DEA Public Comment Period And A Cannabis-Related Crypto Bill? You Heard It First At Benzinga Conference

In Beacon Securities's latest report issued after the Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference in Florida, analysts delved into significant developments and key conversations that are shaping the future of the cannabis industry.

The report highlights the optimism among key operators and multi-state operators (MSOs) regarding impending regulatory changes and their potential to transform the industry's landscape.

Anticipation For DEA's Rescheduling Decision

A major point of discussion was the anticipated reclassification of cannabis from a Schedule I substance to Schedule III following the August recommendation from the Dept. of Health and Human Services to the DEA to ease federal restrictions on cannabis. 

The DEA move, expected soon, could eliminate the stringent restrictions of the 280e IRS tax code, sparking enthusiasm among industry players. However, the exact timeline remains uncertain, with speculation swirling around the possibility of a decision aligning with the politically charged 4/20 holiday. 

“The issue is now in front of the DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel, indicating it is approaching the finish line. The question continues to be whether or not the DEA will hold a public comment period. If it does, the required time implies the decision should come sooner rather than later. There was also some speculation that the combination of Rescheduling, SAFER Banking, and an expected DOJ memo may be enough to allow US exchange listings,” reads Beacon's report. 

This rescheduling could pave the way for U.S. exchange listings, signaling a major shift in the industry's financial and regulatory framework

SAFER Banking And Cryptocurrency Integration

Meanwhile, attendees to the Conference also discussed the effort to attach the SAFER Banking Act to a cryptocurrency (stablecoin) legalization bill, suggesting an innovative legislative strategy. 

This proposed package aims to streamline cannabis banking and financing, making it more accessible and less risky for financial institutions.

Florida's Path To Adult-Use Legalization

The push for adult-use cannabis legalization in Florida faces a tough battle, with recent polls indicating that support falls just short of the required 60% voter approval. Despite this, the report noted industry leaders are rallying, with significant financial support flowing into the campaign.

The presence of an abortion rights measure on the same ballot could indirectly benefit the cannabis initiative by boosting voter turnout and diverting opposition funds. Florida's potential market expansion is a tantalizing prospect for operators, both established and new entrants, signaling a fervent commitment to overcoming legislative hurdles.

Photo: AI-Generated. 

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The Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference is coming to Florida

The Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference is returning to Florida, in a new venue in Hollywood, on April 16 and 17, 2024. The two-day event at The Diplomat Beach Resort will be a chance for entrepreneurs, both large and small, to network, learn and grow. Renowned for its trendsetting abilities and influence on the future of cannabis, mark your calendars – this conference is the go-to event of the year for the cannabis world.

Get your tickets now on – Prices will increase very soon!