NJ Plans For Massive Expansion Of Medicinal Cannabis Program

Although New Jersey’s Governor Phil Murphy’s strong efforts toward legalization last month came up just short, the cannabis advocate’s fight for expansion is far from over.

In an effort to revamp the current medicinal program in New Jersey, the Murphy administration is seeking to open as many as 108 new medical cannabis centers statewide. With the path cleared by the New Jersey Department of Health, officials are proposing up to 30-plus new facilities in each region, immensely upping the current six licensed Alternative Treatment Centers (ATCs).

Governor Murphy hopes that the expansion of NJ’s medical program will “meet the needs of its patients,” as his previous efforts toward legalization could not. With the department continuously adding to the list of conditions qualifying for medical cannabis, residents  are beginning to understand the need for ATCs and, further, the effectiveness of cannabis as medication.

Under the new operation, three types of endorsements–cultivation, manufacturing and dispensary–will be available based on the needs in each region, immensely upping state-wide accessibility.

“We are at a point where patients just cannot wait any longer for easily accessible, affordable therapy. This request for applications allows for specialization of businesses to increase medical product in our state,” New Jersey Health Commissioner Dr. Shereef Elnahal told nj.gov. Beginning July 1, permit-application forms will be available at http://www.nj.gov/health/medicalmarijuana. While processing time is not yet certain, all applications will be due for review on August 15.

Emerald contributor since June 2019

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