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Oregon Sick Leave Laws for Your Cannabis Business: Clear as Mud

Oregon cannabis employment law issuesIf you’re an Oregon cannabis business owner, you likely employ hourly employees entitled to either paid or unpaid sick leave. Oregon passed comprehensive sick leave legislation in 2015. To put it mildly, the legislation was confusing and employers were unsure how to properly implement its requirements. In July 2017, the legislature amended the act to clear up some of the confusion. This post is aimed to give you some understanding of how the Oregon sick leave laws apply to cannabis businesses that employ a variety of employees.

The Oregon sick leave law requires almost all Oregon employers to provide 40 hours of sick leave per year. Employers that employ at least 10 employees in Oregon (six employees if the employer has operations in Portland) must provide 40 hours of protected paid sick leave. Employers that employ less than 10 (six in Portland) must provide 40 hours of protected unpaid sick leave. Protected sick leave means the employee is permitted to be absent from work without disciplinary consequences or a reduction in benefits. If the sick leave is paid, the employee must be compensated at the employee’s regular rate of pay.

Employees are allowed to use sick time for any of the following purposes:

  • For the employee’s own or an employee’s family member’s mental or physical illness, injury or health condition, need for medical diagnosis, care, or treatment of a mental or physical illness, injury, or health condition, or need for preventive medical care;
  • To care for an infant or newly adopted child or newly placed foster child within 12 months after the birth or placement of the child;
  • Absences associated with the death of a family member;
  • Absences related to domestic violence, harassment, sexual assault or stalking;
  • To donate accrued sick time to another employee.

Although an employee can use the sick time for the above reasons, employers cannot ask for verification unless the employee takes more than three consecutively scheduled work days of sick time. The employer must pay for any costs associated with obtaining verification of the use of sick time.

There are two ways employers can award the 40 hours of sick time. Employers can either “front-load” the 40 hours at the beginning of the year by giving its employees all of the hours at once or they can require employees accrue the leave as they work. If an employer chooses the accrual method, an employee must accrue one hour of sick time for every 30 hours worked or 1-1/3 hours for every 40 hours worked. Employers can cap accrual at 40 hours or allow the employees to continue to accrue after the 40-hour milestone has been reached. Employers have to allow employees to accrue from the first day they begin working but may require an employee to have worked 90 days before using accrued sick time. Employees can carry over up to 40 hours of unused leave from one year to the next.  An employee may have up to 80 hours of sick leave in one year. An employer can limit actual time used to 40 hours per year.

Employers are required to maintain records of the hours worked, the paid sick time accrued and used by each employee, and provide quarterly written notification to each employee of the amount of accrued and unused paid sick time available for use.

As you can tell, there are a lot of moving parts involved with Oregon’s sick leave laws. For ease of accounting, it may be best to front-load your employees with 40 hours of sick leave at the beginning of the year (a year can be an annual period and does not have to be at the beginning of the calendar year). If you go with the accrual method you will need to track each of your employee’s hours and provide them with one hour of sick time for every 30 hours they work. For many of our Oregon cannabis clients — most of whom employ a variety of hourly and salaried employees — this is just too much work. Regardless of the method you choose for awarding sick time, you must at least quarterly give each of your employees with a written statement of sick time accrued and unused sick time available for use at least quarterly.

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XIKAR HP4 Quad Lighter


Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger.

Title of a Daft Punk track, yes, but also seemingly the trend of a number of cigar accessories in recent years. In particular, XIKAR has released a collection of accessories under the header of being high performance, and in particular a quad-flame lighter called the HP4 and a new blend of butane fuel designed to be both better at high altitudes than the standard version, as well as capable of helping lighters on their last legs get a bit more life.

As for the HP4, it pushes the envelope of delivering copious amounts of fire and remaining pocket friendly, While lighters of this capability were often relegated to table lighters, XIKAR has found a way to pack four torch jets, arranged into a diamond design with each jet angled to create a single point, into an oval cylinder that is about 3.3 inches (84mm) long, 1.4 inches (35mm) wide, and 1.2 inches (30mm) thick. It’s certainly pocket-capable, and most likely pocket friendly for anything except skinny jeans, though I found myself generally keeping it in my travel humidor. In XIKAR’s five-count version, it’s a bit snug and takes up a good amount of space, but in the bigger options it’s nowhere near as much of an issue.

Keeping in line with the race car-inspired theme of the HP series, the XIKAR HP4 features a pair of racing stripes on its front side and plenty of silver/chrome accents to bring everything together, while functional features include an oversized flame adjustment wheel on the base of the lighter and dual red-tinted EZ-View fuel windows on the front. One of the more interesting aspects of the design is a ridged texture on the backside of the lighter to provide some extra traction and grip while using it. It’s sizable, substantive, and sturdy in the hand, almost a dense version of a table lighter.

There are two aspects of using the HP4 that might be misleading on your first go; the first is that the lid is opened manually as opposed to via a single action; the second, that it’s a pull-down ignition, not a push button as the design might suggest.

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While I had been a big fan of the single-action ignition as recently as a year ago, a conversation with an accessories company sales representative changed my mind. With flip-top lighters such as the HP4, it’s generally a very small latch that holds a spring-loaded lid in place, and each time it’s opened, that latch gets worn down a tiny bit, but over time, almost every lighter will wear down and the lid won’t stay closed. It’s something that can be frustrating, and in some cases leads to the return or repair of a lighter that otherwise works fine.

Once the lid mechanism is understood and you’ve flipped it up to its fully open angle of about 110 degrees—which provides plenty of space in which to light your cigar—it helps to be a bit more methodical when igniting the XIKAR HP4. By that, I mean slowing down when pulling the ignition so that the butane has an opportunity to get flowing before the ignition sparks. It seems like a small thing, but the handful of failed lights I had with the HP4 were almost always a direct result of trying to be too quick to light it.

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Depending on how you have the flame adjustment wheel set, you’ll get anything from a thick, sizable but manageable flame to what I would describe as a tower of fame reminiscent of what comes out of the back of a dragster as it launches from the starting line. Adjusting the flame to somewhere between those two points is done via an oversized adjustment wheel on the base of the lighter, and for a relatively boring part of most lighter, XIKAR does an impressive job giving it both form and function. Designed to look like a five-spoke wheel, the ridges on the side of the wheel make it incredibly easy to grip and turn, with clearly marked direction arrows for whether you want the flame bigger or smaller.

While I usually prefer to set a lighter’s flame adjustment wheel about halfway open, I found that with a full tank of butane in the HP4, I could get a very usable flame from the lighter at its lowest setting. While it’s generally not good practice to use a lighter with the flame adjustment wheel either all the way open or all the way closed, the fact that I was able to get a good flame at the lowest setting was remarkable, as most lighters will barely produce a fleeting flame.

As such, I generally used the HP4 with the wheel only about a quarter of a turn up from the lowest setting as I found that going much more open than that was too much flame not only for the thinner ring gauge cigars I generally smoke, but also because the heat results in such a rapid change in the state of the tobacco that I have to think it’s not particularly good for the tobacco and its flavor.

At its most open setting, the XIKAR HP4 pumps out a huge, roaring flame, with the jets sputtering at times, seemingly unable to keep up with the request for butane It’s the kind of fire power that seems best suited to lighting an 80 ring gauge cigar stuffed with thick ligero from a foot away. The phrase drinking out of a fire hose seems to be quite appropriate here, particularly if you find yourself needing to relight the final inches of a cigar.

With whatever setting you go with, you’ll want to exercise some additional caution and mindfulness when using the HP4; unless you’ve been using some of the more powerful lighters on the market lately, or a blow torch is part of your repertoire, you’ll find that the four flames put out a sizable blue and orange product. You’ll also want to get the lighter a bit farther away from the foot of the cigar so as to not to absolutely singe the foot. Likewise, I also would advise pointing the lighter away from the cigar and your fingers when firing it up, just in case the flame is bigger than you anticipated. Nothing ruins a cigar like accidentally burning your fingers with an incredibly hot lighter.

While I understand and appreciate the appeal of so much firepower, the goal is still the same as if you were to use matches, a soft flame, or a single torch: to gently transition the tobacco from a state of non-combusting to one of combustion, and the HP4 can do that from farther away than you might think.

It also bears mentioning that with the extreme heat that this lighter can produce, you don’t want to leave it running for extended periods of time lest you risk damage to the internals, particularly the ignition wire. If it takes you 30 seconds to light a cigar, for instance, I’d find it better to do it over four short periods of seven or eight seconds with some cooling time in the middle, rather than one extended session. XIKAR’s lifetime warranty is certainly great, but why invoke it if it can be avoided, while also probably helping your cigar start on the best possible note?

As a big positive, I have to give the HP4 a lot of credit for never getting overly hot after use. The top portion of the lighter seems to be well-insulated, and does a remarkably good job at not letting heat transfer to the body, which can occasionally be another place where a lighter will remind you of just how hot it has become. The HP4 stays quite cool, even after firing for 10 or 15 seconds.

All this said, the XIKAR HP4 does quite a good job in lighting cigars, particularly thicker ring gauges with heavier tobacco. If you are exclusively a lancero, panetela, or corona smoker, I’m going to suggest you look for something a bit smaller. Robusto and toro fans, you shouldn’t have as much of an issue, but do exercise caution. When it comes to gordos and beyond, fire away with near impunity.

Once your cigar is properly toasted, you’ll discover one of the more distinguishing features of the XIKAR HP4: the loud snap the lid makes when it closes, almost the inverse of the famed S.T.Dupont sound, both in tone and sequence.

After several weeks of daily use of the XIKAR HP4, I’m a bit conflicted; I really like nearly everything about the lighter, from the design to the build quality to the functionality, but it is simply too much flame for my needs or wants. I certainly appreciate the seeming convenience of being able to torch a cigar quickly, though I also know that many other lighters can get the job done just as well with less over-the-top capacity. Much like having that 750 horsepower engine is appealing, when daily driving calls for staying under 40 mph, it’s just dollars wasted on power you won’t need or likely use. That said, I certainly would encourage almost anyone—exceptions stated above—to at least demo the HP4. It’s quite an impressive design and lighter in its own right, and XIKAR is to be commended for it on pretty much every level.

The XIKAR HP4 is offered in five colors: black, G2, blue, Chopper Orange, and Daytona Red, finishes designed to match the colors of most any car enthusiast. Each color comes with an MSRP of $119.99.

The lighter used for this review was provided by XIKAR, Inc. It was also used exclusively with XIKAR’s new PUROFINE High Performance butane.

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12-Year-Old Medical Marijuana Patient Is Suing Jeff Sessions, DEA and DOJ


12-year-old Alexis Bortell has epilepsy. She is joined by her father and former NFL player Marvin Washington in filing a lawsuit against the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), Department of Justice (DOJ) and U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

The Bortell family moved from Texas to Colorado to have access to medical marijuana for Alexis’ epilepsy, according to ABC News.

Traditional treatments and medical procedures did not provide any relief for Alexis’ form of epilepsy. When the Bortells tried medical marijuana, Alexis had immediate relief for the first time in her life. Before marijuana, she was having multiple seizures daily.

“This lawsuit stands to benefit tens of millions of Americans who require, but are unable to safely obtain, cannabis for the treatment of their illnesses, diseases and medical conditions,” states part of the lawsuit. “Since being on whole-plant medical cannabis, Alexis has gone more than two years seizure-free.”

The restrictive medical marijuana law in Texas doesn’t allow Alexis access to potent enough marijuana that she needs.

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Kanger Spider 200W Mod Kit Review


Final Score

Kangers new Spider Kit isn’t your regular vape mod, it features an internal 4200 mAh rechargeable battery powering up to 200W, but has a new design to select the number of coils to fire within the tank! That’s right, select either 1, 2 or 3 coils to use and the mod automatically adjusts the power for you to vape! That aside, the mod is cool looking with all the other usual features you would expect from a top manufacturer.

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In-depth Kanger Spider Box Mod Kit Review

KangerTech has been pretty quiet in the marketplace for a little while, unlike their main competitors who seem to be releasing new units on a monthly basis trying to achieve the best vape mod. But now they are back with the release of a new box mod kit known as the Kanger Spider Kit, featuring a 200W Mod powered by an internal 4200mAh battery. The question though, is this mod kit better than the others, or is it one to simply forget about? In this Kanger Spider kit review, we will find out!



The Spider kit comes with a carbon fiber look and if you like triangles, then this mod is for you! It’s covered in them, I guess this is to represent a spider web of some description! It also comes in a number of colors; black, red, green, blue and teal. Colors available of the Kanger Spider 200W mod kitI guess the design is based on their Kanger dripbox 160 but is a little on the larger size, for good reason, it holds an internal 4200 mah battery which is recharged using the USB port located on the back of the mod. Speaking of the back, KangerTech has tried to incorporate a non-slip surface which features a pimple effect, it looks ok but not as cool as the carbon fiber look on the rest of the mod!

The firing button on the front is huge, and you’ve guessed it, a triangle! Again has this pimple texture so it can be found without issue. The tank is actually housed in the center of the top, this is a bit unusual as most mods have the tank position on one side. This is actually a good idea, as you can use any tank with any diameter you like on this baby (well up to around 32mm), without any overhang!

You also have some venting holes on the bottom of the mod, to avoid the internal battery getting too hot.

Front of the Kanger Spider Mod


The front holds 2 screens, both triangles again! The bottom screen is just a battery indicator which features 5 stripes, obviously the fewer stripes the less battery life. This is ok, but I personally prefer a percentage indicator, instead of having to memorize that 3 stipes means 60% etc!

The top screen is an OLED easy to read screen featuring all the basic info you need, like; wattage, resistance, voltage etc. similar to what you find on all of the best e cigs. Below the screen is a wheel to help you navigate through the menu and change the wattage of the mod. This is different and in our opinion a pain in the butt when changing the wattage, it can take some time!

To navigate to the menu section, it uses the standard 3 click activation. There you can change the power, coil type, and the ability to lock the wheel so you don’t accidentally change the wattage when carrying around.

The tank on the Kanger Spider kit

The Tank

On initial impressions, it looks like a pretty standard, top fill tank, but Kanger has introduced something a little clever to this tank. Let’s try to explain! The atomizer head that comes with this tank has 3 coils, within the atomizer are 3 connectors at the bottom and via the tank, you can select whether you want to use 1 coil, 2 coil or all 3 coils. When you change this, the mod also recognizes this change and will change the wattage accordingly, i.e. if you select 1 coil, the mod will change to 60W, 2 coils 120W and if all 3 coils are selected then the mod changes to 180W. Pretty cool huh! There are LEDs on the tank to show you how many coils you have selected. Obviously changing the number of coils also changes the resistance.



Not a bad tasting tank, creates some thick clouds and definitely worth considering. One thing we hated is using 3 coils on the tank adjusts the wattage to 180W which is a little too high for us, so to adjust down to around 100W you have to click the fire button to activate the screen, then start scrolling with this wheel for what seems to be a lifetime!
Side view of the Kanger Spider 200W Mod Kit
Ok, that out the way, the mod actually performs pretty well, at higher voltage we noticed a slow build up, instead of instant power, some may love or hate this. Granted, it’s not exactly the best e cig to quit smoking with but if you’ve tried a number of mods and fancy something a little different, then this mod kit might be for you.


To Conclude

A pretty cool looking mod, with a couple of new features like the ability to choose how many coils the tank fires is innovative stuff! The two main negatives we have is this wheel on the front that takes way too long when adjusting wattage and the internal batteries. Yes, we understand that the internal battery holds 4200 mAh which is huge, but we just prefer the ability to switch batteries and carry on vaping rather than waiting for the mod to charge!

Overall though a great mod kit at a really good price. This is a new kit only available on pre-order at the moment, but be sure to check out our Black Friday Vaping Deals page as this and other mods are sure to be available at unbelievable bargain prices!


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5 Well-Known Vape Explosions – What You Can Do To Avoid Ending Up On the 11 O’Clock News



It’s all over the news these days – ‘a vape pen explodes, costing a man five of his teeth’; or, ‘an exploding vape damages property, man runs for his life!’ Honestly, I could go on and on, but I guess you get the general idea. Naturally, all of this is very scary, especially if you’re a beginner vaper.


To combat the mass hysteria that’s all too evident on the social media, I’ve decided to create this short (but sweet) post that could have just as easily be named ‘Please Use Common Sense If Vaping’. No disrespect to anybody, but a lot of these accidents could have been avoided if people only took the time to educate themselves about something they put in their pockets (and their mouths!).


Read on and you will learn:


  • Six most common causes of vape explosions (which all boil down to one cause)
  • How to avoid putting yourself into a dangerous vaping situation
  • 5 widely reported vaping explosions and what we can all learn from them
  • How to report a vape explosion


Is There Really Such a Thing As a “Vape” Explosion?


e-cigarette explodes in man's face


The reason why I put “vape” in quotation marks in the title is because there is really no such thing as a “vape” explosion. A vaping device is either a box with some circuitry or a metal tube with little else inside it. Saying that they, in and of themselves, can explode is pretty ridiculous.


However, add a battery into the mix and you’re dealing with a completely different situation. The crux of the problem are the batteries – they are the ones that can, potentially, explode. However, that’s true of all batteries, including those in our phones. Remember Galaxy Note 7 debacle? The devices weren’t at fault; it was the batteries powering them that caused the explosions. What we’re dealing with here is called thermal runaway – a shorting battery that feeds into itself, causing a rise in temperature that results in the battery venting (exploding). It’s basic chemistry, really.


Still, if these so-called news had a proper headline (for example, Thermal Runaway Caused by Improper Use Triggers Battery Explosion) would you tune in? Of course not – we’re all aware of the fact that batteries can explode, as well as that most of those explosions happen because of user mistakes. Frame it like that, and it’s not really newsworthy, is it?


Common Causes of (Still Rare) Vape Battery Explosions


Causes of Vape Pen Battery Explosion


Still, these ‘vape’ (sigh!) explosions do happen and we want you to feel when using your vaping device. That’s why it’s important to familiarize yourself with the most common causes of those explosions. If you know them, you will most likely be able to avoid them.


What Can Cause a Battery to Vent


  • A defective battery (extremely rare with batteries from reputable manufacturers)
  • Carrying loose batteries in your pocket or purse (any metal can complete the circuit)
  • Using (and continuing to use) the battery if it’s damaged (chipped wrapping)
  • Carrying a mech mod in your pocket unprotected (accidental firing)
  • Using mech mods without any knowledge of amperage ratings
  • Improper use of hybrid mods (positive pin problem)
  • Overcharging batteries (leaving them unattended while charging)


As you can see, all but one of these causes can be attributed to mishandling or improper use of batteries. Fortunately, there’s an easy fix for them – education! If everyone who handles batteries followed basic battery safety procedures we would probably have no more than 10 vape-related explosions per year. Even now, they are pretty rare – a very conservative estimate tells us that there are around 21 million vapers in the world. However, in the last couple of years, there were 250 vape-related explosions reported (not an exact number since most vapers don’t report these incidents, knowing that they are either fully responsible for the explosion or the explosion didn’t injure anyone). That’s 0.001% – hardly an overwhelming number!


Still, most of them were probably avoidable. In order to save you from appearing on the news and invoking the ire of the vaping community, I have a couple of battery safety tips to share with you.


How to Minimize the Chances of Your Battery Venting


  • Don’t use unregulated devices if you’re not familiar with how they work
  • Avoid carrying a mech mod in your pocket (accidental firing)
  • Always carry spare batteries in a protective sleeve
  • Don’t make any alterations to your store-bought regulated mods
  • Replace batteries with a damaged wrap (rewrap only if you know how to do it)
  • Charge your batteries with a designated charger and don’t leave them unattended
  • Use hybrid mods with compatible tanks
  • Buy high-end batteries from reputable manufacturers


Vape Explosion Safety Tips


That’s about it. A bit of common sense goes a very long way in this case. Don’t use things that you don’t know how to use; don’t mix things that don’t mix; don’t ignore the warning signs; and DO buy batteries from people who know how to make them.


Widely Reported Vape Explosions – A Great Learning Opportunity


I choose to showcase these examples here because they were widely reported by the media. Some of them even managed to get tens of thousands of comments on Facebook and other sites, which is pretty surprising. For the record, I sympathize with the victims – some of them will be scarred for life thanks to their running with thermal runaway. However, the record needs to set straight – their batteries (not their vaping devices!) exploded because of mishandling. Vaping demonization that occurred thanks to some of these cases is damaging our community but hopefully, as time moves forward, we’ll see less and less of them.


Andrew Hall, 30, Pocatello USA

This battery explosion went viral, reaching millions of people in a matter of days. Mr. Hall claimed that he was vaping in his bathroom (an odd choice of venue, really) when his vape device blew up in his face. The end result was seven lost teeth, damage to the sink, and scorching marks on the bathroom wall. He took to Facebook, saying that he usually gets his vape set up in a vape shop and has no idea what happened this time.


What actually transpired (by his own admission later on) was that he was running too low of a coil resistance on a mechanical mod. Naturally, the battery was squeezed for more than it could deliver and it blew up in his face. The moral of the story is that you should be very, very careful with mechanical mods. Also, lying after the fact is not smart as that too tends to blow up in your face.


Otis Gooding, New York USA

Mr. Gooding was at his place of work when sparks started flying left and right from his pocket. After a brief struggle, he managed to evacuate the mod out and onto the floor, much at the horror of his fellow co-workers. Mr. Gooding suffered serious burns on his leg and thigh and had to be hospitalized. The cause of battery failure was device tampering. He jury-rigged his mod so it would deliver more current, which eventually caused the battery to vent. All I can say is – if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!


Unknown Vaper, Oldbury UK

A bedroom caught fire in Oldbury, UK, and the local fire department had to come out to the scene to deal with it. After dousing the flames, firefighters found the remains of an e-cigarette on the bed-side table. Apparently, the vaper in question thought he could simply plug his eGo style vape device into any old charger he had lying around and forget about it. Let this be a lesson (actually, two lessons) – always try to use a USB cable that came with the device (or a quality charger for 18650 batteries) and never leave your batteries unattended while charging.


Vape Pen Explodes While in Use


Terrence Johnson, Calgary Canada

While leaving a restaurant with his wife, Mr. Johnson noticed heat erupting in his groin region. Unfortunately, it wasn’t a warm, fuzzy feeling a man who’s just treated his wife to an expensive meal sometimes gets – it was, in fact, a venting battery. He was carrying a spare in his pocket, where it was mingling with his keys and loose change. Eventually, the circuit was closed and the battery vented, causing serious damage to Mr. Jonson’s pants and his leg. Loose coins and loose batteries don’t mix – remember that and buy a protective sleeve for your spare battery.


E-Cig Explosion Incident


Ricardo Jiminez, New York USA

Mr. Jiminez suffered second-degree burns to his thigh and hand after two batteries vented in his pocket while he was driving. This 24-year old EMT was carrying around a couple of spares, unaware of what could happen should they rub off against one another. A double whammy indeed; which is why I feel it’s important to reiterate: never, EVER carry loose batteries in your pocket. One is bad enough but two is just asking for it.


Vape pen battery explodes


Don’t Blame the Batteries – Vape Pen Explosions Are Driven by Human Error


The fact that users more than contribute to these vaping incidents should be pretty self-evident by now. In order to avoid something similar happening to you, please heed the advice you’ve read in this post.


As we move forward, battery manufacturers will come up with ways to make batteries safer than they are now (although, they are really pretty safe), which means that we’ll be seeing less of these vape explosion reports. Until that happens, vape on but vape on safely!


How to Report a Vape Battery Explosion?


What to do if your vape blows up? Report a vape explosion incident to the FDA and NIH.



For more safety tips on how to avoid your vape pen from exploding, check out the posts below.


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BREAKING: California Releases Its Emergency MAUCRSA Regulations

California’s Bureau of Cannabis Control (along with its Departments of Public Health and Food and Agriculture) dropped their much-anticipated emergency rules this afternoon (see here, here, and here) to fully implement the Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act in California. The agencies kept a lot of what we saw from the withdrawn rules under the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA). (see here, here, here, and here), but there are also some new, notable additions and some interesting gap-fillers that now give us the foundation for operational standards across cannabis license types.

Though we can’t cover every single change or topic from these rules in one post (and because we’ll be covering the license types and application details in other posts in the coming days and weeks and at our SoCal Cannabis Forum), I will instead focus on the following highlights of the emergency rules:

  1. We now have a revised definition of “canopy,” which is “the designated area(s) at a licensed premise that will contain mature plants at any point in time.” In addition, canopy shall be calculated in square feet and measured using clearly identifiable boundaries of all area(s) that will contain mature plants at any point in time, including all of the space(s) within the boundaries. Canopy may be noncontiguous, but each unique area included in the total canopy calculation shall be separated by an identifiable boundary which includes interior walls, shelves, greenhouse walls, hoop house walls, garden benches, hedgerows, fencing, garden beds, or garden plots; and

    1. If mature plants are being cultivated using a shelving system, the surface area of each level shall be included in the total canopy calculation.
    2. “Nonvolatile solvent” has been further defined to mean “any solvent used in the extraction process that is not a volatile solvent,” which “includes carbon dioxide (CO2) used for extraction and ethanol used for extraction or post-extraction processing.”
  2. Temporary licensing has now been fully detailed to include online applications, the personal information for each owner that must be disclosed, contact information for the applicant’s designated point of contact, physical address of the premises, evidence that the applicant has the legal right to occupy the premises for the desired license type, proof of local approval, and the fact that the temporary license (which is good for 120 days) may be renewed and extended by the state for additional 90 day periods so long as a “complete application for an annual license” has been submitted to the state. No temporary license will become effective until January 1, 2018.
  3. For the full blown “annual license,” the application requirements are pretty much the same as under the MCRSA rules except that you must disclose whether you’re applying for an “M License” or an “A License” and you have to list out all of your financing and financiers which include: “A list of funds belonging to the applicant held  in savings, checking, or other accounts maintained by a financial institution, a list of loans (with all attendant loan information and documentation, including the list of security provided for the loan), all investment funds and names of the investors, a list of all gifts, and a list with certain identifying information of anyone with a “financial interest” in the business. “Financial interest” means “an investment into a commercial cannabis business, a loan provided to a commercial cannabis business, or any other equity interest in a commercial cannabis business.” The only exempt “financial interests” are bank or financial institution lenders, individuals whose only financial interest is through an interest in a diversified mutual fund, blind trust, or “similar instrument”, and those shareholders in a publicly traded company who hold less than 5% of the total shares.
  4. As part of your licensing application, you will still need to submit a premises diagram drawn to scale along with all of your security procedures and inventory procedures (and pretty much all corresponding operational SOPs) A $5,000 bond is still required for all licensees (as well as mandatory insurance) and all owners must submit their felony conviction criminal histories as specifically enumerated in the regulations, as well as rehabilitation statements.
  5. Several new licenses have been created (and/or brought back from the dead from MCRSA): the cannabis event organizer license (to enable people to take advantage of the temporary cannabis event license), the distribution transporter only license (which allows this licensee to only move product between licensees, but not to retailers unless what’s being transported are  immature plants or seeds from a Type 4 nursery), the processor license (a cultivation site that conducts only trimming, drying, curing, grading, packaging, or labeling of cannabis and non-manufactured cannabis products), the Type N and P manufacturing licenses are back, and there’s now a Type 9 delivery only Non-Storefront Retailer license.
  6. We also now have the non-refundable licensing fee schedules and though they vary depending on the license type they mostly are nominal, though some increase with increased gross receipts, and small and medium-sized growers will have to pay pretty robust fees.
  7. If you want to make changes after-the-fact to your premises or to your ownership structure, you first must secure state approval to do so.
  8. All growers are again limited to one Type 3 medium cultivation license each, whether it’s an M License or an A License.
  9. A retailer can sell non-cannabis goods on its premises so long as their city or county allows it (this excludes alcohol, tobacco, and tobacco products). Retailers can also sell non-flowering, immature plants (no more than six in a single day to a single customer). M-licensed retailers and micro-businesses can also give cannabis away free of charge to qualified patients or to their caregivers.
  10. Notably, until July 1, 2018, licensees may conduct commercial cannabis activities with any other licensee, regardless of the A or M designation of the license.
  11. The renewable energy requirements for cultivators have been revamped hopefully to the satisfaction of cannabis growers.
  12. Again, the licenses are NOT transferable, so we’re looking at folks only being able to purchase the businesses that hold them.
  13. Distributors will be able to re-package and re-label flower, but not infused cannabis products unless they hold a manufacturing license. Distributors also cannot store any non-cannabis goods at their premises. The state has laid out what must take place during a distributor’s quality assurance review and the chain of custody protocol with third party labs for testing.
  14. We have a detailed list of all permissible extraction types, including that any CO2 extractions must be done within a closed loop system.
  15. The prohibited products list is pretty much the same as it was under the  MCRSA rules (so, no nicotine or caffeine infused cannabis products).
  16. In regards to “premises,” the Bureau’s regulations mandate that a licensee may have up to two licenses at a given premises or the same license type so long as they’re owned by the same company and one is an A-License and  the other is an  M-License.
  17. In addition to other relatively onerous advertising requirements, licensees must “Prior to any advertising or marketing from the licensee involving direct, individualized communication or dialog, . . .  use age affirmation to verify that the recipient is 21 years of age or older.” Direct, individualized communication or dialog, may occur through any form of communication including in person, telephone, physical mail, or electronic. A method of age verification is not necessary for a communication if the licensee can verify that “the licensee has previously had the intended recipient undergo a method of age affirmation and the licensee is reasonably certain that the communication will only be received by the intended recipient.”
  18. Retailers and micro-businesses are now required to hire third party security to protect and watch their premises.
  19. To hold a micro-business license, a licensee must engage in at least three of the following commercial cannabis activities: cultivation, manufacturing, distribution, and retail sale. There are also now a slew of regulations surrounding each activity a micro-business can undertake.
  20. Live entertainment is now allowed at a licensed premises so long as it follows the bevy of regulations regarding content and presentation.

Overall, we have a close-ish copy of the withdrawn MCRSA rules that will lead us into 2018. Be sure to read the rules again and again before pursuing your California cannabis license. Applicants will have their work cut out for them on both the state and local levels.


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Best CBD Edibles 2017

Hemp Bombs CBD Gummies

Hemp Bombs makes some of the best-tasting, most affordable CBD edibles out there. Each gummy includes 10mg of pure CBD. The gummies are available in packs ranging from 5 gummies (perfect if you just want to try them out without breaking the bank) all the way up to a monstrous 60-pack.

Hemp Bombs also offers free shipping on all orders over $75, so you can save big if you stock up and buy in bulk. Their customer service team is top-notch and always available to help you decide which CBD product is best for you.

They also have a line of vape oils, syrups, hemp rubs, and capsules. No matter how you like to consume your CBD, Hemp Bombs has a product that is perfect for you.

Hemp Bombs CBD Edibles

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Koi CBD Gummies

Koi is by far the most popular brand of CBD vape oil in the world at the moment, and for good reason. Their ISO certified, 100% natural, 99% pure CBD is extremely potent and has helped numerous customers live healthier, happier lives.

But what many people don’t know is that Koi also has a line of CBD gummies. Each gummy contains 5mg of CBD, perfect for those times when you just need a small dose to get through the day. Their gummies have a delicious burst of tropical flavors. Each gummy is packed with a fruity, mouthwatering combination of lime; acai pomegranate, and tangerine.

Koi CBD gummies are available in a 20-pack.

Koi also manufactures a line of topicals, pet treats, and pre-loaded vape pods.

Koi CBD Gummies
Koi CBD Edibles

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Tasty Gummies CBD Edibles

Tasty Gummies give you all the health benefits of CBD in a delicious, flavorful edible format.  Tasty Gummies are available in a 40-pack, with each gummy packing a whopping 25mg of CBD. If you want a higher dose with each gummy, this is the brand for you.


Tasty Gummies CBD Edibles
Tasty Gummies CBD Edibles

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What are CBD edibles and what are the benefits?

Cannabidiol, or CBD for short, is one of the approximately 113 active cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. As one of the major phytocannabinoids, it accounts for 40% of the plant’s extract.

Manufacturers of CBD edibles isolate the CBD from the other components of the plant to create an extract that has numerous health benefits without the mind-altering effects of THC (the part of cannabis that gets you “high”).

According to several studies and clinical trials, CBD has been proven to have numerous health benefits. A 2013 review in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology showed that CBD oil has helped patients in the following ways:

  • Reduces nausea and vomiting
  • Suppresses seizures
  • Combats psychosis
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Combats neurogenerative disorders
  • Helps with anxiety and depression

There are a few different ways to ingest CBD, including edibles, sublingual, pills, and vape oil. Many people choose to use edibles because they are discreet, convenient, and avoid the harshness on the lungs that some people experience when vaping CBD oil.

CBD is completely legal in the United States and available to purchase without a medical marijuana card.

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J.R. Reynoldson

About J.R. Reynoldson

VaporVanity co-founder J.R. Reynoldson spends 364 days per year wishing that it was 4/20. He is easily offended by your comments.

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TX Blended Whiskey Review


Initial Thoughts

So I have been seeing this TX Blended Whiskey talked about online for a while, but could never find it on the shelves at any of my local stores in Nashville. So when one of my buddies went down to Texas in September I had them pick up a bottle for me. Now, lo and behold I see it all around Nashville. So that’s kind of strange. Nonetheless I got a bottle and I’m ready to dive into it for a review!

So I started digging in and learned more about the brand and who’s behind it. The company is Firestone & Robertson Distilling Co. they have a great story that they share on their website about their love for whiskey and their desire to leave corporate life behind to follow their dreams and create a truly Texan whiskey, read more about their story here. Currently, they have 2 products the TX Blended whiskey which I’ll get to in a minute and their TX Bourbon which I have yet to find on shelves.

If you poke around their website for a little bit you start to find some really cool stuff. My favorite, is the story about the corks that they use for each bottle. When I was looking at my bottle, it didn’t seem like anything special until I went to the website to read about it. Tucked at the bottom of their site is a line that says ‘Every Bottle has a Story’. When I clicked to learn more I’m taken to a page that talks about their Handmade Caps. You’ll have to read the entire story to truly get the sentiment behind it, but after I read that I was blown away by this company and their true authencity behind creating a great whiskey. They went through all the details down to the caps that they used. Pretty impressive across, and well done fellas!


Well if the cap story from above didn’t make you excited to see the packaging then I’m not sure what will. Overall, the bottle is fairly simple, not much of a label just a large TX on the front. It’s a clear glass bottle which shows off the rich amber glow from the whiskey that sits inside the bottle. On the neck of the bottle is a cloth almost burlap like material that protects the neck and gives a nice gripping point to take ahold of. At the bottom of this TX Blended Whiskey bottle is a silver metal band that shows the Firestone & Robertson Distilling badge. Overall, a very simple bottle but the bold TX makes it stand out on the shelves that’s for sure.


Well enough about how it looks, lets jump into the actual flavor and see if it delivers a big bold Texas flavor. Looking at the front of the bottle this is only sitting at 82 proof, so we know it’s not going to be overly potent in terms of strength. It should make it very palatable and hopefully let some of those more complex flavors shine through.

The first thing that I’m hit when I put the glass up to my nose is a nice dose of caramel, and honey. Some of those signature scents of a nice rich bourbon are definitely present. On the palate I picked up a good amount of honey again, but the most dominant note was that caramel sweetness that lingered around for a good bit. The finish offered a good mouthfeel but it was a little thin in coating. It certainly hung around for while but wasn’t quite as deep as I had expected it to be.


Overall, I think this is a really enjoyable whiskey. It comes out at 82 proof which obviously makes it very easy to sip on. I enjoyed a couple of glasses with some cigars as well and it paired very well. The sweetness from the bottle helps tone down the spice from the cigar. I think if you’re looking for a new whiskey to try this TX Blended Whiskey is certainly something to put on your radar. I’m not sure on the actual price since I didn’t purchase it, but I can’t imagine its more than $40 a bottle. At that price point I definitely think it’s a easy buy.

TX Blended Whiskey - Cigar Pairing

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Is It Possible to Vape Pure Water – Or Even Alcohol?


New vapers have a lot of questions but perhaps one of the weirder ones is whether or not is possible to vape pure water. Some even go as far as to wonder the same about alcohol. In all fairness, this probably has a lot to do with the fact that common vaping suspension liquids are called Propylene Glycol and Vegetable Glycerin, which sounds rather chemical and therefore ominous. Water, on the other hand, we’re familiar with so it’s only natural to wonder if we can vape it as well as drink it.


The short answer to these question is yes – both water and alcohol can be vaped. In fact, some vape juices are already cut with water (and DIYers used to cut theirs with vodka) to decrease their thickness. However, why you would choose to vape pure water or alcohol is beyond me. It would mean inhaling very hot steam, which could potentially cause injuries to your mouth. So, theoretically, yes, you could vape both alcohol and water but they are just too ‘watery’ to provide a satisfactory vaping experience.


Vaping Pure Water – A Definite Nay


no water for vaping


As I’ve mentioned, water is sometimes used to dilute high VG juices so they wick more easily. VG is very viscous and some tanks have trouble wicking if a vape juice is not cut with something else. That something else is usually PG but people who have a PG allergy will go with distilled water. The amount is usually around 5 to 10% – the maximum being 15% and certainly nothing higher than that.


However, if you still want to try it there are some things you need to keep in mind. No, it’s not pulmonary edema or pleural effusion – vaping a bucket of water won’t harm your healthy lungs because they have a way of dealing with steam. Your problems will be of a more practical nature.


  • Vaping water produces water vapor – that’s pretty much it. It condenses when it hits your mouth but it’s still hot so there’s a decent chance that it will burn your lips, tongue, and pharynx. It probably won’t harm your alveoli but if you keep at it, who knows! In addition, water hitting a hot coil will make your tank sound as if it is about to explode. There’s also a chance that hot droplets will fly out through the chimney and burn your lips some more – just for the fun of it!
  • Vaping water won’t even seem like vaping (the psychological effect) – once inhaled, water quickly cools down so if you’re doing it for the huge clouds, you will be disappointed. What comes out is usually nothing or so adjacent to nothing that it makes no difference.
  • Water is not very good at carrying flavors – if you plan to add any flavorings to your ‘vape water’ don’t expect them to do much. You might get a slight whiff of the flavor but that’s about it.


In essence, yes, you can vape 100% pure water. However, I wouldn’t really advise it. If you have a thing for hot, moist air you would be better off investing in a good humidifier.


Vaping Alcohol – Apparently, It’s Already a Thing


vaping alcohol is fine


Yes, vaping alcohol is already a thing. Luckily, this new fad doesn’t involve vape tanks or even the vape community but I’ll come to that in a minute.


Presumably, the only reason why someone would vape alcohol is to get buzzed. I can totally get behind that reason. However, while possible, vaping alcohol to get drunk is also exhausting (yes, I investigated!). If you get drunk from a couple of ounces of vodka, you would probably need to vape around 60 ml of it to feel anything. Granted, you would be bypassing your liver so the buzz would be different (faster, more potent, and slightly more groggy) but still – that’s a lot of trouble to go through to get drunk, especially when you could just chug down half a bottle in mere minutes.


Everything that applies to vaping water applies to vaping alcohol as well. It would be messy, hot, and probably painful. There’s really no reason to go through with it when the real deal is just so much better.


If you really want to give it a try, I recommend Vaportini. It recently hit the market and it’s a method of vaping alcohol that involves glass beakers, glass straws, and burning candles. Thankfully, it’s as removed from real mod+tank vaping as humanly possible.




Back in the day, vodka was used to dilute high VG vape juices as well. Apparently, the result was a vape with a slightly stronger throat hit. Some vapers might still be doing it but I haven’t encountered anyone walking around with a 5ml tank filled with Absolute.


Well, yet anyway.


Conclusion – Drink Water (and Alcohol in Moderation) But Vape On PG and VG


vape on PG and VG


While possible, vaping on pure water and even alcohol doesn’t really bring anything to the table. If nothing, it might be a sure fire way to hurt your lips and mouth. If you’re thinking about it, my suggestion would be to give it a pass and stick to good old PG/VG vape juices.


I’d love to hear your thoughts about this topic. Did you ever try filling your vape tank with pure water or alcohol? If you did, how did it go? Drop down to the comment section and let me know – I’m sure we can laugh about it now! Or not?