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Maryland’s first medical cannabis dispensaries opened Friday in Rockville and Cumberland – after nearly five years of bureaucracy and delays, the Washington Post reports. Five more dispensaries told the Post they expect to open shortly.

Prices are sky-high. Allegany Medical Marijuana Dispensary, which opened in Cumberland, has indicated the price for an ounce is set at $680, but manager Sajal Roy said he expects the price to be reduced to about $560 next month. Wellness Institute of Maryland Manager Michael Klein said the Frederick dispensary would sell ounces between $440 and $520. The dispensary plans to open today. Charlie Mattingly, manager of Southern Maryland Relief in Mechanicsville, said they plan to start pricing at $400 per ounce but expect to be “on par” with the illicit market within six months.

“I just need my foot in the door; I’m not trying to gouge anybody in the first year . . . Every new market and new state starts a little bit high.” – Mattingly to the Post.

According to the report, Mattingly expected to open Southern Maryland Relief on Sunday; however, phone calls to the number listed on their Facebook page went unanswered. Peninsula Alternative Health on the Eastern Shore told the Post they planned on opening today; however, that could not be confirmed by Ganjapreneur.

The nascent state market could also be subject to more changes before current operators are stabilized as members of the Legislative Black Caucus announced last month they were drafting a bill to award 10 new medical cannabis cultivator and processor licenses for African-American entrepreneurs after they were shut out of the companies awarded licenses. Two would-be medical cannabis companies are also suing the state, accusing officials of arbitrarily denying them licenses.

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