Permit Issued for Medical Marijuana Cultivation


by Terry Rogers


Columbia Care, the company awarded the Kent County contract for medical marijuana cultivation and distribution has been issued a permit for cultivation in Milford. The company did not release information on where the cultivation will take place due to security. The contract, however, mentions the Milford Industrial Park which is located on Masten Circle near NKS Distributing.

“The City has issued a permit for cultivation only,” Rob Pierce, City Planner, said. “We have not issued a permit for a dispensary. The location they have chosen is zoned for the cultivation portion of the business as it is considered manufacturing. If they want to add a dispensary, they will need to apply for rezoning with the Planning Commission, but as of now, they have not asked to put a dispensary at that location.”

According to Delaware Code, medical marijuana facilities, known as compassion centers, must be issued a valid registration certificate from the Department of Health and Human Services. Registration must be renewed every two years. In addition, Delaware Title 16§4917A says that, although local governments are permitted to enact ordinances and regulations related to medical marijuana cultivation and dispensing, they may not enact Code that would make creating such a location “unreasonably impracticable” in the jurisdiction.

In Delaware, a physician may prescribe medical marijuana to treat symptoms of terminal illness, cancer, multiple sclerosis, HIV and AIDS, cirrhosis, ALS, Alzheimer’s disease, autism, epilepsy or PTSD. Prescriptions are also issued for people who suffer debilitating pain, wasting syndrome, nausea and seizures. Currently, there are two compassion centers in the state, one in Lewes and one in Wilmington. A contract has been issued for a second New Castle County location as well as the one issued to Columbia Care for a location in Kent County.

“The company prefers that the location where cultivation will take place not be publicized,” Mr. Pierce said. “They will have strong security processes in place. Right now, the only permit they have from the City is to grow marijuana at the location. They would need to apply for rezoning for anything else and, as of now, we do not have a request to rezone the location.”

Columbia Care says they are pleased that Milford will be the location of their cultivation facility.

“Columbia Care is thrilled with the progress we’ve made since licensing,” Kelsi Browning, a spokesperson for the company said. “Construction at our cultivation and manufacturing facility will be completed before year end, at which point, we expect to begin growing the best selection of strains available in the state.  Our first dispensary will be located in Kent County and is expected to be ready for final inspection in the first quarter of 2018. As soon as we are given approval to begin serving patients, our team will be ready to serve Delaware with respect, professionalism and enthusiasm.” For more information, individuals can contact the company at Ms. Browning also said that the company has identified what they believe is a more centrally-located home for their dispensary and currently have a fully-executed lease, completed designs and are taking the first steps to begin construction. 

Columbia Care is working with local communities and stakeholders to move forward as quickly as possible. They look forward to offering the people of Delaware the highest levels of service and manufacture pharmaceutical-quality products.

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