Nevada Dispensary Applicants Sue State, Delays Possible

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Five companies that lost out on bids to win medical marijuana dispensary licenses in Nevada have filed a colorful lawsuit against the state and 13 other MMJ businesses, alleging that officials bungled the process and that their competitors received unfair advantages.

The plaintiffs are requesting that they receive provisional certificates to operate dispensaries in unincorporated Clark County, according to the 131-page lawsuit, which was obtained by Marijuana Business Daily.

The move could delay the opening of some dispensaries in unincorporated Clark County, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. The companies behind the lawsuit received county approval to open dispensaries, but the state selected a different group of applicants.

The suit filed argues that the Division of Public and Behavioral Health inappropriately reversed the process it used to grant permits. The agency oversaw the decisionmaking process for 55 provisional dispensary licenses – including 18 in unincorporated Clark County – awarded in early November.

Plaintiffs also claim that the health department inappropriately scored different applicants and ignored that a former administrator of the division went to work lobbying for an MMJ company competing for a license. The suit describes the former state employee as “the ultimate insider” who contributed to an “ethical stench permeating” the licensing process.

Nevada Medical Marijuana Dispensary, GB Sciences Nevada, Nevada Holistic Medicine, Fidelis Holdings and Desert Inn Enterprises are behind the suit.