Arkansas’ 5 medical marijuana license winners face challenges over winning bids

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Arkansas regulators are receiving challenges in response to their licensing of the state’s first medical marijuana growers.

Challenges of this type filed by unsuccessful applicants are a common occurrence in the industry after a state rolls out its first cannabis business licenses.

The Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission announced last month the five companies that scored high enough to receive a license to grow medical marijuana. All five companies have paid the $100,000 licensing fee and posted the $500,000 performance bond.

The cultivation licenses are expected to officially be issued at Wednesday’s commission meeting.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported that an unsuccessful applicant filed a letter of protest with the commission Monday, requesting it refrain from issuing the licenses because the scoring process was flawed.

The Department of Finance and Administration also said it’s reviewing the tax status of those associated with the winning applicants amid delinquency concerns.

David Couch, the attorney who drafted the constitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana in Arkansas, said industry experts expect more challenges in coming days.

Associated Press