Tag: implementation

Massachusetts Officials Seeking Candidates for Cannabis Board

BOSTON (AP) — The race is on to assemble the five-member board that will oversee recreational and medical marijuana in Massachusetts.

Under a new state law approved last month, Gov. Charlie Baker, Attorney General Maura Healey and state Treasurer Deb Goldberg will each name one member of the regulatory board, and the three elected officials will together appoint the remaining two members.

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The commission is supposed to be in place by Sept. 1.

Healey says the attorney general’s office will accept applications until Aug. 15 for both her individual and joint appointment.

Goldberg, who will select the chair of the panel, has said she is dedicated to finding commissioners who will ensure a “safe and timely implementation” of the marijuana industry in Massachusetts.

Retail cannabis shops are expected to begin opening in mid-2018.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

A Brief Guide to Massachusetts’ New Cannabis Law

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker signed a sweeping cannabis bill into law on Friday, marking a milestone in a regulatory battle that began when state voters approved an adult-use legalization measure in November.

“I worry terribly about what the consequences over time will be.”

Gov. Charlie Baker

The new law, the result of a legislative compromise struck last week between the House and Senate, rewrites much of the voter-approved initiative—raising allowable tax rates, amending rules around local cannabis bans, and adjusting details of the agency that will oversee the state’s cannabis program.

Even as he signed the bill, Baker, a Republican, expressed doubts about legalization. He said he remains hopeful that the lawmakers’ changes would address some of his biggest concerns.

“I worry terribly about what the consequences over time will be, and having spent a lot of time talking to folks in Colorado and in Washington … there are a lot of pitfalls we have to avoid,” he said.

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“But, look,” he continued, “the people voted this and I think it’s important that we put the program in place and deliver a workable, safe, productive recreational marijuana market for them in Massachusetts.”

Among the biggest changes under the law is the boost in allowable taxes. The voter-approved initiative set maximum rates at 12% in combined state and local taxes. The new law raises that to 20%. Medical cannabis will remain untaxed.

As in many other legal states, local jurisdictions will have the opportunity to ban the cannabis industry. But the process under the new law is unusual: In communities where a majority of residents voted against November’s legalization measure, elected officials can enact a ban themselves. In areas where residents approved the ballot question, a voter referendum would be required to ban or restrict cannabis businesses.

Some legal experts have said that the compromise, which removes the ability of some voters to oppose a ban, could leave the law open to a constitutional challenge.

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Packaging and labeling rules under the new law will require cannabis products to be sold in child-resistant packaging, and THC levels are required to be included on product labels. “We want it to be a responsible industry that sells safe products to consenting adults and doesn’t market products to children and teenagers,” said Democratic Sen. Jason Lewis, who led a delegation of legislators on a fact-finding trip to Colorado last year and later opposed the ballot question.

“We take elected officials at their word that there will be no more delays in implementation of the legal sales system.”

Jim Borghesani, spokesperson for 2016 legalization campaign

Shortly after Baker signed the bill, state Treasurer Deb Goldberg, a Democrat, announced her five appointees to the Cannabis Advisory Board. The board will offer advice and recommendations to the yet-to-be-formed Cannabis Control Commission, which will oversee both adult-use and medical programs.

Some of Goldberg’s appointees have experience in the medical cannabis industry. They include:

  • Norton Arbeláez, who founded a medical cannabis center in Denver and advised Colorado state regulators.
  • Alan Balsam, the former director of public health in Brookline, MA, and an adjuct associate professor at Tufts Medical School and Boston University School of Public Health.
  • Michael Dundas, the president and CEO of Massachusetts dispensary Sage Naturals, who helped form the Commonwealth Dispensary Association.
  • Jaime Lewis, the founder of cannabis product manufacturer Mountain Medicine and a founding member of the Cannabis Business Alliance. Formerly the chief operations officer for a Colorado dispensary, she now works at Mayflower Medicinals.
  • Shanel Lindsay, an attorney and legalization advocate. A former law clerk for the Massachusetts superior court, she since founded biotech and medical cannabis company Ardent, where she serves as president.

Baker and Democratic Attorney General Maura Healey must also by next week appoint five members each to the board.

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As for the Cannabis Control Commission, a five-member board that must be formed by Sept. 1, the state budget for the fiscal year that started July 1 includes only $2 million to fund the group. Goldberg, responsible for naming the board’s chairman, has said the commission would need up to $10 million in the first year.

“If they need additional resources, they will get additional resources,” Baker said Friday.

Jim Borghesani, spokesman for the ballot question group, found the governor’s pledge reassuring.

“Right now a $2 million appropriation doesn’t even cover the software that’s necessary to get this system up and running,” he said.

In a statement, Borghesani added: “We take elected officials at their word that there will be no more delays in implementation of the legal sales system.”

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Nevada Officials to Consider Emergency Rule on Cannabis Distribution

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval last week authorized state regulators to consider an emergency regulation that would allow officials to determine whether the state has enough marijuana distributors to keep its retail shops supplied.

Sandoval’s approval came this past Thursday, after dispensaries across the state reported higher than expected demand for marijuana since recreational sales of the drug became legal in Nevada on Saturday. The Nevada Tax Commission is expected to take up the regulations Thursday of this week.

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The measure voters approved in November legalizing the sales dictates that licensed alcohol wholesalers have the exclusive rights to cannabis distribution licenses for 18 months. But no alcohol wholesalers have completed the licensing process.

“We are now informed that many have only days or weeks of product to be sold.”

Michael Willden, Gov. Sandoval’s chief of staff

A judge’s order in an ongoing court fight between the state and the alcohol distributors does not allow cannabis dispensaries to transport marijuana from a cultivation facility to the store. Before recreational sales began last weekend, most dispensaries selling medical marijuana were authorized to serve as their own middleman.

About a week before sales began, Sandoval’s office had indicated he wouldn’t go for an emergency regulation for distribution. He reversed his stance after sales exceeded expectations.

“We previously were informed the dispensaries may have up to 60 day supplies of product,” Michael Willden, Sandoval’s chief of staff, said in an email. “We are now informed that many have only days or weeks of product to be sold.”

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Those 21 and older with a valid ID can now buy up to an ounce of cannabis. The Nevada Department of Taxation has licensed 47 dispensaries to sell recreational marijuana.

The department on Thursday said the shops have recorded well over 40,000 retail transactions, and some of them sold more than double of what they had expected.

Carson City District Judge James Wilson last month ruled the regulation the commission adopted in May that could have opened distribution up to others was invalid.

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Wilson said the Tax Commission engaged in “ad-hoc rulemaking” outside the legal process when it made a preliminary determination earlier this year that the liquor industry didn’t have enough interest in entering the cannaibs business to ensure enough distributors would seek applications to meet the anticipated high demand.

“The department has not determined whether exclusively licensing liquor wholesalers as temporary marijuana distributors will result in an insufficient number of licenses,” Wilson wrote.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Massachusetts Update: Sorting out the Cannabis Conundrum

BOSTON (AP) — After a week of sharp divisions and heated rhetoric over the future of the state’s recreational marijuana law, it’s now up to a conference committee of six legislators to try and sort everything out.

On one hand, there’s a House bill that infuriated pro-legalization activists by proposing a major overhaul of the voter-approved law. On the other, a more restrained Senate bill won praise from the groups behind the November ballot question.

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Democratic Rep. Mark Cusack, the House bill’s lead author, suggested before the votes that the two chambers were in about 80 percent agreement on their respective approaches.

There is, in fact, more common ground than readily apparent given the dialogue of the past week.

The House repealed the ballot question and wrote an entirely new law; the Senate keeps the existing law while offering changes.

Neither the House nor Senate changed the current legal possession limit of up to 1 ounce of cannabis or home growing provisions that permit up to a dozen plants per household.

Each place state oversight of recreational and medical marijuana under the Cannabis Control Commission, which would become larger and ostensibly more independent than under the ballot initiative that puts it under control of the state treasurer.

Both bills allow medical marijuana dispensaries to transition into for-profit companies, but eliminate the head start those companies had been given over other applicants for recreational licenses. Both set guidelines for the testing of all marijuana products by independent labs, and standards for packaging, labeling and marketing.

Both adopt diversity measures designed to level the playing field for minority and women cannabis entrepreneurs, and address the historically disproportionate impact the “war on drugs” had on minority neighborhoods. And with no currently reliable test for marijuana impairment, both ask a task force to study issues around driving under the influence.

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Similarities aside, barriers to reaching a deal by the Legislature’s self-imposed July 1 deadline are many.

A few:

“Repeal and Replace” or “Amend and Improve”

Perhaps the most fundamental difference between the competing bills: The House repealed the ballot question and wrote an entirely new law; the Senate keeps the existing law while offering changes.

More than just legislative sausage-making, it’s a central question conference committee members must resolve before doing much else. Do they start from scratch as the House did or keep on the books — with modest revisions — the law 1.8 million Massachusetts voters approved? The answer may well dictate the parameters of the final bill.

High on Taxes?

The sizeable gulf between marijuana tax rates — 28 percent in the House, 12 percent in the Senate — garnered the most public attention during the past week’s debates.

It may also be the easiest issue to resolve should lawmakers simply agree to split the difference. But the underlying issues are more complicated.

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Senators insisted on a tax low enough to encourage consumers to buy from licensed marijuana stores, thereby crushing the underground market for the drug. House lawmakers sought a tax high enough to pay for what the bill described as a “rigorous regulatory scheme” for the cannabis industry. The House also set an ambitious goal of directing $50 million in marijuana revenues to substance abuse treatment programs.

It’s unclear if a compromise tax of about 20 percent satisfies either or both sets of objectives.

Power to the People?

The House grants local governing bodies — city councils and town meetings for example — power to ban or limit retail shops from opening in their communities. The Senate bill leaves unchanged the current law that requires a voter referendum to shut the door on marijuana establishments.

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There is no readily apparent compromise, so barring a creative solution one side must give on this issue.

If No Agreement, What Then?

Failure by legislators to reach a deal by next Saturday would simply leave the voter-approved law intact, and allow Treasurer Deb Goldberg to begin appointing the Cannabis Control Commission. But a possible scenario in the event of deadlock would be to have conferees separate out and approve items they have consensus on, while resolving to address thornier issues further down the road.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Massachusetts Senate Passes Cannabis Bill Calling for Revisions to Law

BOSTON (AP) — The Massachusetts Senate passed a bill Thursday calling for revisions to the state voter-approved recreational marijuana law, setting the stage for negotiations with the House, which just a day earlier backed a more far-reaching overhaul.

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The debate in the Senate over the reshaping of the law which allows adults to possess up to 1 ounce of marijuana and grow up to 12 cannabis plants per household focused mostly on regulatory matters. It unfolded after the House angered many supporters of legalized marijuana by voting to repeal the existing law and replace it with a measure that would, among other things, raise the tax rate on marijuana from 12 percent to 28 percent.

“We should not repeal and replace. We should amend and improve.”

Sen. Patricia Jehlen, Marijuana Policy Committee co-chair

The Senate bill, approved on a 30-5 vote, would keep the current measure in place but with proposed changes in the way both recreational and medical marijuana would be overseen by the state.

“We should not repeal and replace … we should amend and improve,” said Sen. Patricia Jehlen, co-chair of the Legislature’s Marijuana Policy Committee, at the outset of debate. “That is what this bill will do.”

“We need to try to restore some trust in government by not overriding the will of the people,” added the Somerville Democrat, a veiled reference to criticism leveled at the House bill by pro-marijuana activists.

The next step will be naming a conference committee made up of three senators and three representatives that will attempt to reach a compromise. Legislative leaders self-imposed a July 1 deadline to deliver a bill to Republican Gov. Charlie Baker’s desk, acknowledging that further delays would jeopardize the planned July 1, 2018 start of retail marijuana sales.

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The Senate bill holds the tax rate at a maximum of 12 percent, as approved by voters. Keeping taxes relatively low, Jehlen said, would entice consumers to buy cannabis from legal suppliers, while a higher tax might persuade them to continue purchasing from an illegal dealer or perhaps even drive to Maine, where recreational marijuana will be taxed at 10 percent.

The House and Senate bills both change the structure of the Cannabis Control Commission, the state agency that will regulate marijuana. The ballot question called for a three-member panel appointed by the state treasurer, while lawmakers want a five-person board consisting of members named by the treasurer, attorney general and governor.

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A key difference, however, is while the House envisions all five commissioners working full-time at their jobs, under the Senate bill only the chairman of the panel would be full-time and the others unpaid volunteers.

Sen. Jason Lewis, a Winchester Democrat who opposed marijuana legalization, promised to support the Senate bill but sought assurances that the cannabis industry would not become dominated by large national companies.

“We don’t want to see big marijuana like we have big tobacco or big alcohol,” said Lewis, who joined other lawmakers in calling for programs that encouraged women, minorities, veterans and small farmers to own or find employment in legal marijuana businesses.

Senators adopted several amendments before the final vote Thursday night, including one that would make it easier for people to erase past convictions for possessing amounts of marijuana that are now legal in Massachusetts.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

California Lawmakers to Consider Cannabis Rules Thursday

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California would set standards for organic marijuana, allow samples at county fairs and permit home deliveries under legislation set to be considered by lawmakers Thursday as the state prepares for next year’s start of legal marijuana sales.

Lawmakers and Gov. Jerry Brown’s administration are working to merge California’s new voter-approved adult-use cannabis law with the state’s longstanding medical marijuana program. They have settled on an array of regulations to protect consumers and public safety while ensuring taxes are collected.

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The provisions were tucked into the state budget agreement between Brown and top legislative Democrats announced this week following months of negotiations with businesses operating illegally or in the legal medical marijuana field and investors who want to enter the nation’s largest legal marijuana market.

“One of the biggest challenges we have is taking a multi-billion-dollar industry out of the dark and now into the light,” said Sen. Mike McGuire, a Democrat whose district includes much of Northern California’s prime marijuana growing region.

By 2018, state officials must have crafted regulations and rules governing the emerging legal marijuana market with an estimated annual sales value of $7 billion — ranging from where and how plants can be grown to setting guidelines to track the buds from fields to stores. Full legal sales are expected to roll out later in the year.

“There are thousands of businesses currently engaged in this type of commerce.”

Hezekiah Allen , California Growers Association

In general, the state will treat cannabis like alcohol, allowing people 21 and older to legally possess up to an ounce of marijuana and grow six marijuana plants at home.

The budget agreement includes $118 million to pay for startup costs for the newly regulated industry, including technology and staff to work on regulations and issue licenses. The state will open a tax office in the remote region north of San Francisco so marijuana businesses can pay their taxes in cash without having to drive long distances with thousands of dollars.

Because marijuana remains illegal under federal law, cannabis businesses generally cannot open bank accounts, conduct credit card transactions or otherwise use the federally regulated banking system.

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The legislation outlines baseline rules for marijuana businesses and was crafted to promote a new artisanal industry in a state that has embraced craft beer and small wineries.

It would require state regulators to come up with rules for marijuana producers to call their goods organic — an important designation for California consumers that cannot be used on cannabis under federal rules. The state would also create standards for official marijuana varietals and growing regions, known as appellations, so craft producers can distinguish their products based on the unique strain and growing conditions like winemakers do.

With temporary licenses from the state, businesses would be allowed to sell cannabis and provide samples at county fairs, regional agricultural associations and cannabis festivals.

Growers would be allowed to form agricultural cooperatives without running afoul of antitrust laws. Businesses would be able to legally grow, distribute and sell their own product, though firms performing safety tests will have to be independent, with no financial ties to growers or retailers.

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Keeping an open container of marijuana in a vehicle would be illegal like it is for alcohol in California, except for people with a medical card or doctor’s note.

Brown and lawmakers agreed to allow sellers with no public storefronts to deliver marijuana directly to customers.

“There are thousands of businesses currently engaged in this type of commerce,” Hezekiah Allen, executive director of the California Growers Association. “The more of them that can get licensed, the better off the state is going to be, the faster we’ll be able to get rid of the criminal element and the faster we’ll be able to make sure the product is safe and tested.”


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Massachusetts Tobacco Wholesalers Want a Piece of the Cannabis Pie

The tobacco industry in Massachusetts is trying to get a piece of what’s expected to be a lucrative state  cannabis market, with cigarette wholesalers now lobbying state officials to get in on the action.

The tobacco wholesalers want to transfer to the cannabis industry a system they already use to track, deliver, and tax all cigarettes sold in Massachusetts. They’re reportedly asking state officials to require that cannabis producers to sell all their products through them—much like how alcohol goes through a wholesaler on its way to bars and retail stores.

“Rather than reinvent the wheel, let’s use the most successful, proven encrypted tax stamp program we have: the one assigned to cigarettes,” Paul Caron, a former state legislator who now serves as executive director of tobacco trade group the Northeast Association of Wholesale Distributors, told the Boston Globe.

“My members are willing to collect all the taxes on behalf of the state and stamp any marijuana product being distributed for sale,” he said.

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This idea has drawn criticism, however, including from some cannabis legalization advocates. Jim Borghesani, the communications director for the Yes on 4 coalition that led the adult-use cannabis ballot effort, worries the structure could end up raising the retail price of cannabis.“The last thing this state needs is another three-tiered commerce system that gouges consumers and enriches middlemen,” Borghesani said.

Borghesani added that marijuana-specific distribution systems in other states work effectively enough that Massachusetts lacks a good reason to grant a monopoly to a group of tobacco wholesalers.

Other opponents have accused tobacco wholesalers of trying to replicate the alcohol industry’s fairly controversial distribution scheme, which locks retailers into long-term business relationships with wholesalers.

The group of tobacco wholesalers, the Globe reports, made its pitch to both Massachusetts legislators and state Treasurer Deborah Goldberg, who will oversee the new Cannabis Control Commission under the current set of laws.

It’s certainly not the first time companies in other so-called vice industries have taken a stance on the cannabis market. During election season last year, the company behind Sam Adams beer stated in an SEC filing that cannabis legalization in Massachusetts could cause alcohol sales to slide.

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In Nevada, no stranger vice industries, cannabis was initially required to be distributed by alcohol wholesalers when voters passed a legalization measure in November. When the Nevada Tax Commission adopted temporary rules allowing other entities to become licensed distributors, alcohol wholesalers sued. Late last month, a state judge granted their request to freeze the rollout of adult-use cannabis—a move that could delay the state’s planned July 1 launch of its adult-use cannabis market.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Florida Medical Marijuana Legislation Still Stagnating in Legislature

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Simmering frustration with the Florida Legislature’s inability to agree on a framework for the state’s constitutional amendment expanding medical marijuana could build if it’s not addressed at this week’s special session.

Gov. Rick Scott called the session that begins Wednesday because of an ongoing feud over the state budget. Although observers expected medical marijuana to be added to the agenda, lawmakers continue to disagree over key elements: how many retail dispensaries a treatment center could open and whether cannabis would be subject to sales tax.

“I’m surprised it is not on the agenda. I think it will eventually get addressed because people will be angry if they don’t,” said Ben Pollara, executive director of Florida for Care, an organization that advocates for medical marijuana.

If legislators don’t agree on a plan, it would be up to the Department of Health to set the rules.

The amendment, which was passed by 71 percent of voters in November, expands legal use beyond the limited prescriptions for low-strength marijuana allowed under a 2014 law. It also would expand the eligible ailments beyond the current list of cancer, epilepsy and chronic muscle spasms to include HIV/AIDS, glaucoma, post-traumatic stress disorder, ALS, Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and similar conditions.

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When the bill implementing the amendment fell apart late in session, the Senate wanted to limit each treatment center to 15 locations; the House wanted no caps and no sales tax.

Those issues mean little to the 14,700 patients on the state registry like Michael Bowen, who has epilepsy. The Pensacola native can receive low-THC cannabis under legislation passed in 2014 but would like to be able to use higher-strength medical marijuana and see more product variety than he has now.

“Right now, they are playing with people’s lives,” he said.

Patients and caregivers say the proposed rules remain too restrictive, including not allowing smoking. Training for doctors would drop from eight hours to two but they would still have to stringently document patients’ conditions before prescribing marijuana.

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If nothing gets resolved this week, lawmakers could return for another special session. If legislators don’t agree on a marijuana plan, it would be up to the Department of Health to set the rules.

“Clearly, there are discussions behind the scenes and offers being made. The Legislature recognizes that their constituents would like them to find a resolution,” said Taylor Patrick Biehl, who help runs the Medical Marijuana Business Association of Florida.

Biehl said it would be easier for the Legislature to establish the framework of rules instead of the Department of Health, which went through several rounds of litigation when trying to determine who would be licensed to produce and distribute cannabis.

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Department rules are likely to be even more restrictive based on its draft proposal in February. Patients would likely have a 90-day waiting period to get cannabis after seeing a certified physician. That could mean prolonged legal challenges, especially because it would prohibit smoking.

What everyone does agree about is that time is running out to get a structure in place for an amendment, which requires new laws to be in place by July 3 and enacted by October. A recent state revenue impact study projects that by 2022 there will be 472,000 medical cannabis patients and $542 million in sales.

“There’s that saying about having something done is better than perfect. People are counting on something getting done,” said John Morgan, the architect behind getting the amendment on the ballot and passed.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Agenda Glitch Could Delay Nevada’s July 1 Cannabis Start

Nevada officials have been hustling to get the state’s adult-use cannabis market up and running by July 1, but a complaint filed by a local attorney now threatens to delay that launch date—by as much as two months.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported this week that a complaint filed by Jim Hartman, a Douglas County-based lawyer, claims that the Nevada Tax Commission violated the state’s open-meetings law by failing to mention cannabis on its recent meeting agenda:

Hartman, from Genoa, filed the complaint Wednesday with the Nevada attorney general’s office. The complaint references the May 8 meeting in which the tax commission adopted temporary regulations to allow recreational marijuana to be sold starting July 1 — about six months earlier than called for by Question 2.

Hartman claims the meeting’s agenda violated the law because it did not reference “marijuana,” “early start” or “Question 2.”

Tax commissioners, the Review-Journal reports, said at the meeting that they believed the agenda did not violate the law, and they voted to adopt the early-start regulations. But it’s possible the attorney general’s office could disagree, concluding that the commission did in fact break the open-meetings law. Such a finding would force the tax commission to re-hear the agenda item on June 26. And that could delay the adult-use market’s launch date by nearly two months.

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Challenges along these lines are common in state and local government, especially when official actions are particularly controversial. While some can cause severe delays or even scuttle government actions, most end up going nowhere. Still, with the launch of Nevada’s cannabis market little more than a month away, even a slight delay could cause headaches for business owners, tourists, and consumers eager for a summertime start date.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

California Seeks Control of Unruly Medical Cannabis Industry

LOS ANGELES (AP) — California is trying to get control of its unruly medical marijuana industry.

State regulators released draft regulations Friday intended to impose order on the loosely organized marketplace created over two decades ago.

The proposal would establish the first comprehensive rules for growing, testing, transporting and selling medical cannabis in the state that is home to 1 in 8 Americans.

Ariel Clark, attorney & chair of LA Cannabis Task Force

Voters last year agreed to legalize recreational marijuana use for adults in 2018. The state is faced with the challenging task of trying to govern a vast, emerging cannabis industry with a projected value of $7 billion.

Similar rules are being created for the recreational industry. There are differences, and a bill in the Legislature backed by Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown seeks to square the recreational cannabis law with the rules for medical marijuana.

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Hezekiah Allen, president of the California Growers Association, an industry group, called the draft rules “a major step toward a well-regulated cannabis industry.”

However, he added in a statement that “there is still a lot of uncertainty” as the Legislature works to balance the various proposals.

Ariel Clark, an attorney who chairs the Los Angeles Cannabis Task Force, said in an email that much works remains to be done. But “for the first time we have a clear idea how the world’s largest cannabis market will be regulated and licensed,” Clark said.

For medical marijuana users in California, the proposed rules will have no immediate impact. The draft regulations are expected to take months to review and refine.

They do not go into effect until Jan. 1, when recreational marijuana use also becomes legal.

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The 58 pages of draft rules provide insight into the massive job ahead, as the state creates what will be a multibillion-dollar marijuana economy.

There have been questions about how the state could quickly review and issue licenses for tens of thousands of growers, sellers, manufacturers and distributors after the regulations for medical and recreational marijuana kick in next January.

The answer: The state will need some time. Applicants can stay in business indefinitely while the review is underway, providing they were operating prior to Jan. 2, 2018, and submit a completed license application no later than July 2, 2018.

The proposed rules vary widely, from the obvious to arcane. A commercial vehicle containing medical cannabis cannot be left in a residential neighborhood overnight, and dispensaries must shut down by 9 p.m. Packaging must be difficult for toddlers to open.

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Meanwhile, the banking dilemma remains unresolved. Because marijuana remains illegal on the federal level, many dispensaries and growers are in effect locked out of the banking industry, so much of the business is conducted in cash. A state study is underway.

A system that would track the sticky, fragrant buds from seed to sale is also under development.

The Bureau of Marijuana Control said in a statement that it’s attempting to establish a “coherent regulatory framework for an established industry that has not been comprehensively regulated by the state.”


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.