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Washington Bill To Allow Marijuana Home Cultivation Stalls Again, More Than A Decade After Voters Enacted Legalization

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The latest effort to allow Washington State adults to grow cannabis at home fell short last week, pulled from consideration ahead of a planned committee vote on the final day before a key legislative deadline. The move means that, for at least another year, cultivating plants for personal use will likely remain a felony.

Nearly every other U.S. state to have legalized marijuana for adults allows some form of home cultivation, and most advocates nationwide now embrace home cultivation as a key part of cannabis reform. Yet Washington politicians have repeatedly rejected efforts to adopt policies on par with other legal-cannabis states.

Since voters approved one of the nation’s first marijuana legalization ballot measures in 2012, state lawmakers have introduced nearly a half-dozen bills to allow adults to grow plants for personal use, all to no avail. The first push happened just months after the launch of legal commercial sales, with then-Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles’s (D) sponsorship of SB 6083 in 2015. Subsequent homegrow bills were introduced by others in 2017, 2019, 2021 and this year.

While some of those bills were revived the year following their introduction, during the state’s shorter, even-year legislative sessions, each has stagnated and ultimately expired.

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DeSantis’s Marijuana Opposition Campaign In Florida Raises Just $10,000 As Pro-Legalization Committee Rakes In Tens Of Millions

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Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’s (R) recently launched political action committee opposing a marijuana legalization ballot initiative has so far raised only $10,000—just 1/6,000th of the amount of money that’s poured into the effort to pass the cannabis measure.

As of last week, the DeSantis “Florida Freedom Fund” has only raised $10,000 in contributions—all coming from a former Republican congressman representing Pennsylvania, campaign finance records from the Division of Elections records show. By contrast, the Smart & Safe Florida campaign behind the marijuana initiative has raised over $60 million.

Of course, the PAC founded by the governor only launched in May, whereas the cannabis campaign has been active since late 2022. Even so, the early numbers seem to signal a lack of enthusiasm among prospective donors about supporting the effort to derail marijuana legalization, as well as an abortion rights proposal that the DeSantis committee is also seeking to defeat.

Former U.S. Rep. Keith Rothfus (R-PA), the DeSantis committee’s sole donor—voted against numerous amendment in Congress to shield state marijuana laws from federal interference. He also opposed measures on cannabis banking and to allow Department of Veterans Affairs doctors to recommend medical marijuana.

The campaign finance data was first reported by

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Maryland Governor Launches Marijuana Workforce Development Program Focused On People Criminalized Over Cannabis

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The governor of Maryland has launched a first-of-its-kind marijuana workforce development program, with a focus on supporting industry participation by people who’ve been criminalized over cannabis.

Less than two weeks after issuing a mass pardon for over 175,000 marijuana and paraphernalia convictions, Gov. Wes Moore (D) announced the Cannabis Workforce Development Program—a free service for eligible applicants that is being jointly run by the the Maryland Cannabis Administration (MCA) and the Maryland Department of Labor (DOL).

“This groundbreaking collaboration will support Marylanders interested in joining the state’s growing cannabis industry and prioritize individuals and communities directly impacted by the War on Drugs,” Moore said in a press release on Thursday. “For decades, cannabis policy has been used as a cudgel. Together, we prove how cannabis policy can be used as a valuable tool to leave no one behind.”

Through the program, participants will be able to take eight self-paced courses taught by industry experts, licensed marijuana business operators and college professors. After completing 100 hours of virtual instruction, they will also be able to enroll in a two-day, in-person course for occupational training.

The governor’s office says the initiative “will help reduce barriers to employment and create paths to sustainable

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Kentucky Launches Medical Marijuana Applications Six Months Early, Governor Announces

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Kentucky will start accepting license applications for prospective medical marijuana businesses beginning next week—six months ahead of schedule—the governor announced on Thursday.

Just over a year after signing a medical cannabis legalization bill into law, Gov. Andy Beshear (D) said regulators will start taking medical marijuana business license applications on Monday, July 1.

“This administration has been working hard to expedite the timeline for making medical cannabis available to Kentuckians with serious medical conditions,” Beshear said in a press release. “I am pleased to report that Team Kentucky will begin accepting applications from prospective medical cannabis businesses beginning next Monday, July 1–a full 6 months ahead of schedule.”

The governor also announced that the state Board of Medical Licensure and Board of Nursing will be simultaneously start issuing permits for doctors and nurses to issue medical cannabis recommendations to patients at the beginning of next month.

“We are excited that the program will be able to issue licenses in 2024 rather than 2025,” Cabinet for Health and Family Services Secretary Eric Friedlander said. “From its inception, the program has been focused on ensuring patients with serious medical conditions like cancer, PTSD, multiple sclerosis and other symptoms and conditions have safe

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