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W.Va. medical marijuana now two years away, says program’s top regulator

By Jake Zuckerman, Charleston Gazette-Mail

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The ranking regulator of the state’s nascent medical marijuana program opened up Tuesday about an expedited timeline for patients and new program rules that favor larger industry players.

Jason Frame, director of the West Virginia Office of Medical Cannabis, discussed a $4.1 million minimum capital reserve requirement (on top of permit and application fees) for vertically integrated business, and a plan to beat earlier estimates of being three years away from real product sales.

“Our goal is to have products available in less than two years,” Frame said.

The 2017 law technically went live July 1, though an array of the program’s key components are miles from in place. The new timeline comes on the heels of state Treasurer John Perdue having tentatively awarded a marijuana banking contract to a South Charleston credit union — patching a gaping hole in the program since the state’s banking vendor announced its unwillingness to handle marijuana funds in 2018. …

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