News, Politics

Weekly Cannabis Roundup October 22

October 22, 2021 08:00 am ET

Most New Yorkers can now safely indulge in cannabis without fear of being fired, Bank of America is under fire for closing the account of an authorized cannabis research institute, and proposed legislation could help Washington, D.C. finally see recreational cannabis sales.

Let’s dive into this week’s cannanews.

NY Employers Can No Longer Screen Most Workers for Cannabis

The New York State Department of Labor (DOL) announced Tuesday that New York employers cannot drug test most workers for marijuana. The new rule does not apply to employees required to be tested under federal and state law, such as commercial drivers who operate under the Department of Transportation. While employees can still be punished for possessing or consuming on the job, there must be evidence of impairment. “Observable signs of use that do not indicate impairment on their own cannot be cited as an articulable symptom of impairment,” the DOL stated.

Bank of America Closes Account of DEA-Approved Cannabis Researcher

Bank of America—the second-largest bank in the U.S.—has shut down the account of a cannabis and psychedelics research institute located in Arizona. According to reporting by Marijuana Moment, Scottsdale Research Institute (SRI) received an abrupt notice of the closure from the bank with no explanation. After years spent advocating for research on controlled substances, SRI secured preliminary approval from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in May to be a federally authorized cultivator of research-grade cannabis. SRI has already received numerous offers from other financial institutions interested in housing its accounts.

A Senate Bill Could Legalize Recreational Cannabis Sales in D.C.

A U.S. Senate committee revealed a package of spending bills on Monday that would legalize recreational cannabis sales in Washington, D.C. if enacted. Despite the legalization of cannabis possession in 2014 by D.C. voters, Congress has successfully impeded full legalization with a budget provision that blocked the city’s government from regulating cannabis sales. Now, the language of the new budget legislation omits the pesky barricade in an effort to protect marijuana laws. The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) released a statement praising the move.

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