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420 with CNW — DC Legislative Committee Approves Reform Bill Eliminating Cannabis Business Licensing Caps

Oct 28, 2022 | Cannabis News Wire, Media Partners

This post is presented by our media partner Cannabis News Wire

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Lawmakers in Washington, DC, recently passed a medical cannabis reform bill that could bring numerous changes to the district’s cannabis policy if enacted into law. This bill removes caps on the number of medical cannabis business licenses that can be issued, creates new classes of cannabis business licenses and promotes social equity within the industry.

This bill was unanimously supported and approved in the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety. In its current state, the bill will also make permanent a temporary law previously signed by the mayor allowing adults who are at least 21 years old to self-certify as eligible for medical cannabis within the jurisdiction of DC. The law also paves the way for new categories of medical cannabis businesses. These include consumption lounges and delivery services as well as marijuana cooking classes.

The original text of the bill had proposed that the current number of dispensaries be increased by a defined number. However, the changes made to this text by the committee eliminated the cap altogether and left the decision about how many businesses to license to the responsible agency, which is the Alcohol Beverage Regulation Administration. This body will have to provide lawmakers with an analysis justifying any changes to licensing caps. For example, the regulator can avail data showing that demand for medical marijuana has grown by a given percentage, which outstrips the current capacity of the existing licensed businesses/dispensaries or growers.

In the report attached to the bill, lawmakers say that self-certification is necessary because the cost of getting a recommendation from a doctor is “prohibitive” and it is “difficult” to find a doctor willing to write a recommendation for medical marijuana. However, lawmakers say this approach was necessary to work around the Congressional blockage stopping Washington, DC, from creating a regulated market for adult-use cannabis. Several lawmakers have written to Congress protesting this spending rider wondering why DC was singled out for the blockage while other states and territories are free to pass recreational cannabis legislation.

It should be noted that not all marijuana advocates are thrilled by this draft law making its way through different committees. For example, the i-71 Committee states that it doesn’t support this proposed law because its text raises more questions than it seeks to answer. The legislators expect the bill to undergo a number of amendments as it weaves its way through various committees before it is put before the entire council for a final vote. Marijuana industry actors from around the country, such as Flora Growth Corp. (NASDAQ: FLGC), are likely to keep tabs on this bill until its final fate is determined.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Flora Growth Corp. (NASDAQ: FLGC) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/FLGC

About CNW420

CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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