Cannabis News Update June 7, 2021

Today in cannabis news: Idaho advocates submit a new bill for the 2022 midterm elections to legalize recreational possession of cannabis; recent statistics show a decline in sales of CBD-only products in recreational cannabis dispensaries; and a U.S. House delegate from Washington, D.C. urges HUD to allow inhabitants of public housing to consume cannabis in states where it is authorized.

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** First up: Idaho advocates have submitted a new bill to legalize recreational possession of cannabis, which they expect to see on the ballot in 2022. Likewise, campaigners are busily gathering signatures to launch a second initiative to legalize medicinal cannabis statewide.

Organizers submitted the required 20 signatures to begin the ballot procedure for the new restricted recreational legalization proposition. It would make it legal for individuals 21 years or older to carry a maximum of three ounces of cannabis on privately owned property.

Carrying cannabis anywhere but in a private dwelling would still be illegal, although the bill clarifies that “transporting a personal amount of marijuana from a jurisdiction where the marijuana was legally purchased” would be permissible. While adults would be unable to lawfully buy cannabis in the state, they wouldbe capable of traveling to dispensaries in nearby states like Montana, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington and carry it back across state borders.

** Next up: Per an examination of retail figures from the cannabis data firm Headset, since 2018, sales of CBD-only items at recreational cannabis dispensaries have been declining in numerous U.S. states as CBD products shift into online and conventional retailers.

During 2018 through 2020, the market share of certain CBD goods in recreational cannabis dispensaries in California, Colorado, and Washington fell by roughly 5% apiece, with the portion of total purchases in Nevada falling by 23%. The reduction is largely due to the increase of CBD items in conventional commerce, such as supermarkets and drugstores, as well as the increase of online CBD retail.

Despite this, CBD-only goods generated about $43 million in revenue at cannabis dispensaries in California, Colorado, Nevada and Washington in 2020, accounting for 10% of total CBD purchases.

Recent statistics show that total CBD sales revenue for recreational cannabis merchants in these states totaled approximately $42 million in May 2021, a rise of 110% from May 2018.

** Last up: Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives Eleanor Holmes Norton wants Housing and Urban Development Secretary Marcia Fudge to utilize their “executive discretion” to waive the federal prohibition on cannabis consumption in federally subsidized housing in states where it is lawful.

Since cannabis is prohibited within national statute, existing HUD standards prohibit individuals from receiving federally subsidized housing, while property managers are permitted to evict individuals who consume cannabis. In the letter, Del. Norton noted that recreational and/or medical cannabis is allowed in 36 states plus the District of Columbia, with more than 90% of Americans supporting medical cannabis legalization.

Norton claims that Congress has barred the Department of Justice from using federal funds to prevent local governments from enacting medical cannabis legislation, and that HUD must change accordingly by not upholding federal prohibition in states that have implemented cannabis legalization.

“Smoking marijuana in federally assisted housing should be treated in the same manner as smoking tobacco in federally assisted housing,” wrote Norton.

According to sources, HUD has reviewed Norton’s statement and is drafting a reply.

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