Over the years, medical marijuana dispensaries have been going through checks to determine their ethics and ability to manage this hotly contested herb. The case has not been different for Arizona and the Department of Health Services in this state did finally give random awards of licenses to 31 medical marijuana dispensaries on October 6th, 2016. This was a long waited prize for some of the few remaining non-profit making medical marijuana dispensary certificates. Few months ago between July 18th and 29th, 2016 designated for applications, 747 applications were received by the department. Of all these, only 31 were granted their wish. Reports say that the department officials made selections based on certain rules set by the department about 5 years ago. Ideally, the selections were made through a process of that was aimed at placing the new medical marijuana dispensaries where there was the largest number of medical cannabis users. Well, of these 31, nine of them were chosen through a random draw.
The guidelines set required each of the new marijuana dispensaries to be situated within one of the geographic regions that were preplanned by the state for conducting weed business. If that was the case, why was the random sampling conducted? Well, it was believed that a random draw was vital since 9 of the commonly known Community Health Analysis Areas used to establish how the medical marijuana dispensaries were distributed all over Arizona got applicants that were well matched that ties were considered. To help break the ties, an official from the health services department and two other local accounts were in charge of a selection procedure that resembled a lottery process. The proceedings were conducted in one of the DHS headquarters auditorium in Phoenix. Most of the applicants were quite disappointed especially after parting with some cash where out of the $5,000 paid for registration only $1,000 was refundable.
Phoenix New Times reported that those who acquired the licensing through the department of health services were ready to be in operation in a matter of months. This was reported by one Mr. Ryan Hurly, a representative lawyer of medical marijuana dispensaries. Medical marijuana measure was approved back in 2010 and as result Arizona has to today, 99 medical marijuana dispensaries legally trading weed products that have increased in demand among the registered weed patients in Arizona to the tune of 100,000. This last round applications for these licenses accrued revenue collection of $3 million that will form part of the medical marijuana fund for the state. Almost all the new medical marijuana dispensaries will be located in the Tucson and/or Phoenix metro regions that could make them some of the sought-after retail stores in Arizona should the legalization of pot for adults aged 21 years and above be passed. Below is the list of those who were given the licenses:
|Rank||CHAA Name||CHAA ID||Allocated Application ID|
|1||Paradise Valley Village||46||AZDS000001267|
|19||Yavapai Co. NE||26||AZDS000001514|
|22||Tucson E Central||109||AZDS000000986|
|25||Desert View/North Gateway||42||AZDS000000842|
|28||Maricopa Co. W||51||AZDS000001233|
|29||Lake Havasu City||8||AZDS000001508|
Yvonne Wingett Sanchez from the Republic, azcentral.com has been following on the matter and had shared some of her sentiments on this matter on August, 2016. The intense competition anticipated in the issuance of these certificates made applicants scramble to lock down locations in metro Tucson, Phoenix and some other regions that would seemingly be preferred for the upcoming dispensaries. These pursuits were made in consideration to the proposition 205 as well. This proposition seeks to decriminalize marijuana and give way for its recreational use in Arizona. More than that, it is expected that it will give medical marijuana dispensaries a boost. However, this has not been without some issues. This proposition 205 is still mired with its propensity towards the creation of exclusive rights propagating a monopoly dictating on who should go ahead and sell legalized weed, something that has been doing well in such states as Colorado among others.