Pubdate: Mon, 29 Feb 2016
Source: Albuquerque Journal (NM)
Copyright: 2016 Albuquerque Journal
Author: Olivier Uyttebrouck


35 Licensed Nonprofits Will Be Made Public

The names of New Mexico nonprofits licensed to grow and sell medical 
marijuana will be identified publicly on the state Department of 
Health's website today for the first time since lawmakers approved 
the cannabis program in 2007.

The names of all 35 licensed nonprofit producers will be posted at, together with addresses of those with active 
dispensaries, agency spokesman Kenny Vigil said.

The agency will also honor requests from the public to view records 
submitted by producers, including applications and other records, Vigil said.

Last week, the Journal requested applications and other documents 
submitted by licensed producers to the Department of Health since 
Jan. 1, 2015. The department responded Thursday that the request was 
"excessively burdensome or broad" and that the agency could not 
respond until April 6.

The information the agency will post on its website will be similar 
to a list of producers and dispensaries it has provided for years to 
patients licensed to buy medical pot. "We provide a list for patients 
when they get their ID cards for the program, and that is essentially 
what will be posted on the website in some fashion," Vigil said. The 
agency will not disclose information about some 21,000 patients 
certified to purchase medical cannabis.

In the past, the identities and other information about medical pot 
producers remained confidential under rules issued by the Department of Health.

The confidentiality rule was challenged last year in a lawsuit filed 
by freelance journalist Peter St. Cyr and the New Mexico Foundation 
for Open Government. The suit contends that the rule violated the 
state's open-records law.

The agency has been reworking the rules since July, when Gov. Susana 
Martinez ordered officials to make the information public in the 
interest of transparency.

New Mexico has 35 licensed producers, including 12 that were selected 
for licensing last year. Many of the 12 new producers do not have 
active dispensaries, Vigil said.
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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom