Medical Cannabis Commission tosses out license application scores

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The Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission voted Monday to reject the results of third-party evaluators used to rate business license applicants.

AMCC He approved the agreement AMCC attorneys have reached an arbitration between representing companies that have sued the commission over use of results and other licensing issues.

Scores compiled by undergraduates recruited by the University of South Alabama are one of the most controversial aspects of the licensing process. which has been suspended since June, A delay in the availability of products to patients awaiting the launch of the new industry.

Some of the companies that ranked low in the results said the scoring system did not adequately consider key aspects of license eligibility, including the requirement to begin growing marijuana within 60 days of receiving a license.

The decision to ignore the results means that AMCC will essentially start issuing business licenses. The commission Approved new rules and schedule In October.

The plan includes allowing permit applicants to make a presentation to the commission for the first time. The events started on Monday and will continue until next week.

The timeline calls for issuance of permits in December, followed by a due diligence period, and then issuance of permits in late December and early January. If the schedule continues and the process isn’t stalled again by litigation, that means products will be available next year.

The decision to ignore the results on Monday marks a major change in the licensing process, as the AMCC closely monitored the results when issuing licenses in June and August. Most of the companies that were awarded licenses were placed at the top of the results in their respective categories.

AMCC later canceled both rounds of those license awards due to litigation and errors.

All 90 business applicants are under consideration. The categories include grower, processor, safe transport, distribution and testing laboratory as well as integrated category crop, processing, transport and distribution.

It was the farmers’ applicants who started making presentations to the AMCC on Monday morning.

Of the 90 applicants, 38 are in the combined category and that category has been the focus of the debate.

AMCC attorney Mark Wilkerson explained the mediation agreement before the commission voted at Monday’s meeting. Seven of the 13 commissioners voted in favor of the agreement. No one objected.

More than 25 companies are involved in a consolidated lawsuit against AMCC pending in Montgomery County Circuit Court. Circuit Judge James Anderson ordered the mediation that led to the settlement.

Wilkerson said not all companies involved in the dispute agreed with the agreement.

When the Legislature passes the Medical Marijuana Act in 2021, it creates the AMCC to oversee the seed-selling industry, making it fully internalized.

The law allows companies to make gum, tablets, pills, tins, patches, oil and other medical marijuana products. Patients who receive a medical cannabis card from a physician can purchase the product at licensed dispensaries.

The products can be used to treat a wide variety of conditions, including chronic pain, weight loss and nausea from cancer, depression, panic disorder, epilepsy, muscle spasms from disease or spinal cord injury, PTSD and more.

Alabama is one of 38 states that have legalized medical marijuana. National Conference of State Legislatures.

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