Hawaii's medical marijuana licensees must have financial backing


Hawaii lawmakers on Thursday gave final passage to a bill that clears the way for medical marijuana dispensaries to open for business in the Islands as early as July 2016, but an expert says interested applicants will need a couple million dollars to become one of the state’s eight licensees.

The final draft of House Bill 321 passed by House and Senate lawmakers requires that applicants have at least $1 million in the bank and pay an application fee of $5,000 along with a $75,000 license fee due within seven days of acceptance by the Hawaii State Department of Health. Selected licensees will be announced next April and distribution will begin that July.

Local criminal and civil tax attorney Stephen Pingree, who has worked in Nevada for several years with their marijuana industry, says Hawaii lawmakers were particular when deciding who could...

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