Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission Considers Changes to Economic Empowerment Applicant Requirements
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Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission Considers Changes to Economic Empowerment Applicant Requirements

Regulators are weighing whether to reduce business ownership by economic empowerment applicants from at least 51% to 33%, as well as whether to expand the categories of people eligible to participate in the social equity program.

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June 22, 2020

The Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission (CCC) held a virtual meeting June 19 to discuss whether to revise certain regulatory policies, including changes to the requirements surrounding economic empowerment applicants, according to a MassLive.com report.

The economic empowerment program aims to benefit cannabis business applicants disproportionately impacted by the war on drugs by providing prioritized review and licensing. At Friday’s meeting, regulators debated whether to reduce business ownership by these individuals from at least 51% to 33%, as long as the target community members maintain control of the business and receive a certain amount of economic benefit, MassLive.com reported.

The reduction could allow applicants more flexibility to obtain capital, according to the news outlet, but some commissioners disagreed with the change.

“I think it’s extraordinarily important that we are promoting minority ownership of businesses,” Commissioner Britte McBride told MassLive.com.

The CCC could not reach a consensus on the proposed change and has requested public comment on the matter, the news outlet reported.

Commissioners also discussed whether to expand eligibility for the state’s social equity program to include other groups such as veterans, according to MassLive.com. Other topics of discussion included delivery licenses, testing, vaping regulations, research licenses, and a code of ethics and whistleblower policy for cannabis businesses.