Hawaii legalized medical marijuana 15 years ago, though the 2000 provision did not allow for caregivers or collectives – you had to grow your own or call up your dealer just like always. And now, the state of Hawaii has gone for its second round of bullshit marijuana laws.
Governor David Ige signed a bill Tuesday allowing for the licensing of dispensaries on the islands. But the eight Hawaiian islands will only share eight dispensaries between them. And one other thing – you have to have at least $1 million to qualify for the license, effectively taking the potential gold mine of a medical marijuana business out of the hands of small growers and putting them into the hands of venture capitalists and successful business owners.
Paul Armentan, NORML deputy director, expressed a similar sentiment to the LA Times after Hawaii’s announcement, saying that the financial qualification limited license access to those with investor capital.
If or when Hawaii goes to full legalization, a few major businesses will already have a stranglehold on a bottomless market. Many collectives in California, a state where collective licenses are relatively much easier to attain, are worried about what may happen once venture capital gains a greater foothold in the market.
Hawaii has officially proclaimed itself as a state where to join the marijuana industry, you need to have access to a million dollars (the average yearly income in the state is less than $30,000) or be a criminal. Since near monopolies are generally not too friendly to consumers either, the criminals will probably be as busy as ever.
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