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Advisory Committee Members Named For NM Cannabis Control Division

Aug 6, 2021

SANTA FE—The Cannabis Control Division of the Regulation and Licensing Department on Friday announced the members of the Cannabis Regulatory Advisory Committee, a diverse group of stakeholders from around the state who will help ensure that the adult-use cannabis regulatory process continues to meet the needs of all New Mexicans. The committee will hold its first meeting on Tuesday.

“I am excited to work with this outstanding and diverse advisory committee to make sure that real people, from all walks of life and all parts of the state, have a strong, clear voice as the adult-use cannabis industry starts up in New Mexico,” said Regulation and Licensing Department Superintendent Linda Trujillo, who oversees the Cannabis Control Division. “Adult-use cannabis is creating exciting economic opportunities for businesses, entrepreneurs and communities around the state. With this committee’s guidance, we will continue to meet our goal of making this new industry accessible.”

The Advisory Committee, which was established in the Cannabis Regulation Act that passed earlier this year, is charged with advising CCD on the development of rules covering best practices, the promotion of economic and cultural diversity in licensing and employment opportunities, and protection of public health and safety, among other subjects. The Cannabis Control Division had until September 1 to appoint the committee members. Four of the positions on the committee required by the law are chosen by their peers rather than appointed by CCD. They are representatives from the New Mexico Law Offices of the Public Defender, the New Mexico Association of Counties, the New Mexico District Attorney’s Association, and the New Mexico Association of Chiefs of Police.

“We are moving quickly and judiciously to stand up a thriving adult-use cannabis industry in New Mexico,” Trujillo said. “The naming of the members of the committee today is perfect timing and ensures that this thoughtful, public group will be able to review every rule that the Cannabis Control Division puts forward. The Cannabis Control Division is committed to an open and transparent process.

The members of the committee are:

·              A cannabis policy advocacy organization, Emily Kaltenbach from Santa Fe County.

·              A labor organization, Esther Lopez from Bernalillo County.

·              A qualified patient, Nathaniel Paolinelli from Bernalillo County.

·              A state or local agency with relevant expertise as the Director and the Superintendent deem appropriate, Paul Haidle from Bernalillo County.

·              A member of an Indian nation, tribe or pueblo with relevant experience as the Director and the Superintendent deem appropriate, Perry Martinez of San Ildefonso Pueblo from Santa Fe County.

·              Expertise in public health, Dr. Steven Jenison from Rio Arriba County.

·              Expertise regulating commercial activity for adult-use intoxicating substances, Lou Ann Branch from Bernalillo County.

·              Expertise and experience in cannabis laboratory science, Ginger Baker from Bernalillo County.

·              Experience in environmental science, Miguel Santistevan from Taos County.

·              Expertise in small business development, Chase Gentry from Curry County.

·              Expertise in water resources, Harold Trujillo from Mora County.

·              Expertise in other relevant areas as the Director and the Superintendent deem appropriate, Richard Bailey from Rio Arriba County.

·              Previous experience as a cannabis retailer, cannabis producer or cannabis manufacturer and who is a non-voting member, Rachael Speegle from Bernalillo County.

·              Public Defender, Bennett J. Baur, Chief Public Defender from Santa Fe County.

·              Association of Counties, Mark Cage, Sheriff from Eddy County.    

·              District Attorney, Mary Carmack-Altwies, District Attorney from Santa Fe County.

·              Chiefs of Police, Phil Smith, Roswell Chief of Police from Chaves County.


Simultaneous with announcing the committee’s membership, public notice has been given for a Special Meeting of the Cannabis Regulatory Advisory Committee at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, August 10, 2021. Due to the ongoing public health concerns posed by COVID-19, in-person attendees shall be limited to the members of the Cannabis Regulatory Advisory Committee. Please use the following link to access the video conference call: https://ccd.rld.state.nm.us

Among other items, the agenda includes discussion and review of the proposed draft producer rules.

The Cannabis Regulation Act, signed by the governor earlier this year, legalizes the sale of adult-use cannabis in New Mexico and established the Cannabis Control Division to oversee and regulate the industry. According to the law, the CCD must begin issuing producer licenses by September 1, 2021. Sales of adult-use cannabis will begin in New Mexico no later than April 1, 2022. As of June 29, 2021, possession of limited amounts of cannabis as well as growing a limited number of plants at home became legal.

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Retail sales of adult-use cannabis in New Mexico are to begin no later than April 1, 2022. Anyone interested in getting updates regarding upcoming announcements, rulemaking notices and other important information regarding both adult-use cannabis and medical cannabis can sign up for email updates at the Cannabis Control Division website: ccd.rld.state.nm.us.

The New Mexico Regulation and Licensing Department, which houses the Cannabis Control Division, regulates more than 500,000 individuals and businesses in 35 industries, professions, and trades across the state. Our goal is to assure that New Mexicans receive quality services from qualified individuals and businesses while also ensuring a fair and prompt administrative process. Our priority is your protection.