Weekly Wrapup: Medical Marijuana Moving Forward in MA + Snapshot of Dispensary Startup Costs
Something monumental is happening in Massachusetts: The state is actually moving forward with medical marijuana regulations at a surprisingly rapid pace.
Last week, the state’s health department released its near-term regulatory timeline, setting March 29 as the target date for the release of its proposed rules covering the MMJ industry. A public hearing will be held April 19, and final regulations could go into effect as early as May 24.
Those are three very important dates for medical marijuana entrepreneurs in the state, and the overall timeline indicates that officials are committed to the process.
That’s not always the case. In fact, the rapid progress so far in Massachusetts is the exception rather than the rule.
In many states that have passed MMJ laws, the only real surprises that arise during the regulatory process are typically negative ones – in the form of delays, challenges, opposition and setbacks. Most of Massachusetts’ neighbors have struggled mightily in this regard. It has taken years for New Jersey, Washington DC, Rhode Island and Vermont to finalize regulations and lay the groundwork for dispensaries to open, and they’re still grappling with challenges.
Entrepreneurs who want to start dispensaries, grow operations and other MMJ businesses in Massachusetts are understandably antsy. They want to know what type of regulatory framework they’ll have to operate under and the types of application and permit fees they’ll have to pay, as it will affect their entire business plan.
Some entrepreneurs in Massachusetts have expressed frustration that no one has the answers at this time. But when compared to the situation in other states, they are actually in a very enviable situation. Still, cautious optimism is warranted – as delays could crop up at any time.
Also last week, we wrote about how two dispensaries planning to launch in Rhode Island recently submitted in-depth information about their startup costs, revenue projections and other financial metrics to the state. We feel this data is extremely helpful to entrepreneurs hoping to start similar operations in other areas of the country.
This kind of information is exceedingly hard to come by in the medical marijuana industry. These documents show the full range of costs involved, from build-out expenses and payroll to equipment and even office supplies. While of course these costs will vary greatly depending on many different factors (local regulations, market size, permit fees, etc), the information at least gives you an idea of what to expect.
What’s particularly interesting are the revenue projections. The two dispensaries expect to generate a combined $4 million in sales during their first full year of operation – which is way higher than the national average. Those projections could be optimistic – or they could reflect the reality in a market with strict limits on the dispensaries and minimal competition. Time will tell.
Other top stories in MMJ Business Daily:
Louisiana officials are predicting it will take at least two years for the state’s first [click to continue...]
A company hoping to launch an all-inclusive vacation resort catering to cannabis users has delayed [click to continue...]
Five Alaskans were appointed to a board that will craft laws governing the state’s recreational [click to continue...]
Marijuana cultivation facilities have been specifically identified as a key contributor to Denver’s increasing electric [click to continue...]
The New York Health Department may announce winners of the five medical cannabis licenses up [click to continue...]
The Green Rush is back on in Massachusetts. The opening of the first medical cannabis [click to continue...]
Rules governing Oregon’s recreational marijuana market are taking shape, with state lawmakers sending two bills [click to continue...]
Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul made a splash in Denver on Tuesday, raising an estimated [click to continue...]
Dispensaries could be open in Hawaii in just over a year, as a bill establishing [click to continue...]
In an attempt to get around obstructionists in the state House of Representatives who have [click to continue...]
And then there were five. Dispensaries permitted in New Jersey, that is. Compassionate Sciences, Inc. [click to continue...]
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has signed a bill making his state the latest in the [click to continue...]
In another sign of the marijuana industry’s growing national reach, a New York-based real estate [click to continue...]
Washington State growers and processors would no longer pay a 25% tax on cannabis and [click to continue...]