On Monday, the Ohio Board of Pharmacy awarded 56 provisional dispensary licenses to operators who would be able to sell medicinal marijuana, assuming they meet state requirements, once it becomes legal.
Of those dispensaries, three will be located in Newark at 1550 West Church Street, 1246 North 21st Street and 1150 North 21st Street.
Those dispensaries will serve a state-drawn district which covers Delaware, Knox, Licking and Morrow Counties.
Five provisional licenses were awarded to operators in Columbus, with two given to operators in Cleveland, Cincinnati and Dayton, each.
“It seems odd that we would have that many in the small population compared to the other cities,” said Jeff Anderson, who owns a business near one of the Newark locations.
Andy Joseph is the CEO of Ohio Grown Therapies, LLC, which was awarded a license for a Newark dispensary.
“It’s fairly common in the marijuana industry to have what is referred to as the ‘green mile,” Joseph said. “The reason that you find three dispensaries all located in one relatively small city has nothing to do with proximity to anything, or people or places. It has everything to do with the friendliness of the community, and Newark was very open in supporting medical marijuana.”
That is a stance reflected by Anderson.
“It wouldn’t matter whether it would be the business next to me or either side,” he said. “Make sure customers treat everyone around them with a level of respect and I think everything will go smooth.”
Joseph hopes to have his dispensary open by the end of the year.