If things go according to plans, at least two of the medical marijuana dispensaries licensed for Joplin will be open for business in December or January, on the heels of those that have opened in the past few days in St. Louis and Kansas City.
Dispensaries in Missouri are opening two years after voters approved a constitutional amendment in November 2018 allowing for a program that is being overseen by the state Department of Health and Senior Services.
“The implementation of this program has been efficient yet thorough,” Dr. Randall Williams, director of the department, said in a news release. “Much has been said in recent months of how rigorous our compliance processes are, and Missourians should be assured that this industry will be well regulated, just as Article XIV and Missouri voters envisioned.”
So when can patients expect to see a dispensary opening in Southwest Missouri?
Missouri Made Marijuana LLC, which is setting up shop in the former Payless Shoe Store at 1502 S. Range Line Road, hopes to open in December, according to Randy Black, co-owner. He said the company will have five dispensaries, a grow house and a production-manufacturing operation in several states.
“We’re hoping to get going here as soon as we can,” Black said. “We’re aiming to be done with all of the furniture and fixtures in the next two weeks. But you never know. We’re running as fast and hard as we can. I want to open on my birthday, Dec. 12.”
The next step is to complete renovations at the 3,000-square-foot building in the next few weeks, and then the company can request its commencement inspection from the state, one of the final pieces of the puzzle.
“We have to get all of our remodels done, and then the