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New York Cannabis: The Provisional License and Real Estate

As we noted in our summary of the big Cannabis Control Board meeting on May 11, 2023, one significant revision to the New York adult-use rules and regulations was the creation of the “provisional license.” This mechanism allows applicant to be provisionally licensed without having secured real estate prior to submitting an application. Provisional licensing is a major development given that the original language of the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (MRTA) and the first set of the adult-use rules and regulations both required applicants to secure real estate prior to applying.

First things first: it is difficult to overstate the magnitude of this change. As we noted in an early post, post-MRTA, location is one of the most important considerations for applicants:

“For those on the production side (cultivators, processors, and distributors), finding suitable real estate at the right price is critical to being able to operate a successful business. For retail applicants (including on-site consumption applicants), identifying and securing the right space in the right area may be the difference between financial success and failure. As we like to say in New York: location, location, location.”

Allowing for provisional licensure before securing real estate removes a significant pre-licensure

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