The Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission has accepted an outside consulting group’s recommendations and voted unanimously on Wednesday to approve 32 cannabis dispensaries to serve the state. The action by the commission sets the stage for sales of medicinal cannabis to begin as soon as April, more than two years after voters approved an amendment legalizing medical marijuana in November 2016. Cultivation licenses have already been issued and more than 7,000 patients have been approved to use medical marijuana.
The 32 approved dispensaries represent the four highest scoring applications in each of the state’s eight medical marijuana dispensary zones. Scott Hardin, a spokesman for the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration, said that the successful applicants will receive official notification from the state by next week.
“Monday at the latest, that [letter of intent] will go to those 32 companies that scored among the highest in each zone,” Hardin said. “They then have seven days to pay a $15,000 licensing fee, post a $100,000 performance bond, and then once we confirm that they still have that storefront… they’ll likely be licensed within the next couple of weeks.”
The state will launch the medical marijuana program with five cultivation facilities and the 32 newly approved dispensaries. If demand