Oregon Adopts Final Hemp Regulations: Has your CBD been tested?

The Oregon Department of Agriculture adopted final regulations for the hemp industry on May 15, 2019, which replace the temporary rules that were put in place in December. The DOA’s regulations govern the production and processing of hemp in Oregon including the creation of extracted hemp products. The DOA’s website indicates that over 3,500 applicants received a hemp license for 2019, and Oregon expects to produce over 20,000 acres of hemp.

Now that the rules are effective, hemp products that are intended for human consumption must be tested and labeled before they are sold to the public. CBD and other finished hemp products to be tested and reported to the state in the same manner as cannabis. The DOA may revoke the license of any grower or processor that fails to comply with this requirement.

Oregon’s hemp industry remains far ahead of other states, such as Connecticut, New Mexico and Utah, that are just enacting legislation to authorize commercial hemp programs. As a leader in the industry, Oregon urged the USDA to expedite the implementation of the 2018 Farm Bill so that growers and handlers could export products to other states.

Earlier this year, Oregon’s DOA issued a warning to the industry that states bordering Oregon were stopping trucks carrying hemp products, and charging the drivers with criminal violations. In the USDA’s response to Oregon’s letter, it indicated that the Farm Bill will be implemented for the 2020 growing season, which will open up interstate commerce.

Pennsylvania Bill Will Place Recreational Marijuana on 2020 Ballot

The Pennsylvania Senate introduced a bill titled the Legalization of Marijuana for Personal Use by Adults Referendum Act, which will give residents the ability to vote for legalizing marijuana in 2020. Unlike other states, the referendum will be nonbinding, and is only intended to provide the General Assembly with information on whether residents in the state favor legalization.

The ballot question will simply ask voters “Shall the Pennsylvania General Assembly legalize marijuana for personal use by adults?” Following the vote, the General Assembly may choose to follow the results of the referendum, and adopt regulations to allow or prohibit recreational marijuana.

There has been a recent uptick in activity in the state with Philadelphia introducing a resolution, that if passed, would ask the General Assembly and the Governor to enact legislation to decriminalize, regulate and tax recreational marijuana.

Washington Legislature Passes Bill to Implement Hemp Licensing Program

Washington’s Legislature passed a bill that creates a hemp licensing and regulatory program that is required to implement the 2018 Farm Bill. The Department of Agriculture (DOA) is responsible for implementing rules establishing the hemp production licensing regime by June 2019. Businesses that are already licensed under the industrial hemp research program can transfer over into the new program. Businesses will continue to operate under the current research program if the DOA is not able to meet the June 2019 deadline.

The legislation charges with DOA with developing standards for creating hemp extracts that is intended for consumption, and the production of nonhemp food in accordance with state and federal regulations. The Department of Agricultural and the Liquor and Cannabis Board to establish policies and buffers that would prevent the cross pollination of marijuana and hemp. The bill requires the policy to provide preference to the producer that was first to grow, and require the second to cease operations.

Free Cannabis Legislative Tracker For 20 States: Access THC, Hemp And CBD Bills

Access our free legislative trackers for Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan, Missouri, North Dakota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Tennessee, Utah and Washington. Review and access the cannabis & hemp bills introduced by the State Legislatures in the 2019-2020 session. The trackers include a summary description of the legislation, status and link to the full legislative text. The legislative trackers will be updated on a weekly basis.

Illinois Holds Public Hearing Today on Cannabis Legalization Equity Act

The Illinois House will hold a public hearing today on HB 0902 the Cannabis Legalization Equity Act. The bill is socially progressive as it provides high cannabis possession limits, requires 51% of the cultivation and retail store licenses to be granted to communities that have been disproportionately impacted by the drug trade, and requires the state to automatically expunge prior cannabis convictions. The devil will be in the details as to how the state regulators will implement these concepts so as to create the intended equitable results.

Below are seven (7) things that cannabis businesses should know about Illinois’ cannabis legalization equity bill.

  • The bill requires the state authorities to automatically expunge cannabis convictions from the records within six (6) months of the law’s effective date.

  • The bill allows the personal possession, growth an transport of 24 mature plants. This limit is four times the 6 plant limit allowed in most states, and more than the two pound limit in New York’s recreational marijuana legalization bill.

  • The Department of Agriculture and the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation must adopt implementing rules within six (6) months of the law’s effective date, and begin accepting and processing applications within a year. This time frame seems quite aggressive, and probably unrealistic.

  • The Department of Agriculture and the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation must issue 51% of the cultivation and retail store licenses to persons in neighborhoods that have been negatively impacted by the war on drugs. These Departments are also prohibited from denying licenses for persons who are located in these areas. We question whether the licenses should be awarded to persons who were negatively impacted by prior cannabis policies rather than placing 51% of the cultivation and retail licenses in these neighborhoods.

  • A 10% excise tax will be added to the sales price on the sale or transfer of cannabis. The excise tax proceeds will be distributed to the General Fund, Illinois’ retirement systems, and to train state police on drug recognition.

  • A 10% local tax is charged on the net income of cultivation facilities, retail stores and on-site consumption facilities. Other states are sharing percentages of the excise tax charged on the gross sales with local municipalities. The proposed local tax on net income is not as generous.

  • Local municipalities may opt-in and permit marijuana establishments. The bill prescribes a robust approval process for municipalities including timelines for decision making. There are no caps on the application and license renewal fees charged by the municipalities.

7 Facts About Obtaining a Cannabis License Under New Jersey's Adult Use Legalization Bill

Tomorrow at noon, you can watch the New Jersey Assembly Appropriations Committee review the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory and Expungement Aid Modernization Act. The Cannabis Regulatory and Expungement Aid Modernization Act legalizes recreational marijuana, expedites expungement proceedings for persons previously convicted of cannabis crimes, and creates the Cannabis Regulatory Commission to oversee the recreational and medical marijuana industries.

The proposed legislation is progressive in that it prioritizes applications for New Jersey residents who live in an economically and socially disadvantaged areas, or persons who utilize union labor. The bill also allocates a certain percentage of licenses for New Jersey residents who are (1) minorities, women or disabled veterans, (2) within certain income ranges, and (3) who want to operate an micobusiness.

The Commission will have six months to adopt initial rules, and thirty (30) days after the adoption to accept applications. Permanent rules must be adopted the following year. The legislation creates a regulatory framework for creating four (4) classes of licenses to serve as a grower, processor wholesaler or retailer. Initially, New Jersey will establish a process to quickly issue conditional licenses. Conditional licenses will account for thirty-five percent of the each class, and persons applying for a conditional license must have a plan for complying with all local and state rules. Persons applying for full licenses must be in compliance with all local rules and regulations prior to the Commission’s approval of the license.

Seven (7) things that you should know about the legislation includes:

  • The legislation priorities applications of persons who has resided in an impact zones for three years prior to submitting an application, and those who intend to use union labor. Impact zones must have a population of at least 120,000 people; ranks in the top third of New Jersey cities for small possession arrests in the year preceding the bill taking effect; a crime index of 1000 or higher, and whose unemployment rate is ranked in the top 15% in New Jersey.

  • The legislation creates an Office of Minority, Disabled Veterans, and Women Cannabis Business Development that is responsible for creating policies and procedures for certifying minority, disabled veterans, and woman owned businesses including the formulation of a social equity program designed to ensure that persons from economically and socially disadvantaged communities receive at least 30% of the new recreational retail licenses and 30% new of the medical cannabis licenses. The Office would also be responsible for ensuring that at least 15% of the licenses are provided to minority, disabled veterans or women owned certified cannabis businesses.

  • The legislature requires that 35% of the licenses for each class would be conditional licenses be granted to a significantly involved persons who are New Jersey residents for two years prior to the submission of the application, and the person’s wages during this period must not exceed $200,000 a year or $400,000 a year if filing a joint return. The significantly involved person must own at least 5% of an investment interest or a group of people who own at least 20% and has the authority to make controlling decisions.

  • The legislation requires that 10% of the licenses in each class or 25% of the overall licenses would be designated for microbusinesses. Microbusiness licenses may only be held by persons who have been residents of New Jersey for two years prior to the date the application is submitted. The microbusiness license can also be a conditional license.

  • Local municipalities may elect to prohibit cannabis establishments or certain activities. Local ordinances prohibiting cannabis activities that were adopted prior to the bill’s enactment are null and void. Cannabis activities will be allowed in cities that fail to adopt an ordinance within six (6) months of the Commission’s adoption of the initial rules.

  • The bill authorizes indoor and outdoor consumption areas.

  • A state sales tax of 5.375 percent will be charged on the retail sale of recreational cannabis items. This tax is in addition to the current sales tax of 6.625 percent. Local municipalities may adopt an ordinance to charge an additional 2 percent sales tax on recreational cannabis.

Kentucky's Kicking the Tobacco Habit and Embracing Hemp

Kentucky has re-established itself as a leading agricultural center for growing hemp. Kentucky’s history with hemp began over 250 years ago. The state’s production grew to account for over three quarters of the nation’s production of hemp in the 19th and 20th centuries. Kentucky wants the state to reclaim this status. The Kentucky Legislature introduced SR-166 that would authorize the creation of a task force to help farmers transition from growing tobacco to hemp. The resolution notes that farmers have struggled to find an economically viable crop as an alternative to the declining tobacco market. The tobacco harvest has declined over seventy percent over the past two decades. By contrast, hemp production has skyrocketed by over 150% in the last year from 16,000 acres in 2018 to over 42,000 acres in 2019. The 2019 estimates takes Kentucky well ahead of Oregon’s expected 20,000 acres. With these numbers, Kentucky will be well positioned to garner a decent share of the $4 billion global hemp market.

Hoboken, New Jersey to Decide on Whether To Allow Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Tomorrow

The Hoboken City Council will meet tomorrow to decide whether to permit medical marijuana dispensaries in the city. The city will vote on the third and final reading of the medical marijuana ordinance. The ordinance will permit three (3) dispensaries within designated areas in the city. The city has been approached by several organizations from within and outside the city seeking to establish medical marijuana dispensaries. To obtain a dispensary license, businesses will need to pay a $15,000 application fee and a $15,000 annual renewal fee.

Cannabis Regulatory Meeting Tracker 03/04/2019: 15 Meetings Today in California, Colorado, Nevada, Massachusetts, Michigan, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Utah

There are fifteen (15) meetings today in California, Colorado, Nevada, Massachusetts, Michigan, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, and Utah. The big meeting today is in Colorado. Colorado’s House Finance Committee will hold a hearing on a bill that will allow publicly traded companies to own licensed cannabis companies.

California: City Of San Rafael: Authorizing Cannabis Businesses
California: West Hollywood: Ordinance Related To Temporary Cannabis Uses
Colorado Legislature: House Finance: HB19-1090: Publicly Licensed Marijuana Companies
Colorado: Denver Special Issues Marijuana
Nevada Legislature: Senate Health And Human Services: SB228 Revises Provisions Relating To Marijuana And Industrial Hemp. (BDR 54-180)
Massachusetts: Lowell Planning Board Site Plan Review: Marijuana Cultivation Facility
Massachusetts: City Of Lunenburg: Recreational Marijuana Regulations
Massachusetts: City Of Northampton: Community Outreach Meeting: Marijuana Product Manufacturer
Michigan: Village Of Douglas: Amendments To Medical Marihuana Regulations Related To Camera Storage
Michigan: City Of Reed: Proposed Ordinance To Prohibit Marihuana Establishments
North Dakota Legislature: Senate Agriculture: SB 2184 Relating To The Definition Of Allied Health Care Professional And Health Care Provider With Respect To Workers' Compensation Claims And Benefits.
Pennsylvania: Manor Township: Ordinance On Marijuana Possession
Pennsylvania: City Of Philadelphia: Referenda On Adult Use Cannabis Legalization
Utah Legislature: House Business And Labor Committee: SCR007 - Concurrent Resolution Urging Legal Medical Cannabis Banking
Utah Legislature: House Health And Human Services Committee: SB0161S03 - Medical Cannabis Act Amendments

Cannabis Regulatory Meeting Tracker 02/28/2019: 8 Meetings Today in California, Florida, Massachusetts and North Carolina