It is amazing that almost 4 years has passed since licenses were required to be issued under our medical marijuana amendment, now Article X. section 29 of the Florida constitution. The ups and finally downs of the Florigrown lawsuit, with every court besides the Supreme Court, ruling the laws enacted were unconstitutional brings us to this point.
The Good News is that the Office of Medical Marijuana use has finally updated their page to reflect they will begin the rulemaking process for applications.
The Office of Medical Marijuana Use (OMMU) is moving forward with administrative rulemaking to establish an application process to award up to 15 Medical Marijuana Treatment Center (MMTC) licenses. The OMMU is not accepting applications currently. The OMMU will publish any application rule and date the OMMU will begin accepting applications in the Florida Administrative Register.
We expect most of the criteria to be like the prior application with a few adjustments made based on all the challenges. There is also still a Joint Administrative Procedure committee report lingering that has criticized much of the prior rules. Only time will if and how the Department may change them. We will continue to watch and participate in this process as it develops.
The Bad News is that there are only going to be 15 licenses awarded making this a highly competitive process. We do, however, believe that there should be an additional 4 licenses available soon after the awarding of the 15 licenses. Every 100,000 patients an additional 4 MMTC’s licenses are required to be issued, we are currently at 587,624 patients. We do expect when the application is released there will be no more than 30-60 days before they will need to be submitted. Those entities that are prepared and ready to go will have an advantage over those waiting for the procedures to be issued. There are things you can be doing now to get ready, and we are here to assist you in all your application needs.
The Ugly News, the Florigrown decision has dashed the hopes of many hoping that the market would change from a vertical system to a horizontal system. Alas, that is not the case and Florida will continue to make it virtually impossible for mom-and-pop operations and small business to get in the cannabis industry in Florida.