The Harris Beach Podcast-logo

The Harris Beach Podcast

Business & Economics Podcasts

The Harris Beach podcast is a show that explores evolving issues in the law and how they shape organizations, the way business is conducted, and how we live and work. The information provided does not and is not intended to constitute legal advice. Instead all information, content, and materials are for general informational purposes only.


United States


The Harris Beach podcast is a show that explores evolving issues in the law and how they shape organizations, the way business is conducted, and how we live and work. The information provided does not and is not intended to constitute legal advice. Instead all information, content, and materials are for general informational purposes only.






The Hispanic National Bar Association Turns 50

The Hispanic National Bar Association was founded to help advance the careers of Hispanic attorneys, judges, law professors, students and other legal professionals through education, programs, professional development, and scholarships. Harris Beach Senior Counsel Jessica Molinares Kalpakis and Associate Christine Vasconcellos are part of the growing, thriving HNBA membership, and recently attended its annual convention, where the association celebrated its 50 years. In this episode we...


A Lateral Look: Partner Jeffrey Kuhn, Energy Industry Team

When considering ways to expand his career as an energy and environmental lawyer, Jeff Kuhn knew what he was looking for: A quadruple threat. In this episode, Jeff elaborates on why he decided to become a partner at Harris Beach. He also gives a concise summary of the CLCPA and how he and his new team are working together to help clients capture the opportunities. Related Links: Jeffrey Kuhn Bio - Energy Team -


The Importance of Diversity and Inclusion

On this episode of the Harris Beach Podcast, Chief Administrative Officer Kim Swetland and Partner H. Todd Bullard talk about the Harris Beach Council on Inclusion and Diversity, its mission, and some of the challenges in the journey towards a more diverse legal profession. Related Links: H. Todd Bullard Bio - Swetland Bio - and Diversity Council -


Catching up on Recent Cannabis Developments in New York State

This is an exciting time in the adult-use marijuana space in New York state – last month more than 80 small farmers received conditional cultivator licenses. That means plants are going in the ground, and recreational dispensaries will have product to sell when they open later this year. Harris Beach attorneys Heidi Schult Gregory and Meaghan Feenan give our listeners a chance to get caught up on recent cannabis developments, along with a look at what’s to come. Related Links:Heidi Schult...


Why Cannabis Related Businesses Must Consider Legal and Tax Issues

As cannabis related businesses seek strong corporate foundations for business success in a rapidly shifting landscape, it’s critical to consider legal and tax issues. Wesley Rene, an attorney on our Cannabis Industry Team, highlights considerations related to corporate structures, tax liability and more to achieve optimal growth, sustainability and compliance. Please note this does not contain legal or tax advice and should not be relied upon or construed as legal advice; it is merely...


Why We Started a SaaS Company

Why would a law firm start a software company? Technology provides law firms with enormous opportunities to improve client service in part, by streamlining and automating labor-intensive tasks. In today’s episode of the Harris Beach podcast, Chris Jagel, Harris Beach CEO, Alan Winchester, the leader of the firm’s cybersecurity practice, and Mike Compisi, president of Caetra, discuss the origins of and how it fits with our history of innovation, along with the trend of...


Don’t Put Borat on Your Billboards

A small cannabis dispensary choose to plaster the fictional character Borat on its billboard resulting in a $9 million lawsuit; but it’s not an isolated incident. In fact, theft of others’ intellectual property is a recurring problem for the cannabis industry. On this episode of The Harris Beach Podcast, Brendan Palfreyman explains how the Borat lawsuit is a bellwether of companies aggressively protecting against theft, infringement and appropriation by cannabis start-ups. Related Links:...


CAR T-Cell Therapy Patent Dispute

T-Cell Therapies offer enormous promise in the development of new approaches to treating cancer. A federal appeals court recently heard arguments in a patent dispute between two companies that have emerged as leaders in CAR-T technology for new cancer treatments. The patent relates to a treatment approach that uses specially altered T cells to fight cancer. In 2020 Juno Therapeutics won a $1 billion judgment against Gilead’s Kite Pharma in connection with alleged infringement of U.S. Patent...


Recreational Marijuana Use Legalized in NYS

On March 31, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the New York State Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (“MRTA”) which legalized recreational use of marijuana for adults over the age of 21. Although retail sales of marijuana are not expected to begin until 2022, the legalized use of marijuana became effective immediately. On this episode two attorneys from the Harris Beach Cannabis Industry Team – Karl Sleight and Meaghan Feenan – as well as Morgan Hopkins, a CPA at DeJoy, Knauf and...


Key Considerations for NYS Employers Regarding Adult-Use Marijuana

Recreational, adult-use marijuana is poised to become legal in New York state. The changes that legalization brings for virtually every workplace include modifications and updates to employer policies and procedures regarding drug testing, workplace discipline in relation to marijuana use, and workplace productivity and safety. Taylor Ventre, an attorney on the Harris Beach Cannabis Industry Team, joins the podcast to discuss these issues and other key considerations for employers. Related...


The Land-Use Challenges of Renewable Energy

New York state is placing a significant bet on developing renewable energy into a significant sector of the overall economy. The state has pledged to transition 50 percent of the state’s electricity to renewable sources by 2030, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 85 percent by 2050. This focus has created significant opportunity for real estate developers, as wind and solar projects require the use of land. On this episode of the podcast, Harris Beach partner F.L. Gorman talks with Kevin...


Adult-Use Marijuana Legalization in NYS: What You Need to Know

Legalization of recreational, adult-use marijuana in New York state has never been more likely. At the start of 2021, Governor Andrew Cuomo introduced his plan, The Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act (CRTA), and positioned the tax benefits of legalization as a way to help offset pandemic-related deficits. However, businesses looking to enter the burgeoning market in New York state, or simply those that will be impacted by it, have many questions. Meaghan Feenan, an attorney on the Harris Beach...


Facing the Risk of Personal Injury Claims from Covid-19

Product distributors, online retailers, and owners of facilities that are open to the public, may be wondering about their risk of personal injury claims stemming from COVID-19. On this episode of the Harris Beach Podcast, Senior Counsel Dan Strecker from our Mass Torts and Industry-wide Litigation practice group discusses personal injury liability in the age of COVID-19. Related Links: Dan Strecker Bio - Torts and Industry-wide Litigation Team -...


Paycheck Protection Program: Common Questions and Updated Guidance

The Paycheck Protection Program has been seen as a lifeline for many businesses nationwide. In this episode Josh Steele discusses several common questions from the program – including changes to eligibility and forgivable expenses; the opportunity for a draws; elements that are triggering investigations and how an attorney can help organizations navigate what can be a complicated and nuanced loan process. Related Links: Josh Steele Bio - and Employment Team -...


New York State Poised to Lead Nation in Renewable Energy

The renewable energy economy has moved well beyond the novelty stage in New York State. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has called for aggressive broad-based investments and initiatives that he believes will help New York become the leader in building a self-sustaining renewable energy industry in New York. In this episode of the Harris Beach podcast, we asked Energy Industry Team Partner Michelle Piasecki for her reaction to the state’s new plan and to outline what project developers need to know to...


Clearing Confusion over Hemp in New York State

This fall, New York state released proposed regulations for the hemp industry that shed light on legal issues related to growing, testing, labeling and retailing hemp and its extracts such as CBD. In this episode, attorney Meaghan Feenan highlights key regulations for growers, labs, processors and retailers. Related Links: Meaghan Feenan Bio - Industry Team - Act Legal Alert - Episode Transcript


The State of Cannabis in New York

New York state seemed poised to legalize marijuana in 2020 – but those efforts, like so many others, were thwarted by COVID-19. However, we can expect this unfinished business to remain on the radar. In this episode attorneys Meaghan Feenan and Taylor Ventre discuss what could be around the corner in this burgeoning industry, particularly as it pertains to municipalities, special improvement districts, and Industrial Development Agencies. Related Links: Meaghan Feenan Bio -...


Education Data Privacy and Security Laws

School districts now need to prioritize compliance with a critical new regulation expanding New York state’s Education Law 2D. In this episode Joseph Eckstein, business manager and DPO at Eastern Suffolk BOCES; Edward Trevvett, a partner in our Educational Institutions practice; and Alan Winchester, a partner in our cybersecurity protection and response practice and Chief Development Officer of, discuss regulation Part 121 and the new obligations placed on districts for managing...


2020 Updates for NY State Businesses

Forces such as COVID-19, current events and cultural groundswells have prompted society to re-examine everything from how we safely gather to how we best embrace and promote diversity. In this episode, Tori Reyner and Amanda Dwyer, corporate law attorneys at Harris Beach, discuss best practices for participating virtually in shareholder meetings and compliance with new diversity reporting requirements, reflecting the number of women serving on boards of directors of companies conducting...


What are PFAS and Why Should We Care?

In this episode Joe Picciotti, an attorney in the Harris Beach Environmental Law and Commercial Real Estate practice groups, and Vince Dick, a Principal Consultant responsible for developing and implementing environmental permitting programs at Haley & Aldrich, provide an overview of PFAS – otherwise known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances. They touch on the history of PFAS, major uses, why they are an emerging contaminate of concern and what to do about it. Related Links: Joe Picciotti...