Ohio hemp company hit with federal labor lawsuit

North Coast Natural Solutions, a Cleveland hemp manufacturing facility that hasn’t yet opened, is being sued by two employees who claim they haven’t been paid for more than a month of training.

Ty Williams, CEO of Level 5 Global Corp., a Maryland-based business consulting firm, announced last fall that the company planned to open a hemp manufacturing facility specializing in hemp building materials, disposable straws and CBD oil, according to Cleveland TV station WEWS.

The facility was expected to create up to 650 jobs.

The company hired 180 people and required them to undergo paid training at nearby Cuyahoga Community College, according to the lawsuit.

Two North Coast Natural Solutions employees – the company’s former vice president of human resources and a manufacturing worker – argue in their lawsuit that the company violated federal and Ohio labor laws.

The former vice president, Theodore McQueen, argues that he was promised a $25,000 signing bonus that he did not receive.

According to the lawsuit, some paychecks sent by Williams bounced. The plaintiffs are seeking back wages and unspecified damages.

Williams and North Coast Natural Solutions have not yet responded to the complaint. The company did not immediately return an email from Hemp Industry Daily asking about the case.

Ohio has not passed legislation to legalize hemp production, and CBD remains illegal to sell within the state except at medical marijuana dispensaries, according to the Board of Pharmacy.