New Mexico proposes rules for recreational cannabis licenses

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New Mexico regulators released proposed rules for cannabis growers in a move to kick-start the state’s new recreational marijuana market.

According to Albuquerque TV station KRQE, along with a three-tiered plant count framework and fee system, the new regulations include requirements for securing licenses for:

  • Marijuana cultivation.
  • Marijuana cultivation microbusiness.
  • Medical marijuana cultivation.

The three types of cultivation licenses will range from 201 plants up to 4,500, which is nearly triple the current 1,750-plant limit for medical marijuana growers.

Growers with more than 3,500 mature plants will pay an annual per-plant fee of $22 versus $18 for smaller farms.

Licensees will be able to increase their counts in 500-plant increments through an annual application process.

The rules also direct cannabis stores to try to sell 25% of products to medical marijuana patients or caregivers to prevent a medical shortage.

According to the Associated Press, applicants must prove they have valid water rights and explain any past criminal convictions, and they can’t operate within 300 feet of schools or day-care centers.

Public comment will be heard on the proposed rules until June 29.

New Mexico’s Cannabis Control Division plans to begin processing cultivation license applications no later than Sept. 1, 2021, with sales to begin no later than April 2022.