146 Applications for Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Received

Gov. Phil Murphy announced that the New Jersey Department of Health has received 146 applications from 106 organizations to operate medical marijuana dispensaries in the state. Applicants had to identify the region of the state where they would like to operate an Alternative Treatment Center (ATC). There were 50 applicants for the northern region, 45 in the central region and 51 in the southern region.

“By expanding Alternative Treatment Center locations in New Jersey, we are putting patients first and ensuring more convenient access to medical marijuana,” said Governor Murphy. “This is another step forward in removing barriers put in place by the previous administration and creating a more consumer-friendly program.”

On July 16, the DOH released a Request for Applications for up to six new applicants to operate medical marijuana dispensaries. The Department of Health has established an independent and unbiased process and publicly disclosed the selection criteria in its publication of the RFA. The application period ended on Friday, August 31 at 5:00 p.m. Complete applications will be evaluated and scored by a selection committee. Applicants chosen to proceed in the permitting process will be notified once review is complete.

“Program participation has surpassed 30,000 individuals as a result of reforms already made, and we expect that number to keep growing,” said New Jersey Health Commissioner Dr. Shereef Elnahal. “We need more Alternative Treatment Centers to keep pace with the demand for a therapy that has been unjustly restricted for so long.”

Applicants would be required to operate a dispensary as well as cultivating and manufacturing facilities. The business can be either nonprofit or for profit.

About 800 interested applicants and representatives attended a mandatory pre-application conference hosted by DOH on August 9 at the War Memorial in Trenton. Applicants got a step-by-step tutorial on how to file an application online, and Division of Medicinal Marijuana Assistant Commissioner Jeff Brown outlined the timeline process, scoring of applications, and common questions and answers.

The six currently operating ATCs were not eligible to participate in this application process because existing ATCs already have the opportunity to add additional sites for cultivating, manufacturing, and dispensing. Additional opportunities to apply to build cultivating, manufacturing, and dispensing sites will be available in the future.

Applications will not be publicly available until all awards have been made.

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