Missouri high court to decide if medical marijuana business applications can be disclosed

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The Missouri Supreme Court heard arguments in a case that might force state medical marijuana regulators to make public MMJ business license applications, a request made by a company that was denied cultivation permits.

According to the Missouri Independent, the state’s high court will decide whether application confidentiality – which was written into the state ballot measure that legalized MMJ in 2018 – should be nullified so that those who lost out on permits can compare their applications to those of license winners during appeals.

The case was brought by California-based Kings Garden Midwest, which didn’t win either of two cultivation applications it submitted.

The company sought an appeal in part because it contended its two applications were identical but received different scores from regulators.

Lower courts have already ruled in favor of Kings Garden Midwest.

But the state Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) – which oversees MMJ licensing – has refused to disclose the winning applications, citing a confidentiality clause in the 2018 ballot measure, which amended the state constitution.

MMJ license application paperwork has been requested by “many, perhaps most” of the 758 license appeals that are still pending before the state agency, the DHSS wrote in a court filing.