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Vicente LLP New York Tri-State Update: July 2023

Jul 21, 2023

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Each month Vicente LLP highlights notable cannabis information from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. 


New York

Law, Regulations and Policies

On July 19, the Cannabis Control Board (CCB) approved the Cannabis Growers Showcase Programthe first initiative in the nation that allows licensed sales outside of dispensaries. The Cannabis Growers Showcase allows AUCCs to partner with CAURD and AUCP licensees to organize events to showcase brands and sell adult-use cannabis products to consumers. This provides more opportunities for cultivators to sell their product and broader access for consumers who may not have a licensed dispensary in their area. Applications for the program are open now and will close on December 1, 2023. A Guidance document and a FAQ document are available on OCM’s website.

Each Cannabis Growers Showcase event will include at least three cultivators. For every three cultivators with a retailer selling products at these events, one processor will also be able to sell their value-added products like edibles, drinkables and vape cartridges. These events are only allowed in municipalities that allow retail cannabis sales and have a predominantly adult (21+) population. Municipal approval must be obtained unless the event is hosted at a retailer’s licensed premises.

New York City published a Guide to Locating Cannabis Businesses in Compliance with the NYC Zoning Resolution. The city is designating CAURD businesses as Use Group 6C – permitted in most commercial and manufacturing districts. See chart below.

On July 11, the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM ) posted their assessment of public comment for the first draft Adult-Use Regulations. Revised proposed adult-use regulations were filed in the 6/14 edition of the state register. The public comment period ends on July 31.  Contact us if you would like to discuss anything from New York’s regulations or the assessment of public comment.

Regulatory Meetings

The Cannabis Control Board (CCB) met on July 19, 2023. See the press release from this meeting here. The recording may be viewed here. Meeting highlights include:

An application timeline was included as part of the Executive Director’s Report –

The CCB met on June 15, 2023 at 11 a.m. Watch the meeting and review the minutes. During the meeting, CCB provisionally approved additional CAURD licenses.

The Cannabis Advisory Board met on June 13, 2023 at 12 p.m. You can watch the meeting here.

You can follow OCM and the CCB’s day-to-day activities on their Instagram account @nys_cannabis.

Events

Vicente LLP has joined forces with The Bronx Community Foundation, Dutchie, Temeka, KayaPush, and Cannabis Workforce Initiative, and other cannabis industry organizations for The Official Dispensary Showroom Tour this summer.

Team members participated in the Long Island stop on July 14th and 15th, assisting with the showroom and participating in panels for attendees. Next Stop: Syracuse, September 1-2. Learn more and register here!

This free event will highlight a fully compliant mock adult-use dispensary that is designed to meet all of New York's regulations. You will get to see, touch, and experience a fully compliant dispensary and what it takes to operate in this industry.

The Official Dispensary Showroom Tour Dates

  • Long Island: July 14-15
  • Syracuse: Sept 1-2 (w/ The Higher Calling)
  • Mid-Hudson: Sept 21-22 (w/ Hudson Valley Cannabis Industry Association and Dutchess Community College)
  • Queens: October 20-21 (w/ Erica Ford)
  • The Bronx: Dispensary Showroom Wrap-Up Event: Oct. 27th (w/ Beatstro)

September 29-30 | The New York Cannabis and Hemp Convention

NECANN is coming to Albany this Fall! Last year’s conference was a great success, and Vicente LLP can’t wait to see you this year. Stay tuned for details about our involvement.

News Highlights

New York has announced the Cannabis Growers Showcase Program – the first initiative in the nation that allows licensed sales outside of dispensaries. This provides more opportunities for cultivators to sell their product and broader access for consumers who may not have a licensed dispensary in their area.

“The CGS initiative marks an important milestone in New York's cannabis industry, fostering collaboration and allowing licensed cultivators to engage directly with consumers. The Office is committed to ensuring that all CGS events are held in accordance with the approved guidelines, promoting transparency, safety, and an enhanced consumer experience.

CAURD licenses continue to open their doors across the state – most notably, in Long Island and Syracuse.

Enforcement actions are continuing against illicit stores and clubs. Empire Cannabis Club was raided by the Department of Taxation and Finance last week.


New Jersey

Regulations and Policies

Final regulations for adult-use cannabis were published in the state register on March 6, 2023 and are now effective.

The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission (CRC) proposed regulations governing the operation of cannabis consumption areas. The public comment period on these proposed regulations is closed and we now await the final regulations.

Regulatory Meetings

The CRC met on July 18 at 11 am in Atlantic City. The recording can be found here. Highlights included:

  • Executive Director’s Report, including a medical program update and a licensing update;
  • Consideration of applications for permit or license changes;
  • The issuance of:
    • One medicinal cannabis business license,
    • 40 conditional licenses (11 cultivators, 8 manufacturers, and 21 retailers),
    • 35 conditional-to-annual license conversions (10 cultivators, 6 manufacturers, and 19 retailers);
    • 14 annual licenses (6 cultivators, 5 manufacturers, and 3 retailers); and
    • 4 expanded ATC certifications.

The CRC previously met on June 21. Review the slides and replay. Notable highlights include:

  • Chair's report
  • Consideration of publications for the New Jersey Register
  • Rule proposal: Clinical registrant permits
  • Consideration of  license applications for conditional-to-annual license conversions and annual licenses

Events

September 8-9 | The New Jersey Cannabis Convention

NECANN New Jersey will be held September 8-9, 2023 in Atlantic City. Reach out if you want to meet up, Vicente LLP attorneys will be onsite and speaking in two sessions.

Jennifer Cabrera will present the session "Cashing In on Cannabis Hospitality: Learning the Ins-and-Outs of New Jersey’s Newest License Type" on Friday, September 8 at 1:30 p.m. ET.

Steve Pemberton will participate in the panel "Getting Your Brand Into New Jersey’s Cannabis Market: Which Path Is Best?" on Saturday, September 9 at 12:30 p.m. ET.

October 16-18 | Cannabis Quality Conference

Save the date for the Cannabis Quality Conference, which will be held October 16-18! Vicente’s director of regulatory compliance, Casey Leaver, is slated to present the session “What to Expect When You’re Inspected: Creating a Culture of Compliance.”


Connecticut

Law, Regulations and Policies

Effective July 1, 2023, registration fees for the Medical Marijuana Program for patients and caregivers have been eliminated. See the press release from DCP here.

A new set of Policies and Procedures were published on July 11 and will be effective July 28. This is the sixth set of Policies that DCP has released. The initial set became effective on October 16, 2021 has been updated on January 26, 2022, August 5, 2022, September 28, 2022, and June 15, 2023. The changes from version five are:

A clarification that the warning label “Warning: Cannabis that is vaped or smoked typically has an onset within 15 minutes, and cannabis that is consumed may have a delayed onset of up to 2+ hours.” must be included on packaging beginning October 1, 2023;

A packaging requirement update that a liquid containing cannabis may be packaged in an aluminum alloy bottle or can, provided the bottle or can contains no less than 8 fl. oz. and does not incorporate any color; and

After October 1, 2023, labels on edible cannabis products, including beverages, must be entirely and uniformly white (white and black are be considered colors for this purpose).

As a reminder, House Bill 6699 is now law, Public Act 79. Effective July 1, 2023, the amount of THC allowed in hemp products intended for sale outside of licensed cannabis dispensaries is limited. “High-THC Hemp Products,” which will be legally considered cannabis, include manufactured edible hemp products with THC levels that exceed 1 mg/serving or 5 mg/container.

Regulatory Meetings

The next Social Equity Council meeting is July 6, 2023 at 10 am. You can livestream the meeting. The agenda includes:

  • A vote on workforce development plans;
  • A vote on social equity plans;
  • Executive Director’s Report; and
  • Committee Reports.

The June 6, 2023 meeting of the Social Equity Council was canceled. They last met on May 24, 2023 for a special meeting. You can find the meeting minutes for the May 24 meeting here.

Various subcommittees are also scheduled to meet this month and links are available here

Events

September 21 | Business of Cannabis: CT Cannabis Conference

Save the date for the second annual Business of Cannabis: CT Cannabis Conference on Thursday, September 21! Vicente partner Michelle Bodian will be a speaker.

News Highlights

The Department of Consumer Protection released data from June cannabis sales. Sales for adult-use cannabis and medical marijuana totaled nearly $24 million in the month of June. The adult-use market recorded $12.5 million in sales and the medical marijuana market recorded $11.3 million in sales. The average price of products for medical marijuana patients was $37.43 and the average price of adult-use products was $40.00.

DCP included more information of the types of products sold in this report. Since adult-use cannabis sales launched in January, 53% of sales have been usable cannabis/flower, 25% of sales have been vapes, and 10% of sales have been edible products.

Questions about cannabis in New York, New Jersey and/or Connecticut? We're here to help with corporate law, market analysis, selecting a location, community outreach, licensing, and more. Please feel free to reach out to our Tri-state team.

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