Interim committee considers legalization ahead of 2024 legislative session
In November 2023, the Interim Study Committee on Commerce and Economic Development held a six-hour meeting examining “the legalization of adult-use cannabis in Indiana as it relates to workforce impacts and teen use.” The committee ultimately did not make any recommendations for the 2024 legislative session.
During the 2023 legislative session, several cannabis reform measures were introduced, including bills to legalize medical cannabis and to decriminalize possession of small amounts of cannabis. Although one decriminalization bill, HB 1287, received a committee hearing in the House for the first time, no cannabis bills advanced out of committee.
Indiana is increasingly an outlier when it comes to cannabis policy. Three of its four neighbors have legalized cannabis for adults 21 and older — Michigan, Illinois, and Ohio. Indiana is one of only 12 states with no effective medical cannabis law and one of only 19 that still imposes jail time for simple possession of cannabis. Under current law, possession of even a single joint is punishable by up to a year of incarceration and a fine of up to $5,000.
Make sure your lawmakers know this issue matters to voters; ask them to support cannabis policy reform!
Gov. Holcomb signs bill legalizing low-THC CBD oil
On March 21, 2018, Gov. Eric Holcomb signed Senate Enrolled Act 52, legalizing low-THC CBD derived from industrial hemp. The law allows any person to buy, sell, and possess CBD oil, as long as it meets certain labeling requirements and contains no more than 0.3 percent THC.
The law provides a much needed expansion to Indiana’s 2017 low-THC law for patients with seizure disorders, which only allowed CBD oil for epileptic patients while providing no way for them to purchase it. Still, the law provides no clarification on the legality of manufacturing CBD in Indiana.
While cannabis policy reform is sweeping the Midwest, Indiana remains one of only 14 states with no effective medical cannabis law and one of only 19 that still imposes jail time for simple possession of cannabis. However, as more and more states move forward, it’s only a matter of time before Indiana improves its laws. The legislature has convened for its 2022 legislative session, and several cannabis policy reform bills have been introduced, including bills to legalize medical cannabis and decriminalize…