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State approves 18 recreational cannabis shop applications from Queens businesses

Apr. 11, 2023 By Julia Moro

Last week, the New York State Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) approved licenses for a slew of new Cannabis shops coming to New York City, 18 of which from Queens.

Qualifying businesses had to have a cannabis-related offense that occurred prior to the passage of the Marijuana Regulation and Tax Act (MRTA) on March 31, 2021, or had a parent, guardian, child, spouse, or dependent with a pre-MRTA cannabis offense and must have experience owning and operating a business in the state of New York.

The Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensary (CAURD) provisional licenses are part of creating the initial market supply chain as designed by the Seeding Opportunity Initiative.

“We are proud of today’s approval of 99 CAURD provisional licenses, marking a vast expansion of the Seeding Opportunity Initiative as we continue to build an equitable market that offsets harms caused by cannabis prohibition and its disproportionate enforcement,” said Tremaine Wright, Chair of the Cannabis Control Board. “These new licenses will allow entrepreneurs to fairly participate in the legal market while promoting innovation and creative diversity throughout New York’s ever-growing cannabis supply chain and we’re thankful for the ongoing support of Governor Hochul and the Legislature for helping us reach this day.”

Below is a list of the Queens businesses awarded CUARD licensing:

  • Michael Pagan: Owned by Michael Pagan in the borough of Queens. For two years Michael Pagan, a justice involved applicant, owned and operated Npcsa a real estate and marketing consulting business.
  • Just a little higher LLC: Owned by Paul Pagan and Gregory Kornegay in the borough of Queens. For seven years Paul Pagan, a justice involved applicant, owned and operated a large scale concert and event promotion, staging and planning business.
  • Kush Culture Industry LLC: Owned by Jeremy Rivera and Alessandro Cottone in the borough of Queens. For two years Jeremy Rivera owned and operated J & A Building Consultants, an authorized OSHA and DOB construction safety training business.
  • Buds “R” Us LLC: Owned by Benjamin Espinoza Jr. in the borough of Queens. For seven years Benjamin Espinoza Jr., a justice involved applicant, owned and operated Plaster Finish Interiors Corp., an interior repairs business.
  • Summit Canna LLC: Owned by Michael A Montas, Ronald Martinez and Jorge Jimenez in the borough of Queens. For five years Michael A. Montas, a justice involved applicant, owned and operated ALL IN ONE MOTORSPORTS INC., a retail auto sales business in Yonkers.
  • Cannabis Culture 1 LLC: Owned by Angela P. Stokes in the borough of Queens. For five years Angela P. Stokes, a justice involved applicant, owned and operated APS Realty LLC, a real estate business in St. Albans.
  • BigFlavor Entertainment Corp.: Owned by Caesar Grandez Jr. in the borough of Queens. For nine years, Caesar Grandez Jr., a justice involved applicant, owned and operated Bigflavor Entertainment Corp., an events and marketing company.
  • Clemencia E Meza: Owned by Clemencia E. Meza and Hector E. Echeverry in the borough of Queens. For 31 years Clemencia E. Meza, a justice involved applicant, owned and operated Con-Sur Insurance Brokerage Inc., an insurance brokerage firm in Elmhurst.
  • Best Sala: Owned by Best Sala in the borough of Queens. For four years Best Sala, a justice involved applicant, owned and operated Best Consulting NY Group Inc.
  • Fignolecar LLC: Owned by Carrel Fignole, Anais Burrnett, Diana Lopez, Verlee Jones and Latoya Fignole in the borough of Queens. For five years Carrel Fignole, a justice involved applicant, owned and operated Fignolecar Inc.
  • BudBiz LLC: Owned by Salvatore Pinto, Giancarlo Pinto and Jon P. Pezzo in theborough of Queens. For six years Salvatore Pinto, a justice involved applicant, owned and operated Pomidoro Inc., a pizzeria in Ridgewood.
  • Actualize: Owned by Daniel Morena in the borough of Queens. For nine years Daniel Morena, a justice involved applicant, owned and operated Redemptive Marketing LLC in Coram, New York.
  • Green Jungle INC: Owned by Robert Atkins and Marko Popovic in the borough of Queens. For 15 years Robert Atkins, a justice involved applicant, owned and operated Osiris Media LLC, a media and cannabis consulting business.
  • Boxing Express LLC: Owned by Rodney W. Carter Jr. in the borough of Queens. For 10 years Rodney W. Carter Jr., a justice involved applicant, owned and operated a boxing fitness center in New York City.
  • Sean Kang: Owned by Sean Kang in the borough of Queens. Kang, a justice-involved applicant, owned and operated Upscale Consultant Corp. for four years, a consultancy that helped direct to consumer clients develop and grow sales.
  • Boom Factory LLC: Owned by Latrisha Wilkins, Natasha Mitchell and Shaniqua Anthony in the borough of Queens. Latrisha Wilkins, a justice-involved applicant, owned Natural Nature, a hair and beauty company selling both products and services, for two years.
  • Proper Prints LLC: Owned by Angel Pagan I in the borough of Queens. Pagan, a justice-involved applicant, has owned Proper Prints LLC, a screen-printing company, for four years.
  • David Hooper Jr.: Owned by David Hooper Jr. in the borough of Queens. Hooper, a justice-involved applicant, owned Rich League Collection, an online seller of men’s apparel for five years.

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