(Last update: January 29, 2020)
Medical Marijuana: Yes
Recreational Marijuana: No
In-Home Cultivation: -
Marijuana work group does not recommend legalization in 2020
The General Assembly kicked off its 2020 legislative session on Wednesday, January 8.
Early in the 2019 legislative session, leaders of the General Assembly, former Senate President Mike Miller and the late House Speaker Michael Busch, created a legislative work group to study how to best implement the legalization of marijuana. The work group met during the interim, but ultimately came to the consensus they would not recommend legislation to legalize cannabis for adult use in 2020. However, the legislature could now be on track to seriously consider legalization in 2021.
Medical cannabis program expands to allow edibles
In 2019, Gov. Larry Hogan signed a bill that will allow edible cannabis products to be an option for patients. The bill will also allow research institutions to study the effects of medical cannabis.
Unfortunately, there were also bills that were not enacted, including a bill that would have ensured medical cannabis patients do not lose their gun rights and a bill that would have added opioid use disorder as a qualifying condition to the state’s program. We expect to be working for medical cannabis improvements in 2020, too.
Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office will no longer prosecute marijuana possession
In late January 2019, Baltimore City State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced that her office would no longer prosecute marijuana possession, regardless of the amount or criminal history. In Baltimore City, arrests for marijuana possession — almost entirely and disproportionately African American Baltimoreans — have continued even post-decriminalization in 2014.
Law makes expunging past marijuana possession offenses easier
Thanks in part to MPP’s advocacy, marijuana policy in Maryland took a step forward during the 2017 session with the passage of SB 949, which reduced the waiting period for expungement of a marijuana possession offense from 10 years to four years. This law helps people suffering from the many collateral consequences of a prior conviction, which can make it harder to find a job, travel, or obtain housing or an education. If you can’t afford an attorney to help you with your expungement, you can either file the paperwork yourself (this website has more information) or look for an upcoming expungement clinic where you can get free legal help here.