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What’s happening in New York:
• The Coalition for Access to Regulated & Safe Cannabis, which is led by several of the state’s licensed medical cannabis companies, all MSOs, took out a full-page ad in the New York Times calling on Gov. Kathy Hochul to do more on unlicensed cannabis sales. The Coalition is behind one of the lawsuits in the state, as Cannabis Wire has reported, and they argue, in short, that existing medical cannabis operators should have been allowed to sell adult use at the same time as anyone else (including the justice-involved individuals awarded Conditional Adult Use Retail Dispensary, or CAURD, licenses).
• Speaking of lawsuits, there’s a new development in the veterans’ lawsuit that, like the aforementioned lawsuit, challenges the CAURD program and has, as a result, stalled the adult use sales rollout.
Where things left off last week: the judge asked regulators for a list of licensees that could be exempted from the CAURD pause because they had, by one month ago, met all requirements to open. Regulators initially provided 30 names, but after issues raised by the plaintiffs in the case, the judge agreed with those issues and gave regulators specific instructions on resubmitting eligible entities.
What happened this week: Regulators submitted a new list, and it includes only 12 entities, each of which “submitted a post-selection application attesting to being ready to open,” was “issued site-plan approval,” completed a “notification to the municipality,” and was determined by regulators to be “in substantial compliance with all licensing requirements.” Whether this is enough for the judge to let these 12 through remains to be seen.
There is a footnote in regulators’ list that is likely to come into play. They note that while “an on-site compliance inspection” is not required for final licensure, it is required before sales can begin. However, they note that “most final license certificates were issued by the Office before an on-site compliance inspection occurred.” They do not say for which of the 12 those inspections took place.
• Meanwhile, the CAURD Coalition is circulating a petition that asks Hochul to take up cannabis during a special session to codify the CAURD program.
“The CAURD program is fully authorized by existing law – no additional legislative action is required for it to proceed,” Sen. Liz Krueger, one of the authors of the state’s adult use law, told Cannabis Wire.
Florida poll shows support for adult use legalization.
A new survey out of the University of South Florida found majority support for both medical and adult use cannabis, albeit much stronger for medical use, which is already legal in the state.
Support for medical cannabis: 83%
Support for adult use cannabis: 60%
The margin of error for the survey, which included 600 adults in Florida, is +/- 4%, which is worth flagging considering the state requires a 60% majority for a ballot measure to pass, and the adult use push is already facing an uphill battle.
+ More: Cannabis Wire recently published an in-depth story about the adult use push in Florida, which is backed financially by the largest medical cannabis operator in the state, Trulieve.
Maryland: sales climb above $90 million in August.
Maryland’s adult use market launched on July 1, and immediately total cannabis sales in the state doubled: June sales, which included just medical cannabis, came in just under $43 million, and July sales, which included adult use sales, totaled $87.4 million.
Now, the numbers for August are in from the Maryland Cannabis Administration, and so, too, is a breakdown of sales by product type.
August’s total? $91.7 million.
And here’s the total for each product (unfortunately, not separated by medical and adult use):
+ Want more backstory? Catch up on Cannabis Wire’s coverage of the state’s regulatory road to launching adult use sales.