Marijuana Policy Project cuts staff amid funding challenges

The Marijuana Policy Project may be a victim of its own success.

The policy advocacy organization has cut its full-time staff by 30%, from 20 employees to 14, because of “budget constraints,” interim Executive Director Matt Schweich confirmed this week.

He said traditional, philanthropic donors have reduced their funding because they view the industry as having a certain self-momentum with 30 states and Washington DC having legalized medical marijuana and nine states and DC having approved recreational cannabis.

Meanwhile, it’s been difficult for the organization to raise money from the industry because many businesses are in a growing-pain phase and being taxed at a high level.

MPP is continuing to use independent contractors and lobbyists, Schweich said. He declined to elaborate on specific funding numbers.

Schweich took over on an interim basis in November when Rob Kampia, who founded MPP in 1995, stepped down.

MPP launched a national search for an executive director in April and anticipates finishing that process within a few months, Schweich said.

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