ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — There’s another hitch in the plans for medical marijuana in Maryland. The Medical Cannabis Commission has given preliminary approval to 15 applicants to grow and process marijuana, but none of the women and minority applicants were chosen.
Out of thousands of applicants, the Natalie M. LaPrade Medical Cannabis Commission has awarded preliminary licenses to 15 growers and processors for Maryland’s medical marijuana program.
The state Legislative Black Caucus is challenging the process because no minority or women applicants were chosen. Caucus chair Cheryl Glenn has been a champion of medical marijuana.
The LaPrade Commission is named for Delegate Glenn’s mother.
“An African-American woman, my mother, her name is permanently on the commission. And for the commission to make a decision to exclude minority participation is unconscionable,” Del. Glenn said.
The caucus considers the process flawed.
“Jacked up is my words, absolutely,” said Del. Darryl Barnes, (D) Prince George’s County.
Medical marijuana is on track to become a $1 billion-plus industry in Maryland, and these applicants believes fair representation in that market is an obligation of the state.
But as always, in Annapolis, the devil is in the details, and the caucus has yet to determine how to make it fair.
The Legislative Black Caucus is holding a day-long public hearing on this and other issues on October 6.