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Oregon Cannabis: OLCC is Talking Tough

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Listen up friends. The Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission (OLCC) plans to drop the hammer on bad actors in the regulated Oregon market. Or so the Commission announced in a stern news release on Friday, July 29 (the “Release”). The Release is titled “Commissioners plan to tighten ‘change of ownership’ option.” For good effect, it is subtitled “Bad actors won’t get an easy off-ramp to sell their business.” Sounds pretty serious.

We’ve been waiting for this release to drop. Over the past year or so, we’ve watched OLCC case presenters take more aggressive positions in settlement talks following any notice of proposed license cancellation. The Commission is also giving stronger scrutiny these days to so-called “surrender to sell” transactions, especially where the seller will hold any sort of financial interest in the buyer licensee after closing (note: “financial interest” in this context is construed more broadly than in regular old licensing).

For anyone unfamiliar with how “surrender to sell” transactions work, the OLCC historically has allowed a licensee charged with serious offenses to “sell” their license interest to an unrelated third party– if certain criteria are met. The mechanics are simple. The OLCC and the subject party enter a stipulated

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New York CAURD: License Application Scoring and Selection – Part 2

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We recently examined the Office of Cannabis Management (“OCM”) scoring criteria for eligible Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensary (“CAURD”) applicants. Provided certain minimum requirements are met, the top scoring applicants who rank a given region as their first preference will be selected for a provisional license in that region– up to the number of allocated licenses in that region.

The foregoing is vital because CAURD applicants cannot otherwise select their own real estate or region. Instead, regions are selected by the OCM. This begs the questions: 1) what regions can I select, and 2) how can I beat the competition for my preferred region?

During the application for a CAURD license, applicants are able to select up to five (5) regional preferences from the fourteen (14) listed regions within the State of New York for a dispensary location. The allocations for each region will be announced at a later date. The regions of New York State are: Bronx, Brooklyn, Capital Region, Central NY, Finger Lakes, Long Island, Manhattan, Mid-Hudson, Mohawk Valley, North Country, Queens, Richmond, Southern Tier, and Western NY.

Within each region, applicants will be ranked by scores, as described in the Scoring Criteria detailed here. The top scoring applicants

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Tobacco Paraphernalia? Prove It. | GrowCola.com

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Tobacco paraphernalia is in many cases indistinguishable from cannabis paraphernalia, especially when products are unconnected to specific consumers. If an item can be used in both lawful and unlawful ways, it seems illogical to classify it as drug paraphernalia, unless the item is connected to illegal activity. Yet the approach of the U.S. federal authorities is the opposite: Absent evidence of intended lawful use, they have no qualms about labeling something as drug paraphernalia.

The Controlled Substances Act defines “drug paraphernalia” as:

“any equipment, product, or material of any kind which is primarily intended or designed for use in manufacturing, compounding, converting, concealing, producing, processing, preparing, injecting, ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing into the human body a controlled substance.” 21 U.S.C. § 863(d).

As readers may imagine, the “primarily intended or designed” part of that definition has been and remains the subject of many a legal scuffle. For many products, it is clear that they can be used with both tobacco and cannabis, but their primary intended use may be hard or impossible to establish. As we recently noted in Goods and Services and Canna Trademarks:

whether [a] lighter or ashtray or rolling paper is used with marijuana or hemp

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2024: Adult Use Marijuana in Florida

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In 2024, we may finally see adult use marijuana in Florida. This week, Smart & Safe Florida, a non-profit political organization, filed its ballot initiative, “Adult Personal Use of Marijuana“, with the  Division of Elections to legalize adult use marijuana in Florida. Make it Legal Florida already unsuccessfully tried to get adult use on the ballot for this year. Notably, this current initiative is backed by Trulieve, the largest cannabis operator in the state. In any event, adult use marijuana in Florida by ballot initiative must first make it past the Florida Supreme Court.

Unlike many states, Florida initiative sponsors can submit petition signatures at any time. After 25% of required signatures have been collected and sponsors submit a ballot title and summary to the Secretary of State, the Secretary of State then submits the proposal to Florida Attorney General. The Florida AG then petitions the State Supreme Court for an advisory opinion on “the measure’s compliance with the single-subject rule, the appropriateness of the title and summary, and whether or not the measure ‘is facially valid under the United States Constitution.’” The single-subject rule means that the initiative can only address one subject, topic, or issue. And the Court’s

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