Marijuana Law, Policy, and Authority

Updates

On this page, you’ll find blog posts and links to external sites discussing important new developments in the field of marijuana law and policy. Where applicable, the posts will explain where the new materials fit in the book.

 

The Implications of Murphy v. NCAA for State Marijuana Reforms

[Updated for clarity] On Monday, the Supreme Court decided a case that should help insulate state marijuana legalization from preemption challenge. The decision in Murphy v. NCAA invalidated a federal law–the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA)—that had prohibited the states from (inter alia) “authoriz[ing] by law” sports gambling. 28 U.S.C. § 3702(1). I’ll summarize the...... KEEP READING

Posted on Thursday, May 17th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , No Comments »


The Looping Problem in Marijuana Sales

States commonly limit the quantity of marijuana that a licensed supplier may sell to a consumer (see book pages 462-463). For example, Colorado’s Retail Marijuana Code Rule 402 provides that “A Retail Marijuana Store and its employees are prohibited from Transferring more than one ounce of [marijuana] . . . in a single transaction to...... KEEP READING

Posted on Wednesday, May 9th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , 2 Comments »


Two Interesting Developments in Maryland’s Medical Marijuana Law

The Maryland legislature just passed a bill amending the state’s medical marijuana law. The Governor is expected to sign the legislation, which can be viewed here. Two particular changes struck me as noteworthy: First, the bill adopts new—and carefully designed—measures to address racial disparities in the state-licensed commercial marijuana industry. As I discuss in the...... KEEP READING

Posted on Thursday, April 12th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Comments Off on Two Interesting Developments in Maryland’s Medical Marijuana Law


Marijuana, Opioids, and Some Thoughts on Empirical Research on Marijuana Policy

Back in February, I discussed research suggesting that legalizing marijuana could help combat the nation’s opioid epidemic. See Marijuana and the Opioid Crisis. The theory is that once marijuana is legalized some people will use marijuana in lieu of opioids to treat chronic pain. It is the reverse of the gateway hypothesis that was once...... KEEP READING

Posted on Monday, April 9th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , Comments Off on Marijuana, Opioids, and Some Thoughts on Empirical Research on Marijuana Policy


Congress Renews DOJ Spending Rider

The $1.3 trillion budget Congress passed on March 23, 2018 included a rider that continues to bar the DOJ from enforcing the federal marijuana ban in some circumstances. It is identical in substance to the Rohrabacher-Farr (or Rohrabacher-Blumenauer) amendments Congress has passed each budget cycle since 2014 (see book pages 353-358). The latest rider will...... KEEP READING

Posted on Wednesday, March 28th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Comments Off on Congress Renews DOJ Spending Rider


PharmaCann v. BV Development: Another Land Use Issue Confronts Marijuana Suppliers

As discussed in the book, marijuana suppliers have a relatively difficult time leasing real property for their operations (see pages 655-662). The problem stems from a provision of the federal Controlled Substances Act CSA) that makes it a crime for a landlord to lease any real property “for the purpose of unlawfully manufacturing . ....... KEEP READING

Posted on Wednesday, March 21st, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Comments Off on PharmaCann v. BV Development: Another Land Use Issue Confronts Marijuana Suppliers


California Takes on Weedmaps Over Unlicensed Marijuana Shops

In February 2018, California regulators demanded that Weedmaps stop advertising marijuana shops that aren’t licensed by the state. The confrontation has raised some interesting legal issues concerning the liability of third parties (the subject of Chapters 11-14 of my book) which I discuss below. But first, let me provide some necessary background on Weedmaps and...... KEEP READING

Posted on Thursday, March 15th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , Comments Off on California Takes on Weedmaps Over Unlicensed Marijuana Shops


DOJ Suit Challenging California Sanctuary Laws Could Have Ramifications for State Marijuana Reforms as Well

On March 6 the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a lawsuit challenging California’s sanctuary state policies as preempted. Those sanctuary policies are designed to mitigate state concerns over the enforcement of federal immigration laws. The DOJ’s Brief in Support of its Motion for a Preliminary Injunction provides a useful summary of the challenged state laws...... KEEP READING

Posted on Thursday, March 8th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Comments Off on DOJ Suit Challenging California Sanctuary Laws Could Have Ramifications for State Marijuana Reforms as Well


Suit Challenging Maryland’s Refusal to Use Racial Preferences in Licensing Has Been Settled

When Maryland’s legislature passed a medical marijuana law in spring 2013, it instructed state regulators to consider race in awarding a limited number of licenses to cultivate and distribute marijuana (see page 454 n.1 of the book). In 2015, however, the state’s licensing commission abandoned those preferences, apparently due to concerns that racial preferences might...... KEEP READING

Posted on Wednesday, February 28th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , 1 Comment »


The Corporate Tax Cut Might Have Done More for Marijuana Suppliers than Repealing Section 280E Would Have

As most readers will know, state licensed marijuana businesses pay a comparatively high effective federal tax rate, because a special provision of the federal tax code (section 280E) bars them from deducting all but their cost of goods sold (COGS) when calculating their federal tax liability. In other words, these businesses may not deduct their...... KEEP READING

Posted on Friday, February 16th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , Comments Off on The Corporate Tax Cut Might Have Done More for Marijuana Suppliers than Repealing Section 280E Would Have


Cases to Watch: Minnesota Prosecuting Two Employees of State-Licensed Medical Marijuana Supplier

Since it legalized medical marijuana back in 2014, Minnesota has licensed two firms to supply the drug to qualifying patients: Leafline and Minnesota Medical Solutions (MMS). MMS is owned by Vireo Health, which also owns a firm licensed by the state of New York to supply medical marijuana to that state’s qualifying patients: Vireo Health...... KEEP READING

Posted on Thursday, February 15th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , Comments Off on Cases to Watch: Minnesota Prosecuting Two Employees of State-Licensed Medical Marijuana Supplier


Marijuana and the Opioid Crisis

[Updated 2/19 to add further discussion of Powell et al. study.] The nation’s opioid crisis has sparked a lively debate about the relationship between marijuana and the use of harder drugs like opioid painkillers. Richard Friedman is the latest to weigh in on this debate. In a New York Times op-ed posted February 8, Marijuana...... KEEP READING

Posted on Thursday, February 8th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , 1 Comment »


Cases to Watch: California Growers Association vs. California Department of Food and Agriculture

An association of small California marijuana cultivators has just sued state regulators for failing to restrict the size of licensed marijuana cultivators. The lawsuit stems from concerns over Big Marijuana (discussed in the book on pages 512-515 and in a previous post here). If successful, the suit could reduce concentration in California’s nascent recreational marijuana industry,...... KEEP READING

Posted on Saturday, February 3rd, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , Comments Off on Cases to Watch: California Growers Association vs. California Department of Food and Agriculture


Panel Discussion of The Promise and Pitfalls of the Marijuana Justice Act

On January 3, 2018, I had the pleasure of moderating a vibrant panel discussion on race and marijuana law at the American Association of Law Schools (AALS) annual conference in San Diego. I thoroughly enjoyed the panel, which discussed a broad range of topics, including the Marijuana Justice Act proposed by Senator Cory Booker (discussed...... KEEP READING

Posted on Wednesday, January 31st, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , Comments Off on Panel Discussion of The Promise and Pitfalls of the Marijuana Justice Act


Some Observations About How Vermont Just Legalized Recreational Marijuana

On January 22, 2018, Vermont became the ninth state (and the tenth comparable jurisdiction, if we include D.C.) to legalize recreational marijuana. Vermont’s new law can be found here. Vermont’s law is similar in many respects to other recreational marijuana measures. Most importantly, it declares that: [A] person 21 years of age or older who...... KEEP READING

Posted on Wednesday, January 24th, 2018 in News, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , 1 Comment »