Columbia Care will transition its operations at the Cornelia Street dispensary on April 5, 2018, and Curaleaf will begin operating in the coming days to prevent any lapse in the availability of medical marijuana for North Country patients.
As for growers-processors, it's expected to take about nine months to a year from the time applications are submitted until the time the growers/processors are supplying medical marijuana.
Bids to open new dispensaries have been met with mixed reactions from local legislators across the state.
The law doesn't allow medical marijuana in dry leaf form.
Current law permits medical marijuana to be prescribed only for certain debilitating conditions.
John Collins, director of the office of medical marijuana, said all 12 of the now licensed processors are operational, but only two - Cresco Yeltrah in Jefferson County and Standard Farms in Lehigh County - are distributing products to dispensaries.
Connecticut's now operating and regulated dispensaries, allowed since 2012 by state law, are used by 24,165 registered patients whose qualifying condition must be certified by a physician in order to obtain medical marijuana.
Up to two new medical-marijuana dispensaries may open in the Iowa City area following the passage of legislation that will expand Iowa's medical-marijuana program.
Fargo likely won't change its ordinance when it comes to medical marijuana, said Donald Kress, planning coordinator for Fargo's Planning and Development Department.
"We have two processes running here: a commercial and a research side", Collins said in a conference call Thursday with reporters outlining this next phase of the program. Those entities also require state approval, with the state soon beginning that application and approval process.
"Bringing more dispensaries and grower/processors allows for more options for patients", she said.
Dispensary fees include a $5,000 application fee, which is nonrefundable, a $30,000 refundable permit fee and proof of $150,000 in capital.
Medical marijuana may only be grown, harvested, stored and processed indoors in Pennsylvania.
Qualified patients with a doctor's recommendation will receive a Pennsylvania medical marijuana identification card, allowing the purchase of medical marijuana from an authorized state-licensed medical marijuana dispensary.
Police Lt. Walt Miller said that the dispensary, at 445 West Douglas Avenue, was selling its wares illegally.
Such online sales of marijuana are prohibited in the United States, even in states that have legalized or partially legalized the drug, "but clearly these regulations are failing", said coauthor Eric Leas, a research fellow at Stanford University.
But the effort appears to be moving slowly in the Legislature, and Republicans say they view that as a sign legalization doesn't have enough support to pass the Democrat-led Legislature.