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Valley National Bank/Trulieve Loan: A Big Step Out of the Shadows

Client Alert

In a late December press release, Trulieve announced that it had secured a $71.5 million commercial bank loan. In addition to the amount of the loan, which may be the largest commercial bank loan to date to a cannabis company, the release prominently identified Valley National Bank and featured both a quote from Valley’s Senior Vice President, John Meyer, and a description of the Bank’s service platform and commitment to the cannabis industry. To me, this reflects a sharp contrast with other announced bank loans to the industry, in which the lending banks were neither identified nor quoted, presumably by their choice.

Those who have followed my blogs and articles, or have attended conferences at which I’ve spoken, are aware of the 2 consistent and integrally related threads: “follow the money” and “out of the shadows and into the mainstream.” My April 2022 blog regarding the $48 million commercial bank loan to Fluresh, noted:

“For the industry, it reflects its inexorable movement out of the shadows and into the mainstream. This substantiates the view that, whether or not any of pending the federal legislation is enacted, bank lending to the cannabis industry will continue to accelerate.

While a number of mega banks are stubborn holdouts, and whether or not there is a formal change in bank law or regulation, this transaction is further evidence supporting the belief that more and larger banks are entering and will continue to enter the market. Each one that does both paves the way for and draws others in.

Of equal, or perhaps greater significance to the industry than the direct impact on increased access and cheaper money on the operating results, are the intangible, “out of the shadows” implications of these trends in the ongoing process of propelling it “into the mainstream,” the potential significance of which likely extends far beyond banking.”

The fact that Valley National Bank was willing to be identified and provide a quote in this case is another major step in this direction.

For questions, please contact Business and Corporate Law Member and Managing Partner of BMD’s Phoenix/Scottsdale location Stephen Lenn at salenn@bmdllc.com, or 602.796.9647. Stephen speaks regularly at legal and cannabis industry events. You can find out about his upcoming presentations at the Kahner Global Cannabis Investing Summit on February 27 and at the Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference April 11 and 12.


The End of Non-Competes? The Impact It Will Have on the Healthcare Industry

On January 5, 2023, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) announced a proposed rule that, if enacted, will ban employers from entering into non-compete clauses with workers (the “Rule”), and the Rule would void existing non-compete agreements. In their Notice, the FTC stated that if the Rule were to go into effect, they estimate the overall earnings of employees in the United States could increase by $250 billion to $296 billion per year. The Rule would also require employers to rescind non-competes that they had already entered into with their workers. For purposes of the Rule, the FTC has defined “worker” to also include any employees, interns, volunteers, and contractors.”

2022 Healthcare Recap and 2023 Healthcare Check-Up

As the country begins to return to a new “normal” following the COVID-19 pandemic, there are many healthcare rules changing on both the federal and state levels as a result. Thus, it is important for healthcare providers and their employers to be aware of these changing rules, and any implications they may have on their practice. Look back on healthcare in 2022 and find a checklist for 2023.

Direct Support Professional Retention Payments

On December 15, the Ohio Senate and House passed House Bill 45, which authorizes the Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD), in conjunction with the county boards of developmental disabilities, to launch their initiative to issue retention payments to Direct Support Professionals (DSPs). These retention payments will be distributed quarterly to participating home and community-based waiver providers to address the workforce crisis in the direct provider sector. Governor DeWine needs to sign the Bill to begin the payments, but he is expected to do so by the end of 2022.

Real Estate Investors Position for 2023 Opportunities

Real estate investors weathered another year in a post-pandemic world, with the year closing with yet another interest rate increase coupled with both uncertainty and heightened interest carrying into 2023. Just last Wednesday, the Federal Reserve raised its benchmark interest rate 0.50 percentage points, shifting the target range to 4.25% to 4.50%. The new level is the highest the fed funds rate has been since December 2007 and marks the seventh rate hike this year. So what does this mean to investors, brokers, lenders, and others in the real estate world? Read a few perspectives below from stakeholders familiar with our BMD clients and the markets in which they do business.

Five Major Trends for Employers to Watch Out For in 2023

Five Major Trends for Employers to Watch Out For in 2023: Major changes may be on the horizon for noncompete clauses. The EEOC is gearing up to file more discrimination lawsuits against employers. The Department of Labor is poised to raise the salary threshold for exempt employees under the FLSA. Unionization momentum may slow in 2023. ESG is the new norm to attract and retain talent.