On Charlotte Figi Day, family will celebrate the Colorado girl who helped legitimize medical marijuana

Paige Figi hasn’t spoken publicly about her daughter Charlotte in the 10 months since the teenager’s passing. It’s an unusual, if welcome, change of pace considering the Colorado Springs duo spent nearly a decade in the spotlight leading a crusade for medicinal marijuana that helped change both laws and lives.

Charlotte, whose battle with Dravet syndrome and subsequent treatment popularized the use of cannabidiol, or CBD, died last April after contracting what the family suspects was COVID-19. The 13-year-old later was cremated, Figi said, but the pandemic prevented her parents from making any funeral plans. That is, until now.

On April 7 — officially dubbed Charlotte Figi Day in Colorado — family, friends and fans are invited to join a virtual celebration of life called Rock the RoC. Hosted by Realm of Caring, a nonprofit organization dedicated to medical marijuana research, education and advocacy, the two-hour event will feature live…

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Medical marijuana retail workers move to head of vaccine line, ahead of teachers

It was with a sense of accomplishment that young cannabis entrepreneur Jerred Kiloh scheduled his first COVID-19 vaccine appointment for Feb. 11 in San Francisco.

Jerred Kiloh, owner of The Higher Path Collective dispensary in Sherman Oaks. (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)

Kiloh, owner of the Higher Path Collective in Sherman Oaks and president of the United Cannabis Business Association, was one of the movers and shakers responsible for nudging medical marijuana retail workers toward the front of California’s vaccine eligibility line, before some educators, emergency workers and food and agriculture workers.

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Colorado marijuana sales hit $2.2 billion in highest-selling year yet

Despite a global pandemic that disrupted many facets of commerce, Colorado’s marijuana industry experienced its most lucrative year on record with $2.2 billion in sales in 2020.

According to figures released Tuesday by the state Department of Revenue, dispensaries sold $186,343,208 in cannabis products in December, up 6.4% compared to the previous month.

The state collected nearly $32.4 million in taxes and fees in December, pushing the annual tax total to $387.4 million in 2020.

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A Colorado Democrat wants to cap THC levels in marijuana products at 15%

The lone medical doctor in the Colorado legislature is looking to cut back the THC content on the most potent cannabis products, among other changes that would have major impacts on the state’s cannabis industry.

State Rep. Yadira Caraveo, a pediatrician and Thornton Democrat, said she is still revising the bill she plans to introduce this month, but one of the main provisions would ban legal marijuana products above 15% THC — the psychoactive compound responsible for the marijuana high. The ban would apply to flower and edibles. THC in flower products can top off close to 30%, while concentrates generally run at 70-80%.

“Even if it’s the start of a conversation, I think it’s an important conversation,” Caraveo told The Denver Post on Thursday. “We led the way with legalization, but it doesn’t mean we should never look at the issue of marijuana again. … My role as a physician is that you continue to look at the evidence.”

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Cannabis industry may finally move past cash as Democrats look to loosen banking restrictions

Colorado’s cannabis industry has been forced to deal primarily in cash for years due to banking restrictions that pot advocates and banking lobbyists say put shops, growers and others at risk of theft. The industry is now cautiously optimistic this year that, with Democrats in power in Washington, its eight years of trying to lift those restrictions on banks and credit unions will pay off.

Because marijuana remains an illicit drug under federal law — and banking the proceeds of illicit drug sales is a federal crime — credit unions and banks are limited in their ability to work with cannabis companies, and take risks when doing so. As a result, the large and growing marijuana industry still remains cash-only, seven years after legalization in Colorado.

“We’ve got people who are still dealing in cash; we’ve got employees still being paid in cash. It’s just totally irresponsible,” said Chuck Smith, CEO of the cannabis company BellRock Bra…

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Majoring in marijuana? That soon could be common as universities adapt to a growth industry.

Want practical experience growing marijuana, but have no idea how to get a plant? Or just not comfortable growing cannabis at home?

Try stinging nettle, which is a plant that’s distantly related to cannabis and has similar growth patterns.

That’s just one of many workarounds Dana Milstein had to learn as she developed curriculum for UC Riverside’s new extension program focused on cannabis, which is the first program of its kind at a public university in California.

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This rapper and singer is using music to promote the cannabis business

When musicians make it big in the industry, one of the first things many do is quit their day jobs.

But aspiring rapper and singer Robert Ellis IV, a Redlands native who now performs as Pullupnsplash, got into music industry to promote his day job in marketing and as an independent consultant for several dispensaries and cannabis brands.

“Being in the cannabis industry we’re scrutinized, we don’t really have a way to fairly get our voice out. We’re very regulated as far as marketing, so I had to think outside the box and use music as my freedom of speech, and they can’t take that away,” Ellis said.

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Plaintiffs drop suit over marijuana delivery rules

Stung by an exodus of members since it filed suit to block new cannabis industry rules permitting home delivery, the business group that represents most of the state’s brick-and-mortar marijuana shops announced Monday morning that it is dropping the legal challenge.

The Commonwealth Dispensary Association and its attorneys from Foley Hoag had argued in the suit that new delivery-only license types created by the Cannabis Control Commission violated the state’s marijuana law, which they said gives the retailers the right to deliver cannabis under their existing licenses.

The lawsuit was seen by some as an attack on the disadvantaged entrepreneurs and small businesses that the CCC’s new delivery model was intended to help and a number of retailers publicly broke from the CDA as news of the suit spread. The suit targeted delivery-only licenses with the ability to buy marijuana wholesale which will be available exclusively to participants …

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Former Corona City Councilman Nolan accused of marijuana violations

Former Corona City Councilman Steve Nolan has been cited on suspicion of illegal cultivation of marijuana and possession of marijuana for sale, the Riverside County jail log shows.

Nolan, a 58-year-old former Anaheim police officer, was cited by the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department’s Special Investigations Bureau at his Rising Sun Road home at 3:20 a.m. on Jan. 14. The citations are misdemeanors.

Southern California Edison is participating in the investigation, SCE spokeswoman Taelor Bakewell said. She didn’t have any further details. Marijuana growers sometimes illegally tap into electricity sources. Solar panels cover the roof of Nolan’s home.

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California regulators say cannabis billboards along interstate highways must come down

Cannabis businesses can no longer advertise on billboards anywhere along a highway that crosses state borders, after a judge ruled in a favor of a central California dad who sued to block such ads.

The ruling won’t impact stretches of in-state freeways populated with marijuana billboards, such as the 55 in Orange County or the 215 in the Inland Empire.

But the Bureau of Cannabis Control said Thursday that billboard companies must immediately stop selling space to marijuana shops and start taking down existing ads near roadways that at any point cross state borders. This will mean no cannabis billboards near heavily used freeways such as Interstate 10 in the Inland Empire, the 5 freeway in Orange County, and Highway 101 in Los Angeles.

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November marijuana sales push Colorado’s industry to $2 billion annually for the first time

Colorado marijuana sales in November pushed the industry’s annual revenue to $2 billion for the first time.

In November, dispensaries sold $175.1 million worth of products, according to figures released by the Department of Revenue on Tuesday. Recreational sales accounted for about $140.5 million, while medical sales accounted for nearly $34.7 million, the agency reported.

While the total is down about 12% compared to the month prior, it was enough to help Colorado hit yet another financial milestone in an already banner year for cannabis. From January through November 2020, consumers purchased slightly more than $2 billion, the Department of Revenue reported. The previous year, dispensaries reached $1.75 billion in annual sales, a record at the time.

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