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The Case at Hand
Plaintiff Erick Zanetich applied for a job at one of Defendant Walmart’s New Jersey locations. After interviewing for the position, Zanetich received a conditional job offer with a start date, subject to passing a drug test. After testing positive for cannabis, Walmart withdrew Zanetich’s conditional job offer. Subsequently, Zanetich filed suit in federal court asserting violations of CREAMMA.
Behind the beige walls of this former 120,000-square-foot Walmart store in Branchburg, N.J., blooms an emerald green indoor cannabis farm for multi-state operator Verano Holdings Corp.
After winning a permit in 2018 from the New Jersey to supply cannabis for the Garden State’s medical program, Verano’s VRNOF VRNO cultivation facility now grows and processes jars of dried flower, pre-rolled cannabis cigarettes, gummies and vaping oil for the company’s Zen Leaf dispensaries in the state.
NJ resident loses job over Walmart drug testing
Erick Zanetich, 31, of Monroeville, was offered a job as an asset protection association at the Sam’s Club eCommerce Fulfillment Center in Swedesboro in January, with a start date of Feb. 7.
The job was subject to passing a drug test. He tested positive for marijuana, and the job offer was rescinded as a result.
NJ law on marijuana in workplace
A marijuana cultivation plant in New Jersey is causing a stir for people who live nearby because of the odor.
The smell is coming from the old shuttered Walmart. The building is now home to a medical and adult use marijuana production site, owned by Verano holdings.
Those who drive along a short stretch of Route 22 through Reading are bound to catch a quick whiff.
About eight months ago, neighbors say they started smelling what they thought were skunks, but it turns out it was the growing operation. The land is zoned for agriculture use, and Verano was granted a license to operate in early 2020.
Some neighbors say they had no idea marijuana would take over the retail space previously run by Walmart, and want to know why a company considered to be one of the leading producers of medical marijuana in the country simply can't control the smell.
The state Department of Health has issued permits for three companies to begin growing medical marijuana and eventually opening dispensaries.
The permits were awarded to Verano, which plans to turn a vacant Walmart on Route 22 in Readington into a medical marijuana production facility; MPX NJ in Pleasantville and Columbia Care NJ in Vineland.
After their products are tested by the state and their dispensaries are ready to be operational, a second permit will be issued to operate an alternative treatment center.