While some people are very happy to see the back end of 2021, there are bright things on the horizon for cannabis legalization efforts across the country. Several states have cannabis-related laws that took effect on January 1, 2022.
In 2021, Arkansas State lawmakers passed a couple of bills that will expand patient’s access to medical marijuana. Senate Bill 654 allows non-resident patients to legally acquire medical marijuana in the state for up to 90 days. Senate Bill 703 allows telehealth certification for patients seeking medical marijuana access.
Beginning on January 1, 2022, California healthcare facilities must allow end-of-life patients to consume certain marijuana products. Titled Ryan’s Law, Senate Bill 311 allows a terminally ill patient to use medical marijuana within a healthcare facility. It does prohibit patients from inhaling or vaping cannabis and prohibits the use to cannabis products in an emergency room setting.
At the beginning of 2022, qualified patients in Louisiana may purchase herbal medical marijuana from licensed dispensaries for the first time. The new law repealed the state’s longstanding ban on herbal products. On January 1, 2022 medical patients who have been certified to purchase medical marijuana will be allowed to purchase up to two and a half ounces of marijuana flower from licensed marijuana dispensaries.
In Montana, marijuana sales for recreational use can begin on January 1, 2022. Voters passed Initiative 190 allowing for the use, production, and sale of recreational marijuana by adults. Montana voters also passed Constitutional Initiative 118, which stipulates that marijuana use is only allowed for adults aged 21 and older.
In Philadelphia, a subset of employers will no longer be allowed to test job applicants for marijuana as a condition of employment. Police officers and employees who take care of children or medical patients will be exempt from this new policy.