East Hawaii News

Agreement Made on Marijuana Dispensary Bill

May 4, 2015, 2:49 PM HST
* Updated May 4, 2:50 PM
Listen to this Article
1 minute
Loading Audio...

A compromise on the marijuana dispensary bill was reached by State Senate and House of Representative conferees Monday afternoon. The bill would establish a medical marijuana dispensary in the state.

“This is a measure that many stakeholders have been working on for a very long time. It’s taken much discussion, collaboration and compromise to get where we are today and we believe that is a good measure that will get the medical marijuana dispensary system up and rolling,” said Senator Will Espero, Chair of the Senate conference committee. “We are now on the verge of having a safe, secure product for our patients who need this, particularly the children who will benefit from medical cannabis.”

According to the Senate, HB321, CD1 will allow application for licenses to be available in the state beginning Jan. 4, 2016. These medical marijuana dispensaries will be allowed to begin operations in July 2016.

Those who need to obtain a license will be required to pay a non-refundable $5,000 fee.

An approved dispensary would pay $75,000 for a license and pay a $50,000 annual renewal fee.


Eight dispensary licenses will be distributed throughout the state, including two on the Big Island, three on Oahu, two on Maui and one on Kaua’i. These dispensaries will not be allowed within 750 feet of a playground, school, or public housing complex. Dispensary licenses will be distributed based on merit and will be issued by the Department of Health. Licensed dispensaries will be subject to a yearly unannounced inspection, done by the DOH. he inspection will happe


A criminal and background check will be required on all dispensary licensees and employees.

Now that Senate and Representative conferees have agreed on terms of the bill, the measure will be voted on by the full House and Senate on Thursday, May 7.

Should the bill pass both houses, it will be forwarded to Governor David Ige, who will either sign, veto, or pass the bill without his signature.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Stay in-the-know with daily or weekly
headlines delivered straight to your inbox.
Mahalo for Subscribing


This comments section is a public community forum for the purpose of free expression. Although Big Island Now encourages respectful communication only, some content may be considered offensive. Please view at your own discretion. View Comments