As of May 24, The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services released a finalized draft of the questions that all applicants for cultivation, manufacturing, testing, and dispensary facilities will need to answer, as well as the scoring criteria. As expected, the application questions will give the applicant an opportunity to showcase the business plan, the principal officers and managers, and any other unique qualities that may give the applicant a unique advantage. There will also be ways the applicant can score points for its focus on community engagement. Here are a few of the highlights:
- The character of each Principal Officer or Manager will need to be discussed. Applicants will be awarded up to 10 points for strong answers to these questions. The topic relating to background and relevant experience of principal officers or managers will be weighted so as to be worth 12% of the application.
- The application places heavy importance on relevant business experience. Several topics focus on relevant experience that will be helpful to operating a successful cannabis business. It is clear that experience in a highly regulated industry – such as healthcare – will be given special consideration for dispensary applicants. For those applying for a cultivation license, special consideration will be given to those with experience in genetic modification, cultivating plants, harvesting, and recalling the plants. Applicants for manufacturing facilities will receive points for having experience in chemical extraction, quality control, and chemical engineering.
- As stated above, the application will award points for engagement within the community. Specifically, the draft questions ask whether there is a plan to address diversity and inclusion when hiring management, and also asks how the management will have a positive impact on the site community. Further, point bonuses as high as 40% will be awarded to applicants that have proposed locations in zip code areas of high unemployment.
- Applicants will need to prove they have a strong business plan in place that ensures they are sufficiently capitalized, they have an adequate supply of marijuana for patients, they have plans for contingencies, and they have a plan to become profitable. The application has allocated 20% of the available points for the proposed business plan.
- Applicants with strong site security plans will also be rewarded as there is a significant amount of questions devoted to security, all of which will also be worth 20% of the total available points.
A copy of the application questions can be found here. Please contact David Olive at 417-447-4400 if you have any further questions.