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US (MD): Senators approve cannabis sales bill

A Maryland Senate committee has amended and approved a cannabis sales bill to get the state ready for the implementation of a voter-approved legalization referendum, sending it to the floor—where a vote is expected this week.

At a meeting of the Senate Finance Committee, members passed the legislation from Sens. Brian Feldman (D) and Antonio Hayes (D) in a 7-2 vote.

Senate President Bill Ferguson (D) said last week that there were a number of issues that lawmakers needed to address before advancing the measure, including input from existing hemp businesses who’ve expressed concern about possible ramifications of the measure as introduced.

The top senator said that “a lot of legislators are struggling with it right now,” describing it as a “tough issue” that will be addressed as the bill moves. The House of Delegates already approved its companion version this month. The bills were identical when introduced, but the House and Senate bills have now been amended in different ways.


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