Judge allows Montana medical marijuana dispensary in Billings to operate – for now

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A judge is allowing a Montana medical cannabis dispensary to continue operating at least temporarily after questioning whether the state health department violated the owner’s right to due process in revoking his license without giving him a chance to respond to allegations.

District Judge Don Harris said he’ll likely issue a final decision next week in the case involving Montana Organic Medical Supply of Billings, the Billings Gazette reported.

According to the newspaper, Montana Organic’s license was revoked after state inspectors alleged owner Steven Palmer failed to conduct lab tests before selling marijuana products, improperly labeled merchandise and bought products from another provider.

The alleged violations stemmed from a state inspection that occurred in June, about two months after tougher regulations took effect concerning pesticide testing, labeling and product tracking.

The state said Wednesday that Montana Organic was shuttered because regulators couldn’t determine if Palmer was selling safe products.

Palmer and his attorney argued the state hadn’t given him an opportunity to correct violations before revoking his license.

There also have been questions about whether MMJ dispensaries can legally remain in Billings, or whether they need to move outside the city.

– Associated Press and Marijuana Business Daily