SALT LAKE CITY – A number of developments in Utah may very well be signaling a rocky highway forward for medicinal cannabis.
Six firms challenged the Utah Division of Agriculture and Meals’s determination to subject solely eight medicinal cannabis develop licenses. Ten licenses had been accessible however officers determined towards granting the remaining two. The challenges made a number of claims, together with a cost that the division made errors in scoring purposes. Utah officers didn’t agree and have rejected the formal protests of the six firms.
“It doesn’t seem from the procurement file or the protest that the Division of Agriculture & Meals acted arbitrary and capricious or clearly misguided in figuring out to solely award eight licenses. Actually, it seems that the Division of Agriculture & Meals rigorously studied the subject about what number of licenses it ought to award,” Christopher Hughes, the state’s Chief Procurement Officer, wrote in letters.
One of many firms that filed a protest, North Star Holdings, has plans to attraction the choice.
“We’re upset they’re dismissing the protest and we’re going to take the following step which will probably be submitting an attraction. I predict the others will do as nicely,” stated Welby Evangelista, the president of North Star Holdings, in response to Fox 13. “The underside line is we need to do what’s required to learn medical sufferers right here in Utah and ensure this course of was actually geared towards creating the absolute best applications in medical cannabis for the advantage of sufferers.”
The Division of Meals and Agriculture is claiming that granting ten rising licenses might end in an over saturation of cannabis in the marketplace.
Michael Caldwell, chief govt officer for Tintic United Bioscience LLC, a analysis agency primarily based in Utah, doesn’t agree with the division’s rationale. Caldwell claims the division violated a “blackout interval” the place state well being officers weren’t permitted to speak with candidates.
“It’s suspicious and suggests favoritism,” Caldwell informed the Salt Lake Tribune.
Utah is also contemplating adjustments to its cannabis distribution laws. Presently, there are plans for county well being amenities to dispense medicinal cannabis. Some really feel this might place authorities staff susceptible to violating federal legislation.
State Senate Majority chief Evan Vickers stated he and different lawmakers have been contemplating an answer to the difficulty.
“I believe we’re fairly near having an answer that might decrease if not remove danger for the native well being departments,” he informed the Salt Lake Tribune.
In an announcement this week, the Utah Division of Well being stated it’s working with legislators and Governor Herbert “to seek out options that can guarantee sufferers statewide have entry to medical cannabis throughout the timeline set out within the Medical Hashish Act.”