Medical marijuana will be grown on up to 24 licensed sites statewide — subject to some of the highest fees in the country — under the final rules presented to lawmakers Monday.
The cultivator portion of the rules, which also details the application and license fees for retail dispensaries, product processors and testing labs, cleared the Ohio legislature’s Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review without objection from the panel.
The rules will be officially filed later this month and take effect before the May 6 statutory deadline.
Rules and regulations for retail dispensaries, product processors and testing labs are still being revised, but must be in place by Sept. 8.
Columbus attorney David Patton raised concerns about banning license applicants with criminal records. Ohio law allows people convicted of certain crimes, to be determined by regulators, to be eligible for marijuana business licenses if the offenses occurred more than five years prior.
Patton said the rules don’t set a hard line between which offenses qualify or disqualify someone and the state is setting itself up for a lawsuit.
Under the rules, a first-degree misdemeanor conviction or guilty plea doesn’t “automatically disqualify” someone to obtain a license or work as a key dispensary employee if it occurred more than five years ago. Possessing more than 200 grams of marijuana, or a little over 7 ounces, is a felony charge in Ohio.
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