After five years of delays and litigation, the Florida Office of Medical Marijuana Use in late December finally published a new rule outlining the process of issuing new licenses for its medical marijuana program.
According to the new rule, licenses will be released in batches, each preceded by a five-day application window. The rule also establishes a non-refundable application fee of $146,000. The rules do not say when the windows will open or how many licenses will be available in each batch.
A second newly published rule increased the cost for marijuana businesses to renew two-year licenses, raising the fee from about $60,000 to more than $1 million.
Currently, only 22 companies hold licenses in the state’s $1.6 billion system, which includes more than 776,000 card-holding patients. However, a 2017 law requires regulators to create four new treatment center licenses for every 100,000 new patients that enter the market. No applications have been accepted since 2015.
— Brian Beckley