Vermontijuana Daily - Feb. 9, 2016

Vermontijuana Daily - Inform | Engage | Connect | ELEVATE THE STATE - February 9, 2016

  1. VT CANNABIS NEWS

  2. Taxes and revenues have been the focus over the past week with testimony coming from various experts giving lawmakers economics lessons in how pulling the various tax levers could affect the state budget. With price volatility being a huge factor (the price of cannabis will fluctuate and then drop precipitously as VT and then other neighboring states have legal markets), it's interesting to see the comparisons to gas tax, gambling, and tobacco...
  3. Interestingly, due to that price volatility, this expert actually recommends putting all cannabis funds into the general fund in order to avoid budget reliance on fluctuating tax revenues.
  4. "Given all of the uncertainties just described, Vermont lawmakers should take care not to allow the state’s finances to become overly dependent on marijuana. The best way to accomplish this is through only very sparing dedications of tax revenue to specific budget areas. Setting aside some amount of marijuana revenue for the administration and enforcement of marijuana laws, and for the treatment of marijuana abuse, is reasonable. Beyond that, however, Vermont would be well served by allowing the remainder of marijuana tax revenue to flow into the general fund where the impacts of its volatility can be muted by other revenue streams."
  5. And thanks to Ben, who's one of the best twitter follows in the state and a really smart guy--he started the day by sharing a chart showing the rate of incarceration in Vermont...the violent crime rate in 1990 is about the same as today; in those 25 years, the rate of incarceration has more than doubled.
  6. Made us wonder if more funding for enforcement from cannabis would increase the rate of incarceration, or decrease...

  7. NATIONAL NEWS

  8. While New England states work out the details and strategies for (any) cannabis reform in 2016, a few HUGE updates in the D.C. cannabis scene. It looked like cannabis lounges might get a permanent ban in D.C., but in a instead, "That amendment establishes a seven-member task force that would study the feasibility of cannabis clubs in the District, including: health and safety standards, hours of operation, food and beverage availability, the involvement of local agencies, security plans, the amount of marijuana one could bring to them, the costs of membership, and locations."
  9. While the task force will spend the next 120 days investigating, the council passed an amendment to ban cannabis clubs for at least the next 225 days...with D.C. there are always weird federal restrictions that limit the actual sovereignty of the District, but we'll cautiously predict first lounge opens by New Year's 2017.
  10. While lounges moved closer to reality, Vermont-trepreneurs, Ganja-preneurs and would-be VermontGanja-preneurs can all be jealous to see Washington D.C. first 'medible' product: cold-pressed juices that have about four 'servings' of cannabis, cost $32 per bottle and are gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan. On brand much?

  11. MEDICAL

  12. Some of these marketing and educational materials were shared with VT cannabis thinkers as examples of informative guides that were also classy and tasteful. Unfortunately, with lots of discrepancies in how Facebook has restricted cannabis-related advertising, even a proactive and compliant company like this one can be shuttered and effectively lose an entire marketing channel and years of content.

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