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Applications for Connecticut’s recreational marijuana business license lottery opens Thursday

marijuana cannabis
Courtesy David Falkowski

Connecticut residents who want to sell recreational marijuana can start applying for a business license Thursday.

The state’s Social Equity Council made the announcement during a meeting on Tuesday. Rodrick Marroit, director of the state Department of Consumer Protection’s Drug Control Division, said the paperwork to apply and job descriptions will be available online.

Potential candidates will have 90 days to complete and submit their application after the window opens. Half of the licenses will go to social equity applicants, who are from communities disproportionately impacted by drug policing.

The state Department of Consumer Protection will run a lottery for general applicants and another for social equity applicants. The council is charged with reviewing the social equity applications to ensure that they meet the qualifications.

Andrew Clark, director of the Institute for Municipal & Regional Policy at the University of Connecticut, said the goals and intended outcome for this statewide application process should mirror the state’s cannabis study.

He said this recruitment should be more of an “interview process whereby the [drug information] community, those social equity applicants coupled with lessons learned from other states, the social equity council, helps to refine the various things that we’re doing to try to get to these goals.”

Those goals include:

  • To ensure that the nascent cannabis industry is equitably reflecting the population of Connecticut.
  • To ensure that revenues from the new industry are benefiting communities that have been negatively impacted by the criminalization of cannabis.
  • To ensure that the criteria established for social equity applicants are correct and aiding impacted communities.
  • To provide workforce development opportunities and training to aid people from these communities in gaining employment, access to capital and support starting in starting business.
Brooke is a former intern with WSHU Public Radio.