Cannabis Dispensaries Top Target for Labor Unions as More States Legalize and More

In the days of the Armada, a fleet of warships, the scuttlebutt was the rumor or gossip that would spread throughout the ship. Today, Armada Law Corp presents The Scuttlebutt, a daily summery of news articles that people within the cannabis, hemp and plant medicine industries are chatting about along with links to the full articles.

In today’s news:

Cannabis Dispensaries Top Target for Labor Unions as More States Legalize

#cannabisindustry – “It’s going to take more than a few coffeeshops or cannabis dispensaries to ignite the next wave of unionization in America, but workforce organizers have adjusted their sails during a time of historic lows.

In 2022, the union membership rate for wage and salary workers hit an all-time bottom of 10.1%, down 0.2% from the previous year, with the total number of workers belonging to unions at 14.3 million, according to union data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. While the number of union workers increased by 273,000 in 2022, the total number of workers grew more rapidly.

In 1983, the first year of comparable data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, America’s union membership rate was 20.1% with 17.7 million workers unionized. However, the percentage of workers belonging to a union peaked at roughly one in three Americans in the mid-1950s, when public support was at an all-time high, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research….”

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New Year, New Changes for California Employers in 2024

#californiacannabis – “As 2024 quickly approaches, so, too, do many new obligations and restrictions for employers with California employees.

Below, we summarize significant changes to hiring and workforce management, litigation, wage and hour, and other California employment laws taking effect in the new year.

Unless otherwise noted, all new laws discussed below will be effective as of January 1, 2024…..

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#californiacannabis – “This week the Institute of Justice (IJ) responded to the County’s statement in the federal class action lawsuit against Humboldt County’s cannabis abatement program now that the suit is in the court of appeals. IJ represents those who claim they were victimized by the County Abatement program. The appeals process calls for three filings, the third of which was just filed. This most recent filing is the Reply to the County’s Response to IJ’s initial brief on the appeal.

The next step is either oral arguments, or the Court may simply reach a decision based on the written filings.  That decision will have a serious impact on abatement programs throughout California as many counties and cities use the same tactics against alleged unlicensed cannabis growers as Humboldt does, and have made quite a bit of money from these tactics which IJ’s suit says are unconstitutional.

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Cannabis Industry to 2023: ‘Don’t Let the Door Hit You in the …’

#cannabisindustry – “2023 takeaways: “2023 posed a challenge to the broader cannabis industry from the standpoint of capital availability, industry-wide pricing dynamics, and lack of progress on federal reform. But cannabis operators have proven resilient, and as companies such as AYR have channeled their energy into streamlining operations and refining their core offering. Looking ahead, these companies are now entering 2024 with optimism as leaner and more efficient businesses.”

2024 predictions: “MSOs will be focusing on the financial health of their companies, prioritizing cash flow generation and fostering leaner, more efficient operations….”

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Editorial: Biden’s marijuana pardons are welcome, but federal drug laws must catch up with reality

#cannabispolotics – “The two separate actions are welcome but don’t correct the underlying problem. We still have federal laws and regulations that impose sanctions out of proportion to the alleged harm. Marijuana remains a “Schedule 1” drug under the Controlled Substances Act, a more serious classification than that applied to fentanyl, which few dispute is a far more harmful substance if misused. Possession and use of marijuana in the District of Columbia or on federal land can still result in prison time, at least theoretically….”

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New York Weed Farmers ‘Ruined’ After Governor Blocks Massive Marijuana Sale

#newyorkcannabis – “New York weed farmers said they are “financially ruined” after Governor Kathy Hochul vetoed legislation that would have allowed licensed marijuana growers to sell products to tribal retailers.

The legislation, called the Cannabis Crop Rescue Act, sought to assist farmers grappling with unsold cannabis yields as it would have provided growers with another legal avenue to offload products amid lawsuits and other delays since the sales of legal, regulated adult-use cannabis officially began last December in New York. The bill was passed by both chambers of the Legislature in June and was sponsored by state Senator Michelle Hinchey and Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo, who chair their agriculture committees.

However, on Friday, Hochul vetoed the legislation, leaving farmers with the surplus supply as they are unable to offload millions of dollars worth of unsold marijuana…..”

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These Were The Biggest Federal And Congressional Marijuana Policy Developments Of 2023

#cannabispolitics – “The year 2023 brought a mixed bag of federal developments in the marijuana space—marked by historic news such as the Biden’s rescheduling recommendation and pardon expansion, as well as setbacks on the congressional path to enacting cannabis banking reform.

And with Congress now in recess for the holiday season, advocates and stakeholders are left to reflect on the ups and downs of the past year, with hopes of building on their work in 2024…..”

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Missouri lawmakers renew push to regulate ‘delta-8 THC’ hemp products

#hempproducts – “A Republican state senator has filed legislation to renew last spring’s failed effort to regulate intoxicating hemp products in Missouri, such as Delta-8 drinks and edibles.

Delta-8 THC products can be sold in stores in Missouri because the intoxicating ingredient, THC, is derived from hemp, not marijuana which is a controlled substance. And hemp is federally legal.

There’s no state or federal law saying teenagers or children can’t buy them or stores can’t sell them to minors — though some stores and vendors have taken it upon themselves to impose age restrictions of 21 and up.

And there’s no requirement to list potential effects on the label or test how much THC is actually in them.

State Sen. Nick Schroer, a Republican from O’Fallon who chairs the legislative committee that oversees Missouri’s marijuana rules, said the products are too easily accessible to children, particularly teenagers…..”

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Morocco’s Cannabis Regulation Agency Grants Over 600 Authorizations in 2023

#cannabisindustry – “Morocco’s Cannabis Regulation Agency (ANRAC) has revealed that it had granted 609 authorizations out of 1,063 processed applications, for the legal production of cannabis as of the end of November.

The granted authorizations encompass various aspects of the cannabis industry, with 430 allocated to farmers for cultivation and production.

Another 179 were granted for activities ranging from industrial and medical purposes to commercialization, exportation, importation of seeds, and transportation.

The 179 authorizations were distributed among 82 operators, including 7 pharmaceutical establishments, 13 cooperatives, 45 companies, and 17 individuals…..”

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SEC Charges Canadian Cannabis Company and Former Senior Executive with Accounting Fraud

#cannabislaw – “The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged Cronos Group Inc., a Nasdaq-listed cannabis company based in Toronto, for improperly accounting for millions of dollars of revenue and for other accounting misconduct in multiple reporting periods. The SEC also charged Cronos’s former Chief Commercial Officer, William Hilson, with fraud and aiding and abetting the company’s violations. In agreeing to settle with Cronos, the Commission determined that the company should not incur a financial penalty, given its timely self-reporting, significant cooperation, and remediation.

According to the SEC’s order, in three separate quarters between 2019 and 2021, Cronos submitted financial statements with the SEC that contained material accounting errors related to, among other things, revenue recognition and goodwill impairment. The order also found that, in one of the quarters, Hilson entered into an undisclosed oral agreement to sell cannabis raw material and to repurchase cannabis product in the following quarter. This agreement was neither known nor accounted for by Cronos, which discovered the $2.3 million accounting error during an internal investigation. After discovering the accounting errors, Cronos promptly reported the misconduct to the SEC and provided extensive cooperation that meaningfully advanced the Commission’s investigation. It also took effective remedial steps to enhance its internal accounting controls….”

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Cannabis sales on hold in Mississippi over ‘regulatory standards’ gaffe

#cannabisindustry – ”

A large number of medical cannabis products are not being sold in Mississippi for the time being.

The Mississippi State Department of Health says the products have been put on an hold “to protect the health and safety of medical cannabis patients.”

This comes after THC products were tested after being purchased over-the-counter.

One of the products that was tested failed for eight pesticides, but that was just one of 13 products Steep Hill tested, with all of them containing THC levels 30 to 40 times over the legal limit….”

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