Cannabis legalization updates: more states move to free the plant

States legalizing cannabis: two people are excited to hit a bong together

The nascent cannabis industries of the United States are in varying stages. Colorado is settling into its teenage years, enjoying a shrinking legacy market after over a decade of adult-use sales. Meanwhile, on the East Coast, New York is embarking on its journey toward a functioning adult-use market. Then there’s Minnesota, where everyone is expected to wait until August 1 to start planting seeds and lighting up.

With all of the constant change, it’s hard to keep up with the cannabis legislative updates happening across the country. Here are some top state legalization stories from last week.

Pennsylvania Senators seek cannabis legalization

Senators Sharif Street (D-Philadelphia) and Dan Laughlin (R-Erie County) announced their combined efforts to introduce legalization legislation; they presented Senate Bill 846 with support from fellow lawmakers. The bill would legalize possession of just over an ounce of cannabis flower (30 grams), five grams of cannabis, and no more than 1000 mg of THC combined in infused edible and topical products.

“We have a unique and singular opportunity to correct decades of mass incarceration, disproportionate enforcement against marginalized communities, the criminalization of personal choice, and the perpetuation of violence, which all materialized from the failed war on drugs,” Senator Street said in a statement. “Legalizing the adult use of cannabis will help us fully and equitably fund education, lower property taxes, and address a variety of community needs throughout Pennsylvania.”

SB 846 also covers marketing and labeling guidelines to keep products from children. The bill also directs the Pennsylvania State Police to arrange for expunging nonviolent cannabis crimes and sets social equity parameters for licensing. Lastly, it will grant home grow rights to patients and apply an eight percent tax on products with an added five percent for retail shops.

Ohio advocacy group collects enough signatures to get on the ballot

After two years of work, the Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol may finally get legalization on the ballot in Ohio. The Ohio Adult Use Act (HB168) was introduced with bipartisan support in May. It would legalize possession and commerce, expunge cannabis offenders, and give tax income from the industry to schools. The bill was assigned to the House Finance Committee but failed to receive a vote.

In response to inaction from lawmakers, the coalition gathered more than 222,000 signatures this year, about 90,000 more than was required to submit. This initiative would legalize the possession, purchase, and sale of cannabis for adults 21 and over. Ohioans can expect to vote on the Initiative come November.

Home grow now legal in Connecticut

Anyone over 21 can now grow cannabis legally in Connecticut, provided they follow the government-set guidelines. The state legalized medical consumption in 2012, followed by adult-use legalization in 2021. The law put some components on hold until as late as 2023, like home grow rights.

The law opened up home grow to medical patients in October 2021, allowing people to cultivate three plants in flower and three plants in the veg state at a time. Plants must be kept inside and not visible from the street. One household can only have up to twelve plants regardless of the number of occupants. As of July, the same rules apply to everyone–medical cannabis patient or not.

Florida dispensary shares legalization effort success

The Smart and Safe Campaign has collected almost a million signatures to get cannabis legalization on the ballot in November, provided the language is approved by the state supreme court. Multi-state operator Trulieve has a large presence in the state, and contributed up to $39M to the political committee behind the efforts according to FOX13. The news outlet also reports that Trulieve efforts led to the mass of signatures collected. If the conservative-leaning Florida supreme court approves of the language, voters could see the initiative on ballots in 2024.

Ohio voters will have the chance to legalize in the fall and Connecticuters can now add cannabis to the garden. Those in Pennsylvania and Florida can keep their eyes peeled for updates on the most recent legalization bill in session. The updates keep coming, and with every state at its own pace, the most efficient way to keep up is to tune in here for the latest legalization news.

Cara Wietstock is Senior Content Producer of and has been working in the cannabis space since 2011. She has covered the cannabis business beat for Ganjapreneur and The Spokesman Review. You can find her living in Bellingham, Washington with her husband, son, and a small zoo of pets.