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New Jersey Opens Public Comment Period for Proposed Cannabis Rule Amendments

New Jersey residents have the opportunity to provide input on upcoming adult-use cannabis rule updates—input that officials say can have a real impact on the outcome of the final rules.

Public comment on proposed updates to the rules for New Jersey’s adult-use cannabis marketplace is now open from the state’s Cannabis Regulatory Commission (CRC). Residents of New Jersey have until September 30, to make their comments.

The proposed rule amendments—contained in a 325-page document—provide changes to licensing processes for delivery, distribution, and wholesale operations. Proposed amendments include safe-use information and waste management. They also address advertising and promotion.

WHYYAccording to reports, the new rule amendments would allow cannabis delivery and retail services to deliver or sell no more than an ounce of usable marijuana, five grams solid cannabis concentrate, or five milliliters each of cannabis oil. The proposed rule amendments would prohibit retailers from selling vape formulas that have more than five milliliters or more of marijuana oil. They also ban the sale of vapes that are more concentrated than 500 mg of THC.

On December 27, 2020, the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement, Assistance, and Marketplace Modernization Act, commonly known as CREAMM Act, passed. New Jersey is among 18 states that have legalized adult-use cannabis.

CREAMM Act allows the CRC expansion of the existing Medicinal Cannabis Program and the development, regulation, enforcement and enforcement of adult-use rules. You can comment publicly on any outstanding issues.

“The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission has submitted updated rules for the state’s personal-use cannabis market for public comment,” CRC posted in a news release. “New Jersey residents are being invited to give their feedback on the proposed rules up to Friday, September 30, 2022.”

“The rules, which amend the initial regulations adopted by the NJ-CRC in August 2021, establish licensing instructions for cannabis wholesale, distribution, and delivery businesses. They also clarify the working space for microbusinesses to exclude the square footage of bathrooms, enshrine the adopted Universal Symbol, and simplify labeling requirements for cannabinoids to ensure consumers can make informed choices.”

The CREAMM Act requires that the CRC’s 2021 rules be adopted, amended, or readopted prior to an expiration date that takes place on August 19, 2022.  A notice of proposed adoption extended the date for expiration to February 15, 2023. The current rules could be affected by public feedback received within the 60-day period.

New Jersey 101.5Reports indicate that there are new classes of licensing for manufacturing and delivery. Todd Polyniak of Sax LLP in Parsippany provided some insights.

“You can go from growing it to manufacturing it to wholesaling it to distributing it, and then finally selling it in retail or delivering it to a final customer,” Polyniak said.

He said that problems remain, such as social equity startups that have little time to convert a conditional license into an annual license.

“I think the state still needs to come through with some type of way of funding these startups, especially the social equity startups,” Polyniak said. “They have 120 days plus 45 days to actually execute on that conditional license and convert it into an annual license. So that’s not a whole lot of time to get everything done.”

On the website, you can find the full text of the rules as well as the link to register for feedback. Residents who wish to comment can register through the CRC’s website.