Terrapin Announces Plans For Hoboken Dispensary

Begins local process for medical cannabis with community impact plan

NEW JERSEY: Terrapin has announced plans to open a medical cannabis dispensary in Hoboken, with a social equity community impact plan that has the support of the community’s nonprofit sector.

Minority-owned Terrapin has plans to open a dispensary in Hoboken at 86 River St. After nearly three years of outreach to the community, Terrapin is ready to begin the local zoning process, preparing paperwork to move through local zoning boards. Terrapin wanted to wait until it had the support of the North Jersey community before making any announcements.

“As always, Terrapin is focused on planting local roots,” said Chris Woods, the founder, owner and CEO of Terrapin. “We are so thankful to our partners in the Hoboken community who have welcomed us with open arms. We are excited to serve these communities as responsible corporate actors in meeting the needs of cannabis patients, while also leaving a positive community footprint.”

An expanded cannabis industry means potential for long-lasting community partnerships. As part of its commitment to local North Jersey communities, Terrapin has identified several nonprofits and organizations to work with to create a beneficial footprint for its neighbors. Much of the focus is on diversity in workforce and economic development.

Nonprofits and organizations Terrapin partnered with include: 

  • WomenRising, a Jersey City-based nonprofit that assists women and families in North Jersey with counseling, economic development and advocacy. Terrapin has pledged to assist in creating an employment pipeline by connecting WomenRising alumni to potential employment opportunities within Terrapin. Terrapin also has pledged financial support to the organization.
  • Oasis, A Haven for Women and Children. The Paterson organization’s mission is to change the lives of women and children by breaking the cycle of poverty through compassionate programs designed to feed, clothe, educate and empower women and children in need. Terrapin will work on an employment pipeline with the organization, while providing volunteers in the form of directors to develop mentorships and training.
  • Project Help, a group dedicated to serving homeless veterans in northern New Jersey. The nonprofit has been able to expand services to include financial support and legal assistance. One initiative Terrapin has pledged to support is to assist veterans suffering from PTSD. There has been a strong nexus between medical cannabis legalization and assisting veterans, and Terrapin would like to see that momentum grow. Terrapin helped to launch VetForce in Pennsylvania, a security firm for the cannabis industry. Terrapin has plans to assist with a similar program in New Jersey where veterans run security for the cannabis industry.
  • Hudson Pride Center, the LGBTQ+ Community Center for Hudson County. Hudson Pride offers a variety of health, support and social services to the LGBTQ+ community. Hudson County has the largest LGBTQ+ population in the State of New Jersey and Terrapin has long stood as an ally to this community. We will work to educate the local community about the medical efficacy of cannabis, especially for conditions that might be relevant to the LGBTQ+ community, like anxiety and HIV/AIDS. Terrapin will also work with the group on a jobs pipeline.
  • United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW). Terrapin has entered into a Labor Peace Agreement with the Union to avoid labor disputes and to promote harmonious labor relations.

“Terrapin recognizes that partnerships between the business and nonprofit sectors create synergies which benefit individuals and the larger community,” said Roseann Mazzeo, S.C., WomenRising Executive Director. “Workforce development is critical to our mission of assisting women and their families to achieve self-sufficiency and live safe, productive and fulfilling lives. We look forward to working with Terrapin in developing additional opportunities to support this mission.”

Social equity job fair 
Terrapin also has plans for a job fair with an emphasis on social equity. Terrapin will model the program after a similar event the company held in Michigan, where Terrapin provided resources to socio-disadvantaged communities looking for access to a new cannabis industry. Drawing upon our experience with Color of Cannabis, Terrapin will place a focus on diversity as it establishes operations in Hoboken.

Color of Cannabis provides technical business support, mentorship training, and partnerships for people of color and stakeholders negatively impacted by cannabis prohibition. The group will oversee a social equity informational session and resume-building workshop for Terrapin in New Jersey, holding the event virtually if COVID-19 prohibits in-person gatherings. Those who attend the informational session will receive valuable resume-building and interview tips to improve chances of employment. Participants will be encouraged to attend a Terrapin job fair and Color of Cannabis will screen resumes to ensure diversity in hiring.

Support from community leaders 
Terrapin partnered with several high-profile figures in the Hoboken community, including Joseph Castelo, a second-generation descendant of Galician Spanish immigrants who dreamed about building up the community that gave him and his family so many opportunities. Joe, a filmmaker and entrepreneur, has provided fundraising platforms and events for GLAAD, The Water Project, the Boys and Girls Club, and he has donated to numerous local charities. Antique Bar and Bakery, the Hoboken restaurant Joe co-owns, donates food to the community’s homeless shelter. Antique’s senior employees and Joe have also mentored local youth interested in pursuing careers in the restaurant business. Joe himself has extended employment opportunities to ex-inmates, an exercise that has been tremendously successful.

“It has been an honor and a pleasure to work with Chris Woods and his team at Terrapin,” Castelo said. “Terrapin’s culture aligns strongly with our commitment to serving the local community. We are thrilled to enter into a partnership to work with Terrapin to bring more opportunity and diversity to Hoboken’s workforce, while also offering access to patients who need medical cannabis. We look forward to a long relationship.”

Accountability
Terrapin has established several boards to reflect a commitment to Hoboken. The volunteer-based advisory boards include counseling on community impact, workforce development, and medical cannabis efficacy. The boards will convene at least twice a year to ensure that Terrapin is remaining true to its mission of positively impacting the local community, while maintaining a commitment to the integrity of medical cannabis.

Terrapin’s history as a pioneer
Founded in Boulder, Colo. in 2009 as one of the first licensed medical marijuana providers in the country, Terrapin has led the industry as a pioneer. Expanding to New Jersey serves as a homecoming for founder Chris Woods, whose family resides in the state. What started as a one-man business in an office park in South Boulder has blossomed into a national company with more than 300 employees.

Terrapin operates six dispensaries and four cultivation/processing facilities in Colorado. In addition to its Colorado operations, Terrapin operates a licensed grower/processor medical marijuana facility in Clinton County, Pennsylvania, and it recently launched a medical cannabis grower facility in Grand Rapids, Mich.

“We have a proven track record that ensures that we will fit in with the fabric of this community,” Woods added. “The relationships we have developed with the community allow us to serve as a responsible partner who is invested in the future of Hoboken and North Jersey.”

NJWeedman Launches “Get on the CannaBus”

New Instagram Series to Highlight Acts of Civil Disobedience and Protest in New Jersey

NEW JERSEY:  For over three decades, Ed Forchion aka NJWeedman has fought for the legalization of marijuana. As one of the first Black activist in the movement, dating back to the early 90’s, Forchion has spent over 1200 days in prison, fighting for the right to smoke and sell pot.

Now, in 2020, with marijuana legalized in the majority of states, Forchion is part of a vocal collective that is fighting against the current legalization policies in his home state of New Jersey. Forchion asserts that new laws are being set to criminalize growers and small vendors like him, while awarding billion-dollar contracts to corporations for the sales, distribution and marketing of the plant.

In an effort to mobilize attention to this grave matter, Forchion is launching “Get on the CannaBus with NJWeedman” an Instagram Live series starting Monday, September 7, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. ET to 7:00 p.m. ET, to garner awareness and support per his current anti-legalization campaign in New Jersey.

NJ Department Of Health Issues Permit To Grow Medical Marijuana

NEW JERSEY: The New Jersey Department of Health issued last month a permit to Justice Grown in Ewing to begin growing medical marijuana. The permit was issued after a comprehensive review including several site inspections, background checks of its corporate officers and a review of its security operations and cultivation facility.

“As our program continues to grow, the Department wants to ensure that we also continue to increase access for all patients,” Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli said. “This new permit brings the total number of operational medical marijuana cultivation sites in the state to 12.”

Justice Grown is the last Alternative Treatment Center (ATC) to receive a cultivation permit among the awards made by the Division of Medicinal Marijuana in December 2018. Earlier this year, the Division issued cultivation permits to Verano in Readington, MPX NJ in Pleasantville, TerrAscend in Boonton Township, and Columbia Care NJ in Vineland.

Once Justice Grown receives its permit to dispense, the Division will notify the patients and caregivers by email of the opening date.  Justice Grown’s dispensary will also be located in Ewing.

There are nine ATCs currently dispensing medical marijuana: Greenleaf Compassion Center of Montclair, Compassionate Care Foundation of Egg Harbor, Garden State Dispensary of Woodbridge and Union Township, Breakwater Alternative Treatment Center of Cranbury, Curaleaf NJ, Inc. in Bellmawr, Harmony Dispensary in Secaucus and Rise in Paterson and Compassionate Care Foundation of Atlantic City.

Program participation continues to grow. There are now 75,468 patients, 2,949 caregivers and 1,149 physicians participating in the program.

Patients and caregivers can visit the Division’s website if they choose to change their preferred ATC. The change can also be made by calling the Customer Service Unit of the Division of Medicinal Marijuana at 844-419-9712 and does not require changing ID cards.

Patients can refer to the FAQ section of the Division of Medicinal Marijuana website for additional information. Active physicians enrolled in the program are listed by county and medical specialty.

New Jersey residents interested in registering for Medicinal Marijuana can click here.

Follow the New Jersey Department of Health on Twitter @njdeptofhealth, Facebook /njdeptofhealth, Instagram@njdeptofhealth and Snapchat @njdoh.

For more information, visit our homepage at nj.gov/health.

Acreage Announces Grand Opening Of The Botanist By Compassionate Care Foundation in Atlantic City

The Botanist by Compassionate Care Foundation is the first The Botanist dispensary to open in the state of New Jersey

Acreage-Holdings

NEW JERSEY:  Acreage Holdings, one of the largest vertically integrated, multi-state operators of cannabis licenses and assets in the U.S., today announced the opening of The Botanist by Compassionate Care Foundation on Saturday, February 22, 2020, by its business partner, New Jersey’s Compassionate Care Foundation, Inc., a New Jersey nonprofit corporation. Acreage and CCF are parties to a services agreement with CCF under which Acreage delivers its operational expertise, product development capabilities, and The Botanist retail dispensary brand.  On November 15, 2019, Acreage and CCF entered into a reorganization agreement which will result in CCF becoming a wholly-owned, for-profit subsidiary of Acreage.  Closing of the transaction is subject to state approval.

The medicinal cannabis dispensary is located on the Atlantic City Boardwalk at 1301 Boardwalk, Atlantic City, New Jersey. With the opening, Acreage now owns or has management services, consulting or other agreements for 31 operational dispensaries in 12 states, including 13 The Botanist branded dispensaries.

Developed by Acreage, The Botanist is both a retail and product brand, deeply rooted in health and wellness, and focused on the holistic power of cannabis to help individuals live balanced lifestyles. The Botanist CCF offers a wide selection of flower-only products and features a “science meets nature” retail design reminiscent of a 19th century botanist laboratory. Offering a warm and inviting environment in which to learn about the healing properties of the cannabis plant from trained patient care specialists, The Botanist CCF’s design includes a “SEED BAR” education station, a private consultation room, The Botanist’s signature “green foliage wall,” and much more.

Daytrip Expands CBD Sparkling Water Line To New York And New Jersey Markets

Daytrip to introduce THC sparkling water line by end of year

NEW YORK:  Daytrip, the leading cannabis lifestyle brand announced today its expansion into the New York and New Jersey area. After an initial launch in June 2019 across California, Washington, Oregon and Michigan, Daytrip is staking its claim in the metropolitan area as the premier CBD beverage.

Daytrip’s product line will now be available in several retailers across the metropolitan area including Fairway Market, Food Emporium, ShopRite, Westside Market and many others, available in four natural fruit flavors: Cherry, Coconut Pineapple, Lemon Lime and Tangerine.

“The initial reaction to our launch in June has been overwhelmingly positive, and we’re pleased to deliver on our customer’s desires and formally introduce Daytrip to New York and New Jersey, where the demand for natural, premium quality CBD is strong” said Shawn Biega, CEO Daytrip. “Our sparkling water line is only the beginning. In short order, we plan to introduce a series of food & beverage consumables to the CBD market and establish ourselves as a true leader in the space.”

“As the CBD market continues to evolve at a rapid pace, now is the ideal time to introduce Daytrip to an incredibly important market for our future success,” said Joey Cannata, President Daytrip. “What people love about our product is that there’s no sugar, no sweeteners — just a natural flavor that fits in with the spontaneous adventurous lifestyle we see in New York City and New Jersey.”

By the end of the year, Daytrip plans to introduce a THC infused sparkling water line in California, as well as other food & beverage products driven by Daytrip’s proprietary Foliole Nexus Technology that enhances the bioavailability to the CBD ingredient aiding with absorption for a more instant effect.

Each Daytrip beverage contains five calories and includes 10 mg of CBD per can, retailing at $4.99 in the general market and $59.00/12 pk on the first order, available at wearedaytrip.com.

The product is currently available online at www.wearedaytrip.com, as well as distributors across New York, New Jersey, California, Oregon, Michigan and Washington. For more information please visit www.wearedaytrip.com and follow us on Instagram @wearedaytrip.

 

Cannabis Advocacy Organization M4MM To Launch Licensing Boot Camp For Minority & Women-Owned Business Owners in New Jersey

NEW JERSEY: On the heels of the success of its groundbreaking cannabis licensing boot camp in Missouri, advocacy organization Minorities for Medical Marijuana  (M4MM) proudly announces three kickoff events for its New Jersey Cannabis Licensing Boot Camp (CBLB) program.

M4MM’s New Jersey Cannabis Business Licensing Boot Camp (CBLB) is an unparalleled opportunity for those interested in entering the cannabis industry who may not have access to critical information and resources. New Jersey recently expanded its Medical Marijuana program to better serve  the state’s medical patients, which now has more than 50,000 enrollees. CBLB provides intensive training and support, empowering participants with the knowledge, connections and support necessary to successfully obtain a license.The support provided by Trulieve, Inc.-Presenting Sponsor, Oaksterdam University-Education Partner and New Jersey Cannabis Industry Association-Industry Partner allows M4MM to prepare potential licensees quickly and efficiently prior to the next open application period.  The CBLB, slated for Oct 19th and 26th, is a two day intensive training developed specifically to help minority- and women-owned businesses prepare for the licensing process in the Garden State.

In March 2019, the CBLB debuted in St. Louis Missouri with over 50 minority, women, and veteran small business owners participating. Over 40% of the attendees applied, partnered, or formed joint ventures in pursuit of a cannabis business license.“Our program has already helped dozens of people overcome multiple obstacles and successfully navigate the licensing process, says M4MM Founder and CEO Roz McCarthy. “Our proven method can replicate the same success in New Jersey, helping minorities and women entrepreneurs enter the legal cannabis industry in record numbers.”

The three kickoff events are scheduled on September 17th 6pm-9pm EST, at LaunchPad Newark,nSeptember 24th at Historic Trenton Masonic Temple, and October 1st at NJ Cowork Street in Camden NJ will give an overview of New Jersey’s licensing process, address questions and concerns, preview the CBLB instructional curriculum, and meet key medical cannabis experts who will be teaching at the CBLB in October. The CBLB KickOff event fee is $25. Aimed at tackling inequity and the lack of minority- and women-owned business operators in the cannabis industry, the CBLB is scheduled for October 19th and 26th from 8:30a- 6:00pm EST at LaunchPad Newark. This integrative multi-week workshop will be open to 150-200 qualifying business license applicants. Attendees can expect to gain a clear understanding of the licensing process, access Oaksterdam University’s nationally renowned educational tools and experts, learn key strategies, receive specialized training and resource development through M4MM, gain exclusive access to industry professionals necessary to build businesses that succeed, and access to additional pre- and post license support. For more information and registration go to www.m4mmunited.org.

 

New Jersey Requesting Applications For 24 ATC Endorsements – What Applicants Need To Know

By: Rosemarie Moyeno Matos, Esq.

NEW JERSEY: Hot on the heels of Governor Phil Murphy’s May 2019 announcement that his administration would be moving forward with expansion of New Jersey’s Medicinal Marijuana Program (the “MMP”), the Department of Health (the “DOH”) published a new Request for Applications (the “RFA”) for new alternative treatment center (“ATC”) permits and endorsements on July 1, 2019. It’s important to note that this RFA process still falls under the purview of the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act (“CUMMA”),[1] despite Governor Murphy signing the “Jake Honig Compassionate Use Medical Cannabis Act” (the “Act”) into law on July 2, 2019. The Act will eventually turn oversight of the MMP from the DOH to a Regulatory Cannabis Commission upon its creation.

Pursuant to the RFA, the DOH will award up to 24 permits and endorsements for cultivation, manufacturing and dispensary operations throughout the northern, central and southern regions of the state. This article will summarize the RFA requirements and any significant differences from prior application requirements.

NUMBER OF ENDORSEMENTS BY REGION & OPERATION:

For the first time since the inception of the MMP, the state will be issuing separate “permit endorsements” for cultivation and dispensing operations, presenting an opportunity for small businesses and minorities to enter the industry on a smaller, more affordable scale. The RFA is looking to award:

Total Permit/Endorsements Type of Permit/Endorsement
4 Vertically Integrated Permits (“VIPs”)[2]
15 Dispensary Endorsements
5 Cultivation Endorsements[3]

The 24 ATC permits and endorsements awarded under the RFA are to be distributed regionally and by operation in the following manner:

Region Number and Type
Northern (Warren, Morris, Essex Counties and up):2       Cultivation Endorsements5       Dispensary Endorsements1-2    VIPs*
Central (Hunterdon, Somerset, and Union through Mercer and Ocean Counties):2       Cultivation Endorsements5       Dispensary Endorsements1-2    VIPs*
Southern (Burlington and Atlantic Counties all the way down):1       Cultivation Endorsements5       Dispensary Endorsements1-2    VIPs*

*One VIP will be awarded in each region. The region of the 4th VIP will be determined at the time of award based on the applicant’s overall score and patient need.

Except for VIP permits, each individual endorsement requires a separate application. Applicants should note:

  • you are limited to a maximum of three (3) applications, one (1) per region;
  • you may not submit for a VIP and for individual endorsements;
  • you may only submit for one (1) cultivation endorsement; and
  • you will only be awarded one (1) VIP or one (1) individual endorsement.

APPLICATION COSTS:

Two checks totaling $20,000 must accompany each application submitted. The checks represent a $2,000 non-refundable application processing fee and the $18,000 permit endorsement fee if awarded. The DOH will destroy the $18,000 checks submitted by applicants not awarded an endorsement.

In addition to application fees (up to $24,000 depending on the number of applications submitted and whether a permit/endorsement is awarded), applicants will need typically need budget for real estate, professional services and contractors, and construction costs. Property and construction costs vary depending largely factors such as location and form of interest (lease vs ownership). Professional or contractor’s costs largely depend on the fees of each professional or contractors and the specific needs of the applicant, but an applicant can realistically expect to pay well over $100,000 for professional and contractor services leading up to and during the application process.[4]

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS:

Similar to last year’s permit applications, current applications will consist of Part A Mandatory Information, Part B Scored Criteria and Personal History Disclosure Forms for each owner with 5% or more ownership interest in the ATC, as well as each principal, director, board member, and employee.

Part A Mandatory Information largely seeks entity and property information including listing of all individuals and entities having greater that 5% ownership interest in the ATC, all creditors and all individuals and entities having managerial/operational control over the ATC. Applicants will also need to include all formation documentation, all contracts related to management, intellectual property, real estate, equity in, or funding of applicant, Letters of Support and evidence of zoning compliance, site plans and a list of its medical advisory board members with a copy of the board’s by-laws.

Part B Scored Criteria (300 points) includes:

1.   Submission of security, environmental impact and quality control and quality assurance plans (30 pts);

2.   ATC’s compliance history in government-regulated marijuana programs or other highly regulated industry (20 pts);

3.   Financial plan/proof of funding evidencing applicant’s ability to meet supply demand (20 pts);

4.   Evidence of community support and participation (20 pts);

5.   Ability to provide appropriate research data through evidence of past contributions (10 pts);

6.   Compliance experience in cultivating, manufacturing, or dispensing marijuana, as applicable, in government-regulated marijuana programs (100 pts); and

7.   Submission of labor peace agreement, labor compliance plan and a workforce and job creation plan with evidence of WBE, MBE or VOB certifications (100 pts).[5]

IMPORTANT DATES:

Action Date
Application Opening Period on or before July 15, 2019
RFA Question Submission Deadline July 26, 2019
Pre-Application Webinar August 2, 2019
Dispensary Apps Submission Deadline 3:00 pm EST on August 21, 2019
Cultivation & VIP Apps Submission Deadline 3:00 pm EST on August 21, 2019
Final Agency Decision None Provided

CONCLUSION: While the number of endorsements to be issued from the June 3rd RFA (108) versus this RFA (24) dropped significantly, there is reason to believe that additional RFAs will be published soon after the Regulatory Cannabis Commission is established and operational, as the medicinal marijuana  patient population continues to grow in leaps and bounds. The question we frequently receive from interested applicants is whether they should be preparing for this application round or future rounds. The answer depends largely on where the applicant stands with its business plan, site control, capital and team (including owners, managers, and employees, as well as outside professionals and contractors). However, if you are not application ready for this round, you should actively continue to work toward it for the next. If history has taught us anything, an applicant truly vested in this space should be preparing themselves to be application ready at a moment’s notice since RFAs tend to drop with little to no advance warning!

The law firm of Moyeno Gonzalez & Associates PC has represented previous applicants in this space and is ready to assist in answering any questions you may have regarding the RFA, the application process and post-licensing compliance. Please feel free to reach out to us via our website.

In her current role as Partner at Moyeno Gonzalez, Rosemarie Moyeno Matos represents both for-profit and non-profit organizations, rendering a wide range of legal services from entity selection and formation to regulatory compliance advice and commercial transaction representation. In August 2018, she represented a client who submitted two applications for vertically integrated Alternative Treatment Center licenses through New Jersey’s Medicinal Marijuana Program. Currently, she represents several entrepreneurs and start-ups in the medical and recreational cannabis space. Through her corporate and regulatory background, Rosemarie has a keen awareness of the issues faced by those participating in the cannabis industry and successfully helps her clients navigate them.
[1]N.J.S.A. 24:6I-1 et seq.
[2] VIPs include one (1) each of a cultivation endorsement, a manufacturing endorsement and a dispensary endorsement.
[3]Cultivation Endorsements are further broken down by tiers based on canopy size. Of the 5 individual Cultivation Endorsements awarded under this RFA, endorsements will be awarded based upon canopy size in the following manner:
1       for a Canopy up to 5,000 ft2
2       for Canopies between 5,001 ft2 and 20,000 ft2; and
2       for Canopies between 20,001 ft2 and 30,000 ft2.
VIP applicants are not restricted to canopy tiers and may choose any canopy size up to 30,000 ft2.
[4]Additional capital needed to evidence financial suitability and to commence operations are not factored into these application costs.
[5] Applicants who fail to submit a signed labor peace agreement will lose 30 points. Additionally, applicants who submit proof of WBE/MBE/VOB certifications will receive full credit of 30 points, while those who submit evidence of meeting the criteria in the future may receive partial credit.

NJ Governor Murphy & Legislative Leadership Announce Agreement On Outlines Of Legalization Of Adult-Use Marijuana

Agreement Reached on Tax Rate, Regulatory Structure, and Expungement Provisions

NEW JERSEY: Governor Phil Murphy, Senate President Steve Sweeney, Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin, Senator Scutari, and Assemblywoman Quijano today announced an agreement on the broad outlines of legislation to legalize adult-use marijuana in New Jersey.

“Legalizing adult-use marijuana is a monumental step to reducing disparities in our criminal justice system,” said Governor Murphy. “After months of hard work and thoughtful negotiations, I’m thrilled to announce an agreement with my partners in the Legislature on the broad outlines of adult-use marijuana legislation. I believe that this legislation will establish an industry that brings fairness and economic opportunity to all of our communities, while promoting public safety by ensuring a safe product and allowing law enforcement to focus their resources on serious crimes.

“This plan will allow for the adult use of cannabis in a responsible way,” said Senate President Sweeney. “It will create a strictly regulated system that permits adults to purchase limited amounts of marijuana for personal use. It will bring marijuana out of the underground market so that it can be controlled, regulated and taxed, just as alcohol has been since the end of Prohibition. This plan will also advance important social justice reforms to help reverse the discriminatory impact that drug laws have had on diverse communities.”

“The agreement reached to legalize adult-use cannabis is the result of incredibly hard work by many people over many months,” said Speaker Coughlin. “Getting to this point wasn’t easy. We talked and we negotiated in good faith, but most importantly, we listened. I want to thank Governor Murphy and Senate President Sweeney for their tireless efforts and willingness to compromise so we could put forth the most responsible legislation possible. I believe this new, regulated industry will help boost our economy, but I’m particularly proud of the critical social justice components included in the bill.”

“The prohibition on marijuana has long been a failed policy,” said Senator Nicholas Scutari. “This plan will bring an end to the adverse effects our outdated drug laws have had on the residents of our state. As a regulated product legalized marijuana will be safe and controlled. It is time to legalize adult use marijuana in New Jersey and this is a well crafted legal reform that will advance social policy in a fair and effective way.”

“After months of discussions and debate, I am proud that we have come to an agreement on a bill to legalize adult-use cannabis,” said Assemblywoman Annette Quijano. “We learned from stakeholders and listened to opponents. The final product is fair, responsible and focused on social justice. I want to thank Speaker Coughlin for his leadership in the Assembly and express my gratitude to Governor Murphy and Senate President Sweeney for partnering with us in this daunting endeavor.”

Under the terms of the agreement, adult-use marijuana will be subject to an excise tax of $42 per ounce, which will be imposed when marijuana is cultivated. In addition, municipalities that are home to a cultivator or manufacturer will receive the revenue from a 2% tax on the product within their jurisdiction.  Municipalities that are home to a wholesaler will receive the revenue from a 1% tax on the product within their jurisdiction, while municipalities that are home to a retailer will receive the revenue from a 3% tax on the product within their jurisdiction.

Adult-use marijuana will be governed by a Cannabis Regulatory Commission, composed of five members. Three members will be appointed by the Governor, with the Governor’s initial appointments to serve terms of at least four years and not be subject to Senate confirmation. Two other members will be appointed by the Governor, upon the recommendations of the Speaker and Senate President. The Commission will promulgate all regulations to govern the industry and will oversee the applications for licensing of adult-use marijuana dispensaries.

Provisions in the bill establish an expedited expungement process for individuals convicted of low-level marijuana offenses, and a virtual expungement process that will automatically prevent certain marijuana offenses from being taken into account in certain areas such as education, housing, and occupational licensing. Additionally, there are a number of provisions that aim to ensure broad-based participation in the industry for Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises (M/WBEs), low- and middle-income individuals, and disadvantaged communities across the state.

Final text of the legislation will be released in the coming days, subject to pending technical edits.

 

420MEDIA Trailblazers In Cannabis: Edmund M. DeVeaux, Burton Trent Public Affairs

Trailblazers In Cannabis

Digital marketing agency 420MEDIA and the Marijuana Business Association (MJBA) have joined forces to create a series highlighting entrepreneurs trailblazing the cannabis scene. Each week, we’ll profile a noteworthy business pioneer, and ask each 5 questions. This week’s featured trailblazer is Edmund M. DeVeaux, Executive Vice President/Member at Burton Trent Public Affairs LLC, and Policy Advisor of the New Jersey CannaBusiness Association 

 Tell us about your Company

Nearly 10 years old, Burton Trent Public Affairs is a multi-dimensional public affairs and communications firm operating primarily throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. With three primary lines of business: lobbying, business consultancy and strategic communications, Burton Trent customizes and offers its clients public policy counsel, internal and external growth solutions, and messaging employment and deployment strategies.

 

NJCBA-Burton-Trent-Public-Affairs-LLCWhy did you choose the cannabis/hemp business?

Two years ago, the partners at Burton Trent met after a New Jersey legislative fact finding mission to states where adult-use or recreational cannabis was legal. The opportunities to develop the adult-use industry in New Jersey appeared to be boundless. We took a weekend as parents and community leaders to decide if we were all-in pursuing those opportunities as a public affairs firm, given the potential pushback as news spread that we were in the cannabis business. Needless to say, we were all-in.

What change will your firm address in the industry? Does it address an unmet need?

We saw the need to lead the efforts to create a responsible and sustainable professional cannabis industry. We wanted to make sure that the recreational marijuana conversation moved beyond the social aspects of policy and regulatory influence, and actually give the cannabis industry a professional look and feel. The result: Burton Trent’s Vice President, Scott Rudder founded and is currently the president of the Board of Directors of the New Jersey CannaBusiness Association – the state’s first and largest organization created for the development of a professional, responsible and sustainable cannabis industry. The CannaBusiness Association is the chamber of commerce for cannabis in New Jersey. I serve as the association’s primary policy advisor.

Ed DeVeaux Virtues of Vices (1)

What has been the reaction to your product/service/technology?

The New Jersey CannaBusiness Association has a membership of nearly 1,000 individuals and organizations, and hosts monthly informational meetings throughout the state with guest speakers from the spectrum of cannabis-related businesses. I believe the CannaBusiness Association has been successful in not only professionalizing the nascent cannabis industry from a policy standpoint, but it has energized the ancillary service sector. With three formal affiliation agreements with institutions of higher education – Stockton State University, Atlantic Cape Community College and Union County College – the association is ensuring that New Jersey will have a professional and sustained workforce in the industry from growing, cultivation and dispensing to environmental services, security, insurance and legal counsel.

Are there any upcoming milestones for your company?

With amended adult-use and social justice legislation nearly in place, as well as regulatory frameworks, it is our hope that New Jersey and New York (for our New York clients) will be in a position to have not just a more robust medical cannabis economy established, but a vibrant and safe recreational economy being born. 

Where can readers learn more?

www.burtontrent.com

www.newjerseycannabusiness.com

New Jersey: Governor Signs Hemp Cultivation Bill Into Law

NEW JERSEY: Governor Phil Murphy has signed legislation into law permitting the state to establish a pilot program to assess and promote the cultivation of industrial hemp.

Assembly Bill 1330/Senate Bill 3145 authorizes the Department of Agriculture to partner with Rutgers University “to study and promote the cultivation of industrial hemp to the maximum extent permitted by federal law.” Over 40 states have adopted similar legislation.

Federal law permits states to engage in limited hemp production. Pending federal provisions in the Senate-version of H.R. 2: The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (aka the 2018 Farm Bill) for the first time amends the federal Controlled Substances Act of 1970 so that industrial hemp plants containing no more than 0.3 percent THC are no longer classified as a schedule I controlled substance. (See page 1182, Section 12608: ‘Conforming changes to controlled substances act.’).

Earlier this month, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) “guaranteed” that the hemp-related provisions would remain in the bill following the reconciliation process.


For more information, contact Justin Strekal, NORML Political Director, at (202) 483-5500.