CCMA Political greenBrief
Tuesday, December 18, 2018
Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO) Introduced An Amendment To The First Step Act, A Criminal Justice Reform Bill. The Amendment Would Protect Tribal And State Compliant Cannabis Programs From Federal Repercussions Under The Controlled Substance Act And Allow Federally Funded Banks To Accept Money From Cannabis Businesses.
“Saturday marked the 227th anniversary of the ratification of the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution…I can think of no better way to honor that milestone than to pass the bipartisan States Act, and I can think of no better legislation to attach the States Act to than the First Step Act.”
Senator Cory Gardner On His Amendments To The First Step Act
“We don’t want to create a pay-to-play system with our testing labs. We do need to make sure we get standard operating procedures.”
Josh Drayton Of The California Cannabis Industry Association On State Testing Regulations
Pot In California: What’s Going On With Cannabis Testing (CA – Cannabis Testing)
Rolling Stones (December 17, 2018) After fully legalizing marijuana at the start of 2018, California’s cannabis industry has experienced its share of ups and downs, especially since implementing mandatory safety testing on July 1st. The state still does not have an approved set of regulations for governing the legal market, relying on temporary guidelines until revisions are finalized in early 2019. There is particular pressure to overhaul requirements and standards for the testing companies that stand between cannabis suppliers and the legal market.
Suit Aims To Keep CA Highway Patrol From Assisting Federal Marijuana Enforcement (CA – Cannabis Lawsuits)
Marijuana Business Daily (December 17, 2018) A class action lawsuit filed in San Francisco County Superior Court is asking a California judge to block the state’s highway patrol from seizing and turning over cash and other assets from state-legal marijuana companies to federal authorities. The lawsuit asks for a preliminary and permanent injunction to prohibit CHP “from turning over any assets seized from lawfully operating California cannabis businesses to any federal agency.”
Will California’s Cannabis Regulation Limit Commercial Activity Between Licensed And Unlicensed Entities? (CA – State Regulations)
JD Supra (December 17, 2018) On December 7, 2018, California’s three cannabis licensing authorities submitted final versions of the state cannabis regulations scheduled to be approved by January 16, 2019. California’s Bureau of Cannabis Control (Bureau) submitted a final version of Section 5032 of the regulations that substantially limits commercial cannabis activity between licensed and unlicensed entities. The Bureau’s reasoning behind this change is scant but appears focused on the concern that unlicensed entities have exerted control over the operations of license holders.
San Diego Audits Marijuana Businesses As Tax Revenue Starts To Roll In (CA – Cannabis Taxation)
420 Intel (December 17, 2018) San Diego is trying to increase tax revenue from the city’s dozen legal marijuana dispensaries by auditing them and tightening restrictions on sales to medical cannabis patients, which are tax-exempt. The audits, which are expected to conclude this month, are intended to ensure that the dispensaries are complying with a 5 percent tax on all cannabis sales that city voters approved in 2016, officials said.
McConnell’s Marijuana Conundrum: Cory Gardner (USA – Cannabis Policy)
The Hill (December 17, 2018) Last week, while Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) touted his pivotal role in lifting the federal government’s longstanding ban on industrial hemp and further announced his intention to allow a vote on the broad criminal justice reform bill, The First Step Act, Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) saw an opportunity to advance his narrow marijuana reform bill known as The STATES Act.
Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner Proposes States’ Rights Marijuana Amendment To Criminal Justice Reform Bill (USA – Cannabis Politics)
The Denver Channel (December 17, 2018) U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., on Monday introduced an amendment to the criminal justice reform bill being debated in Congress that would implement some of the states’ rights marijuana changes he sought in a measure introduced earlier this year alongside Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass. It would amend the federal Controlled Substances Act so states, Washington D.C., territories and tribes are protected from federal law enforcement if their marijuana rules and actions are in line with their state or tribal laws.
Cory Gardner Hopes Second Attempt At Marijuana Banking Will Be Last (USA – Cannabis Banking)
Westworld (December 17, 2018) On December 17, Senator Cory Gardner introduced an amendment to a federal prison reform bill that would protect a state’s right to legalize marijuana and determine how to regulate it within its borders. Republican Gardner first helped introduce the legislation as its own bill, in a bipartisan effort with Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren known as the States Act. Despite gaining considerable attention over the summer, including an expression of support from President Donald Trump, the bill gained only ten co-sponsors since its introduction in June.
U.S. Hemp CBD Market To Triple By 2022 (USA – CBD Market)
Benzinga (December 17, 2018) The 2018 Farm Bill will restore industrial hemp to nationwide legal production for the first time since World War II, offering vast opportunities for the industry and investment in a market expected to triple in four years. With the removal of hemp from federal prohibition under the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, the total U.S. hemp industry now looks to expand at a healthy 18.4% through a 5-year combined annual growth rate from 2018-2022.
Cannabis Company Terra Tech Sued For Alleged Theft, Deceptive Finances (USA – Cannabusiness)
Marijuana Business Daily (December 17, 2018) A businesswoman in Reno, Nevada, is suing Terra Tech, accusing the California-based, vertically integrated marijuana company and various defendants connected to the firm of alleged theft, stock manipulation and filing false reports with government agencies, a local TV station reported. The company, which trades on the U.S. over-the-counter markets as TRTC, announced in November it had signed a non-binding letter of intent to merge with Toronto-based Golden Leaf Holdings.
Cannabis A Wide-Open Space For Female Pioneers (USA – Cannabusiness)
Forbes (December 17, 2018) As the industry expands with legalization in additional states, and potentially at the federal level, women will come to play an even larger role in the industry, as leaders and consumers. Women make 80% of health and wellness decisions for U.S. households, which will have a huge impact on the medical and recreational cannabis market in years to come. Today, women in the cannabis industry are creating and influencing products.
Teen Marijuana Use Remains Lower Than Pre-Legalization Levels, Federally Funded Survey Finds (USA – Underage Use)
Marijuana Moment (December 17, 2018) Fewer young people are using marijuana now as compared to 2012, when the first states moved to legalize cannabis, according to a federally funded study that was released on Monday. At the same time, fewer adolescents are saying they perceive occasional or frequent cannabis use as harmful. Experts have long believed that lower perceptions of risk are correlated with more frequent use—but for marijuana at least, the data doesn’t seem to bear out those concerns.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo Just Made Marijuana Legalization A Top Priority (NY – Legalization)
Vox (December 17, 2018) New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday explicitly said for the first time that he supports marijuana legalization in his state — and will make it a legislative priority in 2019. The governor did not reveal any specific details of what his legalization bill will entail, but one person working on the legislation told me that it may be introduced as soon as January. The Department of Health’s report concluded that marijuana criminalization “has not curbed marijuana use despite the commitment of significant law enforcement resources.”