'New Era' For MA Cannabis Control Commission

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BOSTON (State House News Service) — As the Cannabis Control Commission gaveled in for its Thursday meeting with new Chairwoman Sarah Kim leading the proceedings, commissioners said it marked a new era for the panel now that none of its original regulators remain.

Kim, previously a deputy treasurer who oversaw the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission and served as general counsel to the Treasury, was appointed by Treasurer Deborah Goldberg earlier this week to serve as the CCC's chair until a more permanent commissioner can be appointed. The commission's original chairman, Steven Hoffman, resigned effective April 25.

"I want to thank former Chairman Hoffman for his time served here on the commission and I look forward to the next phase of this industry with the rest of the leaders here at the CCC," Commissioner Nurys Camargo said. "I often say we can do more and we should do more when it comes to righting the wrongs related to this industry. Our legislators are still working on a few things. I'm hopeful that they will create a social equity fund, repair the host community agreement process and allow for social consumption, all of which we have adopted policies [for] here at the CCC."

Commissioner Ava Callender Concepcion said Thursday's meeting "marks a significant moment for all of us as the five inaugural commissioners have now departed" from the CCC. "So I wanted to be sure to take a moment to thank each of them for their hard work or their time, and the dedication that they put into lifting this industry and agency as well, holding it up. I feel really fortunate to continue their legacy and to have worked with a number of them and will continue to move the industry forward."

As a top aide in the Treasury, Kim was involved in the initial efforts to implement the 2016 voter law that legalized marijuana before the CCC took shape. As she opened Thursday's meeting, she thanked the CCC staff and her fellow commissioners for a warm welcome and for getting her up to speed quickly.

"I am so thrilled to be part of this agency's work to ensure a safe and equitable industry, even if it is just for a short period of time," she said. "So finally, I did want to recognize and thank the initial Cannabis Control Commission commissioners, including Chairman Hoffman, who created a dynamic agency and set the foundation for a very successful industry."

Written by Colin A. Young/SHNS

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