The who’s who of pot will mingle with state lawmakers and bureaucrats today at the second annual marijuana policy conference hosted by the California Cannabis Industry Association.
The gathering takes place under a cloud of uncertainty over the federal government’s stance on recreational marijuana. During speeches on the campaign trail, Donald Trump said he would leave recreational pot decisions up to the states. His press secretary, Sean Spicer, seemed to suggest late last month that the president reversed his position. Spicer said the country needs to abide by federal law and that he expects greater enforcement.
A shift in federal policy could put $5 billion at stake in annual retail sales from pot in California. After voters legalized recreational marijuana in November, lawmakers and state agencies have been scrambling to set up regulations to govern the industry and begin distributing licenses to businesses early next year.
The conference kicks off at 9 a.m. at the Sheraton Grand on J Street. Lori Ajax, chief of the Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation, will speak on a panel and State Treasurer John Chiang will give the keynote address. California Assemblymen Rob Bonta and Rudy Salas and Sens. Steve Bradford and Scott Wiener, all Democrats, are expected to discuss policy developments and current legislation related to the industry.
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