Greenwill CEO Lanier Recaps Developments in Maryland’s Medical Cannabis Commission

From Marijuana Business Daily …

Changing face of Maryland’s MMJ commission

The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission – which governs the state’s MMJ industry – is undergoing a significant face-lift after the governor replaced a majority of the panel.

The overhaul could also mean changes are in store for MMJ license winners and applicants still seeking permits, said Ivan Lanier, the CEO of Greenwill Consulting Group, a Maryland government affairs consultancy. Some companies, for example, could lose their licenses if they aren’t up and running on schedule, he noted.

“The big issue this new commission will have is that there will potentially be a few growers, processors and dispensaries that may not be operational (as planned),” Lanier said.

The businesses in question could have “some capital issues,” he added, “so the commission may have to come back and take a very hard look at the applicants that were awarded (licenses) and decide who has the capital, who’s on track to open and so on.”

So there could be a shake-up in which applicants who were initially denied licenses may wind up with MMJ business permits, Lanier suggested.

“We certainly don’t want growers and processors that are looking to open in the next two to three years when they’re supposed to be open within a one-year timeline,” he said.

The commission also could:

  • Give more consideration to diversity in issuing licenses, since that’s been a hot-button controversy in Maryland and the panel includes some minority members.
  • Decide to issue additional licenses, meaning many applicants that didn’t win dispensary or cultivation permits may still be in line for permits.

“Certainly everyone is holding their breath and hoping that this new commission will review the past decisions … and start to do another round of applicants,” Lanier said.