The preliminary draft rules set released on January 5th, 2021 are an atrocity to our craft medical program. Corporate lobbyists have crafted these rules to push out small business.
Yes, we all knew corporate cannabis has been in Maine for a long time now. Maine’s small craft medical cannabis producers have been fighting them off for years, but this current rule set is the most dangerous assault yet. Here we are sharing the Maine Craft Cannabis Associations and Brigid Farm’s thoughts on the matter.
Call to Action for Maine’s Medical Use of Marijuana Program
RED ALERT! Access to cannabis from the provider of your choice is under assault. The Office of Marijuana Policy released an 81-page ‘update’ to the MMMP Rules that would destroy a program that has created so many jobs, supported Mainers’ health, and provided a resiliency to our state’s economy during a pandemic. We’ll have more opportunities to provide feedback to the OMP, but you have until Sunday, Jan 10th to submit ‘informal’ reactions to the rule. Major takeaways include:
- High hurdles to obtaining a medical card;
- At least a 50% increase in the cost of product for you;
- Tens of thousands of patients left with only pharmaceutical options or the absurdly overpriced and product-limited Adult Use market;
- Hundreds of small businesses shuttered overnight with their families’ and employees’ livelihoods ruined and no other jobs to turn to;
- Local donations, spending, and investment from those businesses drying up overnight, sucking the life out of rural areas with little else to support their economies;
- A dramatic decline in patient choice and a dramatic increase in healthcare cost for those without insurance;
- Affordable access a thing of the past as providers close who can’t afford the $50,000-$500,000 it will take for them to fit into this new corporatist scheme;
- …and a collapse in state tax revenue as cultivators are forced back into the underground market.
SO, what can you do?
- First, you can read the proposed rules, link in bio;
- Second, you can write your local Senator or House Representative and tell them your concerns;
- Third, you can write to the Health & Human Services Committee that oversees the MMMP and share concerns.
- Lastly, you can send us your email or a DM if you’d like to get more involved and contribute/volunteer/learn more about the process still ahead of us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’d like some help organizing your thoughts, here are some suggestions, and you can submit early feedback to the OMP using the link in our bio! Please consider including:
- Delete the requirement for a medical provider to be a specialist in the area of medicine they are certifying you for;
- Remove any new packaging rules that would contribute to unnecessary and terrible waste clogging Maine’s streets, waterways, trails, and dumps;
- Remove language prohibiting discounts and samples for patients;
- Remove the copied & pasted application process from the Adult Use program that lets the OMP weed out any business that doesn’t have hundreds of thousands of dollars to spend to comply;
- Remove labeling requirements that treat cannabis worse than toxic waste;
- Remove purchase limits for patients copied from the Adult Use program;
- Eliminate language giving the OMP free reign to invent violations and new rules arbitrarily as they see fit;
- Explicitly allow caregiver storefronts to deliver;
- Stop involving law enforcement in the enforcement of civil issues, which is only perpetuating the Drug War against Maine’s citizens;
- Allow caregivers to raise money the same way that Adult Use licensees are able to;
- Restrict OMP tracking to sales and revenues reporting only like all other legal businesses in the state of Maine;
- Eliminate the attempt to circumvent the Legislature and introduce backdoor mandatory testing;
- Eliminate language preventing caregiver businesses from contacting their opted-in customers via text and email.
- Eliminate language preventing caregivers from operating out of their homes and requiring a physical storefront!