The Department of Finance and Administration has released scores for the 198 applications to open a medical marijuana dispensary in Arkansas. Only 32 will be selected. The state is split into eight zones, with four dispensaries will open in each zone.
The scores were given to the Medical Marijuana Commission last week from a third-party consulting group from Boston who scored them. The commission originally planned to announce the top applicants this week, but that meeting was postponed to Jan. 9 to give newly appointed commissioners time to be briefed on the issues.
The commission then planned to announce the scores at the Jan. 9 meeting, but the Alcoholic Beverage Control Division released them on Dec. 20, following Freedom of Information Act requests.
“There’s interest in these scores. There has been for a long time and Arkansans know and have been waiting on these scores as have the applicants,” said Scott Hardin with DFA. “Understandably we then quickly started receiving Freedom of Information Act requests saying ‘well you have the scores, why can I see them?’”
These scores are not approved. The commission can still review them before issuing licenses. For companies that applied in multiple locations and scored high for several, they will have to choose one location they want to license.
“If they do have concern or want to look further into an issue they can decide to do that,” Hardin said.