Cannabis Regulatory Update: Delaware, Connecticut, Oklahoma, Kansas & Missouri

Cannabis Regulatory Update: Delaware, Connecticut, Oklahoma, Kansas & Missouri

Delaware House To Vote On Marijuana Sales Bill, Legal Possession Measure Heads To Senate

A key House committee passed a measure to create a regulatory framework for a recreational cannabis market in Delaware, reported Marijuana Moment.

HB 372 was approved by a House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday and is now heading to the floor.

In the meantime, the Senate Judiciary Committee is poised to take up a separate House-passed bill to legalize marijuana possession for adults 21 and older on Wednesday.

Sponsored by Rep. Ed Osienski, (D) HB 371 measure, which requires a simple majority to pass, already advanced through the full House last week.

Osienski is taking a two-track approach to reform after a comprehensive bill that would have accomplished both goals was killed after failing to receive the required three-fifths supermajority vote on the floor last month.

Connecticut Officials Received More Than 15 000 Applications For 12 Licenses To Sell Rec. Marijuana

Over 15,600 businesses applied for a license to sell recreational cannabis in Connecticut prior to the last week's deadline.

The State Department of Consumer Protection released the figures on Friday, revealing that 8,357 applications were submitted before Wednesday's deadline for the first six licenses granted to social equity applicants, reported Central Maine.

The remainder of 7,245 license applications for adult-use cannabis retailers were submitted to the general lottery.

According to Connecticut's state website, the lottery will be run after all social equity applicants have been chosen. In addition, at least half of the licenses will go to applicants who qualify as social equity applicants for each license type.

The Constitution State became the 18th in the country to legalize marijuana for recreational purposes in June 2021 when Gov. Ned Lamont signed the bill into law.

Under the bill, adults 21 and older can possess up to 1.5 ounces of cannabis. The sale of recreational marijuana is planned to kick off this month.

The state's lawmakers recently green-lighted a bill that would ban so-called gifting events involving marijuana, also known as cannabis bazaars.

Oklahoma Senate Sends Bill To Strengthen Penalties For Marijuana Diversion

A bill that seeks to increase penalties for people who buy cannabis and then sell it to non-cardholders was approved in the Oklahoma Senate, according to a release from the Oklahoma state Senate on Monday.

Senate Bill 1367, authored by Sen. Lonnie Paxton (R-Tuttle), was previously passed in the state House.

The measure "increases the fine for a person who intentionally or improperly diverts medical marijuana from $200 to $400 on the first offense, and from $500 to $1,000 on the second offense."

If caught for the third time, "they could lose their medical marijuana license," according to the release, which said that the legislation "also increases the fines for sales or transfers of medical marijuana to unauthorized persons to $5,000 for the first violation and $15,000 for subsequent violations."

"As many Oklahomans know, when State Question 788 was passed to legalize medical marijuana, we were quickly thrown into a situation where we needed to create the framework and guidelines for this industry," Paxton said. "Unfortunately, this led to the inadvertent mixing of medical marijuana legislation and criminal justice reform legislation, resulting in the ability for someone to buy marijuana product legally, but then re-sell it to a child or someone who doesn't have their card, with only an administrative fine. Ultimately, this is drug dealing, but only with the equivalent offense of a traffic ticket. SB 1367 fixes this loophole and makes this practice a criminal offense."

The measure is now heading to the Gov. Kevin Stitt's desk. If Stitt gives his approval, the new law will take effect on November 1.

Efforts To Legalize Medical Marijuana In Kansas Stall As End OF Legislative Session Nears

The Kansas House recently appointed key lawmakers from both chambers to a conference committee that will design the details for a medical marijuana legalization bill. Cannabis advocates called the move a clear sign that reform is inevitable and can be expected soon.

However, it seems that Senate Bill 12, which is still in committee, won't gain traction when lawmakers return on May 23 to tie up the legislative session, reported KSNT News.

"Given we plan to only be there one day, it's unlikely that work could be completed on that item," Mike Pirner, a spokesman for Senate Leadership, told Kansas Capitol Bureau in an email Monday.

Missouri House Requires Disclosure Of Medical Marijuana Ownership Records

Missouri lawmakers are requiring state regulators to turn over ownership information of businesses that obtained medical marijuana licenses, which were not publicly available.

The transparency requirements were added by Democratic Rep. Peter Merideth of St. Louis as an amendment to the local government bill, which the Senate previously passed.

The amendment was approved in a 128-6 vote by the House members, reported KTTN News.

Both Republican and Democratic lawmakers agree that the Department of Health and Senior Service's practice of considering ownership records confidential was a stumbling block in the MMJ program's oversight process.

"If we have a situation where all of the entities that got licenses under this existing program have an advantage in a bigger market, we have to continue doing real oversight to make sure that they were operating properly under the existing constitutional guidelines," Merideth said.

Photo: Courtesy of Esteban Lopez on Unsplash

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Posted In: cannabis legalizationCentral MaineConnecticutDelawareEd OsienskiKSNT NewsKTTN NewsMarijuana Momentmarijuana useOklahomaCannabisGovernmentNewsRegulationsPoliticsMarketsGeneral