US (AR): Cannabis company appeals for waiver to retain permits

Nearly five months after agreeing to hold further discussions, Roaring Glen Farms LLC appeared before the Planning Board on December 2nd to appeal for a waiver from a section of Conway’s bylaws regarding ownership transfers. Under the bylaw, if Roaring Glen Farms sold a stake larger than 10%, their special permit would be revoked, which would instantly cause the farm’s CCC operational license to be revoked, too. 

The company, which was issued a special permit in March 2020 to operate an adult-use cultivation facility is seeking to waive Section 11.5R of the town’s bylaws because the business is seeking to operate as a cooperative farm. The bylaw states a special permit will expire if more than 10% of ownership is transferred, which the farm’s attorney says would prevent the business from getting off the ground because investors would not be able to help fund the high start-up costs.

“The reality is that starting a cannabis cultivation business is a very expensive proposition,” said attorney Tom Lesser, who represents Roaring Glen Farms’ owners John Moore and Lisa Gustavsen. “There are incredible regulations concerning security, concerning going from seed to retail in terms of every plant of cannabis, and all that adds up to a lot of money, which an individual — unless they have millions of dollars — cannot undertake.”

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