The Stay is Lifted – NJ Medical Cannabis Expands

“The stay previously entered by this court is hereby vacated.”

As many are well-aware, the cannabis industry has been plagued by litigation, and New Jersey’s recent experience is no different. Indeed, New Jersey has taken great strides to expand its medical marketplace, with the patient population recently eclipsing 100,000 total patients. Moreover, the New Jersey Department of Health, Medical Marijuana Program (“DOH”) was on pace towards expanding access and production to meet this patient demand,… More

Virginia: The Road to Adult Use Cannabis Legalization

The Virginia General Assembly is currently considering adult use cannabis legalization this session. Governor Northam has made it a priority. The legislative black caucus has endorsed it and the legislative sponsors in both chambers are senior members of their caucuses.

However, there remain a few hurdles to passing this legislation.

First, the adult use legislation does not guarantee adult use cannabis licenses to the existing medical cannabis operators in the Commonwealth.… More

City of Northampton Nixes 3% Impact Fee in Host Community Agreements

In what appears to be a win-win for the city and cannabis businesses, the City of Northampton announced it is dropping the 3% community impact fee it collects from marijuana establishments and medical marijuana treatment centers. Instead, the City will collect an impact fee only after identifying a specific cost incurred by the community. The change applies to both existing and prospective licensees.

Massachusetts law allows communities to collect a fee—limited to 3% of gross sales and for the first 5 years—in order to pay for costs associated with hosting a cannabis business.… More

Massachusetts’ Highest Court to Hear Two Cases on Municipality Discretion in Cannabis Licensing

On February, 3, the highest court in Massachusetts, the Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”) will hear two cases involving municipalities’ scope of authority in allowing adult-use cannabis businesses, Mederi Inc. v. City of Salem and CommCan, Inc. v. Town of Mansfield.

The facts leading up to the Mederi case began nearly three years ago in 2018 when Mederi Inc. was denied a host community agreement (“HCA”) with the city of Salem following a Committee of applications for more than the City’s five allotted marijuana retailer slots.… More

NLRB Division of Advice Weighs in on Cannabis Workers

As we previously blogged, “agricultural employees” are excluded from coverage under the federal National Labor Relations Act, which governs unionization.  The National Labor Relations Board’s Division of Advice (which determines which cases to prosecute) has now weighed in for the first time as to what this means for cannabis grow workers.  In an opinion just released, the Division of Advice found that workers in an indoor greenhouse are excluded from the NLRA’s coverage because they “substantially engage in the primary agricultural functions of harvesting,… More

CCC Fills Final Vacant Post

The Cannabis Control Commission has filled its last vacant seat, ending a prolonged stretch without a full roster of Commissioners.  Filling the void left by Commissioner McBride’s resignation late last year, Governor Baker, Treasurer Goldberg and Attorney General Healey recently appointed Ava Callender Concepcion as the Commission’s newest member.  A Dorchester native and graduate of New England Law School, Concepcion joins the Commission from the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office where she most recently served as Director of Governmental Affairs and External Partnership. … More

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