As legalization continues to spread, it was another month of major grand openings and milestones for cannabis retailers across the country.
The first East Coast storefront for the fast-growing Cookies brand opened in August in Worcester, Massachusetts after the company announced a partnership with retailer New Dia.
Multi-state operator Curaleaf opened its third New Jersey location in August, a 9,546-square-foot dispensary in Bordentown, near the New York and Pennsylvania borders.
Florida giant Trulieve in August reached a milestone, opening its 100th dispensary, located in Port Orange, Florida. It is the company’s 90th location in the Sunshine State.
The two newest BEYOND / HELLO dispensaries opened their doors in Scranton and Johnstown, Pennsylvania in September, bring to five the total number of stores in the Jushi Holdings-owned chain.
Meanwhile in Orlando, Florida, MedMen opened a 5,500-square-foot dispensary described as a “key focal point” in that company’s Florida operations. It is the company’s sixth store in Florida and 27th total.
Back in Michigan, Lume Cannabis Company, which bills itself as the largest single-state, adult-use operator in the country, opened on August 31 its 23rd store, located in Saginaw. It is the company’s 10th opening this year.
Finally, in California, the latest addition to the veteran-owned The Cake House chain opened its new, 2,100-square-foot flagship store in Wildomar.
Cannabis golfers unite in Eastern Washington
The 420 PRESENTS Golf Championship brought together the Pacific Northwest Cannabis Community on August 21 at Suncadia Resort in Eastern Washington for a day of fun and networking on the links.
Twenty teams of four representing all aspects of the cannabis industry, including several leading brands, competed for the title, with the winning team taking home a foot-high, custom leaf trophies during an awards ceremony and dinner in the Rialto Conference Room.
A pair of boxing gloves and a poster autographed by former undisputed heavyweight champion Mike Tyson were also given away to the player closest to the pin on one of the course’s par 3 holes.
Two-time super bowl champion Jim McMahon was an honorary guest for the evening, receiving a Cannabis Lifetime Achievement Award and Rock & Roll Hall of Famer and founding member of Seattle rock legends Heart, Roger Fisher, delivered a special solo performance to round out the evening.
Cannabis company agrees to pay $300,000 wage fine
Massachusetts retailer Theory Wellness was ordered by the state attorney general in August to pay nearly $300,000 in restitution and penalties for failing to pay hundreds of employees premium pay on Sundays and covered holidays, a violation of Massachusetts wage and hour laws.
According to a press release, the Attorney General’s Fair Labor Division began an investigation in December 2020 following a complaint from a worker about premium pay. Fair Labor’s investigation determined that 282 employees were owed hundreds of thousands of dollars in premium pay.
Theory Wellness President and CEO Brandon Pollock and Treasurer-Secretary Nicholas Friedman also received a citation.
Massachusetts wage and hour laws require that employees of certain retail businesses be paid “premium pay” for working on Sundays and certain holidays. In 2021, employees who are entitled to premium pay must be paid 1.2 times their regular hourly rate for work on Sundays. In 2022, that rate will go down to 1.1 times their regular rate and in 2023, the premium pay requirement will be eliminated, pursuant to legislation passed in 2018.
Under the terms of the settlement with the Attorney General’s Office, Theory Wellness has agreed to pay in full the premium wages owed to impacted employees.
According to the release, the company cooperated with the investigation and has since come into compliance with the premium and holiday pay laws. Under the terms of the settlement with the Attorney General’s Office, Theory Wellness has agreed to pay in full the premium wages owed to impacted employees.
— Brian Beckley