Cannabis

Murkowski asks AG to review gun rules for marijuana users

Sen. Lisa Murkowski picked up an issue Lower 48 states with legal marijuana still haven’t resolved in a March 2 letter to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

The letter asks Lynch to reexamine federal gun regulations inconsistent with state laws where marijuana is legal. Along with banking — federal laws prohibit bank involvement with marijuana businesses — gun ownership exemplifies a schism between federal and state laws concerning cannabis.

Pot permits wait on background check bill

A number of bills in Juneau are creating delays in completing approvals for marijuana business license applications.

Prospective marijuana business owners began submitting license applications to the state on Feb. 24, with more than 200 received as of March 25, but their licenses will be held at the end of the process until one bill passes.

Marijuana Control Board director Cynthia Franklin said her staff of four reviewers is still working on licenses, but that they run into a wall at the end of the process where criminal background checks must be performed.

Cultivation dominates marijuana applicants

The first batch of marijuana business licenses is available to the public, and so far Alaskans have more interest in growing than selling.

The Marijuana Control Board began accepting license applications on Feb. 24, but only made them available to the public March 14. Public figures from various marijuana industry and political groups have filed, including members of the Marijuana Control Board itself and the Alaska Marijuana Industry Association.

Cultivation licenses dominate marijuana applications

The first batch of marijuana business license applications is available to the public, and so far Alaskans have more interest in growing than selling.

The Marijuana Control Board began accepting license applications on Feb. 24, but only made them available to the public March 14. Public figures from various marijuana industry and political groups have filed, including members of the Marijuana Control Board itself and the Alaska Marijuana Industry Association.

Assembly eases Anchorage marijuana setbacks

The Anchorage Assembly freed up more marijuana space for Anchorage on Feb. 23, but further limited the already scarce zones in Chugiak and Eagle River.

The new rules seem a win-win for the two Assembly members it concerned, Amy Demboski and Patrick Flynn.

 The reconsideration holds the intent of the final Assembly land use package passed on Feb. 9 — which was packed with amendments adding additional restrictions to Chugiak and Eagle River — while partially responding to industry panic of overregulation in Anchorage.

Anchorage Assembly to reconsider marijuana land use rules

Anchorage marijuana regulations could get a makeover only two weeks after their final passage by the Anchorage Assembly, potentially revising the 500-foot distance marijuana businesses must be from sensitive areas and how that distance is measured.

The Assembly will hold a meeting on Feb. 23 to reconsider its marijuana land use ordinance, which established zoning regulations for cannabis businesses including setbacks from schools. The Assembly will not take public comments, as they are not required for ordinance reconsideration.

Marijuana industry faces steep lease rates in tight market

Marijuana business can expect a hefty square footage price for retail, cultivation, and manufacturing leases within the Municipality of Anchorage once they open for business.

On Feb. 24, the Alaska Marijuana Control Board will start accepting business license applications. In the meantime, several industry sources report being charged several times the average per square footage lease rate for their planned marijuana operations, or entering into lease agreements that give a percentage of business profits to the landlord.

Anchorage Assembly finalizes marijuana business regulations

Anchorage’s marijuana industry is set to begin, with a final package of municipal requirements coming weeks before the Marijuana Control Board starts accepting licenses on Feb. 24.

Anchorage tightened certain regulations while holding off on others. New regulations increase buffer zones in Chugiak and Eagle River, add new buffer zone triggers to Anchorage marijuana businesses, bar small-scale commercial home grows, prohibit onsite consumption, and redraft the measurement standard between marijuana businesses and sensitive areas.

Juneau bars some materials for marijuana concentrates

JUNEAU — Anybody attempting to make marijuana concentrates using butane, propane or any other such chemical had better think twice. Not only could using these gases result in a potentially deadly explosion, they will now result in misdemeanor charges, too.

Anchorage Assembly finalizes pot regs

Anchorage’s marijuana industry is set to begin, with a final package of municipal requirements coming weeks before the Marijuana Control Board starts accepting licenses on Feb. 24.

Anchorage tightened certain regulations while holding off on others. New regulations increase buffer zones in Chugiak and Eagle River, add new buffer zone triggers to Anchorage marijuana businesses, bar small-scale commercial home grows, prohibit onsite consumption, and redraft the measurement standard between marijuana businesses and sensitive areas.

Wasilla says NO to marijuana shops

WASILLA — Southcentral Alaska’s cannabis business just got more concentrated in Anchorage. A big chunk of the Valley, long a byword for marijuana cultivation, is out.

The Wasilla city council voted unanimously on Jan. 25 to ban all commercial marijuana within city limits, further narrowing options for Alaska cannabis industry to enter the newly legal market.

The ban prohibits testing, processing, cultivation, and retail sales within Wasilla city limits, and also expressly prohibits consumption anywhere except a private residence with the owner’s permission.

Kenai finalizes pot regulations, doubles schools setback

KENAI — Prospective marijuana businesses in Kenai will have to observe 1,000-foot setbacks from schools, 500-foot setbacks from other sensitive areas — measured two different ways — a list of zones in which they can establish themselves with permission from the Kenai Planning and Zoning Commission, and two zones in which one business type can operate unpermitted.

The Kenai City Council amended and unanimously passed the city’s final marijuana regulations during a four-and-a-half hour meeting Jan. 20.

Wasilla bans marijuana businesses

WASILLA — Southcentral Alaska’s cannabis business just got more concentrated in Anchorage. A big chunk of the Valley, long a byword for marijuana cultivation, is out.

The Wasilla city council voted unanimously on Jan. 25 to ban all commercial marijuana within city limits, further narrowing options for Alaska cannabis industry to enter the newly legal market.

The ban prohibits testing, processing, cultivation, and retail sales within Wasilla city limits, and also expressly prohibits consumption anywhere except a private residence with the owner’s permission.

Anchorage regs would ban pot clubs, pesticides

The Municipality of Anchorage doesn’t exactly trust state regulations, but appears to see the new marijuana industry as a revenue source worth mining.

An Anchorage ordinance would ban cannabis clubs and cafes, force retailers to foot the bill for cultivators’ pesticide use, and subject the Anchorage industry to city inspection on top of the required state inspection. Meanwhile, a separate ordinance establishes a retail marijuana sales tax that exceeds the city’s tax cap.

The Anchorage Ban on Pot Clubs

City regulators want more control of the state’s marijuana industry than afforded by the Marijuana Control Board regulations.

Space is scarce for Anchorage marijuana business

The marijuana industry will have a tough time finding willing landlords for their would-be dispensaries and cultivation facilities, and the Anchorage Assembly may tighten restrictions even further.

Retail legalization of marijuana will become reality in 2016

Rules governing the recreational cannabis industry were mostly settled at the state level in 2015, but 2016 will be Alaska marijuana’s true birth. Regulators will issue business licenses; cannabis businesspeople will open doors amid both known and yet-to-be-decided restrictions, and the state will punish, forgive, or ignore a fistful of gray market marijuana operations.

Marijuana industry criticizes city zoning

State cannabis regulations might be finalized, but Anchorage rules are just heating up.

The Anchorage Planning and Zoning Commission, which passes zoning recommendations to the Anchorage Assembly, wants to tone down a set of municipal land use rules that make state regulations look laidback in comparison.

Marijuana board reverses itself on residency

In an emergency meeting, the Marijuana Control Board voted unanimously on Dec. 1 to reinstate a stricter residency requirement for marijuana business licensees, following Permanent Fund Dividend rules instead of voter registration rules.

The board also tried to loosen rules to allow more access to Outside money, but public process rules will hold that discussion until the board’s next meeting in February 2016.

The regulatory package will now move to Lt. Gov. Byron Mallot for approval pending a review by the Department of Law to make sure the regulations follow statute.

Marijuana board finalizes industry regulations

The Alaska Marijuana Control Board accepted its final draft of the regulations that will govern the new industry, legalized by Ballot Measure 2 in November 2014.

The new cannabis industry regulations include a concession to marijuana clubs that still leaves a hazy legal area to be sorted out later, maintaining a ban on Outside investment while loosening the residency requirement, revisions to concentration limits, allowances for retail operations and limited cultivator licenses, and clarifications to packaging requirements.

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