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California governor signs tax relief bill.
Gov. Gavin Newsom has signed a bill that is the product of more than six months of negotiations among his office, lawmakers, and cannabis industry stakeholders.
The bill reduces the cultivation tax to zero starting now and locks in the current excise tax rate of 15% for three years. However, the rate can later be adjusted to make up for revenue lost from the cultivation tax elimination, but to no more than 19%. The bill also creates tax credits for equity licensees.
Tax reform has been a top priority for the cannabis industry, as Cannabis Wire has reported throughout 2022.
Final rules proposed for New Jersey’s adult use program.
At its meeting on Thursday, the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission (CRC) proposed final rules for its adult use program. The program is currently operating under temporary rules, which expire at the start of August, and that is when the proposed final rules will land in the New Jersey Register.
The CRC is proposing to add three new licenses: Class 3 Cannabis Wholesalers, Class 4 Cannabis Distributors, and Class 6 Cannabis Delivery Services.
Other changes include clarifying that spaces like bathrooms don’t count toward a microbusiness’ 2,500 square foot limit, for example, and loosens limits on logos on packaging.
It also will make permanent existing language, such as the prioritization of equity applications on a rolling basis.
The public comment period will span August and Septembers, with February 2023 as the deadline for the CRC to make any modifications and adopt the final rules.
During the meeting, the CRC also provided updates on licensing. Of 1,200 applications, all but 350 have had an “initial review.” But, CRC executive director Jeff Brown noted, there have been “more cure letters than approvals,” because of issues like, for example, an applicant saying they fall under the equity category but not providing proof.
There are now 229 conditional licenses, including the 81 approved at the meeting.
Also, the meeting focused on the Social Equity Excise Fee, which is expected to yield $3.5 million in FY 2023. The CRC approved the recommendation that the revenue go toward grants and low-interest loans for social equity businesses. Priorities include housing, job training, healthcare, and youth services. And, a specific point is that no funds will go toward law enforcement beyond what is required under existing law.
The CRC noted that new sales figures are forthcoming, as well as actions related to workplace impairment.
As of right now, the only operational cannabis businesses in the state are still the existing handful of medical cannabis companies that expanded to adult use.
Law that flings open the door to legal edibles takes effect in Minnesota.
It’s a first-of-its-kind confounding one.
The bill, HF 3595, meant to put up guardrails around delta-8 THC products, now makes it legal to sell hemp-derived edibles that contain up to 5 mg THC per serving (or up to 50 mg per package).