Painesville Township and Wickliffe officials are excited to be the first two locations in Lake County approved for medical marijuana dispensaries.
The Ohio Board of Pharmacy on June 4 awarded provisional dispensary licenses to Greenleaf Apothecaries LLC at 30133 Euclid Ave. in Wickliffe, and 127 OH LLC at 382 Blackbrook Road in Painesville Township.
The provisional dispensary licenses give the stores six months to meet state operation requirements.
“OH 127, LLC plans to open a fully compliant medical marijuana dispensary as soon as the law allows,” Painesville Township Administrator Michael Manary said. “Their business plan includes the sale and dispensing of legally approved medical marijuana cannabis, along with ancillary products. They will also offer consultative services relating to medical cannabis product recommendations and other medical cannabis consultative services.”
The facility is 9,188 square feet. All operations for the distribution of medical cannabis will be conducted inside the building, Manary added.
The decision to move forward with medical marijuana dispensaries was thoroughly researched and carefully examined. The State of Ohio has strict security requirements for medical marijuana dispensaries.
“The trustees had a lot of discussion about the validity of a medical marijuana dispensary since this is unknown territory in Ohio,” he said. “In the end they decided that there is going to be a legitimate use for medical cannabis, and that working with a dispensary now would allow us to have some control over their presence in the community. We realize that this is going to be a significant industry in the coming years. The trustees are comfortable that the business will operate in a fashion that is similar to a physician’s office.”
The township will benefit from tax revenue from the operation of the business, he said. OH 127, LLC plans to employ three to five full-time employees and two to four part-time employees, and most importantly an unoccupied facility in the township will be used and maintained, Manary said.
Wickliffe Mayor John Barbish said the facility that Greenleaf Apothecaries LLC plans to use to open a medical marijuana dispensary is about 4,000 square feet.
Barbish said there are many advantages to opening medical marijuana dispensaries including increased revenue and jobs for the city.
“It will also bring a lot of people into Wickliffe,” he said. “It will be good for local businesses, good for Wickliffe and good for the entire state.”
Barbish and Manary both believe this is a growing industry in the state, and there will be a need for more dispensaries,
While Barbish is excited that medical marijuana can be sold in Wickliffe, he said he is disappointed that the state “took this long” to make a decision.
Ohio Sen. Kenny Yuko, D-Richmond Heights, shares similar feelings about the delay of Ohio’s medical marijuana program.
“The state has dropped the ball and their willingness to watch the September 8 deadline come and go is simply unacceptable,” he said. “They have had two years to get this program off the ground and get it right. And it’s been two very long years for the Ohioans who desperately need this medicine. Mothers and fathers with children suffering from debilitating epilepsy, veterans struggling with PTSD and ailing cancer patients were counting on us to meet these very attainable deadlines.”