Cannabis Regulatory Update: Texas, Connecticut, Illinois, Nevada, New Hampshire, And Tennessee

Texas House Sends Psychedelics Research To Governor’s Desk 

The Texas House approved a budget amendment to the psychedelics research bill advancing it to the Governor’s desk. 

The bill, HB 1802, requires the Department of State Health Services and Texas Medical Board to research the medical benefits and efficacy of psilocybin, MDMA, and ketamine when treating various mental health disorders and other ailments. The study will be conducted in partnership with Baylor College of Medicine and will focus on veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Some of the other disorders include chronic pain, anxiety, depression, bipolar disorders, PTSD and migraines. Under the bill, the Health Department is expected to submit the results of the research with recommendations for further legislative actions on December 1, 2022.

  • Connecticut Cannabis Legalization Bill Backed By The Governor Passes Another Committee 

The Connecticut cannabis legalization measure supported by Gov. Ned Lamont passed another committee, possibly opening the doors for a floor vote in the coming week, reported Marijuana Moment.

The bill was approved in a 29-18 vote by the Appropriations Committee, following the approval of the Judiciary Committee in May. 

In addition to this bill, backed by Lamont, there is also another legalization proposal sponsored by Rep. Robyn Porter. The Porter-backed bill is praised by supporters for its social equity clauses. 

Legislative leaders still hope to come up with a combined bill that would be supported by both the governor and lawmakers.  

“House Majority Leader Jason Rojas (D) said on Tuesday that the plan was to reach an agreement by the week’s end, with the expectation of ‘acting on it sometime next week’ in the Senate.”

Earlier this month, Lamont noted that if a legalization measure doesn’t get enacted this year it could reach the voters, reported the outlet. 

  • Illinois Senate Advances Cannabis Equity Licensing Bill To Governor’s Desk 

After the Illinois House passed the cannabis equity bill last month, the Illinois Senate also approved it Friday sending it to the Governor’s desk, reported Marijuana Moment

The bill aims to advance the 2019 Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act regarding a license lottery that had been delayed by the pandemic, controversy, and legal disputes for more than a year. Changes to the bill, sponsored by Chicago Rep. La Shawn Ford (D) would set up two new cannabis dispensary lotteries awarding 55 licenses each as compared to the initial lottery, which was set to award 75 in total. 

The original lottery had many difficulties, aside from delays with only 21 out of more than 900 applicants obtaining an ideal score to qualify for the lottery. 

After passing the Senate, Gov. JB Pritzker said he is eager to sign the bill “so that we can begin the next phase creating a cannabis industry that reflects the diversity of all of our people.”

  • Nevada Senate Approves Measure To Legalize Cannabis Consumption Lounges

The Nevada Senate approved the cannabis consumption lounges legalization bill in a 17-3 vote Monday, sending it to the governor’s desk, reported Marijuana Moment.

The bill, sponsored by Assemblyman Steve Yeager (D) would set up two new licensing categories for cannabis businesses – 1) ”retail cannabis consumption lounges and 2) “independent cannabis consumption lounges.” 

Considering that Gov. Steve Sisolak (D) supports the state’s cannabis industry, advocates are expecting him to sign the measure. Last year, Sisolak pardoned more than 15,000 people with records for low-level cannabis possessions.

  • Insomnia And Autism To Be Legally Treated With Medical Cannabis In New Hampshire 

New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu (R) placed his signature on a bill that would broaden the list of qualifying conditions for the state’s medical cannabis program, reported Merry Jane.

The bill will become law on July 21st, enabling doctors to recommend medical cannabis to adults suffering from insomnia or autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Furthermore, physicians will be able to recommend medical cannabis to minors with ASD in the event that conventional medications can be proven to be ineffective. 

  • Tennessee Governor Signs Medical Cannabis Expansion Bill, Turns It Into Law 

Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee signed a narrow medical cannabis expansion bill, SB 118, into law, reports NORML. The new law takes effect immediately.

Under this law, patients that qualify for medical cannabis products could legally use products with no more than 0.9% THC. In-state production does not fall under this law. 

Originally the measure included only intractable epilepsy as a qualifying medical condition, but with this new measure, the following conditions are being added: Alzheimer’s disease; ALS; end-stage cancer or when conventional treatment causes such responses as nausea, vomiting, and pain; IBS including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis; epilepsy or seizures; multiple sclerosis; Parkinson’s disease; HIV or AIDS and sickle cell disease. 

Furthermore, the new law would set up a commission to analyze federal and state medical cannabis laws in order to advise lawmakers on future medical cannabis legislation actions in the state once the cannabis is rescheduled or removed from its Schedule I status of the Controlled Substances Act. 

The report from the commission is expected to be submitted by January 2022. 

Photo by Robert Nelson on Unsplash


Posted In: Bill LeeChris SununuConnecticut Cannabis Legalization BillIllinois Senate Cannabis Licensing BillJason RojasJB PritzkerMarijuana MomentMerry JaneNed LamontNevada Cannabis Consumption LoungesNew Hampshire Medical CannabisNORMLRobyn PorterSteve YeagerTennessee Medical CannabisTexas House Psychedelics Research BillCannabisNewsMarkets

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