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November 18, 2013 at 4:08 PM

First rush of pot-business applications turned in to state

Pot entrepreneurs eager to get into the state’s new recreational-marijuana industry started submitting license applications Monday.

By 2 p.m., 299 applications had been received at the state Department of Revenue (DOR), the first stop in the application process.

While business was brisk at DOR there were no long lines of pot entrepreneurs at the agency’s offices.

Everyone is being encouraged to apply on-line because it is more convenient, said DOR spokeswoman Beverly Crichfield. Still, some folks “just sort of trickled into” DOR offices Monday, Critchfield said.

There’s no rush for entrepreneurs (other than perhaps the thrill of applying) because the process is not first-come, first-served.

The state will accept applications for 30 days. It will then assign a marijuana investigator to each applicant, to make sure they comply with rules – such as a three-month residency requirement for applicants, their partners and financiers — and they have a viable business plan.

All applications received or postmarked by Dec. 19 will be reviewed. Applications submitted after Dec. 19 will be returned.

There’s no estimate for when the first licenses will be issued. But state officials will give them to growers and processors first, so they can provide supply for stores expected to open as early as May.

Plenty of folks seem willing to get into the pot business based on licensing workshops held around the state. Most of those filled to capacity quickly and at one point, almost 2,000 of 2,400 seats at the workshops had been reserved. There is no limit on the number of growers and processors, but the state will license only 334 retail stores.

Comments | Topics: I-502, marijuana

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