MJBiz - November/December 2023 - 8

FROM THE EDITOR Kate Lavin
Plan for the Future You Want
Rescheduling offers a glimpse of how lawmakers
might legalize marijuana nationwide
I
n the weeks since a letter was
leaked from the U.S. Department
of Health and Human
Services (HHS) advising the Drug
Enforcement Administration to
move marijuana from Schedule 1 to
Schedule 3 on the list of controlled
substances, regulated cannabis
operators have dreamed-and
fretted-about what rescheduling
might mean for them.
has medicinal value and possesses
only " moderate to low potential
for physical and psychological
dependence. "
If federal lawmakers don't
trust the HHS to make educated
decisions about health, why are
they funding the department at a
rate of nearly $3 trillion per year?
Many legal and policy experts
In the excitement that
comes with launching a
new marijuana market,
it's easy to forget
that, one day, state
regulations might need
to play well with others.
So far, they do not.
Meanwhile, two federal
lawmakers inserted themselves into
the debate, introducing a bill stating
that Congress-not health or drugenforcement
officials-should have
the final say about rescheduling.
That's right: The DEA has yet to
announce whether it will accept
the recommendation of the HHS,
and already those with power and
influence are lining up to contest the
decision.
Moving cannabis to Schedule 3
of the Controlled Substances Act
would acknowledge that the plant
believe the rescheduling process
now unfolding offers insight into
what federal marijuana legalization
might look like. And so far? The
process needs work.
Paving a Unified Path
If rescheduling really is a glimpse
into future marijuana legalization,
it presents the industry with a
unique opportunity to streamline
regulations so that when that
day comes, the process runs as
smoothly as possible.
Among the more obvious
obstacles to creating a unified
U.S. cannabis industry are the rules
that differ from state to state. In
just the past month, California Gov.
Gavin Newsom vetoed a bill that
would have allowed operators to
open Amsterdam-style cannabis
cafes. Meanwhile, neighboring
Nevada is actively licensing
consumption lounges, especially in
tourism-driven Las Vegas.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp just
signed off on rules that allow
independent pharmacies to sell
low-THC cannabis oil. Meanwhile,
" pharmacy " is not even in the
vernacular of other state cannabis
operators-except in Louisiana,
where it means dispensary.
8 November-December 2023 | MJBizMagazine
In the excitement that comes
with launching a new marijuana
market, it's easy to forget that, one
day, state regulations might need to
play well with others. So far, they
do not.
If the alcohol industry is any
indicator, having 50 different sets
of rules for 50 different markets
opens the door for distributors
to claim a segment of the supply
chain, widening the divide between
brands and retailers while taking a
share of the profits.
So, what's the best way to
proceed?
Find business owners and executives
who do what you do in other
states. (To start, check out networking
opportunities in the MJBizCon
guide starting on page 24.) Then, ask
them what works and what doesn't
in the locations where they do
business.
Advocate to streamline rules
and adopt practices that work and
create better experiences for businesses
and consumers alike.
Rescheduling has provided
a once-in-a-lifetime chance to
rethink the marijuana market and
create a united front to present to
lawmakers and regulators. It's time
to seize the opportunity.
Kate Lavin is the editor
of MJBizMagazine. Reach
her at kate.lavin@
mjbizdaily.com.

MJBiz - November/December 2023

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of MJBiz - November/December 2023

MJBiz - November/December 2023 - CT1
MJBiz - November/December 2023 - CT2
MJBiz - November/December 2023 - Cover1
MJBiz - November/December 2023 - Cover2
MJBiz - November/December 2023 - 3
MJBiz - November/December 2023 - 4
MJBiz - November/December 2023 - 5
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MJBiz - November/December 2023 - Cover3
MJBiz - November/December 2023 - Cover4
MJBiz - November/December 2023 - CT3
MJBiz - November/December 2023 - CT4
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