Despite President Joseph Biden having pardoned individuals convicted of simple cannabis convictions, he has shown no interest in loosening the federal restrictions that have left most states in control of developing how the billion-dollar marijuana industry in the country is growing. Thus far, 37 states in the country have legalized medical cannabis, with 19 of those states permitting individuals aged 21 and above to possess the drug for recreational use. However, the drug’s illegality at the federal level continues to prevent interstate sales.
Various states have established their marijuana programs to meet objectives beyond legalization. For instance, many prioritize issuance of licenses to those impacted by the war on drugs and entrepreneurs of color.
Courts in the country may have to force their hand in a way that could undermine efforts that diversify this burgeoning industry. For example, a federal court recently ruled that residency requirements on trade imposed in states is unconstitutional because these requirements also endanger packaging and testing rules, which help improve public safety.
Experts believe that this justification by the First Circuit Court of Appeals may open up commerce between different states across the country. An expert on drug laws and federalism, Robert Mikos stated that this ruling foreshadowed the emergence of a national marijuana market, noting that changes in state export and import bans could soon be observed.
The First Circuit is not the only court to rule against residency requirements either. Last year, a federal court in Missouri came down against the residency requirement for ownership in medical cannabis firms imposed in the state.
Various states have also begun to prepare for a potential national market for cannabis. For example, Gov. Gavin Newsom of California recently signed a measure that would permit the state to enter into agreements with other states to regulate the export and import of marijuana products. In 2019, the state of Oregon also approved a similar legislation. The state of New Jersey is expected to go down this path soon.
The path the courts are expected to follow is supported by many advocates who have argued that the time for Congress to amend federal marijuana policies so they can reflect the current legalization landscape is past. This is despite the fact that Congress has the power to regulate global as well as interstate commerce, as stipulated in the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution. At the moment, however, the legalization of cannabis has mainly been dealt with at the ballot through state measures by voters.
If the courts keep making decisions that open more space for the cannabis industry to operate nationally, federal reform may not be far behind, and entities such as REZYFi Inc. could find themselves swamped with more clients than they had expected to serve in the foreseeable future.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to REZYFi, Inc. are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/REZY
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