"Ohio Cannabis Program Finally Flowers, But Not Fully Grown Yet"
Spectrum News 1
January 17, 2019
Excerpt from the article:
“The delays in rolling out a program is pretty standard, it happens in every state,” said Thomas Haren, an attorney with Franz Ward LLP based in Cleveland. “They encounter construction delays, there are unforeseen issues from a regulatory standard that pop up. I actually think the process has been pretty good so far.”
Haren handles clients in the medical marijuana industry, including business owners participating in Ohio’s program.
“People should keep in mind where we started from in 2016,” said Haren. The legislature passed a bill very quickly and then handed it off to the Board of Commerce and the Board of Pharmacy.”
Since Ohio’s program is brand new, the past two years and four months were spent building everything for both businesses and the state.
“[Regulators] had to start from square one not only to develop the rules for the program, but then go through the process of accepting, scoring applications, dealing with subsequent applications in court, appeals,” said Haren. “And then working with all of those companies to build all of these new types of facilities that we’ve never had here before.”
Once the facilities are ready, they are inspected by the state to ensure compliance. If requirements are met the facility is issued a certificate of operation.
“You want to make sure that people follow through on their promises, so there had to be a final inspection done before people can start growing, processing or selling a schedule 1 federally illegal substance,” said Haren.