“They asked the (Mexican) Supreme Court for an extension because the two chambers could not come to an agreement and they were running out of time to make revisions. But it’s an issue of form, not substance. I believe this will be resolved” in the next session, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said in his daily news conference.
The Chamber of Deputies was under a Dec. 15 Mexican Supreme Court deadline to approve the law, but deputies asked for and got an extension through the end of April. The deputies are expected to pick up the discussion in early February.
“There is no opposition to what the Senate authorized regarding the medicinal and limited use of marijuana. It’s just a matter of errors, lack of precision about the amounts and other contradictions in the law itself, and that’s what will be resolved,” Lopez Obrador said.
If that happens, Mexico would be the second country in Latin America – after Uruguay – to decriminalize recreational use of small amounts of marijuana.
The premise might seem odd in a nation plagued by drug cartel violence and with rising rates of addiction in northern border cities. But experts say it reflects a change of attitude in Mexican collective thought and won’t necessarily fuel more violence or addictions.
The Mississippi Medical Marijuana Association (3MA) is now accepting membership applications from business owners in the medical marijuana industry.
“We are so excited to officially launch this association,” said Ken Newburger, Executive Director for the Mississippi Medical Marijuana Association. “We already have over 50 members, and our goal is to make sure we give these businesses access to tools and information to give Mississippi a top-tier medical marijuana program. Our team worked so hard alongside Mississippi voters to pass Initiative 65 at the polls, and now we want to do all we can to assure the program operates in the best way possible for patients in Mississippi.”
The primary focus of the Mississippi Medical Marijuana Association is to monitor legislative and regulatory activity, to advocate for its members, and to be a single and coherent political voice representing the interests of the industry. Membership provides access to educational and informational resources, networking opportunities, and governmental affairs representation.
The association is holding its first event for members, the Mississippi Medical Marijuana Convention, on February 19, 2021.
“We worked tirelessly for two years educating voters to help get Initiative 65 passed,” said Newburger, “and now our team is moving forward to make sure patients who qualify to be treated with medical marijuana can get it in the safest and most secure way possible through prepared, reliable businesses. We have assembled a team of experienced professionals in the legal and communication industries, who also worked closely with the Initiative 65 campaign, to help assure that medical marijuana businesses in Mississippi are set up for success right from the beginning.”
Jay-Z just became the latest celebrity to launch a pot business.
Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter — the billionaire rapper and global business mogul behind a multitude of successful companies including D’Usse cognac, streaming service Tidal and entertainment firm Roc Nation — can now add premium cannabis brand Monogram to his portfolio.
Monogram’s core collection rolled out Thursday. Retailing between $40 and $70, the products include several cannabis strains designated as light, medium and heavy — available in pre-rolled cigars and joints and tins of cannabis flower.
In a statement obtained by CNBC, Jay-Z said his vision for the brand is “cannabis redefined.”
“Cannabis has been around for thousands of years, yet it is still an industry whose legacy of skilled craftsmanship is often overlooked,” he said. “I created Monogram to give cannabis the respect it deserves by showcasing the tremendous hard work, time and care that go into crafting a superior smoke. Monogram products are next level when it comes to quality and consistency and we’re just getting started.”
Jay-Z — who once famously referred to himself as a “business, man” not a “businessman” — joins a growing list of artists getting into the pot industry.
The new draft regulations cover licensing fees, the timeline for license approvals, the structure of the regulatory body, product labeling, public safety protocols and other technical matters. This is the first of what’s expected to be at least one if not more versions of draft regulations that the Arizona Department of Health Services will put out before finalizing rules.
Arizona’s secretary of state officially certified the Election Day results on November 30, which initiated the process of putting these regulations together. Now that they’ve been released in their initial form, stakeholders can use an online survey to submit feedback that regulators can use to amend the proposal. Responses are being accepted through December 17.
“Just a week and a half after Governor Ducey officially certified the will of Arizona voters, the Department is already hard at work to ensure the smoothest transition possible to adult-use in Arizona,” he said.
But again, this is a preliminary step and the provisions outlined in the draft rules are likely to be amended. Richard said he anticipates the department will put out at least one more proposal based on feedback they get and that the rules won’t be finalized until early January.
“They just want to give operators a sense of what the program will look like” before applications go live, he said.
Under the new legalization law, adults will be able to possess up to an ounce of marijuana at a time and cultivate up to six plants for personal use.
“It’s by far the most controversial provision,” Duggan said. “The city will not issue a license to any business unless 50% of the licenses in that category are Detroiters. Which means if you’re from outside the city, you can’t get a license unless a Detroiter already has one. We’ll never go below 50%.”
The plan, city leaders say, was crafted to ensure residents disproportionately affected by the nation’s failed “War on Drugs” will have an equitable opportunity to participate in an industry that’s estimated to yield $3 billion in annual sales. In late November, the city council unanimously approved the ordinance.
“It was imperative for us to ensure we right that wrong,” Tate said. “We have individuals who are making a very good living on marijuana today, the same plant that created this situation of mass incarceration around our country in the city of Detroit, so this is an opportunity for us.”
Applicants can qualify for the “legacy” certification if they’ve lived in Detroit for 15 of the last 30 years; lived in Detroit for 13 of the last 30 years and are low-income; or lived in Detroit for 10 of the last 30 years and have a past marijuana-related conviction.
Legacy Detroiters will receive benefits including reduced fees, technical assistance and a six-week period when only legacy Detroiter applications will be reviewed before the rest of the public by the city’s Civil Rights, Inclusion and Opportunity Department.
Legacy Detroiters will be able to purchase city-owned land at 25% of the fair market value and all application fees be slashed to 1% of the total cost.
“These are for real Detroiters, those who have roots in the community,” Duggan said. “Or you can qualify as a business legacy, owned and controlled 51% by individuals with the legacy certification.”
Despite the scrutiny they face, “Detroit is ready for this huge lift,” Tate said.
He added it was rare to witness overwhelming excitement about an ordinance but said it’s because “now (residents) have that sense of opportunity and hope.”
How to apply
The adult-use law is expected to go into effect in January and Detroiters can start by reviewing the process at detroitmeansbusiness.org.
The state requirements include a $6,000 fee with reductions for those involved in social equity programs. Applicants must provide the state information on the company and have a personal background check.
The state process could take two to three months and Duggan said Detroit applicants can begin the city process in January before state prequalifications are complete.
Starting April 1, Detroiters and general applicants will able to apply for licenses through the Buildings, Safety Engineering and Environmental Department.
Legacy Detroiters will be the first applicants reviewed for licenses starting May 1. General applications will be reviewed starting Aug. 1.
City licensing fees will cost $1,000, but only $10 for legacy Detroiters.
“We are going to change the inequity on Detroit versus non-Detroit businesses,” Duggan said. “We’re doing everything we can to create every opportunity for Detroiters to start these businesses.”
The city will license up to 75 adult-use retailers, the same number it allows for medical marijuana provisioning centers. Officials said it amounted to one dispensary every two square miles in the city.
Applicants will need:
Detailed business plans
Three years of income tax returns
Authorizations for background checks
Property tax clearances and clearances of any blight
An address for the business
Those without an address can obtain a provisional license valid for one year and for information on properties. Detroit officials have said only four of the city’s 46 medical marijuana dispensaries — permitted under a law approved by Detroit’s council in 2018 — are owned by residents.
Mitzi Ruddock, a 40-year-old Detroit single mother with a past marijuana conviction, told The News that having a seat at the table made a difference.
“I and many other Detroiters have sacrificed so much to see the day that brings generational wealth to our children through legal cannabis businesses,” said Ruddock.