Maryland Prepares for Launch of Cannabis Legalization July 1

The Old Line State is anxiously anticipating the official start of legal adult-use cannabis as lawmakers scramble to finalize legislation before Senate Bill 516 takes effect July 1.

Maryland state congressional leaders approved cannabis legalization last month and are now putting the final touches on amendments meant to settle tax rates, social equity, and dual licensing for current medical marijuana operators.

So far, the state has called for around 600 initial licenses and an unspecified amount of microbusinesses available for smaller operators. Consumption space licenses will also be available, but lawmakers have yet to say how many there will be. Social equity applications would be open for anyone with 65 percent business ownership and, at least five of the past ten years, lived in unfairly impacted areas.

“We want to get this moving. There’s a lot of pieces to this,” Senate President Bill Ferguson (D) said.

Maryland is expected to rake in $1 billion in legal cannabis sales within the first two years, with entrepreneurs excited to get a piece of the proverbial pie.

Those wishing to join the Old Line State’s up-and-coming marijuana market should attend Lucky Leaf Expo Baltimore, taking place July 21 and 22 at the Baltimore Convention Center. Featuring dozens of dynamic speakers, engaging exhibits, and high-value networking opportunities, the event will mark the first business-to-business conference and trade show in Maryland’s newly minted adult-use industry.

Registration is open now. Interested speakers, sponsors, and exhibitors can email to learn more.