Hilary Bricken Says…The Future of Cannabis Won’t be Decided by the Feds. It’s the Locals.


She writes.. Nationwide, cannabis companies and advocates are hailing the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act as the savior of the future of cannabis (a copy of the bill is here). If the Act passes, we will finally have federal legalization and the consequences of the current federal conflict will end, or, at least be reversed in the minority of states that continue to outlaw the plant locally. Such a development would, of course, be huge– with IRC 280E no longer an issue; cannabis companies would have the unfettered ability to secure banking outside of the 2014 FinCEN Guidelines, which means no more all-cash transactions; they would have the ability to raise institutional capital without the threat of criminal liability; etc etc. However, even if the Act passes (and chances of that happening appear slimmer by the month), what’s not going to change (probably forever) is the power of local governments to make or break America’s cannabis businesses. For the longest time, I’ve preached that the states are in total control of these unique democratic experiments, and they definitely are where they control license categories, compliance standards, taxes, reporting requirements, etc., but that power is ultimately limited by cities and counties. And the Act gives major deference to the states to keep up their independent cannabis regimes. The catch is that all states pay some (or more like a lot of) credence to local control because of the inherent police powers granted to cities and counties to protect the health and welfare of their citizens. I can’t name a state where local control hasn’t mainly caused major issues for cannabis operators (retail, in particular, gets the short end of the stick in most cities and counties). Cannabis businesses need to realize now that even if the Act passes and even if states maintain their current licensing systems, the cities…

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Source : Hilary Bricken Says…The Future of Cannabis Won’t be Decided by the Feds. It’s the Locals.

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