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Glendale plans to open Colorado's first marijuana tasting room inside a replica jail cell

The Smokin Gun Apothecary in Glendale is planning to open Colorado’s first marijuana tasting room, The Joint, in Glendale.

The post Glendale plans to open Colorado's first marijuana tasting room inside a replica jail cell appeared first on The Cannabist.

Whoopi Goldberg’s California cannabis company has shut down

By Alicia Wallace | CNN Business

Whoopi & Maya, the medical cannabis company co-founded by Whoopi Goldberg, is closing up shop, according to a statement posted on its website.

In an interview with CNN Business, Rick Cusick, a Whoopi & Maya board member who helped found the company with Goldberg and Om Edibles founder Maya Elisabeth, said he received word Friday from Goldberg that she planned to step away from the brand.

Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Colorado unveils plan to help bring banking to state’s cannabis industry

With federal banking still out of reach, Gov. Jared Polis unveiled new strategies Monday to entice Colorado banks, credit unions and money transmitters to work with cannabis companies and become leaders in providing financial services to marijuana and hemp businesses.

Polis’s plan renews the state’s commitment to creating a regulatory landscape that affords cannabis businesses access to services widely available to other legal industries, while offering financial institutions support to navigate the industry’s federal grey area.

Because marijuana remains a controlled substance under federal law, Colorado’s dispensaries, cultivations and other businesses have been prohibited from obtaining conventional financial services, such as lines of credits or loans, and the ability to accept credit cards.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.

State confiscates nearly 1 million marijuana plants, arrests 148 in 2019 effort to combat illegal grows

LOS ANGELES — State Attorney General Xavier Becerra announced Monday the arrests of 148 people so far this year during the Campaign Against Marijuana Planting Program enforcement effort, the nation’s largest such multi-agency eradication program.

During this year’s effort, CAMP personnel also eradicated 953,459 marijuana plants from 345 raided grow sites across the state and seized 168 weapons, Becerra announced at a downtown Los Angeles news conference.

“Illegal cannabis grows are devastating our communities,” Becerra said. “Criminals who disregard life, poison our waters, damage our public lands and weaponize the illegal cannabis black market will be brought to justice.”

Read the rest of this story on ocregister.com.

Vapes on black market may contain toxic chemicals, pesticides, harmful flavorings

Ingredients lurking inside marijuana and nicotine black-market vapes can transform into dangerous, toxic chemicals when heated and inhaled, with the worst impacts of vaping still unknown, according to experts.

“We see in black market products, horrible pesticide contamination,” said Dr. Chris Hudalla, founder and chief science officer at Proverde Labs in Milford, which tests marijuana and hemp-based vapes along with some nicotine vapes for the legal, regulated market.

Black market marijuana vapes are being eyed as a likely culprit in the vape health crisis that has seen more than 2,600 hospitalizations nationwide and at least 60 deaths, including, locally, at least 73 suspected vape injury cases and four deaths in Massachusetts.

Read the rest of this story on BostonHerald.com.

First Alaska retail pot shops get OK to allow on-site use

JUNEAU, Alaska — The first marijuana shops in Alaska where customers can partake on-site have gotten approval, putting them on the leading edge nationally.

Visions for the spaces range from a living room feel to a brewery-style tasting room with a TV to watch football games.

Zoning and ventilation requirements and restrictions on smoking can limit the growth of so-called cannabis lounges or cafes in places that permit them, such as some cities in California, said Morgan Fox, a spokesman for the National Cannabis Industry Association.

Read the rest of this story on BostonHerald.com.

In second year of legal weed, California’s cannabis industry still struggles

As year two of legal cannabis sales in California comes to a close, shoppers are still more likely to buy marijuana from illicit sellers than from state-sanctioned stores that pay taxes and test their products for safety.

California’s 7,000 licensed cannabis businesses — and the state’s tax revenue — are feeling the pinch.

Prominent cannabis companies that a year ago were growing aggressively have, in recent months, laid off hundreds of workers. They say hefty taxes, onerous regulations and competition from a thriving illicit market are forcing them to scale back operations.

Read the rest of this story on ocregister.com.

Pot shops warned to watch out for ‘smurfs’ and ‘loopers’

Pot regulators are vowing to crack down on “loopers” and “smurfs” — slang for people who make make multiple purchases of weed products in one day at one store or many.

The state Cannabis Control Commission and state Attorney General Maura Healey’s office said they are looking to create a task force to find ways to blunt the illegal activity.

A multi-agency illicit pot squad would clamp down on, among other things, people who go from dispensary to dispensary buying the maximum allowable amount of pot, with the intent of selling it illegally.

Read the rest of this story on BostonHerald.com.

California agency recommends major overhaul to state’s cannabis taxes

California’s struggling cannabis industry didn’t get the recommendation many hoped for — a call to sharply lower the industry’s tax rate — but a long-awaited state report did suggest a marijuana tax overhaul.

The report from California’s nonpartisan Legislative Analyst Office, released Tuesday, Dec. 17, says lawmakers should ditch the way the state currently taxes marijuana and, instead, tax cannabis at different rates based on its potency. Such a tax structure, the report said, would result in stable revenue and discourage cannabis abuse.

The report — the first of its kind since voters legalized cannabis three years earlier — also recommends California quit making licensed cultivators pay a tax based on the weight of marijuana they grow.

Read the rest of this story on ocregister.com.

Not your average smurf – The Cannabist

To the average person, the word “smurf” likely conjures up images of a fictional colony of small, blue, human-like creatures who live in mushrooom-shaped houses in the forest.

But in the marijuana black market and beyond, the word — and variations of it — have far different connotations than the series of characters created in 1958 by the Belgian comics artist Peyo and popularized in the U.S. in the 1980s.

Urbandictionary.com defines a cannasmurf, for example, as “a person who is a member of several medical cannabis dispensaries and who obtains the maximum allowable quantity of cannabis from these clubs in order to obtain a sizable amount of cannabis for personal or commercial reasons.”

Read the rest of this story on BostonHerald.com.