On the domestic front, protections for state-legal medical marijuana programs from federal interference are approved by the Senate as part of a broader spending bill, a provision that has been renewed every year since its introduction in 2014. House legislators hoped to extend those protections to all state cannabis programs, including recreational, however, the larger chamber may simply approve the bill as it is to avoid a government shutdown by November 21st.
In California, L.A. City Council President Herb Wesson causes uproar by calling for the city’s latest round of licensing 100 marijuana businesses to be suspended and audited to ensure fairness and transparency. This comes after two applicants were able to get into the online system early, giving them an advantage over all other candidates. Some companies that had already been notified of winning results are threatening to sue if the process is halted, while others, like the California Minority Alliance, are applauding the redo. What do you think? Let us know online at Cannabis Broadcast Station.
In Colorado, random inspections conducted for a research project investigating the shelf-life and packaging of marijuana reveal that cannabis at 20 of 25 Denver dispensaries fail mold and yeast tests. Although specific results weren’t disclosed, such as the microbial levels and cannabis wholesaler names, the dispensaries were ordered to hold or quarantine the contaminated product, which they may then choose to destroy or retest.
In Wisconsin, democratic lawmakers David Crowley and Sheila Stubbs introduce a bill that would decriminalize marijuana possession of up to an ounce, which is currently classified as a misdemeanor offense that can result in a thousand dollar fine and up to six months in jail. Democratic Governor Tony Evers has supported similar measures in the past, however, Republicans in the Senate maintain staunch opposition and are expected to block the bill from passing.
In finance, Michigan-based cannabis producer and retailer C3 Industries raises 16.5 million dollars in a private financing round led by Madison Square Park Capital, bringing their total funding to over 25 million so far. The company intends to use the capital to expand their operations in Michigan, Oregon, and Massachusetts, and enter Missouri’s nascent MMJ market.
In Canada, the province of Saskatchewan ditches its 51 adult-use cannabis retail store limit in favor of an open market system, following the lead of Alberta and British Columbia. Recreational cannabis sales have been sluggish in the province, increasing only 13 percent in the past five months, and new retail store openings are expected to provide a significant boost to the market. Regulators will open up the new permit application process in September of 2020.
Overseas, Uruguay authorizes three new companies to grow recreational marijuana for commercial purposes after currently licensed cultivators ICC Labs and Simbiosys fail to keep up with consumer demand. The three winners, two of which are domestic and one U.S.-based company, will join the existing growers to produce up to 10,000 kilograms of cannabis flower per year at a price fixed by the government.
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