MNE Announces More “Old School Oddity” Shows Celebrating 25 Years of Twiztid!

Due to massive fan reception, Twiztid will be bringing back more “Serial Killa Weekend: The Old School Oddity Show” weekend concerts! That’s right! In Newport, Kentucky, Chicago, and Grand Rapids, Michigan, from Friday, March 4th through Sunday, March 6th, 2022, Twiztid will be celebrating 25 years as the Demented Duo through these (but not limited to) “Serial Killa Weekend: The Old School Oddity Show” concerts! Tickets go on sale this Friday, January 28th at 10 a.m. est. Hit up https://www.twiztid.com/p/tour.html for tickets! Peep the official MNE flyer below for more info.



from Faygoluvers

Arizona Cannabis Generates Over $1B of Revenue in 2021

Cannabis is officially a billion dollar business in the state of Arizona.

Voters in the Grand Canyon State passed a measure at the ballot in 2020 that made recreational pot legal for adults ages 21 and older. Medical cannabis, meanwhile, has been legal in the state since 2010.

That made 2021 the first year with both markets open for business, and the results were lucrative for Arizona.

According to figures released by the state Department of Revenue, medical and recreational cannabis sales combined to generate more than $1.23 billion in revenue last year.

“Rarely does an industry produce over $1.2 billion in revenue in its first year. This number shows that the legalization of cannabis is something Arizonans believe strongly in and the many benefits it contributes to the state’s economy,” said Samuel Richard, the Executive Director of the Arizona Dispensaries Association (ADA), as quoted by azfamily.com.

The Department of Revenue provided a detailed breakdown of the sales data, revealing that recreational adult-use pot brought in $528,001,278 in revenue, while medical cannabis generated $703,803,194.

According to the figures, November brought in $60,299,191 in adult-use sales, making it the highest-grossing month for recreational pot. It was also the only month of the year in which recreational sales topped $60 million. 

April was the top month for medical cannabis, with $72,944,477 generated then. Complete sales figures for December were not provided.

Moreover, the state raked in $196,447,570 in taxes on the combined sales last year, and that does not include sales in December. 

According to the Arizona Department of Revenue, “there is a transaction privilege tax (TPT) rate and an excise tax (16 percent) on the retail sales” of adult use recreational cannabis in the state.

In 2020, 60 percent of Arizona voters approved Proposition 207, a ballot initiative that legalized recreational pot use in the state. (Arizona was one of four states that year where voters approved legalization measures at the ballot, joining Montana, South Dakota and New Jersey in moving to end prohibition.) 

In August, Arizona launched a social equity program for aspiring cannabis dispensary owners as part of Prop 207’s commitment to “promote the ownership and operation of marijuana establishments and marijuana testing facilities by individuals from communities disproportionately impacted by the enforcement of previous marijuana laws.”

Through the program, the state’s Department of Health Services will award 26 dispensary licenses to applicants who come from communities most adversely affected by anti-drug policies.

“The social equity ownership program is intended to promote the ownership and operation of licensed Marijuana Establishments by individuals from communities disproportionately impacted by the enforcement of previous marijuana laws,” the Department of Health Services explained. “Social equity license holders will be required to comply with all statutes and rules that govern Adult-Use Marijuana Establishment licenses, including obtaining approval to operate before opening their retail location. Additionally, social equity license holders will be required to develop and implement policies to document how the Marijuana Establishment will provide a benefit to one or more communities disproportionately affected by the enforcement of Arizona’s previous marijuana laws.”

But that effort has also faced scrutiny, with a group of female investors filing a lawsuit in November targeting the program. The plaintiffs, a pair of organizations known as the Greater Phoenix Urban League and Acre 41, assert that the rules governing the program are inconsistent with the goals of Prop 207.

Defendants in the suit are the state of Arizona, Republican Gov. Doug Ducey, the state Department of Health Services and Don Herrington, the director of the Department of Health Services.

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Rhode Island Budget Proposal Seeks Recreational Cannabis Legalization

The 2023 budget was recently proposed by the governor of Rhode Island, which aims to establish a legislative framework for recreational cannabis legalization.

Rhode Island Governor Dan McKee presented his Fiscal Year 2023 Budget Proposal on January 20, and includes recreational cannabis legalization. “Today, we know there are still many pandemic-related challenges that we must once again come together to address—with our top priority being the health and safety of Rhode Islanders. At the same time, we have an historic opportunity to write Rhode Island’s next chapter now, with $1.13 billion in federal funds and an over $600 million surplus available to invest in our state’s future,” McKee wrote in the introduction of his proposal. “The decisions we make this year have the potential to bolster Rhode Island’s economic comeback and propel our state into the next decade with strength.”

In a press media presentation he briefly covers multiple topics included in his budget proposal. Under “other items,” includes the mention of adult-use cannabis “Allows for controlled, phased-in introduction of retail licenses, results in minimal net revenue in FY 2023.” A more detailed executive summary goes into detail of the Fiscal Year 2023 Budget Proposal in nearly 200 pages of plans, with cannabis being mentioned in a few key sections.

“The governor recommends creating a strictly regulated legal market for adult-use cannabis in the state,” the executive summary states. “This proposal would create a weight-based excise tax on marijuana cultivation, an additional retail excise tax of 10 percent, and also apply sales tax to cannabis transactions.” The summary states that 25 percent of cannabis tax revenue and fees collected from licensing would be given to public health and safety programs. An additional 15 percent would be granted to local governments and the remaining 60 percent would go straight to the state general fund (a combination of cannabis cultivation excise taxes and retail sales excise tax, in addition to the state’s seven percent sales tax). The summary also states that after a full year of sales by fiscal year 2024, the state projects that it will collect up to $16.9 million in general revenue.

The legislation proposal for legalization echoes similar states’ analysis of combating illegal cannabis sales. “Prohibiting the possession, cultivation, and sale of cannabis to adults has proven to be an ineffective policy for the State of Rhode Island,” it reads. “In the absence of a legal, tightly regulated market, an illicit cannabis industry has thrived, undermining the public health, safety and welfare of Rhode Islanders.”

Legal cannabis would allow adults to buy and possess up to one ounce of cannabis, or store up to five ounces at home. The proposed bill is set to begin starting April 1, 2023. In its current form, the proposal doesn’t allow home cultivation, and imposes consequences for those who might illegally cultivate plants at home. In terms of licenses, it requires that 25 retailers should be licensed per year between 2023 and 2025, through a lottery system. Five of those 25 licenses must be granted to a minority-owned business.

In the past, there have been differing opinions between McKee and House and Senate representatives about how to approach legalization in the state. For instance, while McKee’s most recent proposal directs responsibility of maintaining a state cannabis program to the Department of Business Regulation, other representatives have previously believed that a new department be created for the task.

In the beginning of the 2022 legislative session on January 4, Speaker K. Joseph Shekarchi mentioned that the Rhode Island congress is actively working on crafting a recreational cannabis program. “… We have also spent months analyzing the complex issue of marijuana legalization. The House and Senate intend to soon have draft legislation ready which will serve as a framework to begin a robust public hearing process. We may not be the first state to legalize marijuana, but our goal is to do it in the way that is best for all Rhode Islanders.”

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Mississippi Takes Another Step Toward Allowing Medical Cannabis

The long, drawn out back-and-forth surrounding a medical cannabis bill in Mississippi reached a potentially major breakthrough last week, with members of the state House overwhelmingly passing the legislation.

The bill passed out of the state House by a vote of 104-14, the Associated Press reported. Members of the state Senate passed the bill the previous week with a vote of 46-5, “but the House made some changes,” according to the Associated Press, and now it is down to senators to either accept those changes or bring the legislation to the negotiating table.

“This bill has been vetted probably more than any bill in my history for sure,” said Republican state House Representative Lee Yancey, as quoted by the Mississippi Clarion Ledger.

The Clarion Ledger said that Yancey, the chair of the state House Drug Policy Committee, worked closely with GOP state Senator Kevin Blackwell on the legislation throughout the summer months and into the fall.

Earlier this month, Blackwell filed a 445-page bill that was then referred to the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee for review by Lieutenant Governor Delbert Hosemann.

According to the Clarion Ledger, Yancey “made three changes” to the bill passed last Wednesday by the state House, with the most notable dealing with the amount of cannabis a patient can procure, a major area of disagreement between lawmakers and Mississippi’s Republican governor, Tate Reeves.

Blackwell’s bill permitted patients to purchase up to 3.5 grams of cannabis per day, but Yancey’s version allows for only three ounces to be purchased at a time.

According to the Clarion Ledger, a patient “can still purchase 3.5 grams of marijuana at a time, but only six times a week.”

It is unclear if that will be enough to placate Reeves, who has said that he would prefer the limit to be lowered to 2.7 grams.

The Clarion Ledger said that Yancey considers the number “just a starting point, and he expects the legislature to increase the amount of marijuana a person can purchase each month in future years.”

“This is an effort to start small and grow rather than start big and reduce,” Yancey said.

In another notable change, the House-passed bill “puts the entirety of the program under the Mississippi State Department of Health,” according to the Clarion Ledger, whereas the Senate version tasked the Department of Agriculture and Commerce to oversee “the licensing, inspection and oversight of cannabis cultivation facilities, processing facilities, transportation and cannabis disposal entities in the state.”

Nearly 70 percent of Mississippi voters passed a proposal at the ballot in 2020 to legalize medical cannabis for patients in the state suffering from a host of conditions, including cancer, epilepsy or other seizures, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, muscular dystrophy and multiple sclerosis. 

But the law’s path to enactment has been troubled. Last year, the Mississippi Supreme Court struck down the ballot initiative, citing a technicality that rendered it unconstitutional. 

In the wake of that ruling, state lawmakers sought to replace the nullified initiative with a new medical marijuana law, but that, too, has been hamstrung by delays.

Lawmakers produced a draft of a bill in September, but Reeves had concerns with the proposal and never called a special session to debate and pass the legislation.

“I am confident we will have a special session of the Legislature if we get the specifics of a couple of items that are left outstanding,” Reeves said at a press conference in October. “Again, we have made great progress working with our legislative leaders.”

Now, with the regular session underway, the bill returns to the Senate––but the ball remains very much in Reeves’ court. 

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Jon’s Stone Cold Cop List #19

Well ladies and gents, we may only be a few weeks into January, but 2022 is already going off with a bang. From the slew of exciting IRL event announcements, to the previews of phenos coming to market later this year, there’s a lot to be excited about right now. While it seemed for a second we may see another surge to slow our return to normalcy, it’s now seeming we’re collectively over it. Whatever the case may be, whether you’re stuck in isolation or out on the town, you’re going to need some high quality fire power to get you through it, and I’m here to help you find your fix.

For those new to the Cop List, here’s the long and short of it. A LOT of new products come out every month, but not all the dope is that dope, if ya feel me. How are you, the consumer, supposed to see through all the smoke and mirrors? In the words of the Holy Opal of Trapis Designs, “[Finding the right product is] like picking steaks. There are so many varieties and cuts, but if you serve me a fucked up steak I’m probably not coming back to your spot.” Well gang, I try all of it so you don’t have to, and I’ve created this list to help y’all navigate which hype is real. I won’t necessarily call out the busters, you just won’t see them included in this collection.

As always, feel free to drop me a line to let me know what the streets have you hyped about. I’m always happy to put the smoke to the test 🙂

Highnstein’s Cross Joint

Courtesy of Highnstein

I know it’s been over 13 years since Pineapple Express came out, but if there’s one lasting impact of that movie that I can see it was the proliferation of the Cross Joint. You know, the doob with another doob cut into it about halfway through, so you can get a superior smoke ‘trifecta’, if you will. Well friends, now you don’t need to know a really good roller to experience this magic for yourself… the gang at Highnstein’s has done that hard part for you. Now available on the legal market, and at a MSRP of $25, which is far cheaper than I would’ve expected a product like this to run, I’m pleased to report that this thing isn’t just a gimmick. The cross smokes! Filled with some Zkittles x Kush Mints cultivated by a reputable brand, this is a party trick you’ll end up making part of your regular routine.

G-Funk

Courtesy of G Putt

I’ve previewed G’s work on G Putt before, but it’s clear he wanted to dial it all the way in before officially launching, and friends, let’s just say he’s more than ready. Debuting his new G-Funk cut, the pilot of his new portfolio, G’s coming into the market HOT. A proprietary cross of OG & Gelato, the new strain is a perfect culmination of G’s work in the space so far, from his humble OG beginnings to the Gelato craze he helped proliferate. With a nose that touches on the hypiest of terps—the gassy and candy smells—it’s safe to say this is going to resonate with the streets just as much as it is the upper echelon smokers. In the immortal words of Warren G & Nate Dogg’s Bay Area classic ‘Regulate’, “G-Funk. Step to this, I dare ya.”

Flower Mill

Cop List Flower Mills
Courtesy of Flower Mill

Here’s one that’s shippable and available across the world, for those reading from the other side of the country or across the pond. I’ve used a LOT of grinders, and while most of the teeth-based models are great, I was honestly sick of fighting to get all my sticky through the holes. In the past I’ve used mortar and pestle style types and while they’re good, I believe this is truly the next generation of the experience. With no teeth, but a grooved metal surface that mills your flower through it’s grates, this has quickly become my favorite way to chop it up. Delivering a fluffy yet nug-y consistency that will work filling your bowl just as well as a backwood, I highly recommend picking one of these up.

Good Greens

Good Greens cop list
Courtesy of Good Greens

I’m always on the hunt for new cultivators, and candidly one of the things I pay most attention to is not how they brag about what’s in their bag, but how they nitpick their own work striving for perfection. Good Greens finds themselves in this elite class of cultivators. While the work he showed me was miles better than many of the ‘top shelf’ cultivators in the market, it was clear he doesn’t think he’s there yet, which only makes me extremely excited to see what he puts out going forward. I saw two phenos of his upcoming Jealousy x Horchata cross, which while already out of this world, also provided a range of terps we’re not seeing super often right now, so I can only imagine how the end result will perform. Striving for originality, providing the utmost care to produce quality, AND still pushing to be better? Yeah, Good Greens has got it.

Gummy Buns

Gummy Buns cop list
Photo by SAsince1794 at seedfinder.eu | CC BY-NC-SA

Often the best flower I see isn’t labeled, it’s passed to me by a friend who knows what’s good and has something interesting they think I’ll like. Some of my favorite discoveries have been these mason jar scores that I actually smoked days later, and had to try and chase down the details for, which are not always easy to find. My most recent example of this came from my good buddy Billy from the Moxie gang. We linked up at the High Rise party during the last Hall of Flowers and he showed me some truly special buds at a time when I was already thoroughly intoxicated. When I finally came back down to earth and realized what he’d given me, I had to get the deets. This time the mystery score was the classic ‘Gummy Buns’, a cross of Biscotti and Grease Monkey that’s bread by Exotic Genetix. I’m not 100 percent if this is on shelves right now, or if this is just a sleeper private reserve cut, but either way, if you see this out in the wild, grab that bag.

Paradise Smokes

Paradise Smokes Cop List
Courtesy of Paradise Smokes

I’m pretty hard on prerolls, so when I find a brand I actually like I’ve got to shout about it from the rooftops. That’s the case with this new brand Paradise Smokes, these things smack. Besides their attractive packaging, Paradise’s prerolls are described easiest as premium smokes. Wrapped in paper, but with a thick glass tip usually reserved for blunt wraps, these things feel almost like a paper cigarillo. I believe they’re bringing flower to market as well, but with multi-packs and singles of prerolls that smoke just as good as a hand roll, some of you might not need it.

Flight Path

Courtesy of Flight Path

I first caught up with these guys at the most recent Hall of Flowers event, and while I missed their products at the actual show, I’m very glad I caught up with them in the following weeks. A new family business based in SoCal, it’s clear this isn’t the first operation the cultivators behind Flight Path were involved in, despite the newly legal brand face. Not only is the experience there, but it’s also clear these guys have taste. Having shown me three different Jealousy cuts and crosses, that could each proliferate the brand on it’s own, it’s also worth noting that their abilities aren’t limited to pushing new—their Zkittles x Kush Mints is one of the best expressions of the plant that I’ve seen. 

Fiore’s Pomelo Anderson

Courtesy of Fiore

I’m glad the Zalympix results are out because I had fully intended on writing this piece forecasting their win, but I didn’t want to suck the fun out of the competition while it was still going on. That said, it was clear from cracking the jar that this one was a front runner for any competition. With an aesthetic that will grab you even if you don’t know anything about weed, the aroma inside the jar will hook even the snobbiest of consumers. You’ll taste it, too. Finally, while not dark purple, the nugs have enough dark color to turn on the purp fiends without turning off those that see through that hype, and at least from what I’ve seen, they’re just as photogenic as any of our centerfolds. It’s got the nose, flavor, color, and the look—what more could you ask for?

Airscape Storage

Courtesy of Airscape

I’ve included these jars on the list before as they are my favorite way to store my flower, but I just found out about the mega sized one, so I’m passing on the jewels. Although it’s billed as a coffee bean holder, this is the single best way I’ve found to conserve my flower, especially for longer than a few months. The medium size, which I’ve had, has been able to comfortably hold about two ounces, but the new Kilo model can easily fit a QP. Complete with a vacuum-sealing lid, I’m not going to lie, it may take some effort to open, but you can rest assured the flower will be just as gorgeous as the day you dropped it in.

Compound Genetics’ Blueberry Bananas

Courtesy of Compound Genetics

I’ve praised Compound in this list before, but while I’ve followed their work for awhile, I recently got my first chance to actually sit down with the legend behind the hype, Chris, and discuss a bit about his history and what he’s got coming. More on that later in a dedicated piece, but I’d never want my dear readers to be late on something, so let me drop this little tease now: their new Blueberry Bananas is going to knock your socks off. With a Blueberry nose you’ll undoubtedly remember from the classic Blueberry cuts, this is one of the terpiest strains I’ve tasted in years, with a flavor that will coat your lungs from the first inhale. You’ll get the Banana kick on the finish of the exhale in an almost unexpected twist. Even better, that flavors going to stick with you for awhile after you’re done. It’s appropriately named, and a hell of a good smoke.

Bonus: Ember Valley’s Dole Whip

Courtesy of Ember Valley

I’m literally only including this to let you know that I may be a psychic. That Ember Valley pheno I told you about a few months back in the Hall of Flowers list is actually coming to market, and you’re in for a treat. That’s right, I know, I told you it was a killer before they even had a name, and now it can be yours. How did you get so lucky? Affectionately called ‘Dole Whip’ (which I’m also pretty sure I put in their ear but even if not, c’mon—could you get MORE in the pocket for me?) is the Tropic Truffles x Cookies & Cream cross that was the star of their October hunt. Smelling exactly like a fresh cup of the pineapple goodness, this smoke is not only delicious, but powerful. While I typically like the fruity strains first thing in the morning, this is a killer I keep reserved for sunset, and it’s one that’s never let me down!

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