Their report says……More than 800 appeals have been filed by companies that were denied state permits to grow, sell or distribute medical marijuana in Missouri.
As part of the process to launch Missouri’s new medical marijuana program, the state received 2,266 marijuana business applications filed by at least 700 different groups. It awarded 60 licenses to grow marijuana, 86 to make marijuana-infused products and 192 to open dispensaries.
The state’s Administrative Hearing Commission had received 845 appeals of those denials by Friday, spokeswoman Vicki Hale said.
Many of the appeals say the state’s scoring system for awarding permits was flawed. The state hired Nevada-based Wise Health Solutions to score applications. The company could receive up to $582,061 for its work.
Rejected applicants have said Wise assigned different scores for some of the same answers on applications.
“Applications that were largely identical received substantially different scores,” attorneys for NGWMO LLC said in a Jan. 23 filing with the hearing commission. That company is appealing the denial of two cultivation applications.
State lawmakers have opened an investigation into the program and plan to hold hearings on it this spring.
The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services has hired three outside lawyers to help the state’s legal team review all the appeals. The outside lawyers will each be paid up to $49,000 through 2023.
Here’s the original press release about Wise Health getting the contract and it gets more labrythine when we learn that Wise Health is actually a “joint venture between Oaksterdam University (“Oaksterdam”) and Veracious Investigative & Compliance Solutions LLC (“Veracious”)”
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo., Aug. 19, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services recently awarded Wise Health Solutions LLC (“WHS”) a one-year contract to review applications for prospective medical cannabis businesses, in anticipation of Missouri’s burgeoning medical cannabis industry, expected to launch next year. Of the companies that bid for the contract, the State of Missouri determined that WHS was the lowest and best vendor.
Wise Health Solutions, a Missouri-based company, is a new joint venture between Oaksterdam University (“Oaksterdam”) and Veracious Investigative & Compliance Solutions LLC (“Veracious”), two long-standing organizations and practitioners in the cannabis, education, and regulatory compliance fields. Chad Warren Westom of Veracious, who oversaw the development of Nevada’s medical cannabis regulations, is the project’s Executive Lead.
With expert practitioners from both sides of the regulatory field and a successful history of scoring applications in Nevada and Arkansas, Wise Health Solutions anticipates reviewing and scoring license applications to open cultivation and manufacturing facilities, testing labs, and dispensaries. Once the Notice to Proceed is received by WHS, leadership will meet at the end of August in Jefferson City for a kick-off meeting with State Officials.
Wise Health Solutions’ approach to the training and monitoring of the grading professionals, and its commitment to real-time transparency, will be essential to the program’s success. A “blind” review process, combined with a question and information quarantine system, will ensure the consistency and integrity of the review process, and allow eligible applications to be scored solely on the merit of their content. The grading rubric is based on the State of Missouri’s own expectations, with adherence to strict grading rules and scoring standards.
Serving as the project’s Executive Lead, Westom has more than 20 years of experience working in Quality Assurance and regulatory compliance at prestigious companies and government agencies. His broad experience includes public health, environmental protection, and health care, having served both as a department director at a nationwide company as well as in the public sector.
As Bureau Chief with the State of Nevada, Westom built Nevada’s entire marijuana regulatory structure from 2013 through 2017 and oversaw the licensing and opening of all of Nevada’s cannabis establishments. He directed the activities of over 80 professional staff, managing budgets totaling $18 million annually. Previously, he served as the manager for Nevada’s Health Facility investigations, another highly regulated industry. With this expertise, he’s served repeatedly as a subject matter expert in court cases. His credentials include registrations as an Environmental Health Specialist.
ABOUT MISSOURI MEDICAL MARIJUANA PROGRAM: For more information or any questions regarding the state’s program, visit https://health.mo.gov/safety/medical-marijuana, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact the Missouri Medical Marijuana program directly at 573-751-6234.
ABOUT VERACIOUS: A Nevada-based regulatory compliance company that aids prospective cannabis businesses, Veracious is a collaborative team of highly-educated experts in their respective fields with more than 50 years of combined experience in regulatory compliance, permit and license acquisition, monitoring, and compliance auditing. Providing full-service licensing and business services for cannabis and other industries, Veracious has become trusted advisors to many of the finest cannabis stores, cultivators, and edible-producers in the country, ensuring they remain in compliance with all state and local regulators while running at optimal business efficiency. Visit https://www.veracioussolutions.co
ABOUT OAKSTERDAM: Founded in 2007, Oaksterdam University has been the forerunner in providing the highest quality training offered in the cannabis industry and the first institution to address the growing needs of the marijuana movement, from patients to regulators. Such a focus has established Oaksterdam University as the first and only cannabis college with comprehensive programs in both business and hands-on horticulture available as seminars, semesters and online. OU also trains regulators, including city officials, state agencies, and legislative staff as well as evaluators overseeing medical cannabis license applications. OU Faculty is comprised of world-famous professionals, academics, and entrepreneurs. OU Alumni – over 40,000 from over 40 countries – are the most active in the world. Visit Oaksterdamuniversity.com
Brad Senesac, Marketing
SOURCE Oaksterdam University