Maryland’s medical marijuana program rollout has been rife with stumbles, delaying what could become one of the largest markets on the East Coast.
Still, industry officials and regulators are working to get the state’s MMJ program on steadier footing and launched.
Regulators, in fact, hope dispensary sales will begin later this year. But industry observers are less bullish, predicting the first dispensaries will open in 2018.
That would be four years after state lawmakers approved legislation in 2014 laying the groundwork for the state’s new medical marijuana program. Maryland officials initially had aimed to have the state’s medical cannabis program operating by the second half of last year but were slowed by a flood of program applicants and disputes over the racial diversity of license winners.
“Once the program is up and running I think it will be an immensely popular program,” said Meredith Kinner, a partner in the law firm Kinner & McGowan, a cannabis-focused practice with offices in Maryland and Washington DC. “Once people see that it is not just a pipe dream.”