a new initiative campaign is successful. (Creative Commons)
Marijuana Policy

Maryland Legislative Task Force Begins Work on Marijuana Legalization. A General Assembly task force began its work on studying possible marijuana legalization on Tuesday. The body will form subcommittees to study the impact on criminal justice and health, while also considering best approaches to taxation, licensing, and ensuring minority participation. The task force should finish its work by the end of the year, but what members will recommend remains to be seen.

New York Marijuana Advocates Now Aiming to Legalize It Next Year. Marijuana legalization advocates say they plan to spend the next six months lobbying lawmakers to pass a marijuana legalization bill next year. This after Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) and legislative leaders failed to get it done this year, passing a decriminalization bill as a last-minute sop. Kassandra Frederique of the Drug Policy Alliance pointed the finger at Assembly and Senate leaders, but particularly Gov. Cuomo.

Medical Marijuana

Delaware Sees Two Last-Minute Medical Marijuana Bills. With five days left in the legislative session, two last-minute medical marijuana bills await consideration. SB 170 would allow patients with anxiety to treat their conditions with CBD-rich products, while HB 243, would allow certain approved users to grow a limited amount of their own medical marijuana. The assigned committee has not yet issued a report for this bill, keeping it from a full vote in the house.

Idaho Medical Marijuana Initiative Campaign Gets Underway. The Idaho Cannabis Coalition announced Tuesday that it delivered signatures to the secretary of state's office to start the process for getting a medical marijuana initiative on the ballot in 2020. The initiative seeks to provide Idahoans with "safe access to whole plant cannabis and other medical cannabis products through a system of secure dispensaries tightly regulated by the state." Patients with demonstrated physical or financial hardship would qualify to grow their own medicine.

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