LITTLE ROCK, ARK. (Talk Business & Politics) -Nearly a year after lawmakers began the process of writing new laws for the state’s controversial medical marijuana industry, the arduous and complicated task of issuing the state’s first growing and cultivation facilities will begin in earnest this week.
While there will be excitement around the unveiling of the five winning bidders, legal calamity is likely to cloud the awards.
Tuesday (Feb. 20) is the official deadline for the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission (AMMC) to review and score 95 applications for the state’s first licenses to operate a cannabis-growing cultivation center. The five-person regulatory panel will then meet at the Arkansas Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) headquarters on Feb. 27 to hand out awards based on the best scores for five operators of the marijuana growing facilities.
As of Friday (Feb. 16), the Arkansas Department of Health had approved 4,002 applications for medical marijuana registry ID cards allowing citizens to eventually obtain Arkansas-grown, doctor-approved marijuana and other cannabis-related medical products. Another 245 applications are “in-process,” said ADH spokeswoman Meg Mirivel, although cards will not be provided to patients until a month before the medial product is available.