The North Dakota Capitol building.

Matt Turner

The laws governing North Dakota’s medical cannabis program will take effect April 1 after getting the green light from the Legislature’s Administrative Rules Committee, the Bismarck Tribune reports. The voter-approved law was re-written by lawmakers last year, who said that the ballot version was flawed.

Jason Wahl, director of the Health Department’s medical marijuana division, said the agency anticipates opening up applications for manufacturing facilities by the end of this week and, depending on a “number of factors,” medical cannabis could be available to patients before the end of this year.

“Without the rules, this program really cannot move forward. The department is committed to implementing this program as quickly as it can, but needs to ensure that this program is implemented in well-regulated manner.” –  Wahl to the Tribune

There are some concerns that medical cannabis producers could be considered “corporate farms” which would run afoul of a state law preventing corporate farms in the state. Rep Robin Weisz, who as a member of the House Human Services Committee worked on the legislation last session, said that the body added language to “make it clear” medical cannabis companies “were not considered agricultural operations.”

Last August, Health Department regulators announced they were seeking non-binding letters of intent from laboratories interested in testing medical cannabis products.

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