Federal Cannabis Legalization: Policy Issues to be Addressed

For the first time in nearly a decade all three branches of the Federal Government are controlled by Democrats. The Democratic Party has a plethora of agenda items it is looking to enact within this unified government. One of those policy issues is the federal legalization of cannabis.

House Democrats recently passed the MORE Act, which would federally legalize cannabis. The House leadership intends to re-introduce the MORE Act and pass it in short order.… More

Arizona Off to the Races

Unlike states like South Dakota and New Jersey, who are experiencing stumbling blocks with respect to the implementation of their voter backed adult-use cannabis referendums, Arizona has already hit the ground running. By way of background, Arizona’s Proposition 207 was passed by 60% of voters, and broadly legalized the possession and use of marijuana for adults aged 21 years and older,… More

Emerging Issues in Cannabis and Privacy

Though the final results of the 2020 presidential race took a few days to become clear, it was obvious by the morning of November 4 that cannabis legalization had run the table: from deep red Montana, South Dakota, and Mississippi, to purple Arizona, and blue New Jersey, voters overwhelmingly favored state ballot initiatives to legalize adult use and medical cannabis.  The same Election Day, California voters approved an aggressive expansion of the California Consumer Protection Act (the “CCPA”) (already among the strictest state privacy laws) into the California Privacy Rights Act,… More

Sea Change at the CCC

As the pages of the calendar turn to January and turbulent 2020 comes to a close, new faces will be taking their posts on the Commonwealth’s Cannabis Control Commission. Beginning in January, Nurys Z. Camargo and Bruce Stebbins will begin 5-year terms as Commissioners, after Governor Baker, Treasurer Goldberg and Attorney General Healey recently announced their appointments.  Camargo will be replacing Commissioner Shaleen Title, whose term ended on August 31,… More

A Historic Vote and the Future of Federal Cannabis Policy

Last Friday, the U.S. House of Representatives took the historic step of voting on and passing the MORE Act. The legislation would legalize cannabis within the United States and remove criminal penalties associated with cannabis. Although the law has little chance of passing the U.S. Senate by years end, the vote in favor of this bill cannot be overstated. First, it ends the decades old probation of cannabis, thus federally legalizing the use of cannabis in the United States where 2 out of 3 Americans already live in states where cannabis is legal.… More

War and Peace: New Jersey Appellate Court Questions Cannabis Application Grading

What do baseball umpires, war and peace, cannabis, and relative error all have in common? A lot in the opinion of the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division (“Appellate Division”), which issued a ruling today related to the 2018 Request for Applications (“RFA”). While much is addressed in the seventy-five (75) page decision, the net effect is this: the New Jersey Department of Health (“DOH”) – or,… More

Association of Cannabis Regulators Formed to Develop Regulatory Best Practices

Regulators from 19 states have joined together in forming the Cannabis Regulators Association (“CANNRA”). The goal of CANNRA is to share institutional knowledge and regulatory best practices in order to assist federal, state, and local jurisdictions that have approved or are considering the legalization of cannabis. CANNRA is not an advocacy group, nor does it take a position either for or against cannabis legalization, but instead is designed as an informational clearinghouse to help regulators make informed decisions in creating,… More

Where Should I Locate My Cannabis Business in New Jersey?

As the saying about real estate goes, it’s all about “location, location, location.” The same rule holds true and carries substantial weight when determining where to locate your business in the competitive New Jersey cannabis licensing process – both for medical, and as anticipated to continue in the adult use cannabis program. As a result, a common question we as practitioners are asked is “what towns should I be looking in?” So why does location matter in the cannabis licensing process in New Jersey,… More

The Cannabis Election

The race for who will be America’s next President remains a cliffhanger as of early evening on November 4. Many observers thought this election would be a clear-cut win for former Vice President Biden but turned out to be significantly closer than most people imagined with the outcome still unknown and with many votes still left to be counted.

However, one election outcome that was unanimously clear is the one that occurred in five states that had ballot measures regarding the legalization of cannabis for adult and medical use.… More

Certain Cannabis Industry Workers Are Not “Employees” Under Federal Labor Law; Could Be Covered by Mass. Law

In a recent decision, the Regional Director of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for Region 1 (covering most of New England) found that a majority of employees of a cannabis cultivation and processing facility were “agricultural laborers” within the meaning of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and therefore not subject to the jurisdiction of the NLRB.  The decision means that the union can attempt to organize the workers pursuant to Massachusetts law,… More