New Mexico health officials in late June briefly opened a window to submit applications for lucrative licenses for pot production and then approved the only application received, the Santa Fe New Mexican reports.
The Health Department's handling of the process that resulted in the license being issued June 28 to Albuquerque-based GH LLC after minimal public notice has prompted allegations of favoritism and calls for an investigation.
“In my opinion, this was a dirty affair,” said Willie Ford, managing director of Reynold Greenleaf & Associates, a consulting firm for cannabis businesses. “This was obviously somebody making it happen for somebody else.”
The state had not allowed producers to apply for licenses in the previous six years, as the new Cannabis Control Division of the state Regulation and Licensing Department prepared to take oversight of licensing of the cannabis industry on June 29. New Mexico this year legalized recreational marijuana and those sales will start by April 1, 2022.