The Secretary of the Commonwealth has officially released the applications for the Board of Directors of the Virginia Cannabis Control Authority, the Cannabis Public Health Advisory Council, and the Cannabis Equity Reinvestment Board. Applications can be found under “Authority.”
In an effort to support the diversity and equity goals of the Commonwealth and the Cannabis Control Act (CCA), all non-legislative members of each organization must be citizens of Virginia and reflect the racial, ethnic, gender, and geographic fabric of the state.
These organizations were created to oversee the transparent, restorative, and equitable management of Virginia’s new cannabis industry and to promote the health, safety, and prosperity of the Commonwealth.
Cannabis Control Authority, Board of Directors
The Cannabis Control Authority is an independent body comprised of a Board of Directors, a CEO, and the Cannabis Public Health Advisory Council. The 5-member Board is the ultimate authority when it comes to the regulation, licensure, and enforcement of Virginia’s new cannabis industry.
Each of the five appointees must be a resident of the Commonwealth for at least three years before appointment, hold a degree in business or related field, and have a minimum of seven years of experience in management or legal affairs. Members serve five-year terms and may not serve more than two consecutive terms.
The Board’s powers are not yet specifically defined. The CCA gives the Board broad authority in a number of areas that could eliminate otherwise qualifying applicants from the licensure process. Among its powers, the Board can grant, suspend, or revoke licenses, determine the demographic criteria for licensure applicants, license fees, regulations regarding the possession, sale, transport, distribution, and delivery of marijuana products, advertising and labelling, THC content, and the business hours and density of retail stores.
Members of the Board cannot actively hold a cannabis cultivation, manufacturing, wholesale, or retail license while serving the Board.
Cannabis Public Health Advisory Council
Serving as an advisory council to the Cannabis Control Authority’s Board of Directors, the 21-member Cannabis Public Health Advisory Council is charged with assessing and monitoring public health issues, trends, and impacts related to marijuana and its legalization and may make recommendations to the Board regarding health warnings, safety and composition of retail marijuana products, and public health awareness.
The 14 non-legislative members of the Council must too reflect the racial, ethnic, gender, and geographic composition of the state and have experience in the cannabis, social equity, or healthcare industry. Non-legislative members serve four-year terms and may be reappointed.
Cannabis Equity Reinvestment Board
The Cannabis Equity Reinvestment Board was created to address the impact of economic disinvestment, violence, and disproportionate policing in regards to marijuana by providing resources to support local and community-based solutions. The Board administers the Cannabis Equity Reinvestment Fund that supports its programs, including scholarships for historically-marginalized persons, workforce development and mentorship, and re-entry services.
The 13 non-legislative members of the 20-member Board must either be graduates of HBCUs, previously incarcerated for or convicted of a marijuana-related crime, a veteran, an expert in workforce development, re-entry, or education in underserved communities, or have experience in trauma-informed healthcare, among other qualifications. Members serve four-year terms and may be reappointed.
Gentry Locke Consulting has a full suite of cannabis-related services. If you are interested in learning more about the Commonwealth’s emerging cannabis industry, please contact us or visit www.gentrylocke.consulting/cannabis.