The Connecticut legislature passed the Cannabis Omnibus Bill or House Bill 6699 recently in a shift to cannabis businesses. The measure is set to go into effect on July 1, 2023, subject to the governor’s approval, and it calls for modifications to the Department of Consumer Protection’s (DCP) policies.
This extensive piece of legislation includes numerous cannabis regulation-related measures and some notable innovations and initiatives.
The Cannabis Omnibus Bill’s main points:
“Edible Cannabis Product” definition: This definition creates standards and procedures for the manufacturing, labeling, and distribution of edible goods containing cannabis. The bill ensures consumer protection and legal observance in the edible cannabis market by establishing a thorough definition.
Here are a few significant points for cannabis business owners about edible cannabis products:
- Edible cannabis product” means a cannabis-related product meant to be consumed by human veins, does not include raw cannabis plant material, such as a liquid or other substances.
- You can now purchase edibles, including cannabis sweets and treats, recreational cannabis, vape items, and more, at nearby pot stores. While a medical card is not required, you must be 21 years of age or older to consume alcohol, just like at the neighborhood liquor store.
- Products can only be cuboid or spherical in shape and cannot appeal to anybody under the age of 21. Animal shapes and other forms that might be appealing to kids are strictly forbidden. All cannabis products, including gummies and other edibles, are subject to shape and color regulations.
- “THC” must be visibly stamped or tagged on every item.
- If a product has multiple servings, the serving sizes must be clearly labeled and distinguishable.
- The maximum amount of THC per serving is 5 mg. Drinks having cannabis must be packed in single serving sizes.
- In the adult-use cannabis market, cannabis products cannot be in the form of capsules, pills, tablets, sublingual, suppositories, or other product forms administered through a bodily orifice other than orally.
- A product with multiple servings can have no more than a total of 100 milligrams of THC. The medical marijuana program still permits these product categories.
Changes to the definition of “Bona Fide Labor Organization: The phrase “bona fide labor organization” is redefined in the law about cannabis regulation. By effectively representing the interests of cannabis employees to negotiate fair labor practices, labor organizations in the cannabis business have rights, privileges, and obligations that this revision seeks to explain.
The cannabis industry is not an organized industry and quite often there are malpractices in employee treatment. Now, cannabis regulations allow for forming of cannabis labor organizations that can protect the interests of the cannabis business employees. The 6699 bill the cannabis business management will not lock the employees out and prohibits the labor organizations from boycotts, protests, or picketing against the establishment.
Cannabis Ombudsman’s Office: Because recreational cannabis became legal in Connecticut this year, medical marijuana patients have complained that they were facing a shortage of cannabis supply.
HB 6699 creates the Office of the Cannabis Ombudsman to monitor and control the cannabis sector. This specialized office will oversee enforcing legislation, checking compliance, and settling conflicts about cannabis enterprises. The CT ombudsman can support and understand the apprehensions of medical marijuana patients documented by the DCP. At a fundamental level, the ombudsman would examine, inform, and resolve complaints of medical marijuana patients.
Additionally, it creates a task group to investigate the potential effects of authorized people who are permitted to cultivate cannabis at home selling it for retail on occasions planned, to encourage such transactions, at least in part.
Off-Site Event Permits: HB 6699 creates a framework for hybrid and traditional retailers of adult-use cannabis to get off-site event permits. This clause enables these companies to engage in events that are scheduled and sell cannabis goods outside of their designated locations. The state Department of Consumer Protection will provide authorized shops or hybrid merchants permission to sell cannabis products at off-site events.
Off-site event licenses have been introduced, opening chances for participation and growth within the cannabis business. What this means is cannabis dispensaries have off-site sales of their products at cannabis events, gatherings, and concerts.
Each $500 permit is valid for a maximum of three consecutive days, and dispensaries are only permitted to get a maximum of four off-site event permits each year. Additionally, municipal approvals would be required for cannabis merchants, and they would not be allowed to operate in places where cannabis sales are prohibited. State legislation now forbids cannabis usage in beaches and parks for recreational purposes. At least 90% of the event’s participants are “reasonably expected” to be 21 or older. Another potential obstacle is that event planners would only be allowed to serve one of the two options—they couldn’t serve both booze and cannabis.
The Bill’s impacts on the industry: The Connecticut cannabis omnibus law has a significant impact on the sector. This bill alters terminology, defines license categories, classifies “high-THC hemp products” as marijuana, extends the deadlines by which lottery applicants must obtain a final license, and has an impact on the lottery procedure for applicants as it puts a cap on submissions.
This comprehensive cannabis measure changes how a cannabis business is licensed and run in Connecticut in significant ways. The licensing and regulatory framework for cannabis in Connecticut will alter for the first time because of this bill. New applications would have extended deadlines notwithstanding the possibility of interruptions to currently operating enterprises, she stressed.
The Connecticut legislature’s approval of HB 6699, the cannabis omnibus bill, marks a significant improvement in the state’s cannabis industry growth and regulation.