Illegal cultivation

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New Jersey residents to vote on adult-use marijuana next year

A super-majority of New Jersey lawmakers, in a historic vote, passed a proposed ballot question to legalize recreational marijuana, putting the referendum before voters on the 2020 ballot. On Monday, the Democrat-led Assembly passed the measure 49-24, with one abstention, while the Senate passed the question 24-16. The measure doesn’t need the approval of Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy, although he is an advocate of legalizing adult-use marijuana. The larger-than-three-fifths majorities in both chambers ensures the question will be put to voters by 2020. Had only a simple majority of both houses passed the question, then lawmakers would have been required to hold a second vote in the new session, which starts Jan. 14.

– Jeff Smith, Associated Press

California firm charged with illegal cannabis grow

A California agency filed a lawsuit against Lowell Herb, alleging the Los Angeles-based company processed marijuana without a license in the state’s San Luis Obispo between December 2018 and March 2019. The California Department of Food and Agriculture and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife seized roughly 17,772 pre-rolls, 7,162 jars of marijuana flower and more than 1,400 pounds of cannabis product. The suit claims the illegal operation helps the illicit marijuana market and harms licensed cannabis companies.

Most marijuana insurance claims involve theft

Roughly 90% of cannabis insurance claims involve theft, according to Gerrit Nagarwalla, a claims supervisor at London-based Canopius Group. He also suspects much of the thefts involve “some element of inside information,” he told Insurance Business magazine. Nagarwalla noted that cannabis workers are working with “millions of dollars’ worth of products” yet are being paid $15 or $20 per hour.