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John provides cannabis businesses with the regulatory guidance and counsel they need to secure and maintain licensure. John has organized, guided, and secured state and local licensure for dozens of cannabis businesses of all sizes and types throughout Michigan.

Much has been written over the last week about the recommendation by Attorney General Merrick Garland to loosen restrictions on cannabis. That recommendation would, among other things, reclassify marijuana from its current status as a Schedule I substance, similar to heroin and LSD, to a Schedule III substance, similar to prescription drugs such as anabolic steroids, ketamine, and testosterone. Given that Schedule II substances include fentanyl, hydromorphone, meperidine, methadone, morphine, oxycodone, dextroamphetamine, methylphenidate, methamphetamine, pentobarbital, and secobarbital, it has long been questioned why marijuana would be subject to significantly greater regulatory scrutiny than these Schedule II substances that have been directly responsible for so many deaths, hospitalizations, addictions, and broken families in the U.S. and around the world over the last two decades.Continue Reading Even When Section 280E No Longer Applies to Cannabis Businesses, Another Tax Problem Will Remain

  • In the month of February, Notices of Assessment for the 2024 tax year will be sent to taxpayers in the State of Michigan. The Notice of Assessment will include the Classification of your property in addition to the Assessed/State Equalized and Taxable Values.
  • Licensed Medical or Adult-Use Marijuana Growers should pay particularly close attention to their Notices of Assessment, as they have an opportunity to pursue substantial property tax savings.

Continue Reading Appeals of Classification of Cannabis Growing Real Property – Opportunity for Tax Savings

As readers of this blog and the cannabis industry are aware, the conflict between state and federal law on the issue of cannabis is a constant source of tension, struggle, and frustration for the cannabis industry, their employees, and those who provide services to the industry. Among the many sources of consternation is the unwillingness of many financial institutions to provide services to the cannabis industry given its illegal status under federal law. While most cannabis businesses have access to traditional business checking account services, they generally lack access to the full suite of financial products and services that financial institutions offer to all other businesses, such as business loans, lines of credit, commercial mortgages, etc.Continue Reading Finally, Federal Cannabis Banking Reform?!?!

In a significant decision for cannabis advocates and the cannabis industry, on September 1, 2023, the Michigan Court of Appeals issued an opinion directing the placement of a cannabis-related charter amendment on the November 7, 2023, ballot for the residents of the City of Keego Harbor, Michigan, to consider on Election Day. Thanks to the Court’s decision, the voters of Keego Harbor have the chance to directly determine whether they wish to permit recreational marijuana retailers in their community. John Fraser served as lead attorney on the matter in the Oakland County Circuit Court and the Michigan Court of Appeals with assistance from Lance Boldrey, Gary Gordon, Alan Wilk, Steve Liedel, Cheyenne Benyi, and Olivia Flower.Continue Reading Michigan Court of Appeals Orders Placement of Cannabis-Related City Charter Amendment on November 2023 Ballot

After advancing through 13 committees and narrowly winning a 34-33 vote, Minnesota’s State Senate finally approved a bill to legalize adult-use cannabis on April 28th. But before it reaches the desk of Governor Tom Walz (who has pledged to sign it), the bill with have to move to a conference with the State House to reconcile differences with a companion reform measure passed three days prior. With the session ending on May 22nd, the clock is running for lawmakers to get the final bill in front of the governor. Here’s what sets the two versions apart:Continue Reading Cannabis is (Almost) Legal in Minnesota: Here’s What You Need to Know