Medical cannabis: AMCC issues stay on licenses

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Wagon Trail Med-Serv President and CEO Joey Robertson explains how the machines in his facility work. (Noah Galilee)

CULLMAN, Ala. – The Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission (AMCC) on Friday, June 16, held an emergency meeting and put a hold on the licenses that it issued the previous Monday, June 12. The AMCC said it found “inconsistencies” in how applicants for licenses were scored. 

After Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed medical marijuana legislation which legalized medical cannabis in Alabama and created the AMCC, the AMCC selected the University of South Alabama to establish teams of academic evaluators and other qualified individuals to review, evaluate and score the applications. In the Friday emergency meeting, the AMCC stated that a staff member noted the “inconsistencies” regarding the evaluations done when determining which companies would receive licenses.

“The Commission will work expeditiously to investigate and identify inconsistencies in the score data” explained AMCC Director John McMillan. “Out of an abundance of caution, we are suspending all current procedural timelines until those matters are resolved.”

Cullman County’s Wagon Trail Med-Serv was among the list of entities that applied for the AMCC’s Integrated Facility Licenses and was denied. Wagon Trail Med-Serv President and CEO Joey Robertson said he was disappointed to hear that his company did not receive the license. However, he said, he is grateful that the AMCC is making the effort to bring in a third party and reevaluate.

“Even though the results currently are not favorable, I want to applaud the AMCC for looking into this further and not accepting the scores as they were received. If there is a possibility of a miscalculation of scores or things that were missed on the scores, I’m glad that the AMCC is looking at them now and not making us reapply down the road,” Robertson said.

Cullman Economic Development Agency Director Dale Greer was shocked to hear that Wagon Trail Med-Serv did not receive a license. Greer, along with the Cullman County Commission, Cullman Mayor Woody Jacobs and Cullman City Council members toured the facilities at Wagon Trail Med-Serv when the company was seeking City and County approval.

“We were all impressed with the quality and the technology abilities there,” Greer said. “I’ve looked at a lot of manufacturing operations over the years and this place is essentially a pharmaceutical production facility.”

Rep. Corey Harbison, R-Good Hope, said he was upset when he heard that Wagon Trail Med-Serv did not receive a license but is glad that the AMCC is issuing a stay for now.

“I know that people are ready to get this going and I respect that, but this is something that they need to make sure they get it right and if it takes a little more time to do that, then so be it,” he said. “I know this is something that is new and everyone is learning. I appreciate everyone that has been involved in the process and I know it’s not an easy job.”

Said Robertson, “We will continue to do what we have to do in order to support the AMCC with whatever they made need from us moving forward.”

He said he will continue to attend the monthly AMCC meetings and do whatever is necessary in order to obtain the Integrated Facility License from the AMCC.

Wagon Trail Med-Serv is located at 70 County Road 290, Hanceville, Alabama, 35077. 

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