2 votes

NJ's First Medical Marijuana Dispensary opens in Montclair

Thursday, 12/6/12

Greenleaf Compassion Center at 395 Bloomfield Avenue, in the heart of Montclair's commercial district, admitted its first patient at 10 a.m. All initial visits to Greenleaf will be done by appointment only, board member and co-founder Joe Stevens said.

About 20 registered patients from across the state were scheduled to meet with the dispensary staff to discuss their medical history and decide which of the dispensary's three strains of marijuana would work best. Patients will be limited to purchase a half-ounce of pot at their initial consultation, in order to insure the limited supply reaches all patients, Stevens said.

Eventually six dispensaries, or alternative treatment centers, will serve registered patients, but Greenleaf is the first to complete the application and permitting process and secure approvals from local officials…
http://www.nj.com/politics/index.ssf/2012/12/first_nj_medica...

Gov. Chris Christie doesn't like it.

...Thursday’s opening will come after fights between Gov. Chris Christie, who said the law he inherited was too lax, and advocates who said he was taking too long to bring relief to patients in pain.

As Christie and lawmakers wrestled over the program’s rules, the health department — creating the program from scratch — encountered problems with screening potential dispensary operators.

The governor repeatedly stressed New Jersey would not resemble the "de facto legalization" of pot in Colorado and California, and he put John O’Brien, a retired State Police lieutenant, in charge. New Jersey’s medical marijuana law is the nation’s toughest...
http://www.nj.com/politics/index.ssf/2012/12/first_nj_medica... (map of the Montclair area at this link)

They found a reason to tax it.

New Jersey’s 7 percent sales tax will apply to all medical marijuana sales at dispensaries, state Treasury spokesman Andrew Pratt said late Tuesday. Pratt said that the Division of Taxation made the decision to be consistent with the intent of lawmakers behind the 2010 law to allow the sale of medical cannabis to patients.

State Sen. Nicholas Scutari (D., Union), a prime sponsor of the medical marijuana law, said last week that the legislators had intended for the marijuana to be taxed.

“When you buy a cold or flu remedy at Walgreens, there’s a tax,” he said. “Years down the line, it could end up bringing a significant amount into the state.”
http://www.thedailychronic.net/2012/13475/new-jersey-to-tax-...

Very compassionate thinking!

Qualifying medical conditions are:

Cancer, glaucoma, or positive status for HIV, AIDS, cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe or chronic pain; severe nausea; seizures, severe and persistent muscle spasms

Originally, the list also contained:

seizure disorders (including epilepsy), Lou Gehrig’s disease, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, inflammatory bowel disease (including Crohn’s disease), any terminal illness if a doctor has determined the patient will die within a year, "or any other medical condition or treatment that is approved by the state health department."

but apparently elected officials determined that none of those conditions were severe enough to warrant relief.

Some information about owning a dispensary in NJ:
http://ownadispensary.com/med-states/new-jersey

Information for CA, AZ, CO, ME, WA, RI, DE, VT, CN, MA and DC:
http://ownadispensary.com/med-states