Editor Note

Introducing WeedWeek Council

WeedWeek is searching for a select group of leaders and professionals to form, WeedWeek Council, a new way to deliver the latest thinking from some of the smartest people in cannabis.

What does this mean and how do I join?

In partnership with the market research firm SoapBoxSample, WeedWeek is assembling a group of individuals representing a diversity of location and expertise. Two or more times a month, they will receive a short (5-minutes or less) survey on a topic in the news. WeedWeek editors will read the council members’ responses, and share key insights in our newsletters.

Council members will be selected through a competitive process and will receive perks. For starters:

1. Access to the raw data collected by the WW Council surveys.

2. An exclusive monthly “consumer pulse” data snapshot from SoapBoxSample.3. Council members will be recognized and listed on the WeedWeek site, if they so choose.4. Council members will receive an Ambassador Seal for use on your website, social and printed materials identifying yourself as a cannabis thought leader.We will always respect council members’ privacy. Responses will be default anonymous, with the option to submit quotes on the record for publication. Selected council members will be notified on a rolling basis.

3. Council members will be recognized and listed on the WeedWeek site, if they so choose.

4. Council members will receive an Ambassador Seal for use on your website, social and printed materials identifying yourself as a cannabis thought leader.

We will always respect council members’ privacy. Responses will be default anonymous, with the option to submit quotes on the record for publication. Selected council members will be notified on a rolling basis.


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AG Barr Endorses States Rights on Weed

Chip Somodevilla/ Getty Images

U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr opposes legalization, but prefers the bipartisan STATES Act bill, which would allow states to determine their own cannabis laws, over the "intolerable" status quo.
Denver Post

Meanwhile, Treasury Secretary Seth Mnuchin said he would review the SAFE Banking Act bill which would address the industry's access to financial services.
Canna Law Blog

  • Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner (R), has said President Trump would sign the States Act if it reaches his desk.
  • It remains unclear whether the bill can clear the the Republican controlled Senate.
  • While Massachusetts Senator and presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren (D) has endorsed the STATES Act, New Jersey Senator and presidential candidate Cory Booker no longer endorses the bill because it does not include equity. Booker sponsored the Marijuana Justice Act bill, which has been endorsed by the Minority Cannabis Business Association.

Quick Hit

  1. With all that cash to carry, tax day is no fun for pot businesses.

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NYC Close to Banning Pre-Employment Pot Tests

By a 40-4 margin, New York City Council passed a bill which would stop most employers from testing job applicants for marijuana. Mayor Bill de Blasio supports (D) the bill and is expected to sign it.
N.Y. Times

  • The bill includes exceptions for safety sensitive jobs like construction and law enforcement, and does not allow impairment at work.
  • A business group called the bill "overreach."
  • The council also passed a bill that would end the marijuana testing requirement for people on probation.
  • Pre-employment job testing became more common in the mid-1980's after President Reagan signed a "drug-free workplace" executive order.
  • Drug tests show cannabis use is at a 14-year high among workers.

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Florida Bill Would Cap THC at 10%

Weeks after Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) repealed a ban on smokeable MED, a bill banning THC levels over 10% is heading to the state's House. Supporters of the measure cited non-definitive research linking cannabis use with psychosis and violence.
MJ Biz Daily, Miami New Times

Quick Hits

  1. With the state facing a market glut, an Oregon bill would enable interstate cannabis commerce.
  2. If the votes to pass REC aren't there by May, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) said he would focus on expanding the state's MED market.
    Asbury Park Press
  3. After legalizing in 2016, Maine's top pot regulator said the state REC market would open this year.
    Press Herald
  4. Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker(D) wants to pass a REC law within weeks.
    Chicago Sun-Times

Hemp Rules Remain Murky

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) who pushed through hemp legalization as part of the Farm Bill, promised to repair "glitches" in the industry. In several states authorities haven't been sure how to regulate the crop.

There are also questions about bank access for hemp businesses. McConnell, who is up for re-election in 2020, opposes marijuana legalization.

With the CBD market projected to reach $16B annually, the molecule is going ever more mainstream:

  • Pharmacy chain Rite Aid announced it would join competitors Walgreen's and CVS in stocking CBD products.

Quick Hits

  1. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau isn't rushing to take credit for legalization. 🍁For more see WW Canada.
  2. California lawmakers killed a bill which would have blocked the current policy of allowing delivery in areas which don't allow REC businesses. 🌴For more see WW California.
    MJBiz Dail


Dealflow Accelerates

April saw the biggest week of the year thus far for M&A deals involving publicly traded pot companies. Of 11 deals, seven involved plant touching companies.

Quick Hits

  1. Stock in packaging company KushCo fell after the company revealed accounting errors which will more than double its net loss for 2018 to $24.3M.
  2. Social networks have moved to limit discussion of the online game Weedcraft Inc., a cannabis industry simulation.
    Ars Technica
Editor Note

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Critical Mind, Inc. is a Medical Cannabis Cultivation and Manufacturing Facility located in Adelanto, CA. Providing the highest quality Cannabis products. Compliance without Compromise!


Homegrow Sprouts Cottage Industry

A Massachusetts company called Home Grow Community is helping cannabis users grow at home. The company visits clients homes weekly to check in on their plants. It hopes to add technology which could perform some of these services remotely.
Boston Globe

  • Massachusetts allows six plants per person. The service charges $1,500 per grow cycle, yielding seven to 10 ounces. It's somewhat less than retail REC prices in the state.

Quick Hit

  1. A new bill in Massachusetts takes aim at the illegal market.
    Boston Globe

S.F. Weekly Slams High Times 100

Writing in S.F. Weekly's venerable Chem Tales column, Zack Ruskin slammed High Times' choices for its recent list of the 100 most influential people in weed.

  • Honorees including Jim Belushi, Mike Tyson and Damian Marley suggests "a trend toward celebrating the famous over the deserving," Ruskin writes.
  • The list includes only 13 women, all of them white.
  • Ruskin also criticizes the selection of Dope Media executive David Tran. While Ruskin acknowledges Tran's contributions, "Given DOPE is now a High Times property, it seems both grossly self-congratulatory as well as profoundly nepotistic to choose Tran for this distinction."

Illegal Grows Poisoning NorCal Wildlife

National Geographic profiles the Integral Ecology Research Center, a group trying to stop pollution associated with illegal grows in the Emerald Triangle. Founded by a married couple, the center opened in 2004 and has been criticized for co-operating with law enforcement.

  • In a 2012 study the center found 46 of 58 fisher carcasses they tested had been exposed to an anti-coagulent rodenticide.
  • They also found bears, grey foxes, bobcats, mountain lions and owls had been exposed. In some cases the animals were poisoned by accident, in other cases they were baited with poisoned hot dogs.
  • At one illegal grow the scientists found a substance they suspected to be carbofuran, a substance banned by the EPA in 2010. One quarter teaspoon of it can kill a 600-pound African lion.

Quick Hit

  1. Monsanto's Roundup, the world's most used herbicide, faces increasing liability connected to allegations that it causes cancer. I've previously argued that Monsanto, under its new owner, Bayer, could become a major player in cannabis.
    WSJ, SF Weekly

Nevada Licensing Under Scrutiny

Businesses suing the state of Nevada will ask a judge today to freeze the awarding of cannabis licenses. One lawsuit calls the state's process "arbitrary and capricious" and unconstitutional. The state Senate also unanimously passed a measure to release the names of licensees and applicants.

  • The push for transparency comes amid an ongoing push to allow social use lounges on the Las Vegas Strip.

Festival Season Buzzkills

Coachella, which is owned by conservative Colorado billionaire Philip Anchutz, doesn't allow cannabis use, but various brands will be out in force at the side parties which spring up in the desert around Palm Springs, Calif.
L.A. Magazine

The feds, in the form of the Bureau of Land Management, might be serious about stopping Burning Man this year.
L.A. Magazine

San Francisco is likely to start awarding cannabis sale permits at festivals this year. 🌴For more see WW California.
S.F. Evergree

Ann Arbor, Mich.'s 48th annual Hash Bash went forward in the now legal REC state.
Washington Examiner.

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