The Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) will begin accepting applications for Marijuana Establishment Licenses from early applicants from January 19 through March 9, 2021. Entities that obtain a Marijuana Establishment License will be able to sell recreational marijuana to anyone 21 and older in Arizona.
Prop 207 allows adults 21 and older to purchase, possess and use marijuana. Marijuana can only be sold at licensed dispensaries. A soon as the ADHS starts licensing dispensaries, those dispensaries can begin selling marijuana. At the very latest, dispensaries will be able to legally begin selling marijuana on April 5, 2021.
According to the ADHS, to be an “early applicant” one must meet one of the following criteria:
- An entity seeking to operate a marijuana establishment in a county with fewer than two registered Nonprofit Medical Marijuana Dispensaries.
- A Nonprofit Medical Marijuana Dispensary that is registered and in good standing with the Department. Good standing means that the Nonprofit Medical Marijuana Dispensary is not the subject of a pending Notice of Intent to Revoke issued by the Department.
Required forms for early applicants:
Social Equity Ownership Program
The ADHS will issue 26 Marijuana Establishment Licenses to applicants who qualify under the Social Equity Ownership Program.
The ADHS must first adopt rules to create and implement a Social Equity Ownership Program to promote the ownership and operation of marijuana establishments by individuals disproportionately impacted by the enforcement of previous marijuana laws. During the rulemaking the ADHS will post drafts and accept public comments.
The ADHS will begin accepting applications for these 26 licenses within six months of adopting the final rules for the Social Equity Ownership Program. The ADHS does not currently have a timeline for this rulemaking.
Limitation on Number of Marijuana Establishments
After issuing licenses to qualified Early Applicants and to the applicants who qualify under the Social Equity Ownership Program, the ADHS may not issue more than one Marijuana Establishment License for every 10 registered pharmacies in Arizona.