Source: Health Policy Institute of Ohio
Two state agencies are asking for $1.8 million to get Ohio’s new medical marijuana program off the ground (Source: “$1.8 Million Requested to Start up Ohio’s Medical Marijuana Program,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 18, 2016).
The Ohio Department of Commerce and State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy, two of the three state agencies that will regulate the program, plan to request money for the new Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program from the state controlling board. A spokeswoman for the State Medical Board of Ohio, the third entity, said it does not plan to request an appropriation in the near future.
Most of the money will be used to hire nine staff members to help write the rules and regulations for the new medical marijuana program, including how growers and dispensaries will be licensed and how patients will register with the program. The rest will be spent on consultants, stipends for advisory committee members, and supplies.
The agencies plan to reimburse the costs with future marijuana business license fees, which won’t start rolling in until next year at the earliest. The program must be “fully operational” by September 2018, according to the law.