Cannabis & the Law

We have developed this blog specifically to track the creation of the regulatory framework for the cannabis industry in Massachusetts and provide insight on legal issues of concern to potential operators.

Marketed as a legal way to get stoned, Delta-8 products have been hitting the shelves of gas stations and smoke shops nationwide. But how can a product that purportedly gets users high escape federal and state regulation? What is Delta-8? Delta-8 is one of the hundreds of cannabinoids that are naturally found in hemp and cannabis plants. It is an isomer of Delta-9, the source of marijuana’s high. When it comes to tetrahydrocannabinol, one…
On Wednesday, July 14, Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer (NY), Senator Cory Booker (NJ), and Senator Ron Wyden (OR) introduced a draft bill to decriminalize marijuana at the federal level. The draft discussion of the legislation, named the Cannabis Administration & Opportunity Act (the “Bill”), opens by recognizing the disparate impact of the War on Drugs on people of color and states that goal of the Bill is to “end the decades of harm inflicted…
Nearly two weeks after the State Senate first voted on Connecticut’s adult-use cannabis bill, Governor Ned Lamont signed it into law. Starting July 1st, Connecticut will become the 19th state to legalize recreational marijuana for adults 21 and older. The adult-use bill had a bit of a bumpy ride this June, failing to be voted upon by the State House during the regular legislative session. From there, the vote got pushed to a special legislative
As of today – June 15, 2021 – the Commonwealth’s State of Emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic has ended.  Although the Cannabis Control Commission (“Commission”) has issued bulletins and administrative orders that temporarily extend telehealthvirtual community outreach meeting and curbside operations protocols until September 1, 2021, the balance of the Commission’s COVID-19 related protocols have expired.  This may have important implications for Marijuana Establishment Licensees. For example, although the Commission may have…
  As of Friday, May 28, the Cannabis Control Commission (“CCC”) has announced that Certified Economic Empowerment Applicants and Social Equity Program Participants (“EE/SE Participants”) are able to apply for pre-certification and licensure for the new Marijuana Delivery Operator license. This is the second stand-alone delivery license that EE/SE Participants are eligible to apply for, after the Marijuana Courier (formerly Delivery Only) license became available in May 2020. The Marijuana Courier license allows licensees to…
New York, which only recently passed an ambitious adult-use cannabis bill, has also positioned itself as a leader in the field of hemp cannabinoid products, and just today, May 19, 2021, updated its regulations and standards for the production, distribution, and sale of hemp cannabinoid products in the Empire State. As many are well-aware, the hemp cannabinoid marketplace has been one of shifting and evolving regulatory oversight. For instance, the 2018 Farm Bill, while vesting…
With much of the cannabis oriented media focusing on the flurry of adult use bills and opportunities, it is easy to overlook that many states are doubling down on their medical marijuana infrastructure. For instance, over just the last few weeks, the Ohio Board of Pharmacy (“Board”) began its efforts at more than doubling its number of medical marijuana dispensaries. Ohio anticipates commencing an application round soliciting up to 73 additional dispensaries at some point…
With barely half of 2021 gone by, the wave of cannabis legalization continues with Alabama poised to become the 37th state with a lawful medical marijuana program. In particular, on May 6, 2021, the State Legislature voted to legalize medical marijuana, with the Governor still in the process of “reviewing,” though anticipated to sign in light of the bipartisan and strong margins through which the underlying Bill passed (68-34 and 20-9 respectively). But what will…
On April 19, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act in a 321-101 vote. The bill has benefitted from bipartisan support after being co-sponsored by a large group of both Democrats and Republicans in the House. Only one representative, Rep. Patrick McHenry of North Carolina, spoke in opposition to the bill during the House debate. The SAFE Banking Act will next move to the Senate. If the Senate…
The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission (“CRC”) has finally come into existence, and now, the hard work begins. By way of background, the CRC was created by statute as part of New Jersey’s medical cannabis expansion law, though the full roster of commissioners was only recently appointed. The CRC will oversee both the medical and adult-use cannabis marketplace, and is tasked by New Jersey’s adult-use implementation law with creating the rules and regulations that…