Ohio announces first set of medical marijuana growers

0

Ohio announces first set of medical marijuana growers

Operations in Dayton and Huber Heights were included among the 11 Level II medical marijuana licenses announced Friday by the state of Ohio, but there remains some uncertainty whether either site will be state-approved to grow pot.

Two companies submitted applications for multiple locations, but can choose only one under state rules. That means Ohio Clean Leaf LLC has 10 days to decide whether to pick from its proposed sites in Dayton and Carroll in Fairfield County.

The Huber Heights site also could get rejected, but for a different reason. The city has a ban on marijuana-grow operations.

Although Paragon Development Group, LLC, won a Level II license for an operation in Huber Heights, it will have to abide by all local zoning restrictions and laws, said Ohio Department of Commerce spokeswoman Stephanie Gostomski.

Jason Wilson, Paragon’s chief security officer, said the company is working to finalize a deal to shift the location to a city in Miami County.

“I’m ecstatic about it. I think it’s great,” he said of the news that Paragon was awarded one of the coveted licenses.

Friday’s announcement was anxiously awaited by the 76 applicants vying for up to 12 Level II licenses, which allow cultivation on up to 3,000 square feet.

Another 109 entities are seeking Level I licenses, which allow for cultivation up to 25,000 square feet.

Level I license awards will be announced in the coming weeks, though no target date has been set, Gostomski said.

Among the other area sites named in the Level II licenses were one in Monroe and one in Wilmington.

Here is the list:

  • Fire Rock Ltd., which will pick one of three locations identified — Columbus, Canton or Akron;
  • FN Group Holdings, LLC, Ravenna, Portage County;
  • Mother Grows Best, LLC, Canton, Stark County;
  • OhiGrow, LLC, Toledo, Lucas County;
  • Ancient Roots, LLC, Wilmington, Clinton County;
  • Ohio Clean Leaf, LLC, which will pick either Dayton or Carroll location;
  • Ascension BioMedical, LLC, Oberlin, Lorain County;
  • Agri-Med Ohio, LLC, Langsville, Meigs County;
  • Paragon Development Group, LLC, Huber Heights;
  • Hemma, LLC, Monroe, Butler County;
  • Galenas, LLC, Akron, Summit County.

Applicants were scored based on their business, operations, quality assurance, security and financial plans, according to state commerce department officials.

Brian Wright of the Ohio Cannabis Association called Friday’s announcement “very exciting.”

“There were clearly many strong applicants and these selections for the Level II licenses reflect the best of the best,” Wright wrote in a written statement. “We are looking forward to working with them, our state leadership and the hundreds of thousands of Ohioans who will be able to have safe access to the medical treatments they need.”

More about the organizations selected for Level II licenses on Friday:

Ohio Clean Leaf: Seven owners with backgrounds in farming, rental property, trucking, investments and legal marijuana cultivation formed Ohio Clean Leaf. The company is under contract to purchase an industrial warehouse at 2046 Valley Street in Dayton. But it also has the option to set up shop at 3560 Dolson Street in Carroll. The ownership includes multiple members of the Landis family, who have run a hog and crop farm as well as a trucking company.

Paragon: Five managers, including four from the Miami Valley, formed the company. Chief Executive Re’Shanda Grace-Bridges, who runs a home-based travel agency, is director of new student programs at University of Dayton. Melinda Warthman, the compliance officer, is an adjunct instructor at UD. The company expects to pay $12 an hour, plus benefits. Paragon is working with a management company with experience in another state with legal marijuana. It plans to produce four strains: Float, Calm, Motivate, and Happy. It expects to be able to begin cultivation within six months.

Hemma: Two Cincinnati women — Elizabeth Van Dulman and Megan Arata — together own nearly two-thirds of the company while 10 other owners hold minor stakes. Van Dulman is a real estate agent and entrepreneur while Arata is a yoga and pilates instructor who owns a multi-faceted wellness center. The company is under contract to purchase 100 Edison Drive in Monroe and plans to create at least 10 jobs that pay above minimum wage. Hemma also plans to apply for a medical marijuana processor’s license from the state.

View Comments 0

Weather and Traffic