December 23 2022,
THE BIG IDEA
Thanks so much for your ongoing support of WeedWeek.
Best wishes for a happy healthy holiday season and I’ll see you in 2023.
In the newsletter:
- A new tax headache in LA
- Curaleaf received investment from Putin-linked oligarch
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WHAT YOU MISSED IN WEEDWEEK CALIFORNIA PRO
A new tax headache in LA
The new year has a new tax headache in store for retailers in LA and some other cities. Despite efforts by the state to lower pot taxes to combat the illegal market, the accounting issue could raise taxes for some consumers.
California’s new tax law, which kicks in on January 1, zeroed out the hated cultivation tax. It also shifted how the industry pays the state’s 15% excise tax. Until now retailers have passed it to distributors who then paid the state. The new structure requires retailers to deliver the tax to the state.
The problem is that the state and it’s largest market, the city of Los Angeles, are apparently at odds over how the taxes should be calculated. Each claims that the taxes they collect should…
Curaleaf received investment from Putin-linked oligarch
Roman Abramovich, a Russian oligarch with close ties to president Vladimir Putin, helped fund the company that’s now leading MSO Curaleaf. He has also invested hundreds of millions more in the U.S. cannabiz, according to a report in Forensic News.
Curaleaf executive chairman Boris Jordan has repeatedly denied speculation about the company’s Russian ties. He owns more than 18% of the company which has a market cap of about $3B.
- Jordan said Abramovich has exited the company, however Abramovich is still an investor in Jordan’s cannabis VC fund Measure 8.
- Banking reform failed to pass with a big government spending bill. As with previous efforts, it was killed by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) It’s last chance before Republicans take control of the House of Representatives. MJBiz discussed who’s to blame.
- MSO Trulieve reached a settlement with federal worker safety Agency OSHA over the death of Massachusetts factory worker Lorna McMurrey in early 2022. It will require the company to study the potential hazards of ground cannabis dust. Trulieve agreed to pay a fine of $14,502, down from $35,219 initially cited.
- RIV Capital’s recently closed acquisition of New York license holder Etain Health for ~$250M has disgusted investors who seek to replace five of the seven board members.
- For a pilot program in California, Colorado and Puerto Rico, Google is loosening its ban on ads for CBD products.
- An LA Times investigation found labor abuses on licensed and unlicensed west coast farms.
- Here are the L.A.Times’ top 30 weed stories of 2022.
State and local:
- In Washington state, a bill was filed to allow interstate trade. A similar bill is already on the books in California.
- New York selected Dutchie as its equity tech partner.
- NY Cannabis Insider had a frank conversation with an anonymous license winner as the state’s first licensed REC dispensaries open.
- Detroit issued its first REC licenses.
Detroit Free Press
- A 6.4 earthquake rocked Humboldt.
Fun and interesting:
- “A lil’ holiday sesh”
- “How pre-rolls are made”