As a legal Washington state medical marijuana grower and patient, I was disappointed when my employer transferred me to Baltimore, Maryland.
My disappointment came because if you’re an individual who wants to grow your own Maryland medical marijuana, it’s illegal, with no exceptions.
Before I got transferred to Maryland, I’d mistakenly believed the state had legalized medical marijuana.
The reality is that Maryland’s General Assembly (legislature) approved a Maryland medical marijuana program in 2013, and then amended the law in 2014 and in 2015… but as of late 2016, not even one medical marijuana patient has procured legal medical marijuana in Maryland.
The only thing the Maryland medical marijuana law does is give wealthy people the chance to pay lots of money to buy government permission to make lots of money growing, processing, and selling marijuana.
Check this out…
The Maryland medical marijuana law says a maximum of 15 companies will be given exclusive rights to grow Maryland medical marijuana.
The law allows a maximum of 94 medical marijuana dispensaries.
The Maryland medical marijuana law created a government agency—the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission (MMCC)—that’s supposed to create regulations governing growers, processors, dispensaries, doctors who give patients official marijuana recommendations, and patients.
However, in the two years since the legislature created the Maryland medical marijuana program, the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission has been as slow as molasses.
It hasn’t done anything that makes medical marijuana available for the tens of thousands of people who want marijuana right now!
It hasn’t made a way for residents to participate in the Maryland medical marijuana program.
There are still no Maryland doctors officially authorized to give patients medical marijuana recommendations.
There are still no state-licensed Maryland medical marijuana growers or processors.
There are still no state-licensed Maryland medical marijuana dispensaries.
The MMCC dragged its feet on publishing regulations and opening up the application process for licensed growers and dispensers.
When it finally did publish the regulations and the application forms, we see that ridiculously strict investigation, criteria, and rulemaking has been used.
If you want to apply for a state license to be a Maryland medical marijuana grower, processor, or dispensary operator, you’re forced to agree to give up all confidentiality.
You have a complicated 60-page application form to fill out!
You’ll be investigated and evaluated as if you’re applying for a top-secret military or spy agency security clearance.
Not only that, because the regulations and applications were published late and the deadlines so short, you had to hustle like a crazy person to get the forms submitted.
And to add financial insult to personal injury, it costs a lot of money to apply for and hold Maryland medical marijuana licenses.
For example, if you’re “lucky” enough to be approved as one of the 15 state-licensed growers, you have to pay a $125,000 fee for a two-year license to grow, and $40,000 for a dispensary license.
Because of government restrictions, and the fact that none of the hundreds of people applying for these high-cost government licenses have ever grown or sold marijuana, the cost of building and operating corporate cannabis grow facilities is in the millions of dollars.
Another big problem is that local governments are given the right to enact zoning laws telling Maryland medical marijuana businesses where they can be located.
You could spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to set up a marijuana business, only to find out that local government has zoned your business so you can’t make enough money to stay open.
The MMMC continues to drop the ball. Originally, it told us that medical marijuana would be available here in Maryland by the end of 2016.
Nearing the end of summer in 2016, the MMCC claims it didn’t anticipate the large volume of applications it received from would-be marijuana growers, processors, and sellers.
It says it wants to redo the vetting process to ensure that “minorities” have more chances to get the coveted government licenses to grow and sell marijuana.
The MMCC now predicts it won’t be until 2017 before any Maryland medical marijuana businesses open.
In the meantime, while we wait for these government bureaucrats to get their act together, we wonder if they understand that marijuana is our BEST medicine and we want to grow it and purchase it NOW!
Instead, we’re still operating under one of the worst prohibitionist state marijuana laws in the country.
In Maryland right now, if you get caught with a bong, vape pen, vaporizer, butane honey oil manufacturing units, or other “marijuana paraphernalia,” you can get fined or go to jail.
If you have more than ten grams of weed, you can go to jail for a year and face a fine of up to $1000.
If you have LESS than ten grams of cannabis, it’s a “civil offense” with fines that as high as $500.
Marijuana cultivation is totally illegal, and can be charged as a felony with a potential of five years in prison.
If the Maryland medical marijuana program ever becomes is operational, patients will be limited to purchasing a “30 day supply” maximum.
The main point I want to make about the Maryland medical marijuana law is that the law is an insult to patients, doctors, and growers.
We’re being misled by mainstream marijuana “legalization” organizations and the mainstream media into thinking Maryland and states with similarly corporate medical marijuana laws are a sign of medical marijuana victory and “legalization.”
I want to thank BigBudsMag.com for giving me the opportunity to point out how bad the Maryland medical marijuana law is.
I also thank BigBudsMag.com for giving me information on marijuana growing and grow room security so I can produce my own potent cannabis medicine here in backwards Maryland.
I live in constant fear of getting busted, but I need my medicine now, not whenever a bunch of slow-moving bureaucrats finally get around to enacting the deeply-flawed Maryland medical marijuana program.
The sad fact is, if you want to legally grow, use, or sell medical marijuana, you can’t do it in Maryland.