On December 17, 2020, the Arizona Division of Well being Providers (“Division”) held an open assembly to take feedback on the proposed state hashish rules. On this publish, we share a few of the feedback made by the members and a few of the solutions supplied by the Division. The Division said that the aim of the assembly was to not take questions (though, in some circumstances, they did reply questions), however slightly to only enable events to supply feedback on the proposed rules.

Early Candidates in Counties with Fewer than 2 Medical Dispensaries

There was a strong dialogue concerning early candidates for counties which have lower than two medical marijuana (“MMJ”) dispensaries. Based on the Division, there are at present eight counties in Arizona which have fewer than 2 MMJ dispensaries – the Division will present a listing of these counties earlier than the early applicant interval begins (which is ready for January 19, 2021). Thus, there needs to be alternatives to acquire an adult-use license in these counties.

A number of commentators advised that given the excessive software payment, that candidates needs to be scored and rated. Below the legislation, the Division will settle for functions till March 9, 2021 for early candidates. Any entity that submits an entire and compliant software, together with the applying payment, by March 9, 2021, will probably be entitled to enter a random choice course of for these counties with fewer than 2 MMJ dispensaries (assuming there are extra candidates than allotted licenses).

Of specific significance, the Division stated the applying payment (which is at present set at $25,000) is non-refundable. Click on HERE for extra info concerning functions and licensing charges. If an entity submits an entire and compliant software however isn’t chosen by the Division to be a licensee, then for future drawings or open applicant durations, that entity might want to submit a brand new software.

The Division can even launch an digital kind that localities can full for zoning approval acknowledgment. When counting the variety of institutions in a county, for functions of the early applicant interval, the Division said it might solely rely medical marijuana dispensaries (and never cultivation or different associated licensees).

Social Fairness Alternative Program 

Whereas a number of commenters requested concerning the new Social Fairness Alternative Program (“SEOP”), the Division has not launched these guidelines but and it doesn’t seem to be a precedence within the close to time period because the Division is pushing to prepare for the early candidates. One commenter advised that SEOP licensees needs to be for just for native (Arizona) residents, minorities, and others which were disenfranchised by prior marijuana legal guidelines. The Division will take that remark (and all different feedback) into consideration because it updates the proposed rules.

Residency Requirement for Homeowners

Different commenters requested that the Division make Arizona residency a requirement for all homeowners. Nevertheless, I identified that as a result of the statutes enable public firms to be licensees, the Arizona residency requirement could be untenable (I really incorrectly stated the “proposed rules” as an alternative of the statutes). How may the Division implement such a regulation for the open markets? It might be utterly antithetical to the idea of publicly traded firms and the way they function. Amongst different points, each commerce to an out-of-state proprietor would someway need to be stopped prematurely. I don’t consider that may be operationalized by the general public markets or the businesses which can be traded on the markets.

Miscellaneous Dialogue

One commenter requested if the foundations have been modeled on different state guidelines. The Division stated that the foundations are supposed to adjust to Proposition 207, which is now the legislation in Arizona. The principles will probably be finalized by someday in mid-January 2021. Furthermore, in response to the Division, the Arizona legislature will likewise have an opportunity to evaluation and touch upon the proposed guidelines.

The Division said that every one functions will probably be in digital format however that they won’t launch the brand new functions now as a result of the rules aren’t ultimate but. However the Division promised to launch the brand new functions as quickly as potential (and clearly previous to January 19, 2021). The Division additional famous that future guidelines may have extra info on dispensary operations and administrative necessities. One commenter requested if the Division would maintain obligatory trainings for homeowners and workers, like different states require. Additionally, two commenters requested that the Division have higher coordination with cities and cities.

As we beforehand reported (HERE) there are caps in place for the general variety of adult-use dispensaries in Arizona, which is one dispensary for each 10 registered pharmacies in Arizona (HERE to see the statutes that embody the complete standards for the cap). I requested the Division if it had this info, and if that’s the case, whether or not they would share it with the general public. I’ve looked for this info however have solely discovered one report from 2013 that discusses the general variety of pharmacies in Arizona. The Division stated that anybody who desires to know can name the Arizona State Board of Pharmacy.

Concluding Remarks and Subsequent Steps

The Division’s assembly was very informative, and any feedback made at present or on-line (if well timed made) will probably be thought-about by the Division as they proceed to replace the proposed rules. Anybody fascinated by procuring an adult-use license could be sensible to evaluation the proposed rules, any up to date proposed rules, and every other info supplied by the Division. Likewise, you probably have feedback concerning the proposed rules or the brand new proposed rules that will probably be launched sooner or later, you must take the time to submit such feedback to the Division.

The Division will maintain one other public remark interval in early January 2021, just like the one held on December 17, 2020. Additionally, the Division will launch a brand new draft of the proposed rules within the very close to time period. It was apparent that the Division is listening intently to feedback made and obtained by events. How these feedback impression the following set of proposed rules is but to be seen.