When the Delaware State Legislature reconvenes for its 2022 legislative sessions in January, Rep. Ed Osienski has plans to reintroduce an adult-use cannabis legalization bill. This past spring, an adult-use cannabis bill stalled after a debate over the inclusion of a social equity fund.
“I hope to get this done before Washington takes steps because this will give Delaware businesses a head start before the federal government changes its regulations,” Osienski said. “States that didn’t take this action will be slow starting out, whereas states that have will have a head start and be able to sell their product across state borders.”
The social equity fund included in H.B. 150, the previous bill, provided grants or loans to minority business owners to operate cannabis businesses in areas disproportionately impacted by prohibition. When Osienski filed an amendment to address concerns over how to financially support the fund, new concerns were raised that he was weakening the bill.
Osienski working to clarify that a commission will work to create a social equity fund for minority applicants. The new legislation will levy a 15% tax on adult-use cannabis sales and includes a $10,000 licensing fee for businesses.