New Jersey governor signs pro-business medical cannabis expansion bill

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New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on Tuesday signed a bill to expand the state’s medical marijuana program, a day after his administration announced plans to issue 24 additional MMJ licenses.

The expansion plans will offer significant business opportunities in light of the New Jersey Legislature’s failure to legalize recreational marijuana.

Rapid patient enrollment and continuing robust business license activity have translated into high sales.

New Jersey’s new medical cannabis law puts in place a number of changes designed to increase licenses and patient access, although some of those already have been announced or instituted by Murphy’s administration.

For example, the measure:

  • Creates individual cultivation, manufacturing and dispensary permits and also increases the number of cultivation permits. To date, only 12 vertically integrated licenses have been issued.
  • Phases out the state’s 6.625% MMJ sales tax over three years.
  • Establishes a five-member Cannabis Regulatory Commission to oversee the state’s MMJ program, removing it from the state Department of Health.
  • Allows physician assistants and advanced-practice nurses to recommend medical cannabis. State law previously allowed only doctors to make recommendations.

– Associated Press and Marijuana Business Daily