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MD: Hancock Having Tough Time Getting Medical Marijuana Plant Up-And-Running

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Katelyn Baker

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Hancock, Md. - Hancock and Harvest Dispensaries, an Arizona based company, are partnering-up to bring medical marijuana to Washington County.

The partnership means the town will have a 5% stake in the company, but won't have a say in their day-to-day operations.

That is because marijuana is still federally illegal.

However, by holding a 5% stake, Hancock will be the landlord of the space and receive rent from Harvest.

Hancock could also share in their profits.

To Hancock's mayor Dan Murphy, it sounds like an ideal situation. However, as of right now, they cannot move afurther.

Harvest Dispensaries and Hancock are experiencing one road bump after another on their path to bring medical marijuana to Washington County.

Potential employees, Hancock's government and people in-need of specific medical attention are all on stand-by.

"We are now just basically at the mercy of the Cannabis Commission at the state level," Mayor Murphy said.

Another hurdle is how to distribute the medical marijuana once the operation begins.

"There's still no mechanism in place for how to distribute the product," Mayor Murphy said, "And how doctors will prescribe and how people will get a card that allows them to use it."

To make matters worse, several companies that were removed from the list of 15 pre-approved growers because of a lack of geographic and racial diversity are suing the Cannabis Commission.

They feel this is unfair and illegal behavior, especially considering that was something they were told would not be a factor in getting a license.

"There was a concern about racial diversity," Mayor Murphy explained, "There were not enough companies with people of color in executive positions chosen."

Recently, when the CEO of Harvest Dispensaries and Mayor Murphy met to go over last minute preparations, they couldn't come up with a date to start moving operations into the facility.

"We don't have anything to tell people when they say where do we apply for jobs, or a tentative start date," Mayor Murphy said.

What's more, Harvest Dispensaries only received a pre-approval from the Commission.

They still need a final approval before they can move any further.

Mayor Murphy said a company that's ready to invest 11 million dollars into this start-up and small town is on-hold indefinitely.

"We're ready in Hancock," Mayor Murphy said. "Let's go state of Maryland!"

Although Harvest Dispensaries will be growing medical marijuana on the grounds, it was not given a license to process this marijuana.

This means they cannot turn it into another product on site, like medication.



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Full Article: Hancock Having Tough Time Getting Medical Marijuana Plant Up-And-Running
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