Outburst disrupts Cannabis Connection’s license hearing

WORCESTER- Cannabis Connection’s provisional license hearing was delayed again when the Dec. 19 hearing by the Cannabis Control Commission (CCC) was interrupted and adjourned early. 

Cannabis Connection co-owner Thomas Keenan said that his Westfield-based recreational marijuana store was up for a review of their application for a provisional license on Thursday. When the meeting had progressed to the part where provisional licenses were to be reviewed, another prospective store owner filibustered the meeting in protest. 

Approximately an hour into the meeting, just before the CCC was to begin reviewing 31 provisional licenses, Leah Daniels of the Boston-based Alchemy League stood up and interjected with a plea for the CCC to finally review her application, which she said has been active for 610 days. 

CCC Chair Steve Hoffman briefly adjourned  the meeting after threatening to call security while Daniels continued to speak. In addition to her plea, Daniels released a lengthy statement.

After two years of this ridiculous, nontransparent rigged, convoluted process, it has been brought to my attention that you have decided to scrutinize my economic empowerment application review process even further. As I attempt to get clarity and an understanding as to why I am still amiss. I personally requested a copy of my background check to review the report myself and compare it to your own laws/ rules and regulations,” said the statement from Daniels. “To my delight, as I was already aware, I have never been convicted of a felony in my 51 years of living. I d,o on the other hand, have multiple incidents resulting in non-convictions from 1989 at the ripe old age of 21 to 2009 to the ripe old age of 41.”

After adjourning the meeting, Hoffman and the rest of the commissioners, excluding Shaleen Title, left the room for several minutes. When they returned, Hoffman and the rest of the CCC voted to adjourn the meeting for the day. 

Keenan said that he understands the frustration felt by Daniels, as she is a priority applicant who has not been reviewed in two years despite general applicants like Keenan being reviewed in just a few months. Despite his sympathy, Keenan said he was frustrated himself.

“I feel like it could have been handled better,” said Keenan of Daniels’ filibuster and the reaction by the CCC to end the meeting before reviewing any applicants.

The next scheduled CCC meeting is  Jan. 16. Keenan said that he spoke with Hoffman following the meeting, and he was told that they would do what they could to make up the meeting before that date, but that there were “no promises.”


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