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Cannabis company files notice of subpoena against Hochul, state agencies

On Monday, January 31, a cannabis company filed a notice in New York state Supreme Court stating their intention to subpoena records from Governor Kathy Hochul’s office. They’re looking to view any communication Hochul or officials in her office and campaign had with with another firm that donated at least $15,000 to the governor’s political campaign.

The company, MedMen Enterprises, included the state Cannabis Control Board and state Department of Health in the notice of subpoena as well, according to Albany Times-Union. MedMen is seeking records concerning Hochul’s dealings with a Boston-based cannabis company called Ascend Wellness Holdings.

MedMen and Ascend are currently locked in a legal battle that began this January. It started when MedMen sought to void a $73 million agreement with Ascend to acquire a majority stake in MedMen NY. They allege a cozy relationship between Ascend and the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) led to the OCM fast tracking the conditional approval of the deal between MedMen and Ascend. OCM denies these allegations.

Ascend has denied anyone attended Hochul’s December 8, 2021 fundraiser on their behalf, but would not say whether anyone associated with the company attended a Hochul fundraiser on October 28, 2021.

That fundraiser was hosted by lobbying firm Greenburg Traurig, the same firm that is currently representing Ascend in litigation. Ascend donated $15,000 to the governor’s campaign on October 28.

It’s currently unclear if Hochul’s administration will try to block the subpoenas.