Kentucky will hold October lottery to award first marijuana business licenses

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Kentucky will implement a lottery system to award the first medical marijuana business licenses, Gov. Andy Beshear announced in a press conference late last week.

Applicants will have to clear a screening process before applying for one of the state’s limited licenses, according to the Associated Press.

The lottery will be held in October.

In the initial round, the state will issue 48 medical marijuana dispensary licenses, which will be divided equally among 11 regions of the state, the news service reported.

Beshear last week also signed a bill that allows medical cannabis operators to apply for business licenses as early as July.

House Bill 829 contains several restrictions that could stymie growth and expansion, however, including:

  • Bans on smoking MMJ.
  • Allowing opt-outs for local governments to restrict MMJ businesses.
  • Prohibiting outdoor marijuana cultivation.
  • Allowing religious private schools to refuse to enroll MMJ cardholders.