New laws impacting the medical cannabis industry in Oklahoma took effect on Wednesday as officials observed a steep decline in the number of licensed operators.

One change that came about through the passage and adoption of HB 2095 was an extension to the moratorium on issuing new licenses for dispensaries, processors, and growers.

The moratorium was set to end on Aug. 1, 2024. The legislation pushed it to Aug. 1, 2026. On Wednesday, a spokesman for the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drug Control shared updates regarding ongoing efforts to crack down on illegal cannabis activity in the state with FOX 25.

Mark Woodward, public information officer for the OBN, noted, "This is about protecting, you know, the industry itself as well as... making sure criminals don't get a foothold here." He shared investigators have had to shut down hundreds of illegal grows since medical cannabis came to Oklahoma after voters approved the program in 2018.