Cannabis in Wyoming

Wyoming has some of the strictest marijuana laws in the United States.[1][2] Cannabis itself is not allowed for medical purposes, but a 2015 law allows limited use of non-psychoactive CBD oil.

Possession of under three ounces of cannabis is a misdemeanor that can be punished with up to a year in jail and a $1000 fine; possession of over three ounces is a felony.[3]


Wyoming passed laws banning cannabis in the early 20th century, though sources differ as to the exact date: 1913[4] or 1929.[5]

Medical use[edit]

In July 2015, a law took effect allowing the use of CBD oil to treat seizures. The law is narrow and does not provide for in-state access.[6]

Failed attempts to change legal status[edit]

In 2015 the Wyoming chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) gathered signatures to place legal medical marijuana on the 2016 election ballot as a ballot initiative. Wyoming has some of the most stringent ballot initiative requirements in the country, due to which the state has not seen a public initiative reach the ballot since 1991.[7]

In 2016, legislation in the Wyoming House of Representatives to decriminalize possession of an ounce or less of marijuana (sponsored by State Representative James Byrd of Cheyenne) failed for the third year in a row.[8][9]

In 2017, supporters sought 25,000 signatures to put the Peggy A. Kelley Wyoming Cannabis Act of 2016 on the 2018 ballot as a public initiative, but failed to gather the required signatures by the 14 February deadline.[10]


An October 2014 poll of Wyoming residents conducted by the University of Wyoming found that 35% supported legalizing the use of marijuana by adults, while 60% opposed such a measure.[11] However, a large majority favored allowing adults to use marijuana if prescribed by a physician (72% support, 25% oppose).[11] Compared to a previous survey in 2000, the 2014 results showed a modest increase in support for legalized personal marijuana use and no change in support of medical marijuana use.[11] A 2016 study by the University of Wyoming showed that 81 percent of Wyoming residents supported legalizing prescribed medical cannabis.[10]


  1. ^ Chilton Tippin, Is Wyoming caught in Colorado's hotbox?, Laramie Boomerang (January 4, 2015).
  2. ^ Associated Press, Debate looms over legalizing marijuana in Wyoming (December 22, 2013).
  3. ^ "Wyoming Laws & Penalties".
  4. ^ Sarah E. Boslaugh (8 December 2015). The SAGE Encyclopedia of Pharmacology and Society. SAGE Publications. pp. 1758–. ISBN 978-1-5063-4618-2.
  5. ^ Richard Davenport-Hines (29 November 2012). The Pursuit of Oblivion: A Social History of Drugs. Orion Publishing Group. pp. 126–. ISBN 978-1-78022-542-5.
  6. ^ Wyoming, Marijuana Policy Project (accessed April 9, 2016).
  7. ^ "Wyoming marijuana: State panel studies impact of legalization". The Cannabist.
  8. ^ "WY HB0029 - 2015 - Regular Session". LegiScan.
  9. ^ Trevor Brown, Marijuana decriminalization bill fails, Wyoming Tribune Eagle (February 10, 2016).
  10. ^ a b "Measure To Legalize Marijuana Will Not Appear On 2018 Ballot". Wyoming Public Media. 2017-02-04. Retrieved 2017-02-17.
  11. ^ a b c "Wyoming Residents Disapprove of Personal Marijuana Use".