It is estimated that Massachusetts will soon have over 100 dispensaries and 30,000 retail marijuana customers. The state has an ambitious plan to make a recreational marijuana industry worth $1 billion by 2020. While the medical cannabis industry has been slow-going so far, it seems like things could be changing in Framingham this year with three businesses looking to join them.,
The “dispensary near me” is a business that sells recreational marijuana. There are three dispensaries in Framingham, Massachusetts.
Three adult-use marijuana shops have opened in Framingham, with three more on the way.
Nova Farms and Cultivate are now located on Worcester Road (Route 9) while Temescal Wellness is located on Cochituate Road (Route 30). Three more companies are in the works, although it will be some time before they open.
“This is a new industry that was previously illegal, and it’s highly regulated,” said Thatcher Kezer, Framingham’s chief operating officer. “For good reasons, there is a very onerous process, both at the state level and at the local level, to vet out these businesses that are going to be operating in our communities.”
Framingham has signed host community agreements with Union Twist, Innovative Flower, and Life Essence (which was bought by Trulieve). Each has an application pending with the Cannabis Control Commission, a statewide agency that governs marijuana product licensing and operations.
A host community agreement is a prerequisite that each operator must acquire with the municipality in which they wish to operate before applying for a CCC license.
“The state issues marijuana licenses, and localities have a part in the approval process,” Kezer said.
“Most of the time, everything is OK. We sign off… the clock is ticking on the 60-day mark. We sometimes simply let the clock tick away, which means they’re authorized.”
Union Twist, which will be situated on Route 9, has checked all of the boxes, according to Kezer, and the city has told the CCC that the company is completely compliant and ready to operate.
“I’m not sure when the Cannabis Control Commission will approve their license,” Kezer added, “but it’s likely to be soon.”
“We haven’t gotten the certification for Life Essence or Innovative Flower yet, so what else can we do?” I’m not sure; that’s up to the state commission.”
It’s not uncommon for applications and the final parts of those applications to take a long time – Union Twist earned its state license in November. Medical marijuana applications, women-owned companies, and applicants engaging in a social justice initiative are given priority over standard adult-use license applications.
Framingham can only have six recreational sales enterprises at the moment.
The limit was set based on the number of businesses in the municipality that sell alcohol that is not intended to be drunk on site, such as liquor shops. Only Framingham voters have the ability to reduce the number of HCAs for adult-use companies, but City Council may raise it if they choose, according to Kezer.
According to the Cannabis Control Commission, municipalities have a lot of leeway when it comes to applying conditions and restrictions to HCAs.
Framingham, for example, took advantage of the ability to levy a local sales tax: the city receives 3% of adult-use retail sales, as well as a 3% impact fee that goes toward things like public safety overtime and municipal inspection fees.
Other types of marijuana businesses, like as producers, testing labs, and delivery services, are not subject to the limit. However, each company must apply for a separate HCA.
“If you want to apply and operate in more than one category in Framingham, we did it the way we did it,” Kezer said.
“We wanted to keep it independent because you can discontinue one line of business and preserve the other.”