Rhode Island Governor Proposes Recreational Cannabis with State-Owned Dispensaries

Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo’s fiscal year 2021 budget includes over $20 million in revenue that the Governor expects to be generated by legalizing cannabis for recreational use.  While the Governor’s support for legalization is welcomed news for the industry, there is a twist: dispensaries would be owned by the state and run by private operators, much like how states such as New Hampshire structure the sale of liquor.

The proposal calls for retail revenues to be split between the state (61%),… More

State House Amends and Passes Bill on Host Community Agreements

On Tuesday, I blogged about H 4367, a bill that would amend the statutory language that defines permissible scope of community impact fees in Host Community Agreements (“HCAs”) and would grant to Cannabis Control Commission authority to regulate HCA.  Soon after I posted the blog, the House passed the bill with two substantive amendments.

The first amendment, offered by Representative Kane, clarifies that while the 3% community impact fee is the only fee a locality can collect in an HCA,… More

State House to Consider Bill Amending Language on Host Community Agreements

A bill that would amend the statutory language that defines permissible scope of community impact fees in Host Community Agreements (“HCAs”) is making its way through the Massachusetts State House.  The bill, H 4367, would also give the Cannabis Control Commission (“CCC”) express regulatory authority over HCAs.

The issue the bill addresses is one that has created considerable uncertainty and controversy.  Under Massachusetts law,… More

Court Strikes Cambridge’s Permitting Preference Ordinance

In September 2019, the City of Cambridge enacted a local ordinance that effectively created a two-year moratorium on new cannabis retailers unless the retailers were certified Economic Empowerment applicants.  The ordinance prompted a lawsuit filed by Revolution Clinics, which owns an existing medical cannabis dispensary in Cambridge, in October 2019.   Under the ordinance, Revolution Clinics would not have been allowed to obtain a local business permit to sell adult-use cannabis until September 2021. … More

France to Test Medical Cannabis for Two Years

Cannabis consumption is a complex issue and is first and foremost a health matter. While it is forbidden in France for recreational or medical use, on October 25, 2019 the French Parliament (National Assembly) gave its consent to conduct an experimentation on medical use of cannabis starting in early 2020.

The French National Agency for Safety of the Medicinal products (ANSM) had already approved the initiative in July 2019,… More

West Virginia Is Accepting Medical Cannabis Applications Through February 18, 2020

West Virginia is currently accepting applications for its growing medical cannabis program.  West Virginia’s Department of Health and Human Resources has made available applications for dispensaries, growers, and processors on its website and will be accepting applications through February 18, 2020.

West Virginia’s medical cannabis legislation came into effect on April 19, 2017, and has been developed by Department regulations since that time that cover most significant aspects of medical cannabis operation. … More

Important Deadlines in Illinois for Craft Grower and Infuser Applicants

On January 7, 2019, the Illinois Department of Agriculture posted applications for Cannabis Craft Growers, Cannabis Infusers, and Cannabis Transporters.  Applications in all three categories are due March 16, 2020.

Illinois is currently in the midst of one of the most ambitious and widely-watched rollouts of adult use marijuana in the country.  The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation on January 2, 2020 closed the application period for adult use dispensaries,… More

Watch: Cannabis Investor Considerations for Private Fund Managers

The legal cannabis market is forecasted to reach nearly $30 billion by 2025, and investors are looking to get in on what many are calling the “green rush.” Attorneys from Foley Hoag’s private funds and cannabis practices present a webinar discussing the legal framework, regulation and practical fund structuring considerations for private fund managers looking to engage in these types of investments. They walk you through the current market and share lessons learned from their experience working in the space for years.

Topics Discussed

  • State law developments
  • Fund level considerations when implementing cannabis into a strategy
  • Federal tax considerations
  • Strategies for regulatory compliance by fund managers

Speakers

Union Organizes First Cannabis Shop in Massachusetts

In November 2019, United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) became the first union to organize employees at a Massachusetts cannabis company.  According to the Boston Globe, two-thirds of Sira Naturals, Inc.’s employees, who work at its cultivation and manufacturing facility and its dispensaries, voted to join UFCW.  Sira issued its own announcement indicating that in advance of the vote it entered a labor peace agreement with UFCW allowing union representatives to come onsite and talk with employees about unionizing.… More

Partner Kevin Conroy Joined the Vermont Attorney General for a Panel on Northeast Cannabis Lessons

Partner Kevin Conroy joined Vermont Attorney General T.J. Donovan for a conversation about the recreational industry in New England. Vermont legalized cannabis in 2018, and the discussion focused on challenges and lessons state legislators can learn from its neighbors like Maine and Massachusetts, which both legalized adult use cannabis in 2016.

Other speakers included Erik Gunderson, director of Maine’s Office of Marijuana Policy; Charlotte Hanna,… More