Newsletter: D.C. I-71 landlords face letter demanding $600M in damages


New enforcement records reveal D.C. unlicensed cannabis shop locations

D.C.’s Alcohol Beverage and Cannabis Administration (ABCA) is cracking down on unlicensed cannabis shops. Since gaining new enforcement powers in April, they’ve issued warnings to 38 shops, but that’s just a fraction of the estimated hundreds operating illegally.  Newly released records reveal the location of every business that has been warned by ABCA. Most shops that were warned are on U Street NW or in Georgetown. At least 20 unlicensed stores that sell cannabis appear on the map when searching cannabis, marijuana, weed or dispensary on Google maps.

New D.C. existing legal weed biz alliance sends letter to I-71 landlords claiming $600M damages

Over the last week at least five separate landlords for I-71 shops, some that choose to transition to D.C.’s licensed market, were served a legal letter demanding they compensate existing legal dispensaries for $600 million in financial damages. The letter alleges that in renting to gray market gifting shops, landlords “breached their duty of care owed to the legal cannabis market.”

The $600 million in damages estimate comes from a number repeatedly mentioned in city council meetings. The Alliance of Legal Cannabis entities-DC, represented by lawyer Jon L. Brunenkant, is looking to recover “revenues illegally diverted from them,” according to the letter.

The D.C. cannabis business association is moving full steam ahead

Our third interview features D.C. Cannabis Business Association, a mix of passionate residents, experienced entrepreneurs and dedicated activists building a D.C. cannabis market that prioritizes local businesses, sustainability and fairness.

Lisa Scott, D.C. CBA’s president, says she organized the first D.C. cannabis pop-up event in 2017. This event, along with subsequent pop-ups, helped pave the way for the gifting cannabis scene in the city. Scott was one of the first to recognize the gifting loop-hole of I-71.

Comment period closing on MD Cannabis regulations

The Maryland Cannabis Administration is proposing permanent regulations which were published on May 3, 2024. You can review the details and provide comments until June 3, 2024. Comments can be emailed to​.

East Coast Round Up

A New York owner of seven unlicensed cannabis shops got hit with a $15.2 million fine for selling without a license, ignoring warnings and underage sales.

NY’s governor paused the social equity funding program that was accused of being predatory, and the cannabis chief resigned after much controversy in delay.

New York City’s sheriff seized millions in illegal cannabis products held at a Manhattan warehouse.

New York lawmakers introduced a bill that would let any person sue unlicensed cannabis businesses.

Connecticut named its first-ever ombudsman, a rare position meant to help defend patients rights.

Around the country

Study by marijuana policy project shows over $20 billion in tax revenue from adult-use cannabis.

Alabama is putting women in jail for blood tests during pregnancy that show cannabis and other drugs, part of the fetal personhood movement and war on women’s rights.

Culture & More

Kanna, a South African succulent with a long history of use by indigenous tribes for mood and stress relief, is gaining renewed interest. Though not a new drug, it’s attracting attention for potential benefits against depression, anxiety, and even ADHD.

Daily cannabis use outpaces daily alcohol use, new study says.

Nicki Minaj was detained in the Netherlands for alleged cannabis.

From the Swamp

Hemp is on ice as the Farm Bill goes through Congress. A new bill would close the loophole that allowed the hemp industry to start selling THCA and delta-8 THC.

Reform groups gear up to push for cannabis rescheduling as feds seek public input.

Safe Banking is up to 121 co-sponsors in the House. AskaPol got Republican Ron Johnson saying that he supports Safer banking but not rescheduling.

Attend this week

Register for DC CBA’s business workshop May 31, 2024, or attend Weed Wars Film premiere tonight in Baltimore.


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