A sea change in the funding of New Jersey cannabis businesses has been approved by New Jersey’s Legislature and is pending on Governor Murphy’s desk awaiting his signature. Duane Morris attorneys assisted in the conception and drafting of this legislation.
Minority Owned Business
The state Cannabis Regulatory Commission has designated 30% of cannabis business licenses for diverse ownership groups — 15% for certified minority-owned businesses, and 15% for those certified as women owned or disabled veteran owned. Certification requires that a 51% interest or more is held by a combination of minorities, women or disabled veterans, and daily business operations are controlled by one or more of the owning minorities.
Not since the mid-1970s, the dawn of legalized casino gaming, has Atlantic City seen an opportunity for the growth of a new industry. Kashawn McKinley, director of constituent services and special projects for Atlantic City, says the same city that attracts tourists with its casinos and headline concerts is working to become a cannabis hub for the region.
Around the state, many so-called legacy operators — people who sold weed on the black market — are having difficulty getting approval from municipalities, even after they’ve been given state approval.
The doors have been open at the state’s first dozen legal recreational marijuana dispensaries for about three weeks now, but it could be a long time before residents see more businesses like them.
The wait is finally over.
At the Friday meeting, the commission’s executive director Jeff Brown proposed licensing 10 cultivation sites, double the initial number, to meet patient demand.
All of the businesses given licenses Friday are certified minority- or women-owned, Brown said.
And one of them, Etain New Jersey LLC is comprised of nearly 75% percent females. In fact, Etain is also New York’s only women-owned, family-run and vertically integrated cannabis company.