DHS Makes Forms Available for Medical Marijuana Cards

East Valley Tribune:  “Arizonans who act quickly can be among the first to qualify to buy, possess and use marijuana, which voters legalized for medical use last November.  State health officials on Monday made the forms available on the agency’s website that a doctor has to fill out to get a patient a medical marijuana card. State Health Director Will Humble said while applications won’t be accepted until April 14, those who think they qualify can jump-start the process right now.”

By |2011-03-29T17:27:50-07:00March 29th, 2011|Stories & Articles|Comments Off on DHS Makes Forms Available for Medical Marijuana Cards

Pot Cases in Mohave County Dismissed ‘Cause of Out-of-State Medical-Weed Cards

Ray Stern, Phoenix New Times:  “Proposition 203 has sparked dismissal of pot-possession charges in Mohave County against at least 10 people who had out-of-state medical-weed cards.  Though the charges shouldn’t have been brought against such marijuana card-holders in the first place, what’s been happening in northwestern Arizona is a definite sign that ‘the times they are a changin’.”

By |2011-03-29T15:10:47-07:00March 29th, 2011|Marijuana Crimes|Comments Off on Pot Cases in Mohave County Dismissed ‘Cause of Out-of-State Medical-Weed Cards

AMML Sets New Record for Daily Visitors

Yesterday, March 28, 2011, this website set a new record for the most visitors in a single day – 1,572.  I anticipate that we will also set a new record for monthly visitors for our third full month around 20,000 visitors.

By |2011-03-29T08:13:14-07:00March 29th, 2011|Stories & Articles|Comments Off on AMML Sets New Record for Daily Visitors

Want a dispensary? Think Rural

From Will Humble’s blog:

“One of our objectives as we developed the final set of Rules for Medical Marijuana was to ensure reliable access to medication in rural Arizona. . . . we added a provision in the final rules that allow rural dispensary owners to move their dispensaries anywhere in the State after 3 years . . . . By applying in a rural CHAA, they can increase their chances of successfully being awarded a Registration Certificate and keep their options open for moving to a part of the state with a high density of qualified patients after a few years.  Likewise, if a prospective applicant has had a previous bankruptcy or lacks access to $150K in capital (which are part of our competitive screening criteria), they’ll be in a better position to compete for Registration Certificates in rural AZ.”

By |2011-03-29T07:24:32-07:00March 29th, 2011|Will Humble Speaks|Comments Off on Want a dispensary? Think Rural

Dispensary Zoning Issues

From Will Humble’s blog:

“The final rules outline a 2-step process whereby applicants enter into a competitive screening in each Community Health Analysis Area (CHAA) for a dispensary Registration Certificate, followed by a build out and inspection before receiving an Operating License from ADHS.  Each dispensary applicant will be required to sign an attestation that the address that they are applying under is in accordance with local zoning (note that this doesn’t mean that they need to establish whether  they have a special or conditional use permit). . . .

Once an applicant has been awarded a Registration Certificate, they’re allowed to move their dispensary inside their CHAA (subject to local zoning approval, Department approval, and paying our $2,500 fee).  The Registration Certificate holder is also allowed to move their dispensary location (inside the CHAA) after they receive their Operating License.”

By |2011-03-29T07:19:32-07:00March 29th, 2011|Will Humble Speaks|Comments Off on Dispensary Zoning Issues

Health Department’s Final Pot Rules Main Objective: Keep Recreational Users Out of the System

Arizona Capital Times:  “Almost five months after voters passed Proposition 203, the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act, the Health Department has released the final version of the rules that will guide how the system will actually go into effect.”

By |2011-04-03T22:35:52-07:00March 29th, 2011|Stories & Articles|Comments Off on Health Department’s Final Pot Rules Main Objective: Keep Recreational Users Out of the System

Lake Havasu City Officials: New Rules won’t Change Medical Marijuana Ordinance

Today’;s News Herald: “The latest medical marijuana rules shouldn’t have an impact on Lake Havasu City laws.  The Arizona Department of Health Services released the final set of rules Monday for medical marijuana use and distribution. But city officials agree that no changes will be necessary to an ordinance adopted earlier this year.”

By |2011-04-01T01:30:19-07:00March 29th, 2011|Stories & Articles|Comments Off on Lake Havasu City Officials: New Rules won’t Change Medical Marijuana Ordinance

Legal Pot Growing Coming

The Daily Courier:  “Potential medical marijuana users are just a few weeks away from being able to legally grow their own pot in Arizona.  And it’s likely that people who receive medical marijuana user cards before October will be able to continue growing their own legal pot for a year.”

By |2017-02-11T17:33:12-07:00March 28th, 2011|Stories & Articles|Comments Off on Legal Pot Growing Coming

Arizona Department of Health Services Publishes Dispensary FAQ

The Arizona Department of Health Services published a Frequently Asked Questions for prospective Arizona medical marijuana dispensaries.  This is a very enlightening document.  Here are some gems I discovered in the FAQ.

  • When can I apply for a dispensary license?ADHS will accept applications for dispensaries between June 1st and June 30th, 2011.
  • When will you award the dispensary certificates? ADHS anticipates the allocation process for initial dispensary certificates to be completed in August 2011.
  • On what basis will dispensary registration certificates be awarded? The Department will issue dispensary registration certificates using an evaluation process. If only one complete application is received for a dispensary in a particular CHAA, that applicant will be awarded a dispensary registration certificate. If more than one complete application is received for a dispensary in a particular CHAA, the Department will use the evaluation process to allocate the dispensary registry certificate.
  • Once I apply for a dispensary certificate, can I change the address in my application before I begin operating? Yes, as long as the new address complies with local zoning and you pay the fee.
  • Do I need a certificate of occupancy from my city in order to apply? No, applicants do not need to submit a certificate of occupancy in the initial application.
  • How many dispensary registration certificates will one entity be able to obtain? A person may be an applicant, principal officer, or board member on only one dispensary registration certificate application for a location in a single CHAA and on no more than five dispensary registration certificate applications for locations in different CHAAs.
  • In the dispensary application, I have to confirm whether: I’ve been a resident of Arizona for 3 years, whether I am delinquent on federal, state and local taxes, child support, or student loans etc., whether I’ve ever been bankrupt, whether Everyone with a 20% financial interest in the dispensary is an applicant or board member, and whether I have access to $150K in startup capital.
  • Are these requirements? All principal officers, board members and dispensary applicants must have lived in Arizona for the preceding three years before application. According to rules, a delinquency on federal, state, or local taxes, child support, or student loans, an unpaid judgment due to a governmental agency, or a past bankruptcy does not disqualify an applicant from being allocated a dispensary registration certificate. However, ADHS may use those factors as criteria in the selection of who will be allocated a dispensary registration certificate if there is more than one qualified applicant for a given CHAA.
  • Can a dispensary change the location of the dispensary? Within the first three years after receiving a dispensary registry certificate, a dispensary may move; the new location must also be within the CHAA for which the dispensary registration certificate was issued. After the first three years, a dispensary may move to a location in another CHAA.
  • Is a dispensary in a rural area of Arizona required to remain in the CHAA for which the dispensary registration certificate was issued? A dispensary in a rural CHAA must remain in the CHAA for which the dispensary registration certificate was issued for the first three years. After the first three years, a dispensary in a rural CHAA may move to a location in another CHAA but it must prove the new site complies with local zoning requirements.
By |2011-03-28T14:41:03-07:00March 28th, 2011|DHS Rules|Comments Off on Arizona Department of Health Services Publishes Dispensary FAQ

Arizona Department of Health Services Publishes the Final Medical Marijuana Rules

The Arizona Department of Health Services published its final medical marijuana rules (92 pages).

Here are my first impressions of the provisions that apply to would-be dispensaries:

  • DHS took my recommendation and added the owners of entities to its definition of board members who must satisfy the eligibility requirements to obtain a dispensary license.  R9-17-301.B adds the owners of limited liability companies, partnerships and members of a cooperative to the list of board members.  The section starts, “in addition to the individual or individuals identified in the dispensary’s by-laws as board members of the dispensary the following individuals are considered board members: If a corporation is applying for a dispensary registration certificate, the officers of the corporation”  Wow!  This subsection is astonishing because it shows how totally unaware of the business world DHS is.  First, the Bylaws do not normally name the members of the board of directors.  Second, the shareholders of the corporation are not considered principal officers or directors – only the officers of the corporation are deemed to be board members!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  DHS open the door a mile wide.  People with excluded felonies and non-Arizona residents  apparently can be shareholders of a for profit corporation that seeks a dispensary license.
  • R9-17-302.A states, “If more than one dispensary registration certificate application. . . is received for a single CHAA, the Department shall review the dispensary registration certificate applications for the CHAA to determine if:

1.  Each applicant, principal officer, or board member associated with a dispensary registration certificate application has submitted Arizona state income tax returns for the previous three years with the dispensary registration certificate application;

2. Each applicant, principal officer, or board member associated with a dispensary registration certificate application:

a. Is current on paying court-ordered child support;

b. Is not delinquent paying taxes, interest, or penalties due to a governmental agency;

c. Does not have an unpaid judgment due to a governmental agency; and

d. Is not in default on a government-issued student loan;

3. Each individual who has 20% or more interest in the dispensary is the applicant or a principal officer or board member of the dispensary;

4. Each applicant, principal officer, or board member has never filed for personal or corporate bankruptcy; and

5. Documentation, from an in-state financial institution or an out-of-state financial institution, demonstrating that the dispensary has at least $150,000 available to begin operating was submitted with the dispensary registration certificate application.

Holy money bags Batman!  I didn’t see that one coming.  I guess the big money players won.  Mom & pops lose.  This new and outrageous rule apparently means that applicants for a dispensary license must have at least $150,000 in a bank account to get in the lottery.

What’s with the bankruptcy exclusion?  Many good people have been forced to file for bankruptcy.  There is no relationship to bankruptcy and being involved with a medical marijuana dispensary.  It’s just a DHS excuse to limit the possible pool of owners for what reason I cannot imagine.

R9-17-302.A.3 seems to require that every person who owns 20% or more of an entity (including a for profit corporation) that applies for a dispensary license must be a principal officer or a board member.

  • There are major changes in the way dispensary registration certificates will be awarded.  The lottery may or may not be used, depending on the actual to be determined facts associated with each CHAA.  DHS may award a dispensary registration certificate based on if there are no qualified applicants or multiple applicants at each of the five levels set forth in R9-17-302.A.  Think of R9-17-302.A as containing five review levels.  If only one qualified applicant exists at the A(1) level, that applicant gets a dispensary registration certificate.  If there are multiple qualified applicants at a R9-17-302.A level, they move to the next round/level.  For example, if there are multiple qualified applicants that meet the requirements of A(1), A(2) and A(3), they move to the A(4) level and if only one qualified applicant meets the A(4) level, that applicant gets the dispensary registration certificate.  If there are multiple qualified applicants that satisfy A(1), A(2), A(3), A(4) and A(5) then “the Department shall randomly select one of the dispensary registration applications” to get the dispensary registration certificate.  So, the lottery lives!
  • Looks like there will be a dispensary in all 124 of the 126 CHAAs.  If there are no qualified applicants for a dispensary registration certificate in a CHAA, DHS will select an applicant from another CHAA and award the dispensary registration certificate to that “lucky” or ‘unlucky” applicant.  R9-17-302.B.3 states, “If the Department determines that none of the reviewed dispensary registration certificate applications meets the criteria in subsection (A)(1), the Department shall randomly select one dispensary certificate registration application and allocate a dispensary registration certificate to that applicant.”
  • Multiple dispensary applications are allowed with one catch.  R9-17-302.C states,  “If an applicant submits more than one dispensary registration certificate application, the documentation in subsection (A)(5) needs to demonstrate there is at least $150,000 available for each dispensary registration certificate application submitted.”
  • R9-17-303.C states, “A city or town that contains more than one CHAA may request the reassignment of a dispensary registration certificate allocation from one CHAA to another CHAA under the jurisdiction of the city or town by submitting a written request to the Department by June 1, 2011”
  • DHS pushed back the start date for accepting applications for a dispensary registration certificate to June 1, 2011.  R9-17-303.D states, “The Department shall accept dispensary registration certificate applications for 30 calendar days beginning June 1, 2011.”
  • R9-17-304.A states, “An individual shall not be an applicant, principal officer, or board member on:

1. More than one dispensary registration certificate application for a location in a single CHAA, or

2. More than five dispensary registration certificate applications for locations in different CHAAs”

DHS sanctions multiple applications for dispensaries so long as the applications are in different CHAAs, no more than five applications are submitted and the applicant can get a letter from a bank that it has at least $150,000 for each dispensary application.  Big money wins again!  Shame on DHS for misleading people who don’t have $150,000 cash in the bank into believing for months that they could possibly obtain an Arizona medical marijuana dispensary license.

Note:  DHS appears to have taken my suggestion and that of Alan Sobol to clarify that dispensary applicants do not have to get final city or county zoning approval to be able to file an application for a dispensary registration certificate.  Rule R9-17-304.D.5 combined with R9-17-305.A give dispensary applicants a two stage zoning process.  R9-17-305.A requires final zoning approval only after the would-be dispensary obtains a dispensary registration certificate.  Unfortunately DHS took my suggestion and will allow the winner of a dispensary registration certificate to change its dispensary site to a different location within its CHAA if  final zoning is denied or some other reason exists to move to a different location arises.  Getting final zoning approval is a good thing to do before getting a dispensary registration certificate, but not a requirement to filing an application as some people said.

  • DHS actually set minimum requirements for a business plan.  R9-17-304.D.7 states that the application for a dispensary registration certificate must contain “A business plan demonstrating the on-going viability of the dispensary on a not-for-profit basis that includes:

a. A description of and total dollar amount of expenditures already incurred to establish the dispensary or to secure a dispensary registration certificate by the individual or business organization applying for the dispensary registration certificate,

b. A description and total dollar amount of monies or tangible assets received for operating the dispensary from entities other than the individual applying for the dispensary registration certificate or a principal officer or board member associated with the dispensary including the entity’s name and the interest in the dispensary or the benefit the entity obtained,

c. Projected expenditures expected before the dispensary is operational,

d. Projected expenditures after the dispensary is operational, and

e. Projected revenue;”

  • DHS apparently clarified that applicants for a dispensary registration certificate do not need to jump through all the city and county zoning hoops just t be eligible to apply for a dispensary license.  R9-17-305.A states, “To apply for approval to operate a dispensary, a person holding a dispensary registration certificate shall submit to the Department, at least 60 calendar days before the expiration of the dispensary registration certificate, the following:

2. A copy of documentation issued by the local jurisdiction to the dispensary authorizing occupancy of the building as a dispensary and, if applicable, as the dispensary’s cultivation site, such as a certificate of occupancy, a special use permit, or a conditional use permit;

3. A sworn statement signed and dated by the individual or individuals in R9-17-301 certifying that the dispensary is in compliance with local zoning restrictions”

  • Finally, we get some guidance on what it means for a dispensary to operate on a not-for-profit basis.  R9-17-310.A states, “A dispensary shall:

13. Not lend any part of the dispensary’s income or property without receiving adequate security and a reasonable rate of interest;

14. Not purchase property for more than adequate consideration in money or cash equivalent;

15. Not pay compensation for salaries or other compensation for personal services that is in excess of a reasonable allowance;

16. Not sell any part of the dispensary’s property or equipment for less than adequate consideration in money or cash equivalent; and

17. Not engage in any other transaction that results in a substantial diversion of the dispensary’s income or property.”

  • R9-17-316.B states, “A dispensary shall only acquire marijuana from:

1. The dispensary’s cultivation site,

2. Another dispensary or another dispensary’s cultivation site,

3 A qualifying patient authorized by the Department to cultivate marijuana, or

4 A designated caregiver authorized by the Department to cultivate marijuana.”

 

By |2011-04-03T22:43:13-07:00March 28th, 2011|DHS Rules, Video|Comments Off on Arizona Department of Health Services Publishes the Final Medical Marijuana Rules

AMML Sets New Weekly Traffic Record

Thanks for everybody who visited this website last week.  We had a new record high of 5,096 visitors for the week ending at midnight March 27, 2011.  Not bad for a website that is not quite three months old.

By |2011-03-28T06:26:53-07:00March 28th, 2011|Stories & Articles|Comments Off on AMML Sets New Weekly Traffic Record

Entrepreneurs Look to Cash In on Medical Marijuana Biz

myFOXphoenix.com:  “Many business owners are hoping to get a license to sell — and make a lot of money legally selling pot.  Those hoping to open dispensaries in Arizona seem to be satisfied with the finalized set of rules — but its clear owners will have to jump through a lot of hoops if they want to get into the pot business.”

By |2011-04-01T01:26:48-07:00March 28th, 2011|Stories & Articles, Video|Comments Off on Entrepreneurs Look to Cash In on Medical Marijuana Biz

Group Closes in on Dispensary Location Outside Sierra Vista

Sierra Vista Herald:  “After being unable to find a suitable location that meets Sierra Vista’s recently passed zoning restrictions, a group of area businessmen are seeking to establish a medical marijuana dispensary adjacent to a retirement community nestled just outside of the city limits off of Highway 90. “

By |2015-04-06T18:50:22-07:00March 27th, 2011|Stories & Articles, Zoning|Comments Off on Group Closes in on Dispensary Location Outside Sierra Vista

Scottsdale Panel Recommends First Marijuana Dispensary Site

Arizona Republic:  “The first conditional-use permit for a medical-marijuana dispensary in Scottsdale gained the Planning Commission’s support Wednesday, but some members said approval ‘puts the cart before the horse.’  By a 3-2 vote, the commission recommended City Council approval of a permit for the Virtue Center, at 7301 E. Evans Road, in the Scottsdale Airpark. . . . ‘It’s all speculative, no one knows if they’re going to get a license’,”

By |2012-08-18T10:10:03-07:00March 26th, 2011|Stories & Articles, Zoning|Comments Off on Scottsdale Panel Recommends First Marijuana Dispensary Site

Paradise Valley asked to OK Permit for Marijuana Dispensary

Arizona Republic:  “Paradise Valley has received its first permit request to dispense medical marijuana in the town.  Mountain View Medical Center recently submitted a special-use permit application to operate a dispensary at the medical complex at the southeastern corner of Tatum and Shea boulevards.”

By |2012-08-18T09:43:34-07:00March 26th, 2011|Stories & Articles, Zoning|Comments Off on Paradise Valley asked to OK Permit for Marijuana Dispensary

Lawyer in the CHAMPS Marijuana Dispensary Tax Comments on IRS Dispensary Audits

Taxes.com:  “Henry Wykowski . . . represented Californians Helping to Alleviate Medical Problems . . .  in that dispensary’s landmark 2007 case against the IRS.  Now, many of the growing number of California dispensaries facing what could amount to debilitating audits have sought out Wkyowski’s services. . . . ‘The most successful dispensaries do more than strictly offer cannabis.’  Says Wykowski, ‘I personally believe that a large part of the government decided that because they had not been successful through the DEA to shut [the dispensaries] down, maybe they could tax them out of business’.”

By |2015-04-06T18:57:50-07:00March 26th, 2011|Federal Dispensary Attacks, Tax Issues|Comments Off on Lawyer in the CHAMPS Marijuana Dispensary Tax Comments on IRS Dispensary Audits

Will Humble on the Final Version of the Arizona Department of Health Services Rules

Today Arizona Department of Health Services Director Will Humble said:

“We’re finished making our policy decisions regarding the final medical marijuana rules, and our rules team will be spending Friday and probably part of the weekend crossing the T’s and dotting the I’s on the final medical marijuana rules.  We’ll be releasing them on our website first-thing on Monday morning.  We’ll also be having a media conference at some point later that day.  We’ve developed a long set of Frequently Asked Questions to help prospective qualified patients, caregivers, dispensary applicants and physicians understand the final set of rules.  While the final rules will be posted on Monday, the actual law takes effect at the start of the business day on April 14.  We expect to be ready to go on the 14th.

We believe the final rule package accomplishes most of our objectives which include:

  1. ensuring convenient access for folks with debilitating medical conditions identified in the Initiative;
  2. ensuring access to the medication in rural Arizona;
  3. clear expectations regarding criteria for medical marijuana certifications;
  4. a way to identify physicians that act unprofessionally and write certifications for recreational use;
  5. a fair, effective, and orderly way to award dispensary licenses this year and in future years;
  6. clear medical, administrative, inventory, and security expectations for dispensary operation;
  7. reasonable compliance and enforcement provisions;
  8. a clear method for adding debilitating medical conditions over time;
  9. efficient administrative oversight designed to minimize cost; and
  10. reasonable fees that will cover the costs of implementing the program.

Over the last few months we have carefully examined medical marijuana programs in other states, reviewed more than 3,000 comments from the public on our 2 draft rule packages, and used the full range of expertise and creativity among our staff to develop what we believe is a responsible set of regulations that will ensure the near-term and future success of the program.  Thanks for all the hard everybody!

By |2011-03-25T07:12:20-07:00March 25th, 2011|Will Humble Speaks|Comments Off on Will Humble on the Final Version of the Arizona Department of Health Services Rules

Benson Preparing for Medical Marijuana

San Pedro Valley News-Sun:  “With the Arizona Department of Health (ADHS) nearing the end of the study that will officially legalize medical marijuana by April, Arizona cities and counties are quickly working to approve zoning regulations.  The Benson City Council and Planning & Zoning Commission held a joint session last week, discussing how to move forward with regulating medical marijuana distribution and use inside city limits.”

By |2015-04-06T18:50:22-07:00March 25th, 2011|Zoning|Comments Off on Benson Preparing for Medical Marijuana

KEYTLaw Medical Marijuana Dispensary Workshop on Saturday March 26, 2011

This Saturday at 9 am I am holding a free workshop for my Arizona medical marijuana dispensary owners to swap dispensary war stories and learn from two guest speakers about dispensary insurance needs and why dispensaries need an architect. Here are the details:

Time:  9 am – 11 am
Date:  Saturday, March 26
Where:  8765 W. Kelton Ln, Bldg A-1, Ste 102, Peoria, AZ.  Located on the SW corner of 87th Ave., & Kelton Lane (1 block south of Bell Road, just west of the 101 freeway).

Agenda:

  • 9:00 opening remarks
  • 9:15 Doug Banfelder, Premier Southwest Insurance Group on dispensary insurance needs
  • 10:00 Mike Wakefield of Wakefield Architects.  Mike will discuss why dispensaries will need an architect for things such as a floor plan and site plan.  He will also discuss use permit requirements.
  • 10:30 open forum – would be dispensary owners are invited to share information
By |2015-04-06T18:50:21-07:00March 24th, 2011|Stories & Articles|Comments Off on KEYTLaw Medical Marijuana Dispensary Workshop on Saturday March 26, 2011

Medical Directors and the Arizona Medical Marijuana Dispensary Application Process

by James Mc Cready, Managing Director
Arizona Medical Marijuana Medical Directors

The Arizona Department of Health and its director Bill Humble have made a tremendous step forward in the use of Medical Directors to assist in the application process and ongoing management of the Medical Marijuana Dispensaries; to be opened in Arizona, in 2011. Their efforts should ensure the first true “Medical Marijuana” program is established in Arizona.

The Arizona Department of Health has provided a number of important control mechanisms for the Dispensary Applications Process. We believe these steps are necessary to provide a complete and fair mechanism for Dispensary Certification. These measures will ensure the Dispensaries receiving certificates will provide the “Qualifying Patients”, “Designated Caregivers”, the citizens of Arizona, and the State Government of Arizona with the necessary guarantees of Ownership Qualification, Business Operation, Inventory Control, Security, Patient Record Keeping, Education and Support required by the new law.

Medical Directors will be an integral part of the Dispensary Application Process and subsequent Dispensary Operation. For the purposes of our discussion we will focus on the Dispensary Application Process only.

If you are applying for an Arizona Medical Marijuana Dispensary Certificate you will need a Medical Director before you send your application to the Arizona Department of Health. Here are the things you need to know according to Draft 01/31/11 (Remember the Final Draft will be out 3/28/11 and will give us the final word on these requirements):

1. The Medical Director must be an: Medical Doctor, Naturopathic Medical Doctor, Doctor of Osteopathy, or a Homeopathic Medical Doctor with an active Arizona License Number, which you will need to include on your application (Conversation with AZ Dept. of Health).

a. If you are a physician considering becoming a Medical Director. We are recommending to our physicians not to provide their name or license # for application process; UNLESS there is an independent contractor agreement in effect. We are also recommending other specific terms to protect the physician and dispensary, which are outside the scope of this article.

2. The Medical Director can not establish a doctor patient relationship with or provide a written certification for medical marijuana for a qualifying person (R9-17-312 E).

a. If you a re a physician considering becoming a Medical Director. We are recommending to our physicians not to provide a written certification for medical marijuana for any qualifying person. In other words if you are going to become a Medical Director you can not prescribe Medical Marijuana. This is an extremely important consideration. This will have to be a section in your independent contractor agreement. If the Dispensary losses it’s certificate to operate due to your prescription activities. You would be held responsible for the loss of the business. The cost to you would tremendous to you professionally and financially.

3. The Medical Director will need to provide “Policies and procedures that comply with the requirements in this chapter (R9-17-303) for:

a. Qualifying patient recording keeping (for further details see R9-17-312 C and R9-17-312 C)

b. Patient education and support (for further details see R9-17-312 C and R9-17-312 C)

If you a re a physician considering becoming a Medical Director here is what you will need to develop for your Dispensary:

1. Develop and provide training to the dispensary’s dispensary agents at least once every 12 months from the initial date of the dispensary’s registration certificate on the following subjects:

a. Guidelines for providing information to qualifying patients related to risks, benefits, and sides effects associated with medical marijuana.

b. Guidelines for providing support to qualifying patients related to the qualifying patient’s self-assessment of the qualifying patient’s symptoms including a rating scale for pain, cachexia or wasting syndrome, nausea, seizures, muscle spasms, and agitation.

c. Recognizing signs and symptoms for substance abuse.

d. Guidelines for refusing to provide medical marijuana to an individual who appears to be impaired or abusing medical marijuana.

2. Assist in the development and implementation of review and improvement processes for patient education and support provided by the dispensary.

3. Educational materials for qualifying patients and designated caregivers that include:

a. Alternative medical options for the qualifying patient’s debilitating medical condition.

b. Information about possible side effects of and contraindications for medical marijuana including possible impairment with use and operation of a motor vehicle or heavy machinery, when caring for children, or of job performance.

c. Guidelines for notifying the physician who provided the written certification for medical marijuana if side effects or contraindications occur.

d. A description of the potential for differing strengths of medical marijuana strains and products.

e. Information about potential drug-drug interactions, including interactions with alcohol, prescription drugs, non-prescription drugs, and supplements.

f. Techniques for the use of medical marijuana and marijuana paraphernalia.

g. Information about different methods, forms, and routes of medical marijuana administration.

h. Signs and symptoms of substance abuse, including tolerance, dependency, and withdrawal.

i. A listing of substance abuse programs and referral information;

4. A system for a qualifying patient or the qualifying patient’s designated caregiver to document the qualifying patient’s pain, cachexia or wasting syndrome, nausea, seizures, muscle spasms, or agitation that includes:

a. A log book, maintained by the qualifying patient and or the qualifying patient’s designated caregiver, to track the use and effects of specific medical marijuana strains and products.

b. A rating scale for pain, cachexia or wasting syndrome, nausea, seizures, muscles spasms, and agitation.

c. Guidelines for the qualifying patient’s self-assessment or, if applicable, assessment of the qualifying patient by the qualifying patient’s designated caregiver.

d. Guidelines for reporting usage and symptoms to the recommending physician providing the written certification for medical marijuana and any other treating physicians.

5. Policies and procedures for refusing to provide medical marijuana to an individual who appears to be impaired or abusing medical marijuana.

Our next article will deal specifically with the Legal Exposures and problems you will have as an Arizona Medical Marijuana Dispensary Medical Director. We will also discuss some possible solutions. However, as a licensed Physician you know that some challenges in practice are only resolved by a different and larger insurance policy.

If you are considering applying for Medical Marijuana Dispensary Certificate or a Physician looking to become a Medical Director as contact us Arizona Medical Marijuana Medical Directors (AZMMMD) at 602 578-4385. We offer a FREE Consultation to discuss your particular concerns.

James Mc Cready, Managing Director
Arizona Medical Marijuana Medical Directors
AZMMMD.com
602 578-4385

By |2011-03-24T16:02:24-07:00March 24th, 2011|Medical Directors|Comments Off on Medical Directors and the Arizona Medical Marijuana Dispensary Application Process

Washington Medical-marijuana Dispensaries– First County Trial Ends in Acquittal

Yakima Herald:  “Yakima County’s first trial over a so-called medical-marijuana dispensary or collective quickly ended in acquittal Thursday afternoon.  The Superior Court jury that heard the charges against Valtino Hicks of Yakima returned its verdict in less than 25 minutes, unusually quick for almost any criminal trial.”

By |2015-04-06T18:50:21-07:00March 24th, 2011|Marijuana Crimes|Comments Off on Washington Medical-marijuana Dispensaries– First County Trial Ends in Acquittal

3 Steps for an Arizona Medical Marijuana Dispenary to Operate Legally

Mike Wakefield of Wakefield Architects, gave us permission to republish his detailed analysis of the steps a prospective Arizona medical marijuana dispensary must follow to get permission from a city to open a dispensary.  If your dispensary needs an architect and it probably does, contact Mike at 602-595-7276.  His office is located at 3848 North Third Avenue, Suite 3092, Phoenix, AZ 85013.

3 STEPS FOR A DISPENSARY BUILDING TO OPERATE LEGALLY:

I. Local City / Town Application (Zoning)
II. State of Arizona Department of Health Services Application
III. Local City / Town Certificate of Occupancy (Building Permit)

I. Local City / Town Application

Specific to City / Town Ordinances (available via website – i.e. www.phoenix.gov)

II. State of Arizona Department of Health Services Application

DRAFT 01/31/2011
TITLE 9. HEALTH SERVICES
CHAPTER 17. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH SERVICES – MEDICAL MARIJUANA PROGRAM

R9-17-304. Applying for Approval to Operate a Dispensary

To apply for approval to operate a dispensary, a person holding a dispensary registration certificate shall submit to the Department at least 60 days before the expiration of the dispensary registration certificate the following:

2. A copy of the certificate of occupancy or other documentation issued by the local jurisdiction to the applicant authorizing occupancy of the building as a dispensary and, if applicable, as the dispensary’s cultivation site;

3. A sworn statement signed and dated by the individual or individuals in R9-17-301 certifying that the dispensary is in compliance with local zoning restrictions;

4. The distance to the closest public or private school from:

a. The dispensary; and
b. If applicable, the dispensary’s cultivation site;

5. A site plan drawn to scale of the dispensary location showing streets, property lines, buildings, parking areas, outdoor areas if applicable, fences, security features, fire hydrants if applicable, and access to water mains;

6. A floor plan drawn to scale of the building where the dispensary is located showing the:

a. Layout and dimensions of each room,
b. Name and function of each room,
c. Location of each hand washing sink,
d. Location of each toilet room,
e. Means of egress,
f. Location of each video camera,
g. Location of each panic button, and
h. Location of natural and artificial lighting sources;

7. If applicable, a site plan drawn to scale of the dispensary’s cultivation site showing streets, property lines, buildings, parking areas, outdoor areas if applicable, fences, security features, fire hydrants if applicable, and access to water mains; and

8. If applicable, a floor plan drawn to scale of each building at the dispensary’s cultivation site showing the:

a. Layout and dimensions of each room,
b. Name and function of each room,
c. Location of each hand washing sink,
d. Location of each toilet room,
e. Means of egress,
f. Location of each video camera,
g. Location of each panic button, and
h. Location of natural and artificial lighting sources.

III. Local City / Town Certificate of Occupancy (Building Permit)

1. Site Issues – Prior to obtaining a building permit, customers should perform “due diligence” to ensure the site complies with all zoning ordinance requirements. Key ordinance requirements include:

a. Distance of the structures to the property line or “building setback”
b. Percentage of the site covered by structures or “lot coverage”
c. Height of structures
d. All uses on-site (i.e. restaurant space, office area, etc.)
e. All parking and driveway aisles
f. Landscaping

2. Building Issues

a. Two complete sets of plans, drawn to scale, and if required per the Arizona Board of Technical Registration or local building department, signed and sealed by a licensed architect or engineer registered in Arizona. Plans include site plan, floor plan, plumbing and mechanical plan, electrical drawings, and structural drawings. Additional drawings, specifications, and calculations may be required depending on the scope of the project.
b. Description of the proposed project (new build, remodel, etc.) and the business operation.
c. Project address and legal description of the property (lot and block number, meets and bounds description). If an address has not been established, the city will assign one.
d. Owner’s name, mailing address, contact person and phone number.
e. Contractor name, address, phone number, contractor license number, state privilege tax number and city privilege tax number.

3. Inspections – In order for a building to obtain a Certificate of Occupancy, the structure must pass a series of inspections. In most cases, the inspections include, but are not limited to

a. Architectural inspections (where inspector checks if tenant space was built in accordance with an Architect’s stamped and approved drawings),
b. Electrical inspections,
c. Plumbing inspections,
d. Sprinkler inspections,
e. Fire alarm inspections,
f. Fire pump pressure test, &
g. Emergency egress.

Certificate of Occupancy Flow Chart

1) Submit building and site plans
2) Plan review
3) Approved or revisions requested
4) Revisions completed
5) Plans re-submitted
6) Second review
7) Permit fees paid
8) Permit is issued
9) Work commences
10) Inspections completed
11) Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) issued

By |2011-03-24T10:41:50-07:00March 24th, 2011|Real Estate Issues|Comments Off on 3 Steps for an Arizona Medical Marijuana Dispenary to Operate Legally

Ping Fights Medical-pot Dispensary Near Its Phoenix Location

Arizona Republic:  “Golf-equipment manufacturer Ping is threatening to leave its north Phoenix home of 45 years if the neighborhood continues to decline, its attorney says.  Phoenix will do all it can to prevent that from happening, according to a top city official.  The dispute between Ping and its neighbors came to light last week at the first use-permit hearings for medical-marijuana locations citywide.”

By |2011-03-28T12:54:35-07:00March 23rd, 2011|Stories & Articles|Comments Off on Ping Fights Medical-pot Dispensary Near Its Phoenix Location

US Medical Marijuana Sales Seen At $1.7 Billion

Wall St. Journal: “The U.S. medical marijuana market will reach $1.7 billion in sales this year, according to a report by See Change Strategy LLC.  The market, which nearly rivals Viagra’s $1.9 billion in sales, is expected to double in the next five years as the number of patients grows and more states adopt laws allowing the sale of marijuana for medicinal purposes”

By |2015-04-06T18:50:21-07:00March 23rd, 2011|Stories & Articles|Comments Off on US Medical Marijuana Sales Seen At $1.7 Billion

Phoenix Medical Marijuana Locations Reflect Restrictive Zoning

Arizona Republic:  “The first five medical marijuana dispensaries approved in Phoenix are confined to office and industrial parks, an early indication that Phoenix’s new zoning rules for the dispensaries are so restrictive that few, if any, outlets will be located anywhere near the people who need them.  Because of distance requirements from homes, churches, schools and parks, some real-estate attorneys believe there is virtually no retail site throughout the city that would meet the requirements.”

By |2012-08-18T10:00:01-07:00March 23rd, 2011|Stories & Articles, Zoning|Comments Off on Phoenix Medical Marijuana Locations Reflect Restrictive Zoning