NCIA

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U.S.: NCIA Calls On Congress To Restore Commonsense Marijuana Proposals To Bills

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Despite bipartisan, majority support in both the House and Senate, the GOP "leadership" has blocked a fix to the dangerous banking crisis, and also stripped a provision allowing V.A. doctors to discuss medical marijuana with patients.

Recent actions by Congressional leadership have derailed two commonsense, majority-favored marijuana policy reform proposals that had been expected to pass through the appropriations process. The National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) on Friday called on members of Congress to work to restore those provisions as the budget negotiation process continues.

"Bipartisan majorities in the House and the Senate have supported the commonsense, compassionate ideas that law-abiding cannabis businesses shouldn't be forced into dangerous all-cash operations, and that veterans who have put themselves in harm's way for our country should be able to learn about how medical marijuana could help them deal with the physical and psychological aftermath of their sacrifices," said NCIA executive director Aaron Smith.

California: 3,000 Marijuana Professionals To Gather At National Cannabis Industry Association Summit

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As California prepares to consider cannabis legalization, the influential Cannabis Business Summit and Expo starts Monday in Oakland, featuring California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, Numi Tea CEO Ahmed Rahim, industry leaders, federal lawmakers, and three days of education and networking.

More than 3,000 cannabis professionals from 16 countries will gather at the third annual conference at Oakland Marriott City Center, June 20-22, including a "who's who" of industry leaders and policy makers. The Summit takes place at a crucial time in history, with California's Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA) ballot initiative expected to be certified for November voting, and the campaign fully underway.

California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom will deliver the policy keynote address on Tuesday, June 21, at 11 am. Newsom, who is running for Governor of California in 2018, is a key supporter for marijuana reform and legalization and a high-profile advocate for the benefits of embracing a legitimate cannabis industry.

U.S.: National Cannabis Industry Association Platform To Connect Experts, Entrepreneurs

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First-of-its-kind Cannabis Expert Calling Network (ECN®) Kicks Off at NCIA's Cannabis Business Summit and Expo

The National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) and Brainsy, Inc., are collaborating to launch the Cannabis Expert Calling Network (ECN®), a knowledge-sharing platform connecting cannabis industry experts with entrepreneurs and information-seekers online and via paid telephone consultations.

NCIA members who are experts in their area of the cannabis industry will be invited to set up personalized profiles on the Cannabis ECN system, which allows information-seekers to find and contact them, then conduct over-the-phone consultations at a rate set by the expert.

"With so many new people and businesses entering the cannabis industry, there is a huge demand for knowledge exchange across a range of topics including cultivation and processing, dispensary operations, intellectual property, regulatory compliance, banking issues, and many more," said Aaron Smith, executive director of NCIA.

"The Cannabis ECN will allow high-caliber, experienced cannabis professionals a simple platform to share their expertise with the large number of people seeking them out and be compensated for their time," Smith said.

California: NCIA Hosts 3rd Annual Cannabis Business Summit In Oakland June 20-22

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The National Cannabis Industry Association, a national trade association representing the businesses of the legal marijuana industry, will hold its third annual national conference, the Cannabis Business Summit and Expo, in Oakland, California, on June 20-22, at the Marriott City Center.

California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom will deliver the policy keynote address on Tuesday, June 21. Newsom, who is running for Governor of California in 2018, is a key supporter for marijuana reform and legalization and a high-profile advocate for the benefits of embracing a legitimate cannabis industry.

Numi Organic Tea CEO and co-founder Ahmed Rahim will deliver the business keynote on June 21, sharing insights into his company's embrace of the "triple bottom line" approach, best practices in moving toward organics and fair trade, and the importance and benefits of connecting with the local community.

This year the Cannabis Business Summit moves to California from Denver, bringing business owners, entrepreneurs, investors, and policy influencers to the largest legal marijuana market in the U.S. This move comes at a crucial time in history, with California's Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA) ballot initiative expected to be certified for November voting, and the campaign fully underway.

D.C.: Congresswoman Lee Joins National Cannabis Industry Association Press Conference

BarbaraLeeCongresswomanCalifornia[Facebook]

Congresswoman Barbara Lee on Thursday joined several of her colleagues and members of the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) for a press conference on Capitol Hill demanding respect for state laws and fairness for the industry.

“Today, I’m pleased to join my colleagues and the National Cannabis Industry Association in making one simple request to Congress: 'Treat the industry just like any other business,'” Lee said. "It’s past time for the federal government to end its counterproductive overreach into state-legal cannabis markets.

"Last week, I was proud to join Harborside Health Center in celebrating the U.S. Attorney’s decision to end its unnecessary case against this health center," Lee said. "While it was victory for Harborside, there are still centers in my district and around the country that continue to face harassment.

"Additionally, outdated laws continue to prevent many state-legal businesses from thriving, including our arcane banking laws," Lee said. "These laws serve only to trap these businesses in the cash-only market, restrict their access to capital and prevent them from engaging in simple business-to-business transactions.

"This industry is just like any other, and Congress needs to ensure it has access to banking, just like any other industry," Congresswoman Lee said.

U.S.: Members of Congress To Join Cannabis Business Leaders Thursday and Friday

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Members of Congress on Thursday will join cannabis industry leaders from across the country for a press conference to kick off National Cannabis Industry Association's sixth annual Lobby Days. More than 100 cannabis business professionals will travel to Washington, D.C., to take part in policy discussions and citizen lobby meetings to advocate for fair treatment of the legal cannabis industry.

On May 12, NCIA leaders, business owners, and members of Congress including Representatives Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Denny Heck (D-WA), and Ed Perlmutter (D-CO), will hold an 11:30am press conference at the House Triangle to kick off two days of meetings across the Hill between cannabis industry leaders and congressional staffs.

Top priorities for these business owners are a solution to the banking crisis, which prevents many legitimate cannabis businesses from accessing basic financial services, and reform to Section 280E of the federal tax code, which forces cannabis business to pay double or triple the effective federal tax rates of any other industry.

NCIA members will also advocate for the descheduling of marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act, which would give states the authority to make their own decisions about how to handle cannabis legality, much as they currently do with alcohol.

U.S.: National Cannabis Industry Association, BDS Partner To Serve NCIA Members Industry Data

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NCIA members to receive free access to BDS Analytics' GreenEdge™ cannabis sales dataset

Members of the National Cannabis Industry Association will be getting a new benefit, thanks to a partnership with cannabis market intelligence firm BDS Analytics. Beginning next month, NCIA member-businesses will receive free interactive access to market and category-level sales data compiled and contextualized by BDS, an industry source of market data and business insight.

All NCIA members will have access to data and market intelligence reports through an interactive set of dashboards, spreadsheets, and detailed reporting powered by the GreenEdge™ sales tracking software developed by BDS. Reports will cover crucial insights such as market size and growth, dollar and unit volume, retail price trends, and shifts in category mix.

Sponsoring and Sustaining NCIA members will gain access to even deeper levels of insight and reporting, including monthly executive reports, additional dashboards and reports, and personalized access to BDS Analysts.

According to NCIA, members will be able to make informed strategic decisions and answer critical business questions like:

• What proportion of industry sales come from flower vs. extractions vs. infused products?
• How big is the infused product market, and how fast is it growing?

D.C.: Leaders On Capitol Hill For National Cannabis Industry Association's Lobby Days

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Cannabis industry leaders from across the country next week will travel to Washington, D.C., for the National Cannabis Industry Association's sixth annual Lobby Days. More than 100 cannabis business professionals will take part in policy discussions and citizen lobby meetings to advocate for fair treatment of the legal cannabis industry.

On Thursday, May 12, NCIA leaders, business owners, and members of Congress will hold an 11:30am press conference at the House Triangle to kick off two days of meetings across the Hill between cannabis industry leaders and congressional staffs.

Top priorities for these business owners are a solution to the banking crisis, which prevents many legitimate cannabis businesses from accessing basic financial services, and reform to Section 280E of the federal tax code, which forces cannabis business to pay double or triple the effective federal tax rates of any other industry.

NCIA members will also advocate for the de-scheduling of marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act, which would give states the authority to make their own decisions about how to handle cannabis legality, much as they currently do with alcohol.

Colorado: Cannabis Industry Responds To Dismissal Of Marijuana Credit Union Lawsuit Against Federal Reserve

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NCIA executive director:
"This ruling sends a message loud and clear - Congress must act."

A federal judge on Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit filed by the Fourth Corner Credit Union against the Federal Reserve in hopes of providing banking services to the legal cannabis industry.

In his ruling, Judge R. Brooke Jackson said Congress must provide the answer, stating, "I regard the [cannabis banking] situation as untenable and hope that it will soon be addressed and resolved by Congress."

Fourth Corner is a credit union chartered by the State of Colorado and designed to serve legitimate cannabis businesses, but the Federal Reserve had denied its request for a master account, which would have allowed them to provide checking services to its members.

"This ruling sends a message loud and clear - Congress must act," said Aaron Smith, executive director of the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA). "There's no shortcut, there's no band-aid, there's no work-around to fix this industry-wide.

"Forcing cannabis businesses to operate without banking access is a crisis, affecting public safety, law-abiding businesses, and the state officials in charge of regulating them," Smith said. "It's time for Congress to do its job and fix the problem."

California: Congresswoman Lee Recognized With National Cannabis Industry Association's Leadership Award

BarbaraLeeCongresswomanCalifornia[Facebook]

Congresswoman Barbara Lee on Wednesday received the 2015 Legislative Leadership Award from the National Cannabis Industry Association at the organization’s fifth annual gala dinner.

“It is truly a humbling honor to receive this award. I’d like to thank the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA), Board Chairwoman Jamie Lewis and Executive Director Aaron Smith for this tremendous honor,” said Congresswoman Lee.

NCIA is the largest cannabis trade association in the U.S.,a and the only organization representing cannabis-related businesses at the federal level.

“Over the last five years, NCIA has been a tireless advocate for a common sense and pro-business cannabis policy that is focused on providing care and legal access,” added Congresswoman Lee.

"As a bold leader, Congresswoman Lee has been a longtime champion of rational marijuana policies -- even before the position was popular, said Aaron Smith, executive director of the NCIA. "Now that a majority of Americans support reform, Representative Lee will no doubt be among those who lead the charge to finally end the disastrous policies of prohibition.

"The Congresswoman is also an exceptional servant to the cannabis businesses in her district by sponsoring important legislation that would end the industry's unfair and dangerous banking access crisis,” Smith said. “We are proud to be able to honor her visionary leadership by presenting her with our annual Cannabis Industry Legislator of the Year award."

Nevada: National Cannabis Industry Association To Celebrate 5th Anniversary In Vegas

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The National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) will celebrate its fifth year of operation as the only national trade association for marijuana businesses with a gala dinner on Wednesday, November 11, in Las Vegas, featuring Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Rep. Dina Titus (D-NV) as guest speakers.

At “Looking Back, Moving Forward,” NCIA’s 5th anniversary banquet, the organization will celebrate its history and that of the movement that helped create the cannabis industry, while looking ahead to the many challenges still to be faced. Rep. Titus will offer welcoming remarks.

During the banquet, NCIA will present the 2015 Legislative Leadership Award to Rep. Lee, a long-time champion of marijuana policy reform who has co-sponsored multiple pieces of legislation designed to protect cannabis businesses, patients, and consumers from federal interference. Included in those is the Marijuana Businesses Access to Banking Act, NCIA’s priority legislation that would end the industry’s banking crisis and provide financial services for the state-legal cannabis businesses.

NCIA was founded in late 2010 by Aaron Smith and Steve Fox, seasoned advocates for marijuana policy reform who foresaw the need for a voice representing the businesses of the emerging cannabis industry in Washington, D.C. The organization was founded with fewer than 30 members, but has grown rapidly in its first five years, now representing over 900 member-businesses.

U.S.: Sanders Becomes 1st Major Party Presidential Candidate To Support Marijuana Legalization

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Candidate Bernie Sanders, for the first time in this campaign, on Tuesday night indicated at the Democratic presidential debate that he supports marijuana legalization.

When asked how he would vote on an initiative to regulate marijuana like alcohol that is set to appear on the Nevada ballot in 2016, Senator Sanders said he would likely vote "Yes."

Hillary Clinton was asked if she has taken a position on such proposals, now that it has been a year since she said she wanted to wait to see what happens in Colorado and Washington. She said she was undecided on the issue, but that we should stop imprisoning people for pot use. She also said she supports medical marijuana.

The other three candidates in the debate, Lincoln Chafee, Martin O’Malley, and Jim Webb, were not given the opportunity to answer questions regarding marijuana policy.

"This is the first time we've seen a major candidate for president say he'd probably vote for legalizing marijuana if given the chance," said Tom Angell, chairman of Marijuana Majority. "That says a lot about how far the politics on this issue have shifted in a very short amount of time.

Colorado: NCIA To Host Cannabis Business Summit In Denver June 29-July 1

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The National Cannabis Industry Association, a national trade association representing the businesses of the legal marijuana industry, will hold its second annual national conference, the Cannabis Business Summit and Expo, from June 29 through July 1 at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, Colorado.

The Summit will offer cannabis business leaders three days of in-depth discussions and workshops, exploring business best practices, cutting-edge technological advances, and marijuana policy developments on both the state and federal levels. Three Members of Congress - Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO), Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO), and Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) - are confirmed to participate in the Summit or the popular Cannabis Carnival benefit concert taking place on June 30.

The Cannabis Business Summit is positioned for business owners and operators across multiple verticals in the cannabis industry. Several topic-oriented tracks will give attendees the opportunity to focus on their area of expertise. Tracks offered include: Running Your Cannabusiness; Cultivation and Processing; Money Matters: Finance, Accounting and Insurance; and The Law, Policy and Reform; as well as Emerging Topics offering attendees an open forum to discuss industry updates and trends.

Featured educational sessions will highlight some of the industry's leading pioneers and innovators, according to NCIA.

U.S.: NCIA To Present 2nd Annual Cannabis Business Summit & Expo

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The National Cannabis Industry Association on Friday announced its second annual national conference, the Cannabis Business Summit and Expo, taking place June 29-July 1 in Denver, Colorado.

The summit will offer cannabis business leaders an open forum to discuss best practices and business developments throughout the industry. Over the course of three days, attendees will have the opportunity to explore various workshops and tours, view over 100 exhibitor stations, network with over 2,000 attendees from the cannabis business industry, attend an investor demo day event, and finally let loose at the popular Cannabis Carnival II.

The summit is positioned for business owners and operators across multiple verticals in the cannabis industry. Several topic-oriented tracks will give attendees the opportunity to focus on their area of expertise.

Tracks offered include: Running Your Cannabusiness; Cultivation and Processing; Money Matters: Finance, Accounting and Insurance; The Law, Policy and Reform; as well as Emerging Topics offering attendees an open forum to discuss industry updates and trends. Featured educational sessions will highlight some of the industry's leading pioneers and figureheads.

Conference Highlights

• Educational facility tours and workshops

• Investor Demo Day Event, featuring a select group of cannabis startups

• Second Annual Cannabis Carnival Music Concert, featuring an eclectic lineup of world-class musicians

D.C.: Marijuana Business Leaders Make Their Case To Congress

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Tuesday: Symposium highlighted by ‘fireside chat’ with Grover Norquist and Rep. Earl Blumenauer

Wednesday: Morning press conference kicks off fifth annual fly-in lobby days for the legal marijuana industry

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Cannabis industry leaders from across the country have traveled this week to Washington, D.C., for the National Cannabis Industry Association’s fifth annual Lobby Days. About 100 cannabis business professionals will take part in policy discussions and citizen lobby meetings to advocate for fair treatment of the legal cannabis industry.

The events will begin with a policy symposium on Tuesday, highlighted by a “fireside chat” between Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Americans for Tax Reform president Grover Norquist.

Rep. Blumenauer introduced H.R. 1855, the Small Business Tax Equity Act of 2015, which would create an exception to Section 280E to allow marijuana businesses operating in compliance with state law to take deductions associated with the sale of marijuana like any other legal business. The bill was endorsed by Norquist and Americans for Tax Reform.

On announcing the bill, Rep. Blumenauer noted it “would bring much needed fairness and level the playing field for small businesses that follow state laws and create jobs.”

On Wednesday, NCIA leaders, business owners, and members of Congress will hold a 9 am press conference at the House Triangle to kick off two days of meetings across the Hill between cannabis industry leaders and congressional staffs.

Tuesday, April 28

U.S.: Rep. Blumenauer, Sen. Wyden Announce Tax Reform For Legal Marijuana Businesses

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Representative Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) on Thursday announced plans to introduce bicameral legislation next week that would reconcile state marijuana laws and federal tax law.

The Small Business Tax Equity Act, which was introduced last Congress by Congressman Blumenauer, would create an exception to Internal Revenue Code Section 280E to allow marijuana businesses operating in compliance with state law to take deductions associated with the sale of marijuana like any other legal business.

“More than two-thirds of Americans now live in jurisdictions that have legalized either the medical or adult use of marijuana,” said Congressman Blumenauer. “It’s time for the federal government to catch up."

"Section 280E creates an unequal and unrealistic tax burden on these businesses," Blumenauer said. "I’m excited to work with Senator Wyden in introducing the Small Business Tax Equity Act, which would bring much needed fairness and level the playing field for small businesses that follow state laws and create jobs.”

“Our legislation would provide an overdue update to federal tax law, which has not caught up to the fact that it’s 2015 and Oregonians have voted both to legalize medical marijuana and to regulate marijuana for recreational use,” Senator Wyden said. “This is a question of standing up for the people of Oregon, and ensuring that the federal government respects the decision Oregonians have made at the ballot box.”

U.S.: National Cannabis Industry Association Drops Tommy Chong As Spokesman

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Iconic stoner Tommy Chong has been dropped as a spokesman by pro-marijuana lobbying group the National Cannabis Industry Association.

According to NCIA Executive Director Aaron Smith, the pot lobby is tired of the Cheech & Chong stoner jokes and wants to be taken seriously in Congress, reports Burgess Everett at Politico. The cannabis industry reportedly wants to move past the stoner stereotypes represented by Chong as it tries to remake itself as a "serious suits segment" of the economy.

Smith, in a Monday email sent to Chong's representatives and allies, said that after feedback from "allied members of Congress," the group decided Chong wasn't its best representative in D.C., particularly when it comes to influencing right-wing lawmakers.

"Having Tommy out in D.C. for the NCIA Lobby Days will detract from the overall message we aim for with the event, which is that cannabis business people are regular professionals and relatable to the generally conservative members of Congress we are looking to appeal to," Smith wrote. "We are here to break 'stoner' stereotypes rather than reinforce them."

U.S.: National Cannabis Industry Association Presenting Cultivation Symposium March 16-18

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The National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) is launching its first cultivation-focused conference and expo, The Cultivation Management Symposium, March 14-16 in Seattle, Washington.

The conference, designed for cannabis industry professionals, will bring together leading minds in the cultivation arena for three days of education, product discovery, and networking. More than 400 attendees, more than 30 exhibitors, and dozens of speakers will share best practices in the rapidly evolving fields of cultivation and horticulture.

Keynote speakers include:

• Alex Cooley, Solstice Grow
• Jonathan Valdman, Forever Flowering Greenhouses
• Amy Poinsett, MJ Freeway
• Jan Carlos Byl and Adam Dunn, MedCanna Consulting
• Jennifer Martin, Bulbulyan Consulting Group
• Phillip Hague, Mindful
• Stephen Keen, Surna
• Jay Czarcowski, Canna Advisors

NCIA's Cultivation Management Symposium is positioned to give cannabis industry professionals a wide spectrum of information on cultivation, with topics ranging from horticulture science to operational efficiency. An array of experienced speakers will provide attendees with actionable solutions needed to drive return-on-investment for cannabis cultivation.

Topics of discussion will include:

• Sustainable approaches to commercial cannabis cultivation
• Analyzing harmful contaminants
• Cultivation practices: Soil-less mediums, alternative nutrients, outdoor, and greenhouse
• Facility design and operations
• HR and talent acquisition
• Cultivation science: Genetics, strain creation, tissue culture

U.S.: Top 6 Moments In The Historic First Year of Marijuana Legalization Listed By NCIA

Legalized ... 2014

“There’s no superlative that could adequately describe the impact that 2014 has had on the cannabis industry.”
~ Aaron Smith, NCIA

In honor of the one-year anniversary of Colorado’s history-making opening of legal adult-use sales of marijuana, the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) is looking back at the most monumental year in the history of the cannabis industry.

“There’s no superlative that could adequately describe the impact that 2014 has had on the cannabis industry,” said NCIA executive director Aaron Smith. “The success of adult-use legalization in Colorado and Washington, the overwhelming public opinion in favor of medical marijuana, and the steady march of policy change at both the state and federal levels have created an entirely new world.

“NCIA is proud to work on behalf of the businesses, consumers, patients, and advocates all striving to build a cannabis industry that is successful, responsible, engaged in our communities, and treated fairly by policy-makers,” Smith said.

Nearly every week brought new ground-breaking developments, but here are NCIA’s top six moments in a year that has changed the industry forever.

1. Legal adult-use sales begin in Colorado.

U.S.: Cannabis Industry Calls On Congress To Respect People's Choice For Legalization

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Possible budget deal to block implementation of regulated system in D.C. violates overwhelming will of voters

“This is a move that would manage to be both cynical and stupid, not to mention deeply out of touch.” ~ Aaron Smith, NCIA

The National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) on Tuesday responded to reports that an upcoming Congressional budget deal may include a provision blocking the creation of regulations for Washington, D.C.’s marijuana legalization initiative, which passed on Election Day with more than 2-1 support from voters.

“D.C. voters overwhelmingly chose to take a smarter and safer approach to marijuana policy by allowing for the creation of a responsible, regulated system for production and sales,” said NCIA executive director Aaron Smith. “Apparently, Congress is not interested in being smart, or safe, or democratic.

“Dictatorially blocking D.C.’s ability to create a regulatory system for already-decriminalized marijuana isn’t just a violation of the voters’ clearly stated will," Smith said. "It would rob the city of the chance to mandate responsible selling practices, monitor for safe products, and benefit from a powerful economic engine.

“This is a move that would manage to be both cynical and stupid, not to mention deeply out of touch with the majority of American voters, who want the federal government to butt out of local marijuana policy choices,” Smith said.

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