October 2022


On October 17th Burns and Levinson hosted its Sixth Annual Cannabis Industry Conference, where our very own Frank Segall sat down with Steven Hoffman to reflect on Steven’s time as the Chairman of the Cannabis Control Commission, his impact, and what his hopes are for the future of the industry.

Steven recalled his first few months as the Chairman as somewhat of a whirlwind. From being appointed on a Friday night and thrust into a press conference on Monday morning, he has been going nonstop ever since. Steven initially had the help of 5 commissioners, no office, no staff, no money, and very aggressive legal mandates to decipher. His plate was overflowing from day one. For the next 6 months, the commissioners held between 30-50 public meetings in order to discuss and draft regulations that would be broadly followed throughout Massachusetts.

Steven’s proudest moment as commissioner was the implementation of the Cannabis Social Equity Trust Fund. This fund was put into place to encourage the participation of regulated marijuana for entrepreneurs who have been harmed by marijuana prohibition and enforcement. This fund is set to provide additional opportunities to those who may not be able to do … Keep reading

Spotlight Series: Kyle Patrick Judge, Vice President, Manage Liability, Cannabis & Transaction Risk at HUB International

The CannaBusiness Advisory Spotlight Series features expert perspectives from Burns & Levinson clients and contacts who are blazing new trails in the cannabis market.

Today we spotlight Kyle Patrick Judge, Vice President, Management Liability, Cannabis & Transaction Risk at HUB International. HUB is a global insurance broker and financial services firm headquartered in Chicago with over 530 offices throughout North America. Their work focuses on risk management, insurance, employee benefits, retirement, and wealth management products and services. HUB’s dedicated cannabis practice assists cannabis-related businesses with securing business insurance, risk services, and claims management, and building employee benefits programs.

At Burns and Levinson’s Sixth Annual State of the Cannabis Industry Conference, Kyle will speak with nationwide industry experts on the panel “Weathering the Storm: Restructurings, Workouts, and Distressed M&A.” The panel will discuss best practices for navigating financial and operational distress from multiple perspectives – investors, secured debt holders, and companies during dropping stock prices and reduced multiples.

From your corner of the cannabis industry, what’s the single greatest challenge right now?

The biggest challenge in the management liability space is a lack of carriers playing in the cannabis space. This is the crux of a lot of … Keep reading

President Biden Acknowledges a “Failed Approach” to Marijuana Policy, Outlines Significant Plans to Pardon Thousands, and Evaluate How Marijuana Is Scheduled Under Federal Law.


On Thursday, October 6, 2022, President Joe Biden issued a press release and video statement announcing his actions to end what he called a “failed approach” to the United States’ federal marijuana policies and calling for significant marijuana reform at the federal level.

First, President Biden announced his administration will be pardoning any U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents charged or convicted under federal law (and Washington D.C. law) of simple marijuana possession on or before October 6, 2022. Their full political, civil and other rights will be restored. The President called on all governors to follow suit and pardon state offenders of simple marijuana possession.

President Biden also directed the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Attorney General to initiate the administrative process to “review how marijuana is scheduled under federal law.”

At a minimum, the President’s announcement shows a real – and long-awaited – change in the Federal Government’s approach to cannabis, which has been criminalized as a Schedule I substance since the Controlled Substances Act was signed into law … Keep reading