NY Cannabis Insider’s week in legal weed for April 8, 2022

Each week, NY Cannabis Insider — the state’s premiere source for industry information and networking — will round up the news you may have missed in the state’s marijuana marketplace.

This week saw a flurry of developments in NY’s developing legal weed ecosystem.

First, Sen. Jeremy Cooney announced plans during a NY Cannabis Insider conference to introduce legislation “in the coming weeks” to make it easier and less costly for financial institutions to engage in banking with cannabis businesses.

Then, the Rochester Democrat saw success in his push — along with Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo — to decouple IRS Code 280E from state taxes for cannabis businesses. We broke down what 280E means for small businesses in an earlier story.

The Office of Cannabis Management on Monday launched a campaign to educate New Yorkers about marijuana called “Cannabis Conversations.” The OCM built a new section of its website to offer a list of comprehensive resources for the community, such as legal facts, health and safety information and industry opportunities.

Several stories this week documented the rapid growth of New York City’s “gifting” shops despite warnings and cease and desist letters sent by the OCM over the past couple of months. Last week, we reported that despite the office’s insistence that these “gifting” shops are illegal, prosecutors across the state don’t all agree.

Also, NY Cannabis Insider published several stories that went deep into key issues facing cannabis entrepreneurs.

The first, a guest column from Hudson Valley-based grower and consultant Colin Decker, questioned whether the state’s conditional hemp farmers are set up for success. In it, Decker prophesied that “roughly 50% of the material grown this coming season will either not pass the testing requirements or will be of extremely rough quality due to poor decisions, tight budgets, untested cultivars, environmental factors, and a lack of proper preparation.”

Another guest column, this one from Jordan Isenstadt, a senior vice president at NYC-based PR firm Marino, offered actionable advice for startups to lay the groundwork for a public relations strategy “from day one.”

A Q&A with Fulton-based hemp farmer Sarah Stenuf touched on a range of topics including veterans, the VA, conditional cultivator licenses, and working proactively with local municipalities.

Lastly, a story about NY’s Cannabis Workforce Initiative explained how Cornell University’s Industrial and Labor Relations School and the Workforce Development Institute are partnering to train the next generation of cannabis entrepreneurs.

NY Cannabis Insider is hosting its first in-person conference in Albany on May 20th. The event will feature panel discussions led by industry experts, networking opportunities, a vendor fair and more. Tickets are available now.

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