Pharmacology University: Medical Cannabis Seminar; 6.5 CLE Credits

The class will be 10 AM to 6 PM on Saturday August 26th, 2017 @ The Little Rock Marriott 3 Statehouse Plaza Little Rock, AR 72201

Licensed Attorneys will receive 6.5 CLE Credits as authorized by the Arkansas Bar Association.

Click here to enroll.


  • History of Cannabis
  • Medicinal Value and Dosages
  • Dispensary Concept and Pharmacists
  • Legal Regulations, Issues
  • Production/Growing
  • Licensing/Investing
  • Chemistry/Extracts


Basic Tuition

Includes full day of instruction, parking, and certificate of completion.

VIP Tuition

Includes full day of instruction, parking, lunch, certificate of completion and all course materials to take home.

Includes full day of instruction, parking, lunch, certificate of completion, CLE Credits and all course materials to take home.

Please note there is a $50 fee per seat for any cancellation or rescheduling. No refunds for missed classes or cancellations with less than 21 days’ notice, cancellations received after this date are not eligible for refund. Refund requests must be made by the attendee or credit card holder and will be credited back to the card used for payment.

Medical Cannabis Federal Taxation Seminar

Are you thinking about applying for a medical marijuana dispensary or cultivation facility license in Arkansas?

The IRS 280E statute is a major hurdle for cannabis businesses when tax time comes around because it states that only expenses that are considered Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) are able to be deducted for federal income tax purposes. This can lead to much higher federal income tax burdens when compared to normal, non-cannabis businesses.

Sarah A. Vestal, PhD, a revenue agent with the Internal Revenue Service with a specialty in cannabis taxation, will educate prospective dispensary and cultivation facility applicants on the ins and outs of IRS code 280E and will provide examples of how the IRS actually conducts audits of cannabis businesses. Robert J. Clock, CPA, an Arkansas accountant on the board of the ACIA, will talk about the implications of 280E from the tax accounting perspective.

A question and answer segment will follow their presentation.

Please join us Tuesday, September 5th from 6pm to 7pm.

RSVP at the Facebook event page or by emailing


    • IRS goals with cannabis industry – no fraud, no referrals, only future compliance
    • Cole memo implications
    • Background expertise
    • USC 26, IRC §§ 280E and 471
    • Court Cases
    • Indirect methods of determining cannabis gross receipts
    • Tour of business, interview, minimum income probes
    • San Francisco cannabis grower

Medical Cannabis Federal Taxation Seminar

Tuesday, September 5th
6:00pm to 7:00pm
Comfort Inn & Suites Presidential
707 Interstate 30, Little Rock, AR 72202

No charge – our goal is to educate prospective applicants in the Arkansas medical marijuana industry.

About Sarah A. Vestal, PhD – IRS Agent

Sarah Vestal serves the Internal Revenue Service in her hometown of Little Rock, after recently transferring from San Rafael, CA.  Over the last decade, Sarah worked Marin, San Francisco, and Sonoma Counties as an IRS field agent bringing cannabis growers and dispensaries into compliance with federal taxation law.  The IRS also has Sarah provide expert testimony on behalf of the US government in ongoing CA and CO cannabis tax litigation and educate other IRS agents nationwide on all aspects of cannabis production.

In search of warmer winters in 1877, Sarah’s ancestors moved their family greenhouse and nursery business from Indiana to now North Little Rock, AR.  In 1892, Vestal’s Greenhouse & Nurseries published the first color catalog west of the Mississippi River. Sarah’s father and grandfather both received horticultural degrees and were nationally recognized by the industry in differing decades based on their continuing greenhouse technological innovations.  As an active 6th generation family business member, Sarah grew up managing greenhouse operations for multiple flowering crops.

Sarah was recognized by the US Department of Agriculture in 2002 for developing the first USDA Certified Organic greenhouse range in compliance with the National Organic Program.  Sarah was named as Arkansas Farm Family of the Year in 2005 and served the University of Arkansas as a Master Gardener for the AR Governor’s Mansion.  In 2016, Arkansas Times named Sarah as Arkansas Woman Entrepreneur of the Year – Trailblazer, for Sarah’s efforts in promoting cannabis production in compliance with Federal taxation laws.

Sarah has an undergraduate degree in Accounting from the University of Arkansas (1979) and she is a licensed Certified Public Accountant in California.  Sarah has a MBA degree in Technology Management (University of Phoenix, 2001) and a MS degree in Taxation from Golden Gate University (2010), the top-rated tax program in the U.S. Her doctorate is in organizational leadership (University of Phoenix,2015).

Over an almost 40 year professional career, Sarah has owned and led mid-size manufacturing, research & development, import-export, and agricultural organizations in addition to her current service for the federal government.

About Robert J. Clock, CPA

Robert J Clock, CPA has over 30 years of public accounting experience focused in the area of taxation.  Robert is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) licensed in California and Arkansas.

Robert assists clients in the areas of tax planning, compliance, preparation, business succession and accounting for businesses, individuals, trusts and estates.  His experience includes healthcare, medical professionals, medical clinics and practices, dental practices, horticulture, agriculture, transportation, legal, real estate development and construction, manufacturing, retail, wholesale, software development and consultants, and many other small to medium size businesses.  He has helped develop several start-up companies across the country.  Robert has been involved in multistate taxation, buy/sell agreements, transaction structuring, historical rehabilitation tax credits, and several other areas of taxation.  Robert has successfully represented many clients before the IRS and state taxing authorities.

Robert earned his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with emphasis in finance from California State University at Long Beach.

In Arkansas, Robert has served as tax manager at Beall Barclay & Company and Lawrence, Schlutterman & Schwartz, Ltd.  He also previously owned and operated his own tax practice for over 18 years in Long Beach, California.  Robert began his professional career at Balser, Horowitz, Frank & Wakeling in 1986, before joining Price Waterhouse in 1987.  These experiences have been instrumental in helping him prepare for his current role.

Robert’s commitment to a strong and disciplined work ethic has brought him success throughout his professional career.  His understanding and care for his clients have made Robert an invaluable resource to those he serves.

Robert has lived in the Fort Smith area for over 9 years and has been converted to a fan of the SEC and Razorbacks.   On his down time, Robert enjoys spending time with his family, watching Razorback Sports, hunting, fishing and playing ice hockey.

Robert J. Clock, CPA

Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission Releases Advisory Memorandum II

TO: Potential Applicants

FROM: Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission

DATE: August 11, 2017
RE: Advisory Memorandum II for Potential Cultivation Facility and Dispensary Applicants

This Advisory Memorandum is intended to address frequently asked questions regarding application submissions. This document should be considered after reviewing the full application posted at and Advisory Memorandum II.

In this Advisory Memorandum, cultivation facilities and dispensaries may be referred to in this document as “medical marijuana facility(ies),” the Medical Marijuana Commission may be referred to as “MMC,” the Alcoholic Beverage Control Division may be referred to as “ABC,” the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration may be referred to as “DFA,” and the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Amendment of 2016 (Amendment 98 to the Arkansas Constitution) may be referred to as “Amendment.”

Q:        Where can I find the universal symbol for Arkansas medical marijuana?

A:        The universal symbol can be found on the Arkansas Department of Health’s website at:

Q:        Will there be any price control for wholesale or retail medical marijuana?

A:        The Amendment does not contemplate price control of medical marijuana.

Q:        I am interested in acting as a distributor/transporter/processor. How can I obtain licensing for this?

A:        Act 642 of the 91st General Assembly modified the Amendment by creating licensure for distributors, transporters, and processors. Act 642 gave the MMC power to create rules for licensure. As of today, the MMC has not promulgated these rules. Please continue to monitor for updates on these licenses.

Q:        What if I am issued a license for a cultivation facility or dispensary and a school/daycare/church subsequently locates within the 3,000’ or 1,500’ distance requirement?

A:        Per section (g)(2)(C) of the Amendment, a cultivation facility and dispensary must not be within a certain distance of a public or private school, church or daycare center existing before the date of the cultivation facility application.

Q:        I am interested in becoming a pharmacy consultant. Must I seek any additional training and/or accreditation?

A:        At this time, there is no additional accreditation required of pharmacy consultants. Pharmacy consultants will be licensed as agents of the dispensary and the dispensary will apply for that agent card in the same manner as all other agent cards. However, please note that Act 1024 of the 91st General Assembly provides the responsibilities of the pharmacy consultant. While the MMC and ABC will not be providing any training or accreditation specific to pharmacy consultants at this time, pharmacy consultants should seek any guidance or instruction to be able to meet the standards set out in Act 1024.

Q:        What tracking system should my cultivation facility and/or dispensary use?

A:        The state of Arkansas is currently in the process of procuring a seed-to-sale tracking system for use across the entire medical marijuana program. Cultivation facilities and dispensaries will be required to use the selected seed-to-sale tracking system.

Q:        When will applicants and applications be available for disclosure under the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act?

A:        The MMC will release applications under the Freedom of Information Act (less any applicable redactions) as soon as practically possible after the application closure date of September 18, 2017.

Q:        Does real property operated as a juvenile detention facility qualify as a “school,” when there are school operations conducted on the property?

A:        Juvenile detention facilities cooperate with local school districts to provide school instruction that the individuals incarcerated would ordinally receive if not incarcerated. Because schooling is provided in the facility by the local school district and recognized by the Arkansas Department of Education as a non-traditional school, real property operated as a juvenile detention facility will qualify as a school.

Q:           How do I provide proof of approval of my use of the real property as a cultivation facility or dispensary in writing?

A:            An affidavit from any lien or mortgage holders on the property that they no objection to the proposed use.  Additionally, the MMC will accept a notarized statement that the lien or mortgage holder has stated no objection to the use of the real property for a cultivation facility or dispensary when coupled with proof of notification to the lien or mortgage holder regarding the intended use of the real property.

Q:           Will individuals serving in an advisory role be required to provide a background check during the application phase?

A:            During the application phase, the applicant must provide proof that no “owner, board member, or officer” has been convicted of an excluded felony offense. Only individuals who will have ownership interest or power to participate in operational decision-making will be required to submit a background check during the application phase. Individuals serving in only an advisory capacity will not be required to undergo a background check during the application phase.

However, all applicants should note that any individual who will act as an agent of the cultivation facility or dispensary, in an advisory role or otherwise, will be required to undergo a background check as part of his or her registration as an agent with the ABC. Registration will be required of any agent of the cultivation facility or dispensary who will have access to medical marijuana as part of his or her agency.

Q:           Can business entities hold ownership in a cultivation facility or dispensary?

A:            Yes, LLCs, corporations, partnership and any other legally recognized entities may hold ownership in the dispensary or cultivation facility. However, because of the relevant constitutional requirements, these entities will be required to provide the MMC with their ownership. Accordingly, even individuals with a derivative ownership interest in a cultivation facility or dispensary must meet the constitutional requirements. The derivative members will be considered when determining whether the requirements for ownership are met.

Q:           May assets owned by prospective individual owners be included to meet the minimum asset requirements?

A:            Yes. Assets owned by individuals who have ownership in the entity applying for a cultivation facility may be used to meet the asset requirements if the application includes proof that the individual owners have pledged those assets to the entity for the purpose of fulfilling the conditions of a cultivation facility or dispensary license. The application must also include proof of these assets as otherwise required.

Q:        I would like specific guidance on my minimum requirements.

A:        Please note that the MMC will review and verify the completeness of your application upon submission. The MMC will notify the applicant within ten (10) business days whether the application meets minimum requirements. If an application does not meet minimum qualifications, the applicant may amend the application. However, no applications or amendments will be received after September 18, 2017. Any applicant that tenders an application less than ten (10) business days before the application period ends assumes the risk of not meeting minimum requirements and not having an opportunity to amend the application.

Q:        I would like specific guidance on my response to merit criteria.

A:        Please review the applications and advisory memorandum issued by the MMC. Applicants will be judged on how they respond to the information requested in the merit criteria. There are not prescribed or predetermined responses for those criteria. The MMC will not offer specific guidance on how to respond to merit criteria.