Office of Cannabis Management Advances Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensary Licensing

Michael Roche


On Thursday, July 14, 2022, the Office of Cannabis Management (“OCM”) held a board meeting at which it approved final regulations authorizing Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensary (“CAURD”) licensing. 

As had originally been proposed, CAURD licenses will be available to certain “justice involved” individuals and nonprofit organizations that are able to demonstrate that they intentionally serve justice-involved individuals and communities with historically high rates of arrest, conviction, incarceration, or other indicators of law enforcement activity for cannabis-related offenses and create employment opportunities for justice-involved individuals.  Justice-involved individuals are those who have been previously convicted of a cannabis-related offense or had certain close family members convicted of a cannabis-related offense.

The final regulations outline several requirements that must be included in the application.  Among the more notable requirements are (1) audited financial statements for the applicant or, if the applicant was formed within the year preceding the application, certified financial statements; (2) an organizational chart of the applicant, including position descriptions and the names and resumes of the persons holding such positions; and (3) details of the sources of funding used in connection with the business.

The final regulations also outline a method for allocating licenses in the event there are more applicants than available licenses.  OCM may divide the state into regional geographic zones (e.g., Finger Lakes, Western NY, etc.) and each such zone will have a certain number of available licenses.  Each applicant will rank preferences for regional geographic zones.  If there are more eligible applicants than available licenses for a given zone, OCM may select from eligible applicants based on weighted scoring of the evaluation criteria.  In the event of a tie between two or more candidates, OCM will randomly select the final applicants to recommend for approval.

OCM also adopted a mockup of the application for CAURD licenses, which has been posted on OCM’s website.  The final application is not currently available on their website.  OCM will provide notice on its website at least 14 days before the application becomes available and the application will be available for at least 30 days.

The regulations also establish an application fee of $2,000.

If you have any questions regarding this LEGALcurrents, please do not hesitate to contact any member of the firm’s Cannabis Law practice group at 585.232.6500 or 716.853.1616.

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