Maryland County Wants Out of MMJ Program

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Another Maryland county wants to leave the state’s medical marijuana program, and this one is willing to sue to get its way.

The Calvert County board voted 4-1 this week to ask state lawmakers to give counties the option of banning marijuana dispensaries and growing facilities within their borders, according to the Washington Post.

In September, a top official from Anne Arundel County proposed prohibiting marijuana businesses in the county. Maryland’s attorney general responded that banning marijuana businesses would run afoul of state law.

So it’s possible that the county may wind up fighting the state in court over the matter. But if the county wins, it’s not clear how many licenses may be affected.

Under Maryland’s medical marijuana program, each of the state’s 47 Senatorial districts can have two dispensaries. Calvert County overlaps with two of those districts that between them received 21 of the total 811 dispensary license applications.

Those districts overlap with two other counties, so it’s likely that not all 21 of those applications were for Calvert County.

Anne Arundel contains four Senate districts that between them received 41 dispensary applications, and it shares with another county a fifth Senate district that received 22 dispensary applications.

County officials said that if they can’t ban marijuana businesses, they want the right to tax them and use the money for public safety and drug education programs, according to the Post.