‘Proximity protection’ in New York a new battleground for dispensaries – Green Market Report

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A rule established by New York cannabis regulators requiring that all legal marijuana shops be at least 1,000 feet apart is under fire, both from a new lawsuit and also from other stakeholders unhappy about the protocol.

The rule by the Office of Cannabis Management – which requires all dispensaries to be 1,000 feet apart in any municipality with more than 20,000 residents, and 2,000 feet apart if the population is under 20,000 – has led to a policy of “proximity protection.” That policy has been granted to some of the retail licensees that have been queued up for permit consideration in order to rule out other possible shop sites.

Gracious Greens LLC, a cannabis retail license applicant owned by a service-disabled veteran, asked a state judge to strike down the rule, the Times Union reported, arguing that the rule itself is impossible to follow because it was established before there were any existing legal recreational marijuana shops from which to measure 1,000 feet for any others.

The chicken-and-egg situation created a game of Russian roulette for the dispensary applicants, the suit argues, because it forced entrepreneurs like Gracious Greens to spend money locking down real estate that could very well

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