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Colorado’s marijuana businesses can remain open during pandemic, but they say they’re still struggling

As the coronavirus fueled changes in regulation for Colorado’s cannabis industry, leaders at LivWell Enlightened Health knew they needed to make dramatic moves to keep the business and its workers thriving. And fast.

On March 30, 18 company executives and department heads agreed to suspend their compensation for three months to avoid making cuts elsewhere, including personnel.

The company employs 690 people between its cultivation sites, business administration and 18 dispensaries in Colorado and Oregon. Most are what Executive Director Dean Heizer calls “heartbeat” employees, namely, those on the front lines serving customers in marijuana dispensaries and working in its grow facilities sites to ensure there’s product to sell.

“Our employees in retail and cultivation are the heartbeat of our company. We don’t survive if they aren’t happy and healthy,” he said.

Heizer declined to comment on the exact amount of money made available by deferred compensation, but said it’s enough to “keep our promise” to provide two weeks of paid sick leave and continued health insurance coverage for employees.

“This and other cost-cutting measures put us in a good position to weather the storm,” Heizer said. “So long as the storm lasts 90 days.” [Read more at The Denver Post]

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