Government & Policy

Crafting effective marijuana and hemp laws and regulations requires specialized knowledge that few governmental entities possess. Vicente Sederberg LLP has been working at the intersection of cannabis, law, and commerce for over a decade, and we are uniquely qualified to assist local, state, and national governments with their cannabis policy and economics needs.

VS provides a full suite of legal and advisory services to assist governmental bodies with the development and implementation of laws and regulations governing medical cannabis, adult-use cannabis, and hemp, with a focus on public health and safety objectives and efficient administration. We also have an in-house Economics & Research department, which uses policy research and proprietary projection models rooted in economic theory and statistical analysis to inform regulatory policymaking across all sectors of the cannabis market.

As a leader in the cannabis policy and business communities, VS has been intimately involved in shaping marijuana and hemp laws and regulations, as well as standards and best practices for the industry. We have extensive experience identifying core legal and regulatory issues and crafting solutions that balance competing concerns and are still effective in practice. We understand where and how laws are working and how they can be improved upon, and we work with public sector clients to produce policies that are mindful of potential compliance, implementation, and enforcement issues.

LEADERSHIP

Services

Select a category below to learn more about our government and policy services. 

Because each government and community is unique, our services are tailored to the individual needs of each public-sector client. We offer comprehensive guidance on a wide variety of subjects, including:

  • Licensing
  • Testing
  • Delivery
  • Product safety
  • Social use
  • Hemp and CBD
  • Operational regulations
  • Seed-to-sale tracking
  • Packaging and labeling
  • Community plans
  • Social equity plans
  • Tax and fee structures

We work collaboratively with stakeholders to identify the broad range of interests that exist and to create policies that match the desires of your administration and the needs of your community. Depending on your specific needs, our assistance can be limited to providing recommendations or comments on a single draft or existing policy, or it may cover the entire drafting process from planning to passage, with ongoing advisory, analytical, and drafting services.

Our analytical services are customized to meet the individual needs of each public-sector client and provide a data-driven basis for their marijuana policy decisions. We provide a wide range of market, policy, economic, financial, and statistical research, including:

  • Statewide economic projections of medical and adult-use cannabis markets
  • Demand forecasting for state cannabis programs
  • Tax revenue projections and economic impact modeling
  • Production control model evaluation
  • Medical cannabis patient population analysis and growth models
  • National research on regulatory issues facing different cannabis products and services

Experience

VS was founded in Colorado in 2010, and its founding partners played a key role in the state's establishment of the nation's first regulated medical cannabis market. Attorneys at VS then led the drafting of Amendment 64, which established Colorado's adult-use cannabis market; served on the governor’s Amendment 64 Implementation Task Force; and chaired many of the Marijuana Enforcement Division’s highly successful negotiated rulemaking working groups. Through working group participation and our professional relationships with prominent state and local officials, VS has continued to shape the regulations under which the Colorado cannabis system operates.

Today, our opinions are not just sought out and respected in Colorado, but in other states and even in other countries. Members of our team have:

  • Advised lawmakers and regulators from jurisdictions across the U.S., as well as in more than a dozen countries spanning four continents
  • Assisted advocates in drafting several successful cannabis-related ballot initiatives
  • Assisted elected officials in Guam with an overhaul of the territory’s medical cannabis statute and development of a comprehensive adult-use legalization bill 
  • Provided the U.S. Virgin Islands Bureau of Economic Research and the St. Thomas-St. John Chamber of Commerce with economic analysis and policy guidance that aided in the establishment of a regulatory system for medical cannabis; assistance included drafting, comments, testimony, and ongoing consulting to help officials better understand several issues, including the domestic and tourism markets for medical cannabis and the unique legal and regulatory difficulties posed by the islands' geography
  • Assisted Texas legislative staff with the drafting of an interim report on establishing a regulated hemp market; then worked with lawmakers and staff on a successful bill to legalize and regulate hemp in Texas
  • Led the drafting of the American Hemp Campaign's model plan for state hemp programs, which has assisted policymakers in the development of hemp regulatory regimes across the U.S.
  • Engaged with Pueblo County (CO) to assist with drafting ordinances and regulations governing personal cultivation, social use, and the cultivation of industrial hemp
  • Engaged with the City of Cathedral City (CA) to assist in its development of comprehensive medical cannabis regulations under MCRSA, including facilitation of community and City Council question and comment, policy advisement, drafting, and implementation
  • Consulted with the City of Santa Rosa (CA) in preparing medical cannabis policies, including policy presentations to community and Council meetings, advisement on the intersect of MCRSA, the Compassionate Use Act/SB 420, and AUMA, and development of the city’s prospective comprehensive medical cannabis regulations in close coordination with city staff
  • Assisted the Canadian Association of Medical Cannabis Dispensaries with public policy memos that lent to the passage of legislation in British Columbia that was designed to facilitate the transition of unregulated medical cannabis dispensaries into regulated adult-use cannabis retail stores
  • Organizing comprehensive cannabis fact-finding trips to Colorado for dozens of local, state, and national government officials from around the country and across the globe, including exclusive tours of licensed facilities; private meetings with Colorado’s key regulators, decision makers, and experts; and in-depth cannabis policy briefings and ongoing advisory services

People

Senior Policy Analyst & Technical Writer

Of Counsel

Associate Attorney

Director of Economics & Research

Director of Strategic Affairs, Massachusetts

Founding Partner

Policy Analyst & Licensing Specialist

News

Coronavirus and Cannabis: Colorado Regulatory Updates

By Charles Alovisetti, Jessica Scardina, Andrew Livingston, Jordan Wellington, and Matthew Bartling
Mar 21, 2020

Vicente Sederberg is monitoring the potential impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on cannabis businesses, service providers, and consumers in Colorado.

Getting to the Root of the Problem: The 0.3% THC Hemp Standard

By Shawn Hauser, Partner
Feb 27, 2020

The beginning of federally regulated hemp has been marred by industry-wide concerns about an overly restrictive federal program, and what may come from the USDA review of more than 4,600 comments to its interim final rule governing U.S. hemp production.

Weed Wonks Episode 10 - Oklahoma! With Dwight Clark

Feb 19, 2020

VS political analyst, technical writer, and former Oklahoman, Dwight Clark, sat down with the Weed Wonks to discuss the current nature of cannabis in Oklahoma, how its MMJ legalization drastically differed other states, and how their regulatory rollout of MMJ could shape other state's legalization efforts going forward.

Congress Approves Farm Bill With Provision to Legalize Hemp Farming Under Federal Law

Dec 13, 2018

The U.S. House of Representatives gave final approval Wednesday (368-47) to the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018, known as the farm bill, which includes historic provisions that explicitly legalize the production of hemp and establish a regulatory framework for the U.S. hemp industry. The legislation, which was approved by the Senate yesterday (87-13), is now headed to President Trump, who is expected to sign it into law before the end of the week.

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