How Mass. cannabis inspectors keep a watchful eye over the legal pot industry

Nearly one year since the first legal, adult-use cannabis sale was made, there are now 33 retail stores open around Massachusetts.

So far, state regulators have issued 227 provisional and final licenses to retail, cultivation, cannabis manufacturing facilities and independent testing laboratories. Before — and even after — licenses are issued, those facilities must be inspected by the state.

'Keeps Everyone On Their Toes'

On a Tuesday morning in October, two CCC inspectors pull up to the Sira Naturals Cultivation and Manufacturing facility in a pair of gray, unmarked crossover SUVs. The only giveaway? The vehicles have official state license plates.


21 medical marijuana facilities approved in Grand Rapids so far

Grand Rapids officials have approved plans for 21 medical marijuana facilities in the city so far with about two dozen more awaiting review.

The latest approvals in recent weeks were all from the same company, Green Skies-Healing Tree LLC.

The Grand Rapids Planning Commission on Thursday, Nov. 14, unanimously approved Green Skies’ application for a dispensary at 715 Michigan St. NE, about half a mile east of the Medical Mile.

Two weeks before, planning commissioners approved Green Skies’ plans for dispensaries at 2301 44th St. SE, near Breton Road, and 4162 Eastern Ave. SE, near 44th Street.


Yale pioneers medical marijuana trials

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a medical marijuana clinical trial led by the Yale University School of Medicine. Researchers say it’s the first of its type to be run on human subjects.

Cori Alicea has been using medical marijuana since she was diagnosed with stage 4 brain cancer in 2014.

“It helps me with every physical ability that I have, with talking and doing everything. My right side was completely numb after having my seizures and my surgeries from the craniotomies. This medicine has made it so that I am able to live my daily life.”


Most marijuana vape products quarantined by Mass. Health Officials

A quarantine was ordered for most marijuana vaping products in Massachusetts Tuesday, extending the state's efforts to control vaping products amid a nationwide epidemic of lung injuries.

Exempt from the quarantine are medical marijuana products designed specifically for devices for medical marijuana flower vaping, the state Cannabis Control Commission said. Massachusetts' ban on vape-related products for medical marijuana users was lifted as the quarantine went into effect.


Medical marijuana patients will be able to purchase cannabis vaping products on Tuesday

Massachusetts medical marajuana cardholders will be able to purchase cannabis vape products again on Tuesday after the state’s Cannabis Control Commission refused to extend Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker’s controversial four-month vaping ban to vaping products used by cardholders.

This CCC decided not to uphold Baker’s ban after Massachusetts Superior Court Judge Douglas Wilkins ruled Baker’s Department of Public Health did not have the authority to regulate cannabis products used by medical marijuana patients, according to the ruling.


Law keeps medical marijuana out of vets’ reach

Imagine living in fear of doing something that’s perfectly legal in Massachusetts.

This is the maddening “Catch-22” that our veterans face when they purchase cannabis at a medical marijuana dispensary to treat conditions like PTSD and chronic pain issues.

Our servicemen and women are looking over their shoulders, worried that they’ll lose their jobs, security clearances, GI Bill loan benefits, disability payments, Second Amendment rights and access to other medications if they publicly disclose their legal use of cannabis.

That’s because under federal law, which the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs is obligated to follow, marijuana is still classified as a Schedule One Controlled Substance — an illegal drug.


Medical marijuana patients can buy vape products in Mass. again, starting Tuesday

Medical marijuana users are on track to regain access to vaping products starting next week after the Cannabis Control Commission did not uphold the Baker administration's ban, though that permission could be short-lived amid ongoing legal challenges and potential future regulations from the commission.


Starting in November, medical marijuana patients in Mass. will no longer have to pay annual fees

Medical marijuana patients in Massachusetts will no longer have to pay annual registration or renewal fees starting in November, a long-sought change by patients who have called the fees a barrier to access.

The elimination of the $50 annual fee was unanimously approved by the state’s Cannabis Control Commission during its recent review of the medical use of marijuana regulations. The cannabis commissioners heard from patients about the impact of the fee — and also weighed whether the state could offset lost revenue from getting rid of it — before voting to kill the charge.


Massachusetts vaping sales ban can stand, but needs fixes: U.S. judge

A Massachusetts judge on Monday declined to immediately halt a ban on the sale of vaping products adopted after an outbreak of e-cigarette-related lung injuries, but he said the state must redo the ban and get public comment this time.

The ruling by Suffolk County Superior Court Judge Douglas Wilkins in Boston was a partial victory for Republican Governor Charlie Baker, who through an executive order last month adopted the toughest sales ban of any state in response to the outbreak.

But Suffolk County Superior Court Judge Douglas Wilkins said Baker likely overreached his authority in issuing the order and said he would bar the state from enforcing the ban on nicotine-vaping product sales unless several defects were addressed.


Efforts intensify to battle corruption involving local Government Officials and cannabis industry

Law enforcement authorities across the country, including the FBI, have cast a wide net in their efforts to root out corruption among local government officials overseeing the marijuana industry.

The crackdown has ensnared local government and cannabis industry officials in states such as California, Massachusetts and Michigan. Charges have included bribery and extortion.

While claims of licensing bias and flawed scoring are more common, an examination of the landscape suggests that there have been a number of blatant efforts over the years to improperly influence public officials into awarding highly coveted marijuana licenses.


Subscribe to RSS - Massachusetts