Ohio Cannabis Cultivation Licenses
When Governor John Kasich signed House Bill 523 last June, Ohio became the 25th state to legalize cannabis for medical use. While HB 523 outlined the basis for the Medical Marijuana Control Program, a Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee consisting of 14 appointed individuals will be responsible for crafting the final rules and regulations. The committee will review public comment and may submit recommendations related to the implementation or enforcement of the program.
Recently, the state began soliciting proposals for systems necessary to operate a regulated cannabis industry. Similar to Illinois, Ohio is seeking a system to track cannabis production from seed to sale while recording lab test results and transportation. In addition to a system to track and trace cannabis, the Department of Administrative Services advertised for bids for a comprehensive system to handle medical patient licensing and tie into their existing Prescription Drug Monitoring Program. Potential applicants have until March 10th to submit their proposals with the winner being announced this spring.
As the state works to determine how they will monitor the medical cannabis supply chain, the framework for the private sector is coming together one license type at a time.
According to the department website, the state expects to award 12 Level 1 large scale cultivation operations and 12, smaller, Level 2 facilities. A Level 1 facility, up to 25,000 sq ft of cultivation, will require applicants pay a $20,000 non-refundable fee in addition to supplying proof of at least $1,500,000 in funds. Successful licensees will also need to pay a yearly licensing fee of $180,000.
Level 2 facilities, capped at 6,000 sq ft of cultivation space, require a $2,000 application fee and proof of funds in excess of $150,000. Awarded licensees will be responsible for a $20,000 yearly licensing fee.
The committee has until May 6th to release final cultivation rules and until September 8th for Processor, Testing Labs, and Dispensaries. By staggering the release of the rules by license types, the committee has prepared itself to make changes as the industry evolves. Unfortunately, this measured approach means that the program is not expected to be fully operational until September of 2018. For more information visit BioTrack.com/Ohio.
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