The Maryland Cannabis Administration announced that the first application round for cannabis business licenses will open on November 13. The administration also revealed the number of permits, by license type, available in the first application round.
How many of each license type will be available in the first round?
More than 175 standard and micro cannabis grower, processor, and dispensary licenses available in the first round will be exclusive to social equity applicants. A social equity applicant is an applicant that has at least 65% ownership and control held by one or more individuals who lived or went to public school in an area disproportionately impacted by the criminalization of cannabis or attended a four-year institution of higher education in Maryland where at least 40% of enrollees were eligible for a Pell Grant.
Last week, the Office of Social Equity published the ZIP codes and public schools in Maryland within a disproportionately impacted area and the qualifying four-year higher education institutions. Detailed information on the geographic qualifying regions, public schools, and higher education institutions may be found at ose.maryland.gov.
How long will the application round last?
The application round will be open for 30 days, from November 13 to December 12.
Any applicant who meets the minimum requirements for licensure on a pass-fail basis will be placed in a randomized lottery based on license type (grower, processor, or dispensary) and county or region for which the application was submitted. Under the Cannabis Reform Act, the administration will conduct the lottery on or before January 1, 2024.
Growers, Processors, and Micro Licenses:
For the remaining license types, the state will be divided into four regions, as follows:
- Western Region: Allegany, Carroll, Frederick, Garrett, Montgomery, and Washington.
- Southern Region: Anne Arundel, Calvert, Charles, Prince George’s, and St. Mary’s.
- Central Region: Baltimore, Baltimore City, Cecil, Harford, and Howard.
- Eastern Region: Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, Somerset, Talbot, Wicomico, and Worcester.
Equal numbers of each of the remaining license types will be available, as outlined below.
Social Equity Verification Portal:
Additionally, the administration announced the opening of the Social Equity Verification Portal. The portal instructs individuals on the social equity applicant eligibility requirements. It allows them to confirm their eligibility as a social equity applicant before the application period opens on November 13. The portal will be open for 60 days, closing on Tuesday, November 7. For more information on the application process and how to access the Social Equity Verification Portal, visit cannabis.maryland.gov.
How we can help?
At Cannabis License Experts, we provide you with the guidance to plan your cannabis business, acquire funding, navigate the legal requirements, and acquire the appropriate cannabis license for your operations. As the United States and Maryland specifically develop, more and more licensed producers will be needed to meet the demands of consumers.
Cannabis License Experts offers support from day one of starting your cannabis business, including strategic planning, floor plan preparation, site audits, SOPs, Preventive Control Plans (PCPs), and more.
Contact us today to discover how we can license and legalize your cannabis business to meet federal or provincial regulations.