Pubdate: Mon, 12 Jul 2010
Source: Times Record (ME)
Copyright: 2010 Times Record Inc., ASC Inc


BRUNSWICK - A Maine Department of Health and Human Services panel 
announced today it has chosen applicants to operate medical marijuana 
dispensaries in six of the state's eight public health districts, 
according to a department announcement.

The selections were made by a four-person department panel after 
scoring the applications using several criteria. Division of 
Licensing and Regulatory Services officials say it will still likely 
be as long as four months before any of the chosen dispensaries are 
open for business.

"I appreciate the many hours that the panel and our licensing staff 
have dedicated to this work and to adhering to this aggressive time 
schedule," said DHHS commissioner Brenda Harvey in a statement.

Among the original 27 applications submitted for consideration was 
one from a group that listed its headquarters as being at 4 Turner 
St. in Brunswick. The Brunswick-based group, called Primary Organic 
Therapy, was not chosen to open a dispensary in District 2, which 
covers Cumberland County.

The District 2 choice was Northeast Patients Group, which proposes a 
dispensary for 959 Congress St. in Portland. Northeast Patients Group 
was also the state's pick to run the marijuana stores in Districts 4, 
5 and 6, with locations proposed for Thomaston, Waterville or 
Augusta, and Hermon, respectively.

District 4 includes Sagadahoc, Lincoln, Knox and Waldo counties.

In District 3, the department's four-person panel of advisors chose 
Remedy Compassion Center of East Wilton, and for District 8, the pick 
was Safe Alternatives of Fort Kent.

The department did not announce selections for Districts 1 and 7, 
saying no applications from those two districts met the minimum score 
of 70, tallied using criteria such as the quality of the applicant's 
long-term business plan, record-keeping, convenience of location, 
patient education, inventory and quality control.

"We plan to re-open the application process in these districts as 
quickly as possible," said Cathy Cobb, director of the Division of 
Licensing and Regulatory Services, in a statement today. "Those who 
were not selected can make changes to their plans and re-apply."

Primary Organic Therapy also submitted an application for District 1, 
proposing a spot at 139 State Road in Kittery, the address listed for 
the group's chief executive, Derek Brock.

The Friday announcement is the culmination of eight months of work 
since Maine voters last November legalized marijuana dispensaries in 
a statewide referendum.

The list of chosen dispensaries is as follows:

- - District 2 (Cumberland County): Northeast Patients Group, for a 
location at 959 Congress St. in Portland.

- - District 3 (Franklin, Oxford and Androscoggin counties): Remedy 
Compassion Center, for a location at 932 Route 2 in East Wilton.

- - District 4 (Sagadahoc, Lincoln, Knox and Waldo counties): Northeast 
Patients Group, for a location at 153 New County Road in Thomaston.

- - District 5 (Somerset and Kennebec counties): Northeast Patients 
Group, for a location at either 13 Water St. in Waterville or 10 
Middle Road in Augusta.

- - District 6 (Piscataquis and Penobscot counties): Northeast Patients 
Group, for a location at 601 Coldbrook Road in Hermon.

- - District 8 (Aroostook County): Safe Alternatives of Fort Kent, for 
a location at 267 Main St. in Fort Kent.
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MAP posted-by: Keith Brilhart