In the latest episode of Regulatory Oversight, Troutman Pepper RISE attorneys Jean Gonnell and Cole White are joined by AGA’s Bruce Turcott, legal editor of the Cannabis Law Deskbook, to discuss the evolution of cannabis regulation in Colorado and Washington, the first two states to legalize marijuana. They discuss the challenges and successes of implementing cannabis laws, including the development of licensing systems, the impact of local authority on licensing, and the role of receiverships in the industry.

Additionally, they cover social equity in the cannabis industry, with both states implementing programs to support those adversely affected by the war on drugs.

The conversation concludes with a look at the future of cannabis regulation, including the potential federal rescheduling of cannabis, the need for national testing standards, and the impact of intoxicating hemp products. The speakers emphasize the importance of learning from the experiences of pioneering states, while recognizing that a one-size-fits-all approach may not be suitable for every state.

Transcript: Budding Regulations: Navigating the Cannabis Regulatory Landscape (PDF)


* Our Cannabis Practice provides advice on issues related to applicable federal and state law. Marijuana remains an illegal controlled substance under federal law.

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Photo of Stephen C. Piepgrass Stephen C. Piepgrass

Stephen leads the firm’s Regulatory Investigations, Strategy + Enforcement (RISE) Practice Group. He focuses his practice on enforcement actions, investigations, and litigation. Stephen primarily represents clients engaging with, or being investigated by, state attorneys general and other state or local governmental enforcement bodies,

Stephen leads the firm’s Regulatory Investigations, Strategy + Enforcement (RISE) Practice Group. He focuses his practice on enforcement actions, investigations, and litigation. Stephen primarily represents clients engaging with, or being investigated by, state attorneys general and other state or local governmental enforcement bodies, including the CFPB and FTC, as well as clients involved with litigation, with a particular focus on heavily regulated industries. He also has experience advising clients on data and privacy issues, including handling complex investigations into data incidents by state attorneys general other state and federal regulators. Additionally, Stephen provides strategic counsel to Troutman Pepper’s Strategies clients who need assistance with public policy, advocacy, and government relations strategies.

Photo of Jean Smith-Gonnell Jean Smith-Gonnell

Jean has dedicated her entire career to the cannabis sector, helping growers, dispensaries, investors, receivers, and other stakeholders achieve their business goals and prepare for unexpected issues. She has extensive experience with medical marijuana, retail marijuana, hemp, and CBD products, and helps clients…

Jean has dedicated her entire career to the cannabis sector, helping growers, dispensaries, investors, receivers, and other stakeholders achieve their business goals and prepare for unexpected issues. She has extensive experience with medical marijuana, retail marijuana, hemp, and CBD products, and helps clients as they establish their businesses, mitigate risk, and resolve disputes. Known for responding to clients within 24 hours or less, Jean is also a go-to advisor for a wide range of day-to-day operational issues.

Photo of Cole White Cole White

Cole is a member of the firm’s Regulatory Investigations, Strategy and Enforcement (RISE) group. He has a decade of experience working in the attorney general community, having joined the firm from the Wyoming Office of the Attorney General, where he was assistant attorney…

Cole is a member of the firm’s Regulatory Investigations, Strategy and Enforcement (RISE) group. He has a decade of experience working in the attorney general community, having joined the firm from the Wyoming Office of the Attorney General, where he was assistant attorney general.