‘Social Equity’ Applicants Are Still Waiting For Their Cannabis Licenses in Los Angeles

‘Social Equity’ Applicants Are Still Waiting For Their Cannabis Licenses in Los Angeles

In Massachusetts, the Cannabis Control Commission signaled support for a new rule that would give minority entrepreneurs exclusive access to the state’s cannabis delivery business licenses for a 24-month period.

The 4-1 vote on April 26 was the latest move in the state’s work to establish a fertile adult-use marketplace and to enact a prosperous social equity platform within that market. Applicants for the state’s cannabis delivery licenses would need to be either an economic empowerment applicant or an entrepreneur working through the commission’s social equity program.

As commissioner Shaleen Title recently outlined on Twitter: “The social equity program provides technical assistance, training, fee waivers, and more to communities disproportionately harmed by prohibition. Applications are open. Bids to provide the training due 5/3. The program itself has not launched.” Massachusetts residents can learn more about the program and its upcoming deadline here. “Separately,” Title continued, “under state law, economic empowerment priority was granted to 123 applicants who demonstrated that their businesses promote economic empowerment in disproportionately harmed communities [insofar as cannabis prohibition and related prosecutions go]. These applicants will receive prioritized review of their business applications.”

With the vote, the draft rule will now wend through a public hearing process before coming up for a final commission vote later this year. The 24-month window for minority candidates would not begin immediately; rather, according to the Boston Business Journal, it would begin once the state’s social equity program has had time to prepare prospective business owners for the marketplace.

“Delivery is an important thing to do,” commission chairman Steve Hoffman told the Boston Globe after the hearing. “I believe we’re ready. This is going to make it more accessible for consumers, … and it’s a very important thing from a social equity standpoint, because of the lower barriers to entry in terms of the capital requirements.” 

In terms of how Massachusetts is fashioning these delivery licenses, drivers would be allowed to pick up and deliver products from multiple licensed dispensaries. Once on the road, though, drivers would only be allowed to deliver those products to customers living in municipalities that have already greenlit regulated cannabis sales. In this way, the commissioners walked the fine line between local home rule and the state market’s growing consumer demand.

Published at Wed, 01 May 2019 16:18:00 +0000

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