Attendees to the 2016 MACo Summer Conference heard an update on medical cannabis at the “Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission: Questions and Answers for Public Officials” on August 20.
Natalie M. LaPrade Medical Cannabis Commission Executive Director Patrick Jameson and Ex Officio Commission Member Allison Taylor responded to audience questions about the status of the application process for medical cannabis growers, processors, and dispensaries. Jameson stressed in his introductory remarks that the goal of the Commission is to “deliver safe and effective medicine.”
Responding to a question about local zoning, Jameson noted that counties can do whatever local zoning they want to, regardless of where the state is at in the application process. He also stated that because the cannabis is a medical product, it is not taxed by the state. Multi-state operations are allowed but all product must stay within the state, he explained. Jameson also said the State plans to implement a “seed to sale” tracking system for any medical cannabis produced in the state. Finally, Jameson cautioned that dispensary applications are still under review and preliminary approvals will not be released until September or October.
Taylor responded to questions about the scoring process the Commission used in reviewing applications. The review process was “double blind” and largely set by the General Assembly.
Delegate Joseline Peña-Melnyk moderated the session.