This week, cannabis stocks were on the rise after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said it is expediting its effort to create a regulatory framework for CBD, announcing plans to publish a report on its progress by early fall. Elsewhere, in California, an audit found that the Bureau of Cannabis Control is struggling to hire sufficient staff and set an overall strategy for the state’s cannabis market.
Here, we’ve rounded up the 10 headlines you need to know before this week is over.
- Federal: Dillard’s will now carry a wide range of CBD-infused wellness and beauty products. The Little Rock-based department store chain plans to stock the brand CBD For Life, which uses hemp-derived CBD extract. Read more
- Cannabis stocks were mostly higher on Monday, after the FDA said it is expediting its effort to create a regulatory framework for CBD with plans to publish a report on its progress by early fall. Amy Abernathy, acting chief information officer, said in a series of tweets sent on Friday that the agency is “expediting its work to address the many questions about cannabidiol.” Read more
- West Virginia: Despite legislation from 2017 that legalized medical cannabis starting on July 1 of this year, West Virginia officials say they're still years away from the first sale. The state must find a banking solution to get around federal law, and health officials say they also have to implement permitting and licensing for patients and businesses. Read more
- Utah: The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food has postponed the date for its awarding of 10 medical cannabis grower licenses. The original announcement date was July 15. Read more
- In addition, the state has scrapped a proposed residency requirement for cannabis cultivation, to the dismay of some local farmers. The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food, which is in the process of crafting rules for the state’s emerging medical marijuana program, concluded that residency restrictions could run afoul of federal law, an agency spokesman said. Read more
- New Hampshire: Gov. Chris Sununu has signed a bill that will begin the expungement process for adults convicted of possessing up to three-quarters of an ounce of cannabis prior to Sept. 16, 2017. Sununu also vetoed a bill that would have eliminated a requirement that a patient have at least a three-month relationship with a healthcare provider before receiving a certification to receive medical marijuana. Read more
- California: Gov. Gavin Newsom has signed a bill allowing the state and the California Highway Patrol (CHP) the opportunity to conduct realistic research on driving under the influence of cannabis in order to develop more accurate sobriety tests. Prior to this legislation, California law limited how CHP could research the impacts of cannabis impairment on driving ability. Read more
- The agency overseeing California’s legal marijuana market has been overmatched by the job and is struggling to hire sufficient staff and set an overall strategy for the nation’s largest cannabis economy, an audit found. About two-thirds of the 219 staff positions authorized for the Bureau of Cannabis Control remain unfilled, according to an audit by the state Finance Department, and a shortage of staff in the enforcement unit is hindering the agency’s ability to conduct investigations. Read more
- New Mexico: Patient enrollment in the state's medical marijuana program has increased by nearly 10 percent since the start of the year. The Department of Health says the number of active patients increased to 74,100 at the end of June. Read more
- Michigan: Misdemeanors involving low-level marijuana use and possession would be automatically cleared from Michiganders’ records under a bill that will be introduced this week by Sen. Jeff Irwin (D-Ann Arbor). The bill would allow roughly 235,000 people to have their misdemeanor records for marijuana use and possession automatically expunged without having to go through the courts. Read more