It was just a week ago that incoming New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said in his inauguration speech that he planned to legalize marijuana. The Democrat that replaced anti-cannabis governor Chris Christie said, “A stronger and fairer New Jersey embraces criminal justice reform comprehensively, and that includes a process to legalize marijuana.”
Legislators say they can get a bill to the governors’ desk in 100 days as they fast track the campaign promise. Even the governors’ website says it “will end mass incarceration by pursuing the legalization of marijuana and comprehensively reviewing all criminal sentencing laws.” This quick turnaround has jump-started interest in the state’s marijuana market.
The NJ Cannabis Symposium to be held on Thursday, January 25th has had to move locations three times due to popular demand. Green Market Report is a media partner with the Symposium, which is now planned for the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC).
“As the news about New Jersey’s move towards approving adult use cannabis took on traction with the election of Governor Phil Murphy, we found there was also a lot of misinformation being circulated,” said Brian Staffa of the BSC Group, one of the hosts for the New Jersey Cannabis Symposium. “We see this unique event as a way to draw a roadmap for the months and years ahead, noting unique attributes about NJ’s current program, and drawing comparisons to how other states’ programs have evolved.”
New Jersey has had legal medical marijuana when it was passed in 2010, but under Governor Christie, the program was limited and restrictive. There were only 12,514 patients since the program began with 5,000 coming on in 2016. Only five treatment centers were established.
The program was designed to appeal to people who are interested in getting involved in the market, which is expected to grow quickly. It was planned by experienced cannabis industry professionals to help people learn what steps to take with regards to finances, application requirements, hiring employees and more.
It will address businesses looking for plant-touching licenses, ancillary businesses and investors looking to assemble teams. By scheduling the event in the evening, most attendees will not miss a day of work in their regular jobs.
“We see this event as a way to detail the required/recommended resources for applicants, and at the same time help ancillary companies to understand the process and needs of applicants, and how they can position themselves to serve the market effectively,” said Joshua Bauchner of Ansell Grimm & Aaron, a law firm co-hosting the New Jersey Cannabis Symposium.