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‘discrimination’

Three Federal Courts (So Far) Have Held That State Residency Requirements for Cannabis Licenses (Probably) Violate the Dormant Commerce Clause

Jun. 22, 2021—Federal courts in Michigan and Missouri have just issued rulings in lawsuits challenging those states’ residency requirements for cannabis licenses. Both courts found that the plaintiffs were likely to prevail on the merits of their challenges. In particular, both courts held that using residency to award cannabis licenses probably violated the Dormant Commerce Clause (DCC). The...

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State Restrictions on Interstate Commerce in Cannabis are Unconstitutional

Mar. 3, 2021—The title of this post is the takeaway of a new law review article I have just posted on SSRN. The article challenges the widely held assumption that legalization states may ban imports of cannabis or otherwise prevent nonresidents from participating in their local cannabis markets. Here is the link to a nearly final draft...

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UPDATE: Federal Judge Finds that State Residency Requirements for Marijuana Licensing are Unconstitutional

Oct. 7, 2020—As I blogged in the summer, Maine has become a hotbed of litigation concerning residency requirements for marijuana licenses. Many states (including Maine, for a time) limit the ability of non-residents to own and operate marijuana businesses. The litigation began when a Delaware firm (Wellness Connection) challenged a provision of Maine’s new recreational marijuana law...

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UPDATE: Maine Drops Residency Requirement for Adult-Use Commercial Licenses, Moots Legal Challenge

May. 13, 2020—A few weeks ago I blogged about an interesting lawsuit challenging Maine’s residency requirement for commercial recreational marijuana licenses. See Company Sues Maine for Discriminating Against Non-residents When Licensing Marijuana Businesses. Brought by a Delaware corporation, the suit claimed that the residency requirement violated the Dormant Commerce Clause doctrine. Although I suggested two reasons why Maine...

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Company Sues Maine for Discriminating Against Non-residents When Licensing Marijuana Businesses

Apr. 2, 2020—A Delaware corporation (Wellness Connection) has sued Maine, challenging a provision of that state’s recreational marijuana law that bars out-of-state companies and non-resident investors from obtaining commercial marijuana licenses. The suit was filed on March 20, 2020, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maine. The story has been reported in local papers...

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Interesting New Student Note on Application of ADA to Marijuana Dispensaries

Sep. 27, 2019—Chris Conrad, a law student at Georgetown, has written a very interesting new paper on an issue that had previously escaped my attention: Whether the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to marijuana dispensaries (e.g., whether those dispensaries must make themselves accessible to persons with disabilities). The issue is of particular salience to medical marijuana...

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Update: Connecticut Employment Discrimination Case (Noffsinger v. SSC Niantic)

Sep. 24, 2018—A federal judge in Connecticut has issued another notable ruling in Noffsinger v. SSC Niantic Operating Co., LLC. In particular, the judge just granted summary judgment for the plaintiff on her claim that the defendant company violated Connecticut’s medical marijuana law (known as PUMA—the Palliative Use of Marijuana Act) when it rescinded her job offer after she...

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New Study Defends Constitutionality of Racial / Gender Preferences in the Award of State Marijuana Licenses

Jan. 18, 2018—At least two states (Maryland and Ohio) have attempted to use racial preferences in the award of their commercial marijuana licenses. However, as discussed in the book, Maryland’s licensing board abandoned that state’s preferences in 2015 after a Deputy State Attorney General wrote a brief letter suggesting the preferences would likely violate the Equal Protection...

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My Reactions to Cory Booker’s Marijuana Justice Act

Aug. 4, 2017—Senator Cory Booker (D NJ) has introduced a proposal to repeal the federal marijuana ban. In a nutshell, Booker’s Marijuana Justice Act would exempt marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act. I believe Booker’s proposal to is incomplete (and therefore, both unwise and politically unpalatable) because it fails to offer any replacement for prohibition. I develop...

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Massachusetts court finds employers must accommodate employee’s off-duty medical marijuana use

Jul. 21, 2017—Massachusetts’ highest court has ruled that employers have a duty to accommodate their employees’ off-duty use of medical marijuana.  The ruling in Barbuto v. Advantage Sales and Marketing, LLC (Mass. 2017), concerned a state handicap discrimination law (similar to the ADA) which makes it unlawful for any employer “to dismiss or refuse to hire . ....

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