North Dakota eyes spring 2018 start for medical cannabis sales

Medical marijuana sales in North Dakota would begin next spring under the state’s tentative timeline for its MMJ industry.

The state health department plans to open the application process for growers and dispensaries in early August and close it at the end of September. The agency would review applications in October and make selections in early November.

Regulators estimate cultivators will need about six months to set up facilities and grow the first medical marijuana crop. If the timeline plays out, sales would begin in April, May or June 2018. That time frame falls within the department’s earlier estimates.

“I think we’re still on track to deliver 12-18 months after the signing of the bill,” said Kenan Bullinger, director of the department’s MMJ division.

North Dakota voters approved medical cannabis last November, and state lawmakers earlier this year crafted a measure setting up a regulatory structure. The governor signed the bill in April.

The health department unveiled its timeline while asking potential MMJ growers and distributors to notify the agency by July 28 whether they plan to apply for the two cultivation licenses or eight dispensary permits the state expects to award.

Regulators are requesting nonbinding letters of intent from prospective business owners to get an idea how many applications they may receive and how long it could take to process them.

There’s no cost for potential growers or distributors to submit a letter of intent. However, all applicants will pay a nonrefundable $5,000 fee. Cultivation licensees will pay $110,000 and dispensaries $90,000 for two-year certificates.

– Associated Press

One comment on “North Dakota eyes spring 2018 start for medical cannabis sales
  1. Thomas Sparks on

    I sure hope this is correct. I’ve heard it could take at least another whole year.
    I am very interested in this b/c I have been on legally prescribed OxyContin for over 10 years now and my doc believes I should try to switch to this medicinal cannabis. He would be willing to sign a card so I would have access to dispensaries, once they open. I suffer from many maladies that continually cause me Chronic Pain and have tried ALL the other pharmaceutical drugs available and OC was the only thing that helped me. But after being on it for so long, it is becoming a catch-22 and I would rather change to something else that WORKS. From what I’ve read, Med. Cannabis seems to be a no-brainer for me. Cannabis is much less harmful, less addicting or habit forming, and it’s medicinal qualities are known to work, for my situation. And it is much safer than taking any narcotic or opioid! I really hope more people start seeing the truth about the efficacy of Cannabis in the medical field. I sure hope the dispensaries are up and running soon, so I can see this effect personally, as my quality of life has become much more hard to find after 10-12 years of dealing with my debilitating illness and having to use a formulated opioid from Big Pharma, that works, but has SO many bad side effects and risks. I am 58 yrs old and don’t see a whole lot of life, much less a quality of life, down the road! People need to be more compassionate when it comes to people, like me, that suffer on an hourly basis. I am really hoping that is the case here. The population in our country needs to get beyond the stigma and or vilification of Cannabis. Everything I have seen/read since researching it for myself, points toward Cannabis being a very effective medicine for many, many medical indications people suffer with. It only makes sense, IMHO, to roll this out ASAP, especially due to the National Opiod Crisis that is killing people daily. Cannabis CAN NOT kill!

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