Kentucky to open applications for the state’s medical marijuana business

Published 8:00 am Thursday, June 27, 2024

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Kentucky’s medical cannabis program has taken significant steps toward ensuring those with qualifying conditions have access to medical cannabis as soon as possible, said Gov. Andy Beshear on Thursday. 

“This administration has been working hard to expedite the timeline for making medical cannabis available to Kentuckians with serious medical conditions,” Beshear said. “I am pleased to report that Team Kentucky will begin accepting applications from prospective medical cannabis businesses beginning next Monday, July 1 – a full six months ahead of schedule.”

The initial licensing application period will end Aug. 31.

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The program has issued a series of YouTube webinars, a Business Licensing Application Guide and other helpful material to assist applicants throughout the process. These materials are available on the program website,

“The program is focused on ensuring cannabis business licensing is fair, transparent and customer-service oriented,” said Sam Flynn, executive director of the Kentucky Office of Medical Cannabis.

Gov. Beshear also announced that beginning Monday, under regulations now in effect, Kentucky’s Board of Medical Licensure and Board of Nursing will begin taking applications from physicians and Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) seeking to become authorized to write medical cannabis certifications.

The program is partnering with these boards to ensure Kentuckians will be able to find authorized physicians or APRNs near them. Patients will not be able to apply for a medical cannabis card until Jan. 1, 2025.

“The Beshear administration is committed to ensuring Kentuckians with qualifying medical conditions have safe, affordable access to medical cannabis,” said Cabinet for Health and Family Services Secretary Eric Friedlander. 

In April, the Governor signed House Bill 829 into law, which among other things, moved up the timeline for cannabis business licensing from Jan. 1, 2025, to July 2024.

In March, five regulations were filed to provide the framework for how Kentuckians with qualifying medical conditions can become cardholders.

In January, 10 regulations were filed to provide direction for how medical cannabis businesses, including cultivators, processors, producers, dispensaries and safety compliance facilities, will operate in the commonwealth.

In March 2023, the governor joined lawmakers and advocates to sign Senate Bill 47, which legalizes medical cannabis in Kentucky.