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Double dealing: Legal, illicit blur in California pot market

California Marijuana-Legal and Illegal
Posted at 10:17 AM, Jan 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-17 13:17:26-05

LOS ANGELES (AP) — As California enters its fifth year of broad legal marijuana sales, industry insiders say the practice of working simultaneously in the legal and illicit markets is all too commonplace in the struggling pot economy.

Legal businesses have long complained that heavy taxes and regulation — paired with thriving illegal sales — make it impossible for licensed shops to turn a profit.

To survive, an increasing number of license holders are secretly operating in the underground — working both sides of the marketplace to make ends meet.

Leading companies recently warned Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom the legal market could collapse. Newsom says he's open to changes.