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18 vie for 3 licenses to sell marijuana in Lorain County (MAP)

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ELYRIA — Eighteen applicants are hoping to nab one of the three medical marijuana dispensary licenses in Lorain County.

Grant Miller, spokesman for the Ohio Board of Pharmacy, said the licenses awarded to those applicants will be announced by early May.

Miller said the board will be looking at the criteria the applicants enclosed in their applications, mostly under the section of 3796:6 for the Ohio Administrative Code.

“We made it explicitly clear everything that was needed by an applicant and that’s what we are going off on the applications,” Miller said.

Angel Dawson, an applicant for the dispensary Natural Remedies, said she is excited about potentially opening a dispensary in Elyria, where she wants to be more than just a drugstore. The applicant is currently the office manager for an addiction clinic and urgent care. Dawson said she’s patiently waiting, but feels every other applicant is in the same situation.

“I think everybody is nervous, anxious and just ready to see what happens next month,” she said.

She also wants to offer health seminars and educational classes led by a medical professional to help eliminate the stigma associated with medical marijuana. She also sees her business as the kind that would be community-minded with a lean toward helping youths.

The applicants for the dispensaries listed possible locations in Elyria, Lorain and one in Sheffield Lake.

A retail dispensary is prohibited from being within 500 feet of a school, church, public library, public playground, public park or community addiction services provider, according to state law.

In addition, cities, villages and townships can adopt regulations to prohibit or limit the number of retail dispensaries.

There are 21 qualifying medical conditions that are allowed to be treated using medical marijuana.

They are HIV/AIDS; Alzheimer’s disease; amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS; cancer; chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE; Crohn’s disease; epilepsy or another seizure disorder; fibromyalgia; glaucoma; hepatitis C; inflammatory bowel disease; multiple sclerosis; pain that is chronic and severe, or intractable; Parkinson’s disease; post-traumatic stress disorder; sickle cell anemia; spinal cord disease or injury; Tourette’s syndrome; traumatic brain injury; and ulcerative colitis.

If she could obtain one of the licenses, Dawson said she could start right away. But if not, she’s happy enough medical marijuana is available.

“I’m just happy that it’s coming to Ohio and we’re able to help. My family has been in the medical business for 20 years so I’ve been in the medical field all my life, so to have this come to Ohio and be able to help patients in any way we can, it’s just amazing for anyone who gets this opportunity.”

Contact Bruce Walton at (440) 329-7123 or bwalton@chroniclet.com. Follow him on Twitter @BruceWalton.



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