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Is your business ready for regulatory compliance?

For more information see:
#vendor-corner:adherence-compliance

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The concept of a compliance officer for a licensed cannabis business is good. However, it needs to be part of a larger overall approach. The legal and regulatory compliance obligations of a commercial cannabis business, particularly one in California is highly complex. The execution and responsibility need to start at the CxO executive level as it penetrates an entire organization. The basic team should consist of:

Lead Counsel - an attorney that has experience and specific skills in corporate, business, commercial litigation real estate, and cannabis industry law is a critical starting point.

Specialty Counsel - may be required for environmental, labor law, zoning, and any number of other specialties.

Certified Public Accountant [“CPA”] - with accounting, attest, tax, tech and regulatory compliance skills is a critical member of the team for dealing with the numerous tax and compliance filings that may be required. Setting up effective internal accounting controls over cash is also a priority. It is important to keep in mind that while there may be bookkeepers, generic accountants, VARs that install POS and inventory systems, NONE of them are able to “audit”, “certify”, “examine” or issue an “audit report” The reasons why are quite complicated, and I would refer you to “Who can perform a regulatory compliance audit”?

There are other types of professionals involved in the compliance process perhaps including different types of engineers and inspectors. What is important to keep in mind, is that the professionals listed above are the ONLY individuals that are allowed to “sign off” on the specific requirements for the business to comply with applicable laws, regulations, etc.

The internal compliance team, software vendors, and outside consultants without recognized professional credentials are not responsible for setting the standards, or deciding which standards apply. Rather, they are responsible for making sure that the company is adhering to the procedures and meeting the applicable standards.

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You are absolutely correct. Legal Counsel & CPA’s are crucial roles for implementing effective Cannabis Compliance Programs. In addition, several of our clients have established Chief Compliance Officer roles with leaders that have an extensive law enforcement background.

We work and collaborate with all of the above because they all recognize the value we bring with metrics, data, and analytics.

MJH

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