During the 2023 legislative session, the legislature and governor enacted twin bills HB 556 (sponsored by Delegates CT Wilson and Vanessa Atterbeary) and SB 516 (sponsored by Sens. Brian Feldman and Antonio Hayes) to legalize and regulate the sales of cannabis in Maryland to adults 21 and older. Simple possession and home cultivation by adults 21 and older were already legalized, effective July 1, 2023. (Details of that legislation, which included expungement, are available here.)
The House passed an amended version of HB 556 on March 10, 2023, in a 103-32 vote. On March 31, the Senate approved an amended version of SB 516 in a 32-13 vote. The two chambers approved harmonized versions of the bills on April 8, 2023. Governor Wes Moore signed the legislation into law on May 4, 2023.
Starting on July 1, 2023, sales will begin exclusively from existing medical cannabis licenses who pay a conversion fee. Other licenses will begin being issued to social equity applicants in early 2024.
Here is a full summary of the law:
Cannabis Regulatory Authorities
Converting Existing Medical Cannabis Businesses
Cannabis Business Licensing
Licensing Timeline and Numbers Per Round
Social Equity and Diversity
“Social Equity Partnership” Grants
Office of Social Equity
Community Reinvestment and Repair Fund
allowed for other adults), with a four plant per household cap.
Cannabis Research and Development
Prohibits Synthetically Produced Cannabinoids