Pennsylvania is one step closer to allowing all 25 of its medical cannabis grower/processor licensees to also obtain retail licenses after the House passed Senate-approved legislation that would remove a restriction in the state’s 2016 medical cannabis law that allows only five grower/processor licensees to be fully vertically integrated.
Senate Bill 773 passed the Senate in September in a 44-3 vote. The House then approved a slightly revised version of the legislation Nov. 15 in a 114-89 vote.
The bill, introduced in June by Sen. Chris Gebhard, R-Lebanon County, aims to break up what lawmakers claim is a retail market controlled by only a handful of companies.
Senate Majority Leader Jay Costa, D-Allegheny County, has said, for example, that the medical cannabis retail market in Pennsylvania is a “monopoly-type situation with out-of-state, multistate organizations coming in to the detriment of these independent grower/processors,” according to a Penn Live report.
Since lawmakers amended the bill in the House, it must now get final approval in the Senate before it goes to Gov. Josh Shapiro’s desk.