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October 7, 2022

Cannabis companies drop lawsuits against state 

YEHYUN KIM / CTMIRROR.ORG A staff member at Rocky Hill-based medical cannabis grower CTPharma checks on the marijuana flowers.

Following the state’s decision to let some rejected cannabis companies resubmit their license applications with corrected ownership and control information, several entrepreneurs who were suing based on their rejections have dropped their challenges, according to court records.

Eleven companies agreed to withdraw their administrative appeals following a joint stipulation agreement with the state. The companies are: Acreage Connecticut Cultivation JV; Coastal Cannabis; Connectibuds; Core Cult; DF C3; Elm City Agg; The Goods THC Co.; The Hartford Cannabis Company; Leaf CT; Let’s Grow Hartford; and Nautilus Botanicals.

Per the Oct. 3 ruling by Judge John Louis Cordani, these companies can submit updated applications within 14 days and the Social Equity Council must act on those within 30 days.

These companies had filed lawsuits against the state in July after the Social Equity Council rejected their social equity status for disproportionately impacted area cannabis cultivator businesses. At the time, the state had received 41 applications, approving 16 and denying the rest.

Social equity cultivators pursuing this license type, which allows for large-scale grow operations, had a one-time window to apply in a process not subject to the lottery.

Many of the applications were rejected because of unclear ownership and control requirements laid out by the Social Equity Council.

The Social Equity Council in September voted to approve language clarifying its ownership and control guidelines and elected to allow some businesses to resubmit their respective social equity applications with updated ownership and control information.

“Without admitting that the council erred in denying the license or otherwise failed to follow appropriate procedures, I believe it would be in the best interest of the council to reconsider these applications,” Social Equity Council member Ojala Naeem said during the meeting.
 

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