Massachusetts Licensing Process Flawed From Start, Report Says

The process used to award dispensary licenses in Massachusetts was flawed from the start, beset by conflicts of interest, issues involving contractors and shortcomings in vetting applicants, according to a Boston Globe review of records.

The revelations could influence lawsuits against the state over its selection process for MMJ business permits and spur changes in how Massachusetts handles licensing going forward.

One contractor hired by the state’s health department to rank companies that wanted to operate dispensaries said it ran out of time to conduct background checks, while a separate contractor failed to note that a couple hired by several applicants had lost their license to operate in Colorado, the Globe reported.

Neither company was tasked with verifying applicants’ claims, and as a result many assertions went unchecked, according to the Globe.

Another issue was the hiring of former health department staff members by companies approved for licenses. Andy Epstein, who retired last year after helping craft regulations, was then hired by New England Treatment Access Inc., which was among dispensaries that won licenses, according to the newspaper. Daniel Delaney, another former health department employee, was a lobbyist for two companies that were approved by the state.

A superior court judge ruled earlier this year that the opening of dispensaries shouldn’t be delayed by legal action from companies that didn’t receive licenses, saying patients had already waited long enough.

4 comments on “Massachusetts Licensing Process Flawed From Start, Report Says
  1. nancy on

    PLEASE MY HUSAND IS IN PAIN STOP THE BS FRED WESISE NANCY WEISE WE LIVE ON THE SOUTH SHORE CAN NOT AFFORD STREET PRICES. HE IS A VETREAN HELP. SERVIE RELATED MS

    Reply
  2. CAT on

    The MA process was doomed from the get go. The people that wrote the regulations and “debated” how the industry would be formed – law enforcement, judges, and public health officials – wrote themselves and their interests into how the businesses would operate. Vertical integration really meant a lock down on the industry to small entrepreneurs in the name of making it safe from “criminal elements”. Which is to say, only big money could compete (and we all know that big money is always clean.) Too bad, a huge opportunity lost for small business development in MA.

    Reply
  3. George on

    It’s good that MA is going to verify application claims. This wasn’t done in CT. If it was Theraplant would not have won a license.

    Reply

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