A bill that will allow more of Pennsylvania’s medical cannabis growers and processors to also act as retailers — and vice-versa — fully cleared the legislature on Tuesday and will head to Gov. Josh Shapiro’s desk.
Despite some legislators’ predictions earlier this year that the bill could — or should — become a vehicle for home-growing or even full adult legalization, the bill that passed the state Senate in September was partially broadened and partially narrowed through deal-making in the House.
Most notably, the bill was amended in the House so that not only are independent growers/processors eligible to open dispensary locations but independent dispensaries are now eligible to apply to become growers. However, the number of dispensary permits that independent growers/processors would be automatically eligible for was reduced by the House from two to one, much to the dismay of the bill’s original author.
“That’s certainly frustrating to us because we did a lot of market research and calculations in terms of what we determined should be two permits versus one,” said Sen. Chris Gebhard, R-Lebanon County. “We are putting them in a very difficult position long term to compete in the marketplace,” Gebhard said of prospective grower-retailers.
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