BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — Leaders of the Massachusetts' cannabis industry spoke out Wednesday against a lawsuit that is seeking to void the state's new rules establishing adult-use marijuana delivery services.
The Commonwealth Dispensary Association filed its lawsuit in Suffolk Superior Court on January 13th, arguing the Cannabis Control Commissions' new delivery regulations will violate state law, because they allow only social equity applicants to receive cannabis delivery licenses for the first three years.
The Massachusetts Cannabis Business Association is an organization of the state's cannabis-related businesses, including cultivators, manufacturers, dispensaries, micro-businesses and ancillary businesses that serve the cannabis industry.
The MassCBA's President and CEO David O'Brien said Wednesday the Association was disappointed to see wealthy cannabis companies attempt to shut entrepreneurs out of the lucrative new industry.
"Since Massachusetts’ first adult-use cannabis dispensaries opened in late 2018, the retail cannabis industry has already generated over one billion dollars in revenue," O'Brien said. "But small entrepreneurs, especially Black and Latino entrepreneurs and those who have been harmed by the failed war on drugs, have been largely shut out of this fast-growing market."
O'Brien said the CCC's new regulations would open up the industry to those disproportionately impacted by decades of cannabis laws that primarily targeted communities of color.
"The Commission’s new limited delivery regulations are poised to create new wealth-building opportunities for those who have been disproportionately harmed by cannabis prohibition," O'Brien continued. "These small entrepreneurs merely want the opportunity to get their foot in the door, and it’s incredibly disappointing to see the wealthy and well-connected businesses who have already profited from this growing industry try to slam that door in their faces."
The CCC's delivery regulations, approved in November, will establish two Marijuana Establishment types; Marijuana Courier and Marijuana Delivery Operator. Both will be authorized to provide limited delivery services to adult-use cannabis consumers in the Commonwealth.
The Commission’s delivery regulations specify that both license types will be exclusively available to Certified Economic Empowerment Priority Applicants and Social Equity Program Participants for a minimum of three years, with the exclusivity period beginning once the first Marijuana Delivery Operator commences operations.
Written by Brit Smith
(Photo: Getty Images)