Cannabis legalization in the United States is set for substantial shifts in 2024. With several states preparing to put cannabis legalization on the ballot, this year could be another landmark moment in the journey toward wider acceptance and regulation of cannabis. Here’s an overview of the key states and their potential impacts.

States Expected to Have Cannabis Ballot Initiatives in 2024

Florida is expected to be a significant battleground for cannabis legalization in 2024. The state, which already has a robust medical marijuana program, is seeing strong advocacy for recreational use. If legal recreational cannabis passes in Florida, it could potentially set a trend for other states in the Southeast.
Key Points:

  • Florida’s ballot initiative aims to allow adults 21 and over to possess and use cannabis.
  • It proposes a regulatory framework for the cultivation, distribution, and sale of cannabis.
  • Economic projections suggest substantial tax revenue and job creation.

On February 6, 2024, Governor Josh Shapiro (D) unveiled his 2024-2025 budget, which includes a proposal to legalize and regulate cannabis for adults, to keep up with “Friggin’ Ohio”. The plan aims to legalize cannabis by July 1, 2024, with licensed shops commencing sales on January 1, 2025. The proposal also includes a 20% tax on the wholesale price of products sold through the regulated system.

However, it is up to the legislators to implement this policy change. The House Health Committee is currently holding informational hearings on adult-use legalization, and a bipartisan legalization bill has been introduced in the Senate.

In July 2023, Senators Sharif Street (D) and Dan Laughlin (R) introduced SB 846, legislation to legalize and regulate adult-use cannabis in Pennsylvania. The bill would allow adults 21 and older to purchase, possess, and gift up to 30 grams of cannabis, and it includes provisions for expunging past cannabis convictions.

SB 846 also establishes a Cannabis Regulatory Control Board to oversee licensing and regulation of both medical and adult-use cannabis. The board is tasked with developing policies to prioritize diversity and full participation by communities disproportionately impacted by cannabis prohibition. With the governor’s support, a Democratic majority in the House, and significant backing in the Senate Republican caucus, there is a strong possibility for legalization in Pennsylvania shortly.


Hawaii’s bill for legalized recreational cannabis died in April 2024. Despite being the sixth state to legalize medical cannabis in 2000, Hawaii fell behind in broader reforms under Governor David Ige, who opposed legalization. His successor, Governor Joshua Green, expressed support for adult-use cannabis before his election.

In March 2023, the Hawaii Senate passed an adult-use legalization bill with a decisive 22-3 vote, but it stalled in the House. House Speaker Scott Saiki delayed discussions until after the legislative session, citing the need for a comprehensive bill addressing federal restrictions and law enforcement concerns, but no progress was made.

As the 2024 legislative session begins, adult-use cannabis legalization remains a priority for the Senate but not for the House. The House and Senate have both passed different versions of three important bills to expand cannabis justice

In early April, Idaho lawmakers adjourned the 2023 legislative session, leaving a Republican-sponsored bill to legalize medical cannabis without advancement.

Idaho remains among the few states that have yet to adopt any significant cannabis policy reform in recent years. However, advocates with Kind Idaho are determined to change this. After falling short of collecting enough signatures for a medical cannabis ballot initiative in 2022, the coalition of patients and allies is making a renewed effort with a new measure for 2024.

The 2024 proposal closely mirrors the previous initiative. If it qualifies for the ballot and gains voter approval, it would establish a medical cannabis program overseen by the Department of Health and Welfare for patients with serious health conditions. The initiative would also allow patients to appoint caregivers and create a system of medical cannabis dispensaries.

South Dakota
After defending the voter-approved medical cannabis law in South Dakota’s legislative session earlier this year, activists might need to mobilize once more. Opponents have filed a 2024 ballot initiative proposal in July to repeal the state’s medical cannabis program, posing a significant threat to the progress made.

Simultaneously, with Minnesota’s adult-use cannabis legalization program coming online, South Dakota activists are hopeful to make another attempt at legalizing cannabis for adult use in 2024. They believe that higher voter turnout during a general election year could improve the chances of success.

Previously, a 2020 ballot initiative to legalize cannabis in South Dakota was overturned by a lawsuit. The Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) spearheaded efforts to reintroduce the issue on the ballot in November 2022. However, the statutory initiative, known as Measure 27, which aimed to legalize cannabis for adults, was narrowly defeated, with 52.9% voting against and 47.1% in favor during the midterm elections, where voter turnout was significantly lower than in 2020.

The fight continues as activists gear up for what could be another pivotal year for cannabis reform in South Dakota.

Wisconsin stands as an outlier in cannabis policy reform, lagging behind neighboring states like Michigan, Illinois, and Minnesota, which have legalized cannabis for adult use. Despite overwhelming public support for reform, Wisconsin remains one of the few states without a compassionate medical cannabis law and one of only 19 states that still impose jail time for simple possession.

Statewide policy changes in Wisconsin rely solely on legislative action, as citizen-initiated ballot measures are not permitted. Unfortunately, legislative leaders have consistently refused to bring cannabis reform bills to a vote. In early 2024, Assembly member Patrick Snyder introduced AB 1040, a medical cannabis bill criticized for its limitations, including the exclusion of smokeable cannabis and overly restrictive qualifications for pain patients. The Senate rejected the bill’s state-run dispensary model, and Assembly Speaker Robin Vos indicated no interest in negotiating a workable solution. The only hope for aligning Wisconsin’s cannabis laws with voter sentiment in 2024 was in the bipartisan decriminalization bill, AB 861, which failed to pass.


Implications of 2024 Ballot Initiatives

The 2024 ballot initiatives for cannabis legalization could have far-reaching implications. Successful initiatives could:

  • Accelerate Federal Reform: State-level successes might pressure federal authorities to reconsider cannabis’s legal status and create a more unified national policy.
  • Boost Economic Growth: Legalization typically leads to job creation, increased tax revenues, and new business opportunities.
  • Advance Social Justice: Many initiatives include provisions for expunging past convictions, promoting social equity, and addressing the disproportionate impacts of the War on Drugs on marginalized communities.
  • Enhance Public Health: Regulated markets ensure safer products and more informed consumption, potentially reducing the harms associated with unregulated use.

2024 is a Year of Change in the Cannabis Industry

The momentum at the state level remains strong, with 38 states and Washington, DC, allowing medical cannabis use. Recent legalizations in Maryland, Minnesota, and Ohio highlight the continued expansion of the cannabis industry. As 2024 approaches, the potential for significant advancements in cannabis legalization is certain. States like Florida and Pennsylvania show promise in 2024 and are leading the charge. These ballot initiatives reflect a growing recognition of the benefits of legalization, from economic gains to social justice and public health improvements.

For over 15 years, Mosca Seeds has been a trusted name in the cannabis industry, offering award-winning strains and expert knowledge in cannabis genetics. Whether you’re a seasoned grower or a newcomer, our top-quality seeds can help you achieve the best results. Explore our selection today and experience the Mosca Seeds difference.