Medical Marijuana Security Compliance in Rhode Island

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Medical Marijuana Security Compliance in Rhode Island

R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(b)(1)(i) authorizes DBR to promulgate regulations
regarding the form and content of registration and renewal applications for
compassion centers.
B. Compassion Center Application and Registration Timeline
1. Applications for compassion centers may only be submitted to DBR for
consideration during an open application period announced by DBR.
Open application periods will only be announced upon revocation,
relinquishment, or expiration of an existing compassion center, as
provided in R.I. Gen. Laws §§ 21-28.6-12(b)(7)(ii), 21-28.6-12(b)(8), and
21-28.6-12(d)(3).
2. Upon notification of an approval of an application from DBR, the approved
applicant must take reasonable and documented efforts to complete the
prerequisites for issuance of the registration which steps are detailed in
Section 1.2(E). If such efforts take longer than nine (9) months, the
approved applicant must show good cause to DBR why additional time
should be granted and the application approval should not be rescinded.
3. Once the registration has been issued by DBR, the compassion center
must take reasonable and documented efforts to launch compassion
center activities, which for purposes of this paragraph shall mean actual
medical marijuana cultivation, processing, packaging, manufacturing,
authorized sales and/or other medical marijuana activities requiring a
compassion center pursuant to the Act. If such efforts take longer than
one (1) year, the compassion center must show good cause to DBR why
the license should not be revoked for non-use.
C. Application for Compassion Center Registration
1. DBR will evaluate applicants based upon the information provided by
applicants on the application forms/submissions and otherwise obtained
during the application process.
2. Each application for a compassion center shall be on such forms and
through such submission mechanisms as designated by DBR and shall
include:
a. A non-refundable application fee set by R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-
12(c)(1)(i) ($250).
b. The applicant’s legal and any d/b/a name(s), certificate of
incorporation under R.I. Gen. Laws § 7-6-36 or certificate of
authority under § 7-6-70, articles of incorporation and bylaws, and,
if applicable, documentation of recognition as a tax-exempt
organization by the US Internal Revenue Service.
c. A business plan, including scope of activities, budget and resource
narratives, and timeline for initiating operations.
d. The proposed physical location of the compassion center (by plat
and lot number, mailing address, etc.), if a precise location has
been determined. This may also include one additional location to
be used for the secure cultivation of medical marijuana. If a precise
physical location has not been determined, a description of the
general location(s) where it may be sited, if approved, and the
expected schedule for purchasing or leasing said location(s).
Regarding the proposed physical location(s), the applicant shall
submit:
(1) Evidence of compliance or preliminary determination of
compatibility of the location(s) with the local zoning laws.
(2) Evidence that the physical locations are not located within
one thousand feet (1,000’) of the property line of a
preexisting public or private school in compliance with R.I.
Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(f)(2). For the purposes of this
paragraph, “private school” shall be deemed to refer to any
nonpublic institution of elementary or secondary (K-12th
Grade) education, accredited or recognized as a private
school by the department of elementary and secondary
education or the school committee of the city or town having
jurisdiction over private schools. For purposes of this
paragraph, the 1000 foot distance shall be measured from
the secured compassion center premises, which shall
include allotted outdoor areas (such as parking and loading
areas), to the property line of the school, which shall include
the school building, land, and appurtenances.
(3) A draft diagram of the proposed facilities, including where
within the facility the medical marijuana will be cultivated,
stored, processed, packaged, manufactured and dispensed,
and where security alarms and cameras and surveillance
recording storage will be located, and showing the location
of the facility relative to streets and other public areas.
(4) A description of objective parameters (such as distances
from streets and public areas) and/or proposed measures
(such as black-out window shades) that ensure that
marijuana at the premises shall not be visible from the street
or other public areas.
(5) Evidence of either ownership of property or agreement by
owner of property to allow the operation of a compassion
center on the property, including the cultivation and/or sale
of medical marijuana, if property has already been
purchased or leased at the time of the application.
e. The legal name, current address, and date of birth of each principal
officer, director or member of the compassion center.
f. A list of all persons or entities (legal names and current addresses)
having direct or indirect authority over the management or policies
of the compassion center.
g. If a compassion center will have a management agreement in
place, it shall also include a copy of the management agreement or
management agreement proposal and a list of persons who have
any ownership interest or operational control over the management
company.
h. A list of all persons or business entities (legal names and current
addresses) having any ownership interest in the applicant entity,
whether direct or indirect.
i. If the compassion center premises and/or other operational assets
will be owned or leased by a person or entity other than the
applicant, the legal name and current address of such person or
entity and a list of all persons or entities (legal names and current
addresses) having any ownership interest in such entity, whether
direct or indirect.
j. The legal names and current addresses of all creditors holding a
security interest in the premises and/or other assets to be used in
the compassion center operations, if any.
k. Tax Affidavit in accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 5-76-1 et seq.
l. Other written materials which will allow DBR to determine the
compassion center’s ability to comply with the review criteria
contained in R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(3).
m. All other information required by DBR as described in the
application form.
3. Only applications which DBR has determined to be complete (i.e.,
adequately address all application requirements above) shall be eligible
for review. An applicant who submits an incomplete application shall
receive written notification from DBR regarding the specific deficiencies
and shall be allowed to resubmit additional material to address these
deficiencies within a reasonable timeframe.
D. Compassion Center Application Review Criteria
DBR shall utilize the criteria specified in R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(3) of the
Act to review applications for a registration certificate to operate a compassion
center.
E. Prerequisites to Issuance of Compassion Center Registration and
Commencement of Operations
1. If an applicant seeking to operate a compassion center is notified that its
application has been approved by DBR, it shall complete the below steps
before a registration certificate authorizing operation of a compassion
center will be issued.
2. Annual Compassion Center Registration Fee: The annual registration fee
set by R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(5)(i)($5000) must be paid.
3. Final Information and Documentation to be Supplied: The applicant must
provide any updates to previously submitted application information and
the following additional items to DBR:
a. A sufficient description of the final physical location of the
compassion center (by plat and lot number, mailing address, etc.).
This shall include any additional address to be used for the secure
cultivation of medical marijuana (if applicable).
b. Evidence of complete compliance of the facility with the local
zoning laws in the form of a letter from an authorized zoning official
of the municipality and certification by an authorized officer of the
applicant as to compliance with any other applicable local
ordinances.
c. Unless already provided at time of initial application, evidence that
all of the physical addresses to be utilized as a compassion center
or for the secure cultivation of medical marijuana are not located
within one thousand feet (1,000’) of the property line of a
preexisting public or private school. See Section 1.2(C)(2)(d)(2).
d. A current Certificate of Occupancy (or equivalent document) to
demonstrate compliance with the relevant provisions of Chapters
28.1 and 27.3 of Title 23 of the R.I. General Laws [Fire Safety Code
and State Building Code, respectively] for each physical address to
be utilized as a compassion center or for the secure cultivation of
medical marijuana.
e. Evidence of either ownership of property or agreement by owner of
property to allow the operation of a compassion center on the
property, including the cultivation and/or sale of medical marijuana.
f. A final diagram of the proposed facilities, including where within
the facilities the medical marijuana will be cultivated, stored,
processed, packaged, manufactured and dispensed, and where
security alarms and cameras and surveillance recording storage
will be located, and showing the location of the facilities relative to
streets and other public areas.
g. The name, address and date of birth of any person who will be an
agent, employee or volunteer of the compassion center at its
inception.
h. Evidence of completion of divestiture plan pursuant to Section
1.2(E)(6)(e).
4. In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(f)(5), request that RISP
visit the compassion center to inspect the facility security and make any
recommendations regarding the security of the facility and its personnel
within ten (10) business days prior to the initial opening of the compassion
center and any alternative cultivation site.
5. DBR Pre-Registration Inspection
Before a compassion center registration will be issued, a DBR inspection
is required. Approved applicants should contact DBR to coordinate said
inspection. Nothing in this paragraph should be construed as limiting
inspections at an earlier time in addition to the final pre-registration
inspection.
6. Divestiture of Prohibited Material Financial Interest and Control
a. A compassion center and “key persons” thereof may not have any
“material financial interest or control” in another compassion center,
a cultivator, or a licensed cooperative cultivation or vice versa. See
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(1)(iii)(limiting a compassion center
to one additional location to cultivate its marijuana); R.I. Gen. Laws
§ 21-28.6-12(b)(1)(ii)(DBR minimum oversight over compassion
centers); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(i)(cultivator to be licensed at
one location only); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(b)(2)(DBR
minimum oversight over cultivators); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-
3(4)(i) and R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-3(12)(separately defining
“compassion center” and “licensed cultivator,” respectively); R.I.
Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(10)(DBR authority to regulate
operations of licensed cooperative cultivations); R.I. Gen. Laws §
21-28.6-4(q)(qualifying patient and primary caregiver cardholders
may only grow at one location).
b. R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(f)(10) authorizes regulations regarding
testing of medical marijuana and marijuana product cultivated
and/or manufactured by compassion centers, which will include
ensuring the independence of third party testing providers.
Accordingly, a compassion center may not have any material
financial interest or control in a Rhode Island DOH-approved third
party testing provider and vice versa.
c. “Material financial interest or control” shall mean: i) any ownership
interest, regardless of the size of the holding, and including any
ownership interest through a subsidiary or affiliate; ii) trusteeship,
mortgage, guarantor, endorser or surety relationship, or loan
relationship, except that loan relationship for the purposes of this
definition shall exclude accounts payable and accounts receivable
on account of a medical marijuana purchase order; iii) any other
beneficial financial interest such that the holder bears the risk of
loss (other than as an insurer) or has an opportunity to gain profit
from the operation or sale of the regulated medical marijuana
business; iv) operational control, including but not limited to
interlocking directors or officers or through a management
agreement.
d. “Key persons” shall mean officers, directors, and any persons with
managing or operational control.
e. Therefore, if a compassion center application is approved and any
prohibited material financial interest or control has been identified
by DBR or is otherwise known to the compassion center applicant,
such interest or control must be divested prior to issuance of the
compassion center registration certificate. The plan of divestiture
shall be filed with DBR.
f. The duty to divest prohibited material financial interests and control
is a continuing obligation of registration.
7. Registry Identification Card Requirements
Before commencement of operations, all principal officers, board
members, employees, agents, and volunteers of the compassion center
must apply for a registry identification card and submit to a national
criminal background check as provided in Section 1.3. Such individuals
may be hired, appointed, or retained prior to receiving a registry
identification card, but may not begin engagement in medical marijuana
cultivation, storage, processing, packaging, manufacturing, transport,
dispensing or other medical marijuana activities requiring registration
pursuant to the Act until receipt of the card.
F. DBR Post-Registration Inspection of Operations and Inventory
After the compassion center registration is issued, the compassion center
shall notify DBR when it obtains inventory and commences operations.
DBR may conduct a post-licensure inspection upon this commencement
of operations, including but not limited to inspection for compliance of
medical marijuana and marijuana product inventory with the tagging and
tracking requirements set forth in Section 1.4(E). Nothing in this
paragraph shall be construed to limit DBR’s general inspection powers as
delineated in Section 1.4(K).
G. Changes in Location, Floor Plan, Ownership and Control of Compassion Center;
Continuing Duty to Update Application Information; Discontinuation of or Failure
to Launch Compassion Center Activities
1. A registration certificate authorizing operation of a compassion center
shall not be assigned or otherwise transferred to other persons or
locations.
2. A compassion center shall provide DBR with a written notice of any
change described below at least sixty (60) calendar days prior to the
proposed effective date of the change:
a. A change in ownership of the compassion center.
b. Change in the membership of a board of directors or board of
trustees.
c. Change in corporate officer.
d. Merger, dissolution, or entity conversion.
e. Entering into a management agreement, changing management
companies, and/or material changes to an existing management
agreement.
f. Changes in the approved premises location for cultivation and/or
sale of medical marijuana.
g. Change to approved premises floor plan.
h. Proposed premises expansion.
3. Unless the compassion center provides timely notification of the above
changes and receives prior DBR approval or waiver of the requirement of
prior notice and approval (for example a non-material change in ownership
or emergency situation as determined by DBR), the registration certificate
shall be void and returned to DBR.
4. As to any proposed change of ownership or to a management agreement
that will effect a change of majority control and/or decision-making
authority with respect to the operation of the compassion center or as to
any proposed change in an approved premises location for the cultivation
and/or sale of medical marijuana, DBR may require the compassion
center to follow the process for a new application, which may include a
new application fee and/or hearing.
5. For updates in information other than the categories requiring sixty (60)
calendar days prior notice, the compassion center has a continuing
obligation to update, amend and/or correct any information requested
and/or submitted in the application process within ten (10) business days
after any change in the information submitted and/or any material change
in circumstances related to the application. This includes timely
notification and divestiture if a prohibited interest as delineated in Section
1.2(E)(6) is acquired by operation of law.
6. If the compassion center proposes to alter the final floor plan previously
submitted and approved, the compassion center must first submit a
renovation plan for DBR approval 60 (sixty) calendar days prior to
commencement of construction. The renovation plan must specifically
address quality control procedures for the protection of medical marijuana
and medical marijuana products from any contamination during the
construction process and further address any other criteria DBR requires.
7. In addition to the requirements of paragraph 6 above, any expansion of
the approved premises further requires explanation by the compassion
center that the request to expand is justified by the projected needs of
qualifying patients. See R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(i)(1).
8. The registration certificate shall be void and returned to DBR if the
compassion center discontinues its operation, unless the discontinuance
is on a temporary basis approved by DBR. Once a registration certificate
is issued, the compassion center must take reasonable and documented
efforts to launch compassion center activities. If such efforts take longer
than one (1) year, the compassion center must show good cause to DBR
why the registration certificate should not be revoked.
H. Annual Renewal
1. Compassion center registrations shall be issued for one year terms.
2. Annual renewals shall be submitted on such forms and include such
information as prescribed by DBR.
3. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(d)(2), DBR’s review of
compassion center renewal applications shall include consideration of
whether the compassion center is adequately providing patients with
access to medical marijuana at reasonable rates.
4. An annual inspection shall be part of the annual renewal process.
1.3 Compassion Center Cardholder Registry Identification Card
Provisions
A. Compassion Center Cardholder Definitions
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-3(4)(ii), “compassion center
cardholder” includes all principal officers, board members, employees,
agents, and volunteers associated with the compassion center.
2. “Agent” of a compassion center shall include, but not be limited to, “testing
agents.”
3. “Testing agent” shall mean an employee of an approved third party testing
provider who performs independent testing of medical marijuana and/or
marijuana products of the compassion center in accordance with the DOH
Testing Regulations, once adopted.
B. Registry Identification Card Requirement, Eligibility, Annual Fee and Application
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(6), all principal officers, board
members, employees, agents, and volunteers of a compassion center
must apply for compassion center registry identification cards.
2. Each compassion center shall maintain a current list of all compassion
center cardholders associated with that compassion center.
3. Compassion center cardholders shall be at least twenty-one (21) years
old.
4. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(6), DBR hereby sets the nonreturnable,
non-refundable annual fee for a compassion center registry
identification card, including each initial application and subsequent
annual renewal, at one hundred dollars ($100.00).
5. Applications pursuant to this section shall be on such forms and through
such submission mechanisms as directed by DBR.
6. Eligibility for the compassion center “volunteer” designation shall be
limited to persons whose volunteer activities and use of compassion
center resources is strictly limited to participation in educational
programming conducted for compassion center cardholders and
registered qualifying patients, primary caregivers, and authorized
purchasers. Volunteers shall not be permitted to be otherwise involved in
the growth, cultivation, weighing, packaging or labeling, manufacturing,
processing, dispensing or sale of medical marijuana.
C. Criminal Background Checks
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(7), all compassion center
cardholders will be subject to a national criminal background check as part
of their application for a compassion center registry identification card
(hereinafter also referred to in this section as “applicants”).
2. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(7), DBR shall deny an
application for registration if the background check reveals the applicant
has been convicted of a felony drug offense or has entered a plea of nolo
contendere for a felony drug offense and received a sentence of
probation, unless the applicant successfully petitions for an exception
pursuant to Section 1.3(C)(8).
3. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(7)(i), applicants shall apply to
RISP for a national criminal identification records check that shall include
fingerprints submitted to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
4. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(7)(i), upon the discovery of a
felony drug offense conviction or a plea of nolo contendere for a felony
drug offense with a sentence of probation, RISP shall inform the applicant,
in writing, of the nature of the felony.
5. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(7)(i), upon discovery of
disqualifying information, RISP shall notify DBR, in writing, without
disclosing the nature of the felony, that a felony drug offense conviction or
a plea of nolo contendere for a felony drug offense with probation has
been found.
6. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(7)(ii), in those situations in
which no felony drug offense conviction or plea of nolo contendere for a
felony drug offense with probation has been found, RISP shall inform the
applicant and DBR, in writing, of this fact.
7. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(7)(iii), applicants shall be
responsible for any expense associated with the national criminal
background check with fingerprints.
8. R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(7) provides DBR with discretion to grant a
compassion center registry identification card if the disqualifying offense
was for conduct that occurred prior to the enactment of the Act or that was
prosecuted by an authority other than the state of Rhode Island and for
which the Act would otherwise have prevented a conviction. To seek relief
from criminal background disqualification pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-
28.6-12(c)(7), the applicant must make the request for relief to the DBR in
writing, setting forth in detail why the Act would have prevented a
conviction, including all applicable court records and legal documents.
The DBR may conduct a hearing on the issue and, if so, the applicant
shall bear the burden of proof to show why the relief should be granted.
9. R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(7) provides that the compassion center will
be notified in writing of the purpose for denying a compassion center
cardholder application. DBR shall limit its disclosure of the purpose to a
statement of the fact that disqualifying information was found, without
revealing to the compassion center any further detail of the offense.
10. DBR will not require a person subject to a national criminal background
check under this subsection to undergo such a check more than once
every two (2) years, unless a more frequent time frame is mandated
and/or agreed to as part of a license disciplinary action.
D. Issuance of the Compassion Center Registry Identification Card
1. Once the application is approved by DBR, the principal officer, board
member, agent, volunteer or employee of the compassion center is
responsible for getting a registry identification card from DOH.
2. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(6), the registry identification
card shall contain:
a. The name, address and date of birth of the person.
b. The legal name of the compassion center that the individual is
affiliated with.
c. The category of the person’s affiliation: principal officer, board
member, employee, agent, or volunteer.
d. The date of issuance and expiration date of the registry
identification card.
e. A random registry identification number.
f. A photograph.
E. Expiration and Renewal of Compassion Center Registry Identification Cards
Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(8), compassion center registry
identification cards shall expire one year after issuance. Renewal applications
shall be on such forms and through such submission mechanisms as directed by
DBR.
F. Change in Name or Address; Lost/Stolen Cards
1. In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(9), a compassion
center cardholder shall notify DBR of any change in his or her name or
address within ten (10) business days of such change. A compassion
center cardholder who fails to notify DBR of any of these changes may be
subject to a fine up to one hundred fifty dollars ($150).
2. In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(10), changes in name
and/or address require the compassion center cardholder to remit a ten
dollar ($10.00) fee to DBR. Upon receipt of the notice and fee, DBR will
prompt DOH to issue an updated registry identification card. The
compassion center cardholder shall be responsible for getting the updated
registry identification card from DOH.
3. In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(11), if a compassion
center cardholder loses his or her registry identification card (which would
particularly include a card suspected to be stolen), he or she shall notify
DBR and submit a ten dollar ($10.00) fee within ten (10) business days of
losing the registry identification card. Upon receipt of the notice and fee,
DBR will prompt DOH to issue a replacement registry identification card.
The compassion center cardholder shall be responsible for getting the
replacement registry identification card from DOH.
G. Duty to Notify DBR of Disqualifying Criminal Information
Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(13), a compassion center cardholder
shall notify DBR of any disqualifying criminal convictions as defined in §21-4
28.6-12(c)(7). Such notification must be made in writing within ten (10) business
days.
H. Termination of Compassion Center Registry Identification Card
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(i), a person found to have
dispensed marijuana to a non-cardholder or in excess of the statutory
limits is not eligible to be a compassion center cardholder, and such
person's registry identification card shall be immediately revoked.
2. If a compassion center cardholder violates any other provisions of the Act,
DBR Regulations, or DOH Regulations, his or her registry identification
card may be suspended/revoked as determined by DBR pursuant to R.I.
Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(14).
3. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(f)(3), when a compassion center
cardholder ceases work with a compassion center, whether voluntarily or
involuntarily or upon the compassion center closing, his or her registry
identification card shall be null and void. See also R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-
28.6-12(c)(8). In that situation, the compassion center and/or the
compassion center cardholder shall notify DBR and the registry
identification card shall be returned to DBR within ten (10) business days.
No hearing shall be necessary to render the card null and void in this
situation. In addition to being null and void, a penalty of up to one
hundred and fifty dollars ($150) may be assessed for failure to return the
card within the ten (10) day period.
1.4 Compassion Center Operational Provisions
A. State Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System
Upon direction by the DBR and in accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-
12(g)(3), each compassion center shall be required to utilize the state approved
Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System to document and monitor
compliance with the Act, the DBR Regulations, and the DOH Regulations,
including but not limited to seed to sale and point of sale tracking, dispensing
limits and the patient information privacy protections, inventory supply tracking,
adherence to restrictions on third party supply and sources of marijuana and
marijuana products and transfers thereof off the registered premises, and all
testing compliance tracking. Compassion centers may be required to pay costs
associated with use of the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System which
may be assessed on an annual, monthly, per use, or per volume basis and
payable to the state or to its approved vendor.
B. Permitted and Prohibited Sources of Marijuana; Contract Requirement
1. A compassion center can only legally purchase or otherwise receive
marijuana from a Rhode Island licensed cultivator as authorized by R.I.
Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(e), which has a “formal agreement” requirement.
2. “Formal agreement” requirements shall be as follows: A written executed
contract or purchase order shall be required for all sales from a licensed
cultivator to a compassion center and shall contain the following minimum
terms: a) date of execution/placement of the contract/purchase order, b)
description and amount of product to be sold; c) the total and per unit price
of the product to be sold; d) the specific date or date range not spanning
more than thirty (30) calendar days for fulfillment of the order and delivery
or pickup; e) the payment due date, as specifically agreed between the
parties, but if no date is specifically agreed to, payment shall be made
within sixty (60) calendar days of delivery or pickup. Contracts/purchase
orders pursuant to this paragraph may not be modified but may be
cancelled or voided by the creation of a new replacement
contract/purchase order.
3. In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(c) and (i), a compassion
center cannot purchase or otherwise receive marijuana from any
qualifying patient cardholder or primary caregiver after December 31,
2016. This prohibition extends to purchases and transfers from
cooperative cultivations.
C. Permitted and Prohibited Sales and Transfers
1. Sales to qualifying patients, directly or through their caregivers or
authorized purchasers, are only permitted if those qualifying patients,
caregivers, or authorized purchasers are registered with DOH. For such
sales, a compassion center shall be strictly bound by the dispensing limits
of R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(g). Sales for delivery to a qualifying
patient cardholder’s residence are deemed permitted provided that such
sales comply with Section 1.4(J)(3)(e).
2. A compassion center is permitted to transfer or transport medical
marijuana and marijuana products to a Rhode Island licensed cultivator
only if the transfer/transport is pursuant to a written contract or purchase
order for the cultivator to process the medical marijuana into a product to
be furnished back to the compassion center.
3. Any transfer to or from a third party testing provider shall be in accordance
with the DOH Testing Regulations, once adopted.
4. Unless specifically permitted by this section, no other compassion center
sales or transfers of marijuana or marijuana products are permitted.
D. Inventory Limit
Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(i)(1), a compassion center must limit its
inventory of seedlings, plants, and usable marijuana to reflect the projected
needs of qualifying patients.
E. Medical Marijuana and Marijuana Product Tagging for Compassion Centers
1. The compassion center shall properly use tags with unique identifiers
through the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System, or if prior to the
implementation of the Marijuana Program Tracking System, DBR will
advise the compassion center of acceptable alternative inventory tagging
and tracking systems and protocols. In such a case, any references to the
Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System in this section shall be
deemed to include the acceptable alternatives.
2. Compassion centers must ensure that medical marijuana is marked with
Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System unique identifier tags
through each stage of production the compassion center is undertaking,
from seed propagation through packaging, as may be applicable.
3. Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System unique identifier tags shall
contain the following information and/or technical functions:
a. DBR registration number.
b. Unique identifier(s) (such as barcodes and/or
numerical/alphabetical codes) that track marijuana product through
each stage of production.
c. Registered premises location.
d. Any other information or technical functions DBR deems
appropriate (such as radio frequency identification).
4. Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System unique identifier tags shall
not be altered or duplicated.
5. Unique identifier tags shall be placed in a manner so as to clearly display
their association with a particular plant, plant material, or product, such as
affixed to the plant itself, on the growing receptacle, or in the growing
medium, by labeling drying racks and other receptacles that wet marijuana
dries on, by affixing the tag to the stalk for drying on the stalk, on a label
affixed to a storage/transport package and/or retail-ready package, and
other reasonable means.
6. The unique identifier tags may not be transferred or assigned except when
affixed to marijuana plants, wet marijuana, or usable marijuana which is
being sold/transferred/transported in accordance with Sections 1.4(B), (C),
and (J)(3).
7. Return of unique identifier tags by the compassion center upon revocation
or abandonment of the license shall be specifically governed by DBR
order or agreement which may include coordinated efforts with law
enforcement. Disposal of unique identifier tags by the compassion center
as may be required by DBR, such as in the regular course of tagging if
different stages will require different tag forms or such as recall of tags
due to new technology, shall be handled in accordance with further
instructions provided by DBR.
F. Inventory Control
1. Upon direction by DBR, each compassion center shall utilize the state
approved Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System for all inventory
tracking from seed to sale as further defined herein.
2. If the compassion center is notified by DBR that the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System is not available, the compassion center will be
provided with direction as to alternative inventory control measures, which
may include but are not necessarily limited to the compassion center
being directed to:
a. Conduct an initial comprehensive inventory of all medical
marijuana, including usable marijuana available for dispensing,
marijuana plants and seedlings, unusable marijuana, and wet
marijuana, at each authorized location on the date the compassion
center first dispenses medical marijuana or as of another date
certain set by DBR.
b. Conduct subsequent comprehensive inventories at intervals not to
exceed twenty-four (24) months from the date of the previous
comprehensive inventory.
c. Conduct a monthly inventory review of stored, usable marijuana,
seedlings, plants, and wet marijuana.
3. Upon request, DBR may require a compassion center to conduct and
provide the results of alternative inventory control measures outlined
above, regardless of the availability and use of the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System.
G. Minimum Security Requirements
1. Authority
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(b)(1)(iv) authorizes DBR to promulgate
regulations regarding the minimum security requirements for compassion
centers.
2. General Security Requirements
a. Each compassion center shall implement appropriate security and
safety measures to deter and prevent the unauthorized entrance
into areas containing marijuana and the theft of marijuana.
b. Use or carry of firearms on the premises and/or perimeter of the
compassion center is a prohibited form of security, except by
security guards licensed by the Office of the Rhode Island Attorney
General pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 5-5.1-13 and who are under
written contract to provide security services to the compassion
center and by law enforcement personnel during duty.
c. The outside perimeter of the compassion center retail premises
shall be well-lighted at all times. For any alternative cultivation only
site, the premises may be equipped with motion activated lighting
acceptable to DBR.
d. Except for persons whose visit falls within Section 1.4(G)(2)(e)
below, any person who does not have a valid compassion center
registry identification card who enters any area where marijuana
and marijuana products are grown, cultivated, stored, weighed,
packaged, processed, manufactured or sold shall be considered a
“visitor” and must be escorted at all times by a compassion center
registry identification card holder. The compassion must maintain a
visitor log for any such activity as detailed in Section 1.4(G)(6)(d).
e. Registered qualifying patients, primary caregivers, and authorized
purchasers are only permitted within point of sale areas. In such
areas, the compassion center shall ensure that all marijuana and
marijuana products are kept behind the sales counter or other
partition and make reasonable efforts to limit the number of
registered qualifying patients, primary caregivers, and authorized
purchasers present in relation to the number of compassion center
cardholders to assure adequate monitoring and control of point of
sale area activities.
f. Each compassion center shall ensure that the storage of marijuana
and any marijuana products is in a locked area, meaning that at all
points of ingress and egress, the compassion center shall ensure
the use of a working commercial-grade door lock.
3. Security Alarm Requirements
a. Each compassion center shall have a fully operational security
alarm system at each authorized physical address that will provide
suitable protection against theft and diversion, including alarms at
all outside perimeter entry points and outside perimeter windows.
b. A fully operational security alarm system may include a
combination of hard-wired systems and systems interconnected
with a radio frequency method such as cellular or private radio
signals that emit or transmit a remote or local audible, visual, or
electronic signal; motion detectors, pressure switches, duress
alarms (a silent system signal generated by the entry of a
designated code into the arming station to indicate that the user is
disarming under duress); panic alarms (an audible system signal to
indicate an emergency situation); and hold-up alarms (a silent
system signal to indicate that a robbery is in progress).
c. A fully operational security alarm system shall at a minimum
provide for immediate automatic or electronic notification to alert
municipal and/or state law enforcement agencies or public safety
personnel to an unauthorized breach or attempted unauthorized
breach of security at the compassion center or any other authorized
physical address and to any loss-of-electrical support backup
system to the security alarm system.
d. Each compassion center shall establish a protocol for the testing
and maintenance of the security alarm system, which shall at a
minimum provide for a maintenance inspection/test of the alarm
system for each authorized location at intervals not to exceed thirty
(30) calendar days from the previous inspection/test and prompt
completion of all necessary repairs to ensure the proper operation
of the alarm system.
e. If the compassion center suffers a failure of the security alarm
system, due to loss of electrical support, mechanical function, or
otherwise, that is expected to exceed an eight (8) hour period, in
addition to the notice requirements provided in Sections
1.4(G)(3)(c) and (G)(7), the compassion center must also close the
authorized physical address(es) impacted by the failure/malfunction
until the security alarm system has been restored to full operation,
or, if approved by DBR, provide alternative security.
4. Video Surveillance Requirements
Each compassion center must have a fully operational video surveillance
and camera recording system with appropriate protocols, which shall, at a
minimum, comply with the below requirements:
a. Video surveillance equipment shall, at a minimum, consist of digital
or network video recorders, video monitors, and digital archiving
devices capable of playback quality sufficient to identify and
monitor all individuals (including sufficient clarity of facial features)
and activities in the monitored areas.
b. The recording system must record in digital format.
c. The date and time must be embedded on the recording without
significantly obscuring the picture. Time is to be measured in
Eastern Standard Time.
d. All video surveillance systems must be equipped with a failure
notification system that provides prompt notification of any
surveillance interruption and/or the complete failure of the
surveillance system. Said notification must be routed to
compassion center personnel specifically designated by
management and to DBR.
e. All video surveillance equipment shall have sufficient battery
backup to support a minimum of four (4) hours of recording in the
event of a power outage.
f. Video recordings must be archived in a format and maintained in a
manner that ensures authentication of the recording as legitimatelycaptured
video and guarantees that no alteration of the recorded
image has taken place.
g. Remote access to a continuous live feed video on a real time basis
must be available at all times to compassion center personnel
specifically designated by management and to DBR. Additionally,
all video surveillance records and recordings must be made
available upon request to DBR. DBR employees and
representatives will hold video surveillance records and recordings
of point-of-sale areas confidential except for authorized release in
accordance with applicable law.
h. The system must include a color printer or similar equipment
capable of printing still photos of a quality sufficient to identify
individuals and activities in the monitored areas.
i. Camera coverage is required for all areas where marijuana and
marijuana products are grown, cultivated, stored, weighed,
packaged, processed, manufactured or sold, including all areas of
ingress and egress thereto, point-of-sale areas, security rooms (as
defined below), all points of ingress and egress to the exterior of
the compassion center, and any computer or other digital access
points.
j. Camera views of required coverage areas shall be continuously
recorded twenty (24) hours a day, (7) seven days per week.
k. All surveillance recordings must be kept for a minimum of sixty (60)
calendar days.
l. Surveillance recording equipment and all video surveillance records
and recordings must be housed in a designated, locked and
secured room or other enclosure with access limited to compassion
center personnel specifically authorized by management (the
“security room”). The compassion center must keep on site a
current list of all authorized employees and service personnel who
have access to the security room and a video surveillance
equipment maintenance activity log.
m. If the compassion center suffers a failure of the video surveillance
system, due to loss of electrical support, mechanical function, or
otherwise, that is expected to exceed an eight (8) hour period, in
addition to the notice requirements provided in Section 1.4(G)(7),
the compassion center must also close the authorized physical
address(es) impacted by the failure/malfunction until the video
surveillance system has been restored to full operation, or, if
approved by DBR, provide alternative premises monitoring.
5. Emergency Plan
The compassion center shall develop and maintain an emergency plan
with procedures to be followed to prevent and, if not prevented, to
adequately address and mitigate consequences of theft or burglary or
attempts thereof, fire, natural disasters, and other emergencies, including
cybersecurity and data breach procedures to prevent a compromise of the
integrity of the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System. The plan
shall include training for employees on crime prevention and personal
safety techniques.
6. Security-Related Record-Keeping
The compassion center shall maintain the following documentation on-site
and with digital back-up for a period of at least twenty-four (24) months
after the event:
a. Inventory records including, at a minimum, the date the inventory
was conducted, a summary of the inventory findings and the name,
signature and title of the individual who conducted the inventory.
b. All records of maintenance, inspections, and tests of the security
alarm and video surveillance systems and of servicing,
modifications, or upgrades performed on said systems. These
records shall include, at a minimum, the date of the action, a
summary of the action(s) performed and the purpose therefor, and
the name, signature and title of the individual who performed the
action(s).
c. Emergency notification reports as required by Section 1.4(G)(7).
d. Visitor logs which shall include the name of each visitor, the date
and time of the beginning and end of the visit, the reason for the
visit (i.e. maintenance, authorized pickup, etc.), the name of the
escorting compassion center registry identification cardholder.
7. Emergency Notifications and Reports
a. Compassion centers shall provide notification of emergency events
to DBR and municipal and/or state law enforcement as outlined
below.
b. Immediately upon discovery of the event, the compassion center
shall provide telephone notification to the appropriate municipal
and/or state law enforcement authorities regarding any of the
following “emergency events”:
(1) Theft or burglary or an attempt thereof.
(2) Any fire.
(3) A natural disaster that results in the destruction of or
damage to medical marijuana or marijuana products.
(4) A failure of the security alarm system or video surveillance
system, due to loss of electrical support, mechanical
function, or otherwise, that is expected to exceed an eight
(8) hour period.
(5) A security alarm activation.
(6) Any other event which requires response by law
enforcement or public safety personnel.
c. The compassion center shall provide e-mail notification to DBR
immediately upon discovery of any data breach or cybersecurity
threat to the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System, and
within twenty-four (24) hours of discovery of any other emergency
event as defined above. A follow-up telephone notification to DBR
shall be provided no later than the next business day.
d. The compassion center shall submit a follow-up written report to
DBR within five (5) business days for each emergency event. The
written report shall include, at a minimum, a description of the
event(s), identification of known or suspected cause(s) for the
event(s), any corrective action(s) taken to prevent a recurrence,
and the name, title, and signature of the individual preparing the
report.
e. Any notification and report of an emergency event required to be
made to DBR pursuant to these DBR Regulations shall be made
using the mailing address, telephone number, and/or e-mail
address provided by DBR to approved licensees.
f. Upon written direction to the compassion center, DBR may require
that the written and telephone notifications and reporting must be
replaced or supplemented by notifications and reporting through the
Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System or any other
electronic system or means DBR mandates the compassion center
to utilize.
H. Record-Keeping and Reporting
1. Authority
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(b)(1)(iii) authorizes DBR to promulgate
regulations regarding the minimum record-keeping requirements for
compassion centers.
2. Operations Manual
Each compassion center shall develop, implement, and maintain on the
premises an operations manual which addresses, at a minimum, the
following subject areas and requirements:
a. Procedures for the organization, administration, command, and
control of the compassion center (including but not limited to
organizational chart, chain of command protocols, etc.).
b. Procedures for safely dispensing medical marijuana only to
registered qualifying patients, registered primary caregivers, and
authorized purchasers, including procedures for verifying
authenticity of registry identification cards and other forms of
identification.
c. Procedures to ensure accurate record-keeping, including protocols
to ensure that all acquisitions, dispensing, and sales of marijuana
are logged into the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System on
a real time basis and that all dispensing and sales transactions to
registered qualifying patients, primary caregivers, and authorized
purchases adhere to the limits for usable marijuana prescribed by
statute and the marijuana product equivalency limits set by the
DOH regulations, and procedures on proper training and use of the
Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System and any other
tracking system used by the compassion center.
d. Records retention policies.
e. Ethics and compliance policies.
f. Alcohol and drug free work place policy.
g. If applicable, medical marijuana manufacturing protocols, safety
measures, and training information.
h. Odor control and mitigation plan.
i. A description of the compassion center’s outreach activities to
registered qualifying patients, registered primary caregivers, and
authorized purchasers.
j. Customer service protocols.
3. Personnel Records
Each compassion center shall maintain a personnel record for each
employee, agent or volunteer for a period of at least six (6) months after
termination of the individual’s affiliation with the compassion center. Said
personnel record shall contain the following minimum documentation and
information:
a. An application for employment or to volunteer or offers to provide
services as an agent.
b. An employment or engagement description detailing duties,
responsibilities, authority, qualifications and supervision.
c. If applicable, a copy of any employment or engagement contract or,
for volunteers, volunteer agreement.
d. A record of any disciplinary action taken.
e. Documentation of all required training, which shall include a signed
statement from the individual indicating the date, time and place he
or she received said training, topics discussed, and the name and
title of presenters.
4. Additional Records to be Maintained
In addition to all other specific record-keeping requirements of the Act, the
DBR Regulations, and the DOH Regulations, the compassion center shall
maintain the following records for a minimum of five (5) years:
a. All contracts and purchase orders with licensed cultivators,
including documentation of any cancelled contracts or purchased
orders and any contracts and purchase orders voided by
replacement contracts.
b. Invoices and any supporting documentation of all marijuana
purchases, acquisitions, transfers, and payments.
c. Contracts pertaining to the security alarm and security camera
systems.
d. Contracts with vendors, including any approved third party testing
providers.
e. All records normally retained for tax purposes.
5. Storage of Records
Records pertaining to transactions occurring within the last six (6) months
shall be stored on the registered premises. Records dating further back
may be stored off the premises with DBR’s approval.
6. Responsibility for Loss of Records and Data
The compassion center shall exercise due diligence and reasonable care
in preserving and maintaining all required records to guard against loss of
records and data, including cybersecurity of electronically-maintained
records.
I. Product Packaging and Labeling Requirements
1. Authority and Applicability
a. These product packaging and labeling requirements for
compassion centers are promulgated pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws §
21-28.6-12(f)(11). These requirements were developed jointly with
DOH.
b. Compassion centers shall have ninety (90) calendar days from the
effective date of these regulations to comply with these
requirements.
c. Any container or packaging containing usable marijuana or
marijuana product, including both retail-retail ready packaging and
product otherwise packaged for the purpose of storage and/or
authorized transport, must:
(1) Protect the product from contamination.
(2) Not impart any toxic or deleterious substance to the usable
marijuana or marijuana product.
(3) Contain the Inventory tracking ID number assigned by the
Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System or, if prior to
the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System’s
implementation, an inventory tracking ID number generated
from an alternative inventory tracking system approved by
DBR.
(4) Be labeled with the quantity of the product.
d. The remainder of these product packaging and labeling
requirements only apply to retail-ready product packaging and
labeling.
e. Compliance with these product packaging and labeling
requirements shall include the requirement that retail-ready product
complies with the DOH Testing Regulation, once adopted.
f. While a compassion center is permitted to purchase medical
marijuana and medical marijuana products from a Rhode Island
licensed cultivator pursuant to a written contract/purchase order,
including final products that have already been packaged, labeled,
and/or tested, the compassion center is responsible for ensuring
the integrity of the product, compliance of the packaging and
labeling, including particularly that the products have the correct
composition and profiles that are advertised/indicated in the label.
2. Packaging and labeling shall not:
a. Make any false or misleading statements including particularly any
statements regarding health or physical benefits to the consumer
and the composition and profiles that are advertised/indicated in the
label.
b. Resemble the trademarked, characteristic or product-specialized
packaging of any commercially available snack, baked good, or
beverage.
c. Contain any statement, artwork, or design that could reasonably
mislead any reasonably prudent person to believe that the package
contains anything other than medical marijuana or marijuana
product.
d. Contain any seal, flag, crest, coat of arms, or other insignia that
could reasonably mislead any reasonably prudent person to believe
that the product has been endorsed or manufactured by the State
of Rhode Island or any agency thereof or municipality within.
3. Packaging for medical marijuana and marijuana products sold at retail
shall be opaque, light-resistant, and tamper-evident.
4. Packaging and labeling shall not be designed such that it would be
attractive to children. This requires the packing and labeling be in black
and white only, have no animal characters, and does not contain the word
“candy.”
5. Medical marijuana and marijuana products sold at retail must be packaged
in manner that is “child-resistant,” which for purposes of these Regulations
shall mean that the packaging is designed and constructed to be
significantly difficult for children under five years of age to open. Approved
methods include but are not limited to:
a. Solid or liquid marijuana products may be packaged in plastic four
mil or greater in thickness and be heat sealed with no easy-open
tab, dimple, corner, or flap.
b. Liquid marijuana products may also be packaged in a bottle and
sealed using a metal crown cork style bottle cap or other similar
sealing method pre-approved by DBR.
6. For solid edible marijuana products with more than one serving size in the
outer package, each serving must be packaged individually and placed in
a child-resistant outer package.
7. For liquid edible marijuana products with more than one serving in the
package, a measuring cap or dropper must be included in the package
with the product.
8. All medical marijuana and marijuana products when sold at retail must
include a label affixed to the package containing the following information,
prominently displayed and in a clear and legible English language font:
a. The business or trade name of the selling compassion center.
b. Inventory tracking ID number assigned by the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System or, if prior to the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System’s implementation, an inventory tracking
ID number generated from an alternative inventory tracking system
approved by DBR.
c. Date of final packaging, and, if applicable, the recommended
expiration or “use by” date.
d. Total weight in ounces and grams or volume as appropriate.
Weight and volume must be determined using accurately calibrated
equipment which equipment must also comply with any other
applicable state laws.
e. Total estimated amount of THC and total estimated amount of
CBD.
f. For edible marijuana products, a list of all ingredients used.
g. A statement that discloses all pesticides applied to the marijuana
plants and growing medium during production and processing.
h. If solvents were used, statement that discloses the type of
extraction method, including any solvents, gases, or other
chemicals or compounds used to produce or that are added to the
extract.
i. Any applicable instructions for use and safe storage.
9. All medical marijuana and marijuana products when sold at retail must
include a label affixed to the package containing the following warnings,
prominently displayed and in a clear and legible English language font.
For products other than edibles and topical applications, these warnings
may be on an insert provided with the packaging.
a. “Warning: Marijuana has intoxicating effects and may be habit
forming and addictive. The intoxicating effects of marijuana may be
delayed by up to two hours.”
b. “Warning: Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under its
influence.”
c. “Warning: There may be health risks associated with consumption
of marijuana.”
d. “Warning: For use only by adults twenty-one and older. Keep out of
reach of children.”
e. “Warning: Marijuana should not be used by women that are
pregnant or breast feeding.”
f. “Warning: Do not take this product across state lines.”
g. “Warning: For medical use by a registered patient only. Not for
resale.”
h. “Warning: This product is not certified to be free of contaminants.”
i. For product to be smoked, “Warning: Smoking is hazardous to your
health.”
j. If applicable, a warning regarding use or contact with any nuts or
other known allergens as defined in the federal Food Allergen
Labeling and Consumer Protection Act of 2004, as administered by
the federal Food and Drug Administration.
10. Notwithstanding any of the product labeling requirements set forth in this
Section 1.4(H), application may be made to DBR for approval to affix a
two inch (2”) by two inch (2”) logo or graphic, which may be colored, for
the purpose of identifying the compassion center selling and/or the
cultivator producing the product.
J. Other Compassion Center Operation Requirements
1. Authority
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(b)(1)(ii) authorizes DBR to promulgate
regulations regarding the minimum oversight requirements for compassion
centers. The requirements set forth in this section are promulgated in
accordance with that statutory duty of general regulatory supervision over
the compassion centers.
2. Use on Premises Prohibited
Compassion centers shall not permit the use of marijuana or marijuana
products on the premises of the compassion center, including any parking
areas that are designated for compassion center clients or otherwise
within the control of the compassion center.
3. Transportation of Medical Marijuana to and from a Compassion Center;
Home Delivery Transportation
a. “Authorized transports” of marijuana and marijuana products to and
from compassion centers are limited to approved patient home
delivery plans under Section 1.4(J)(3)(e)and transports to and from
licensed cultivators for transactions authorized under Section
1.4(C)(2).
b. “Registered/licensed facility” shall refer to a either a registered
compassion center or licensed cultivator that is party to an
“authorized transport,” as the context requires.
c. “Authorized transport vehicle” means a vehicle meeting the
following criteria:
(1) The vehicle bears no markings that indicate that the vehicle
is being used to transport marijuana nor indicates the name
of the registered/licensed facility.
(2) The vehicle is equipped with a global positioning system
monitoring device that is monitored by the originating
registered/licensed facility during an authorized transport.
(3) The vehicle has a locked storage compartment within which
the marijuana and marijuana product being transported is
secured.
d. “Detailed transport manifest” refers to a manifest which DBR may
require be generated through and/or maintained in the Medical
Marijuana Program Tracking System and that shall include the
following minimum information:
(1) Departure date and approximate time of departure.
(2) Names, location addresses, and registration/license
numbers of the originating and receiving registered/licensed
facilities.
(3) If for transport to a registered qualifying patient pursuant to
an approved patient home delivery plan, the patient registry
identification card number and any such other information
pursuant to approved delivery plan.
(4) Product name or descriptions and quantities (by weight or
unit) of each product to be delivered to each specific
destination location(s).
(5) Arrival date and approximate time of arrival.
(6) Delivery vehicle make and model and license plate number.
(7) Names, registry identification card numbers, and signatures
of the delivery persons.
e. If a compassion center proposes to offer home delivery service of
usable marijuana or marijuana products to a Rhode Island
registered patient’s residence, it shall submit a comprehensive
proposed patient home delivery plan to DBR for its review and preapproval,
detailing how the program will assure compliance with the
Act, the DBR Regulations, and the DOH Regulations. The patient
home delivery plan must include satisfactory cardholder verification
procedures to ensure delivery is made to requested qualifying
patients and in authorized amounts. The patient home delivery
plan must include how the compassion center will comply with point
of sale tracking requirements for patient home delivery
transactions. Patient home delivery services, if approved, are
subject to the requirement that payment must be made prior to or
within one (1) business day of delivery to the patient.
f. The originating registered/licensed facility shall ensure that all
delivery times and routes are randomized.
g. Authorized transports may only be made by cardholders affiliated
with the particular registered/licensed facility that is the source or
recipient party to an authorized transaction. Authorized transports
must be in compliance with one of the following minimum
requirements: (i) an authorized transport may use a single
authorized transport vehicle so long as it is operated/occupied by a
minimum of two authorized transport cardholders and is subject to
the requirement that at least one such cardholder shall remain in
the authorized transport vehicle at all times; or (ii) an authorized
transport may use two or more authorized transport vehicles that
are operated/occupied by authorized transport cardholders
provided the authorized transport vehicles are traveling together at
all times during the authorized transport.
h. During all authorized transports, the delivery persons must have on
their persons their compassion center or licensed cultivator registry
identification cards and the detailed transport manifest.
i. Any authorized transport vehicle carrying marijuana and marijuana
products shall travel directly from the originating registered/licensed
facility to the receiving registered/licensed facility. Any compassion
center authorized transport vehicle carrying marijuana and
marijuana products to patients pursuant to an approved patient
home delivery plan shall only stop at the patient addresses listed on
the detailed transport manifests. In case of an emergency stop, a
detailed written account must be maintained describing the reason
for the event, the duration, the location, any activities occurring
during the stop, and any personnel exiting the vehicle during the
stop.
j. Authorized transports shall be conducted in such a manner as to
ensure that marijuana and marijuana products are secured and
safe at all times during transport, which includes, but is not limited
to, the requirements that marijuana is not visible from outside the
authorized transport vehicle at that any ingestible marijuana
products that are perishable are adequately refrigerated, if
necessary.
k. Prior to leaving the originating registered/licensed facility for an
authorized transport to another registered/licensed facility, the
originating registered/licensed facility must weigh, inventory, and
account for on video all marijuana and marijuana product to be
transported.
l. For authorized transports to and from a licensed cultivator, the
transport manifest shall be accompanied by a copy of any
contract/purchase order for which the transport is being made and
documentation of the actual payment date, if prepaid.
m. The detailed transport manifest shall be prepared by the originating
registered/licensed facility and transmitted in advance to the
receiving facility. Both facilities shall retain copies of detailed
transport manifests as part of their record retention responsibilities.
n. Within eight (8) hours of after arrival at the destination
registered/licensed facility, the receiving party shall re-weigh, reinventory,
and account on video for all marijuana and marijuana
product transported.
o. Both the originating and recipient registered/licensed facilities shall
timely adjust their records to reflect in its records the completed
authorized transport of marijuana, including logging such
information in the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System. All
records and entries in the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking
System shall be easily reconciled, by product name and quantity,
with the applicable detailed transport manifest. Any unusual
discrepancies in the quantity described in the detailed transport
manifest and the quantities received shall be reported to DBR and
municipal and/or state law enforcement within (24) hours.
p. Any vehicle accidents, diversions, or losses during authorized
transports of marijuana shall be reported to DBR and law
enforcement as an “emergency event” pursuant to Section
1.4(G)(7).
q. Transportation to or from a third party testing provider shall be in
accordance with the DOH Testing Regulations, once adopted.
4. Manufacturing and Extraction
a. Any manufacturing method using a solvent extraction process must
be approved by DBR. If the manufacturing method uses a
flammable/combustible material or heat source, the method must
also be approved by the State Fire Marshall and/or local fire
department.
b. Only registered compassion center employees and agents may
manufacture marijuana products on the premises. A registered
volunteer may do so only as part of educational programming under
the direct supervision of a registered compassion center employee.
c. The compassion center must maintain written standard operating
procedures for each manufacturing process, including step-by-step
instructions.
d. The compassion center must ensure that for each manufacturing
process, all safety and sanitary equipment appropriate for that
manufacturing process, including any personal protective
equipment, is provided to any authorized compassion center
cardholder who will be involved in that manufacturing process.
e. All medical marijuana product manufacturing areas must be
adequately lit during manufacturing, cleaning, or other use.
f. All work surfaces on which medical marijuana products are
manufactured and the walls and floors in the areas in which such
products are manufactured shall be non-porous, non-absorbent,
and easily cleanable.
g. No eating or smoking shall be permitted in the manufacturing area.
h. The compassion center must provide a training manual and
instructional training on each manufacturing process to any
authorized compassion center cardholder who will be involved in
that manufacturing process.
5. Required Patient Outreach Activities
The compassion center’s outreach activities to registered qualifying
patients, registered primary caregivers, and authorized purchasers shall,
at a minimum, include:
a. Providing each new registered qualifying patient who visits the
compassion center with a frequently asked questions sheet that
explains the limitations on the right to use medical marijuana under
state law in accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(f)(9).
b. Providing a list of ingestion options for usable marijuana.
c. Providing applicable usage techniques and any corresponding
safety information to registered qualifying patients.
d. Communicating potential side effects.
e. Upon the request of DOH and/or DBR, e-mailing or otherwise
disseminating information to compassion center clients regarding
changes in the medical marijuana program.
6. Required Employee, Agent, and Volunteer Training.
In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(f)(14), each compassion
center shall develop, implement and maintain on the premises an on-site
training curriculum, or enter into contractual relationships with outside
resources capable of meeting employee, agent and volunteer training
needs. Each employee, agent or volunteer, at the time of his or her initial
appointment and every year thereafter, shall receive, at a minimum,
training in the following:
a. Professional conduct, ethics, and state and federal laws regarding
patient confidentiality.
b. Informational developments in the field of medical use of marijuana.
c. The proper use of security measures and controls that have been
adopted.
d. Training on use of the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System
and any other tracking systems used by the compassion center for
persons responsible for using the system.
e. Specific procedural instructions for responding to an emergency,
including robbery or violent accident.
7. Minimum Sanitation and Workplace Safety Conditions
a. The compassion center shall be maintained in a safe, sanitary, and
clean manner, with all operations in the cultivation, receiving,
inspecting, transporting, segregating, preparing, manufacturing,
packaging, and storing of medical marijuana and marijuana
products conducted in accordance with adequate sanitation
principles, as further detailed below.
b. The facility must meet the following minimum specifications:
(1) Adequate supply of potable hot and cold water.
(2) Non-porous, non-absorbent and easily cleanable floors,
walls, and ceilings in areas where marijuana is cultivated,
manufactured, and stored.
(3) Lavatory facilities that are readily-accessible to employees
and that comply with the Rhode Island State Plumbing Code
Regulation.
(4) Adequate hand-washing area(s): hand washing sinks with
effective hand-cleaning and sanitizing preparations (such as
soap dispensers) and disposable towels or an air dryer for
hands.
(5) Adequate screening or other protection against the entry of
pests and environmental contaminants.
c. All mechanical and electrical equipment shall be maintained in a
safe operating condition.
d. Waste disposal equipment shall be adequate and removal
schedules timely so as to minimize the risk of contamination to
medical marijuana and marijuana products, including the risk of the
waste becoming an attractant, harborage, or breeding place for
pests.
e. All waste (including all liquid, chemical, hazardous, pesticide,
manufacturing solvent and chemical waste) must be stored,
secured, and managed in accordance with all applicable federal,
state, and local statutes, regulations, ordinances, or other legal
requirements. Specific instructions for safe destruction of any
marijuana required to be destroyed and proper disposal of medical
marijuana waste are provided in Section 1.4(J)(10).
f. Floors, walls, and ceilings shall be kept clean and in good repair,
free from dust, debris, mold, mildew, and other contaminants and
potentially hazardous materials.
g. Lavatory facilities and hand washing areas shall be kept clean and
sanitary and in working condition at all times.
h. Toxic cleaning compounds, sanitizing agents, and other chemicals
shall be identified, held, stored and disposed of in a manner that
protects against contamination of medical marijuana and marijuana
products and in a manner that is in accordance with any applicable
local, state, or federal law, rule, regulation, or ordinance.
i. The compassion center shall comply with all relevant statutes,
regulations, and requirements administered by the Federal
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), including
but not necessarily limited to standards for toxic and flammable
compounds and air contaminants.
j. All persons working in direct contact with medical marijuana and
marijuana products shall conform to hygienic practices while on
duty, including but not limited to maintaining adequate personal
cleanliness and washing hands thoroughly in an adequate handwashing
area before starting work and at any other time when the
hands may have become soiled or contaminated.
k. Any person whose medical condition, as determined by medical
examination or as observed by a supervisor, poses or reasonably
appears to pose a risk of contamination of medical marijuana
and/or medical marijuana products shall be excluded from medical
marijuana operations until the condition is cleared. Medical
conditions posing a risk of contamination include but are not
necessarily limited to open lesions, including boils, sores, or
infected wounds, or any other abnormal source of microbial
infection.
l. The compassion center shall not permit the entry of any animal into
the premises. Service animals (as defined in the Americans with
Disabilities Act) are exempted from this prohibition.
m. In addition to the safety and sanitary equipment including personal
protective equipment that the compassion center is required to
furnish its employees involved in marijuana manufacturing and
extraction pursuant to Section 1.4(J)(4)(D) of these regulations, the
compassion center must also furnish its employees with proper
safety equipment for other types of work assigned as part of the
compassion center operations.
8. Odor Control and Mitigation
a. Cultivation area(s) shall have ventilation and filtration systems
installed that prevent medical marijuana plant odors from exiting the
interior of the structure to an extent that would significantly alter the
environmental odor outside, while addressing the potential for mold.
b. The ventilation and filtration system, along with any plumbing
improvements, shall be installed in compliance with all applicable
codes and ordinances, including obtaining any necessary permits,
and inspected by the municipality.
c. Measures to assure compliance with this section shall be
documented in an odor control and mitigation plan acceptable to
DBR.
9. Pesticide Use and Records
a. The cultivation process shall use best practices to limit
contamination of medical marijuana and marijuana products,
including but not limited to mold, mildew, fungus, bacterial
diseases, rot, pests, pesticides, and any other contaminant
identified as posing potential harm.
b. The use of pesticides on marijuana plants in Rhode Island by
registered compassion centers will not be considered a violation of
these regulations provided that the product must satisfy all of the
following criteria:
(1) The product must be a “minimum risk pesticide” under 40
C.F.R. § 152.25(f), as the same may be amended from time
to time.
(2) The product must be labelled for use on “all plants,” “other
plants,” bedding plants, unspecified plants, or unspecified
crops.
(3) The label must not prohibit indoor or greenhouse use, as
applicable.
(4) All active ingredients must be eligible for food use as
determined by the federal Environmental Protection Agency
(EPA). See EPA’s Active Ingredients Eligible for Minimum
Risk Pesticide Products (last updated December 2015), as
the same may be updated and/or amended from time to
time. https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-
12/documents/minrisk-active-ingredients-tolerances-2015-
12-15.pdf.
(5) All inert/other ingredients must be eligible for food use. See
EPA’s Inert Ingredients Eligible for FIFRA 25(b) Pesticide
Products (last updated December 2015), as the same may
be updated and/or amended from time to time. See
https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2016-
07/documents/section25b_inerts.pdf.
(6) The product must be a currently registered pesticide product
eligible for sale in Rhode Island as determined by the Rhode
Island Department of Environmental Management. To verify
a product’s registration in Rhode Island, please consult the
online National Pesticide Information Retrieval System
through the Center for Environmental and Regulatory
Information Systems.
http://npirspublic.ceris.purdue.edu/state/state_menu.aspx?st
ate=RI.
(7) The product must be used in accordance with any and all
use instructions on the label.
c. No application of pesticides shall be made after the vegetative
stage of growth of the cannabis plant. The vegetative stage of
growth should be determined by visual buds or flower or by proxy of
the plant receiving less than eighteen (18) hours of light in a twentyfour
(24) hour period.
d. Pesticides shall be identified, held, stored and disposed of in a
manner that protects against contamination of medical marijuana
and marijuana products and in a manner that is in accordance with
any applicable local, state, or federal law, rule, regulation, or
ordinance.
e. As a DBR record-keeping requirement, compassion centers must
keep detailed records of any pesticide products used and
application regiments, including video recording during pesticide
applications which must cease if there is a failure or disruption of
the video surveillance system. This record-keeping requirement is
independent of that required of commercial pesticide applicators by
the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, and
is intended to apply in addition to that requirement, where relevant.
10. Safe Disposal of Medical Marijuana Waste and Safe Destruction of Usable
Medical Marijuana
a. Marijuana and marijuana product waste (including all liquid,
chemical, hazardous, pesticide, manufacturing solvent and
chemical waste containing any traces of marijuana) must be stored,
secured, and managed in accordance with all applicable federal,
state, and local statutes, regulations, ordinances, or other legal
requirements.
b. Prior to disposal, marijuana and marijuana product waste must be
made unusable and any marijuana plant material made
indistinguishable from other plant material. This may be
accomplished by grinding and incorporating the marijuana plant
waste with other non-consumable solid waste or other ground
materials so the resulting mixture is at least fifty percent nonmarijuana
waste by volume. Other methods to render marijuana
waste unusable must be approved by DBR before implementing.
Marijuana waste rendered unusable following an approved method
may be delivered to a licensed solid waste disposal facility in
Rhode Island for final disposition or disposed of in an alternative
manner approved by DBR.
c. Destruction of marijuana and marijuana materials other than waste
generated in the regular course of processing and/or manufacturing
(such as destruction of whole plants, wet, or usable marijuana that
are found to be in excess of statutory possession limits or
destruction of a contaminated batch of medical marijuana product)
shall be in a manner acceptable to DBR, which may include
consultation with law enforcement.
d. Destruction of marijuana and marijuana materials upon revocation
or abandonment of the license shall be specifically governed by
DBR order or agreement and/or coordinated efforts with law
enforcement.
e. Compassion centers must maintain accurate and comprehensive
records regarding waste material that accounts for, reconciles, and
evidences all waste activity related to the disposal of marijuana and
marijuana products (including any waste material produced through
the trimming or pruning of a marijuana plant prior to harvest). DBR
may mandate storage of any such records or summaries of such
records to be through the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking
System or any other electronic system DBR designates.
K. Inspections and Audits; Enforcement Actions
1. Compassion centers are subject to reasonable inspection by DBR and
DOH. DBR and DOH and their authorized representatives have authority
to enter a compassion center premises at reasonable times and to inspect
in a reasonable manner, the premises and all equipment, materials,
containers, and other things therein, including without limitation all
records, files, financials, sales, transport, pricing and employee data,
research, papers, processes, controls and to inventory any stock of
marijuana, labels, containers, paraphernalia and other materials and
products. During any inspection, DBR and DOH may review the
compassion center's confidential records, including its dispensing records,
which shall track transactions according to identifying information for the
patient, primary caregiver, and/or authorized purchaser. Dispensing
records for patient cardholders shall be tracked by registry identification
numbers only to protect their confidentiality. See R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-
28.6-12(e).
2. DBR may review and audit the books and records of compassion centers
to ascertain compliance with the Act, the DBR Regulations, and/or the
DOH Regulations, including continued satisfaction of the statutory criteria
considered in granting a compassion center license. The compassion
center must make such books and records immediately available for
reviewing and copying by DBR and DOH. DBR may retain an
independent auditor to act as its agent for purposes of this section, the
cost of which shall be borne by the compassion center.
3. Nothing herein shall be interpreted to limit the real time access of DBR
and DOH to information stored in the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking
System consistent with the Act.
4. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(d)(5) and § 21-28.6-12(b)(1), a
compassion center's registration certificate may be suspended/revoked if
the compassion center is in violation of the laws of Rhode Island, including
the Act, DBR Regulations, or DOH Regulations.
5. If a principal officer, board member, employee, agent, or volunteer
affiliated with a compassion center violates the Act, the DBR Regulations,
and/or the DOH Regulations when acting in their capacity as a principal
officer, board member, employee, agent, or volunteer of the compassion
center, the compassion center may be subject to suspension/revocation
for failure to exercise adequate supervision.
1.5 Licensed Cultivator Application and Licensing Provisions
A. Authority
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(b)(1) authorizes DBR to promulgate regulations
regarding the form and content of licensing and renewal applications for licensed
cultivators.
B. Licensed Cultivator Application and License Timeline
1. Licensed cultivator applications may be submitted to DBR for
consideration through April 30, 2017. The application period will be reopened
each subsequent year during the months of January, February,
and March. DBR reserves the right to modify the application periods
based on patient and program need. DBR also reserves the right to issue
regulations limiting the number and/or classes of new licenses available
for application based on the projected needs of the Rhode Island Medical
Marijuana Program population. See R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16 (location
and possession restrictions, regulation of licensing and oversight
requirements).
2. Upon notification of approval of an application from DBR, the approved
applicant must take reasonable and documented efforts to complete the
prerequisites for issuance of the license which steps are detailed in
Section 1.5(E). If such efforts take longer than nine (9) months, the
approved applicant must show good cause to DBR why additional time
should be granted and the application approval should not be rescinded.
3. Once the license has been issued, the licensed cultivator must take
reasonable and documented efforts to launch licensed cultivator activities,
which for purposes of this paragraph shall mean actual medical marijuana
cultivation, processing, packaging, manufacturing, and/or other medical
marijuana activities requiring a cultivator license pursuant to the Act. If
such efforts take longer than six (6) months, the licensed cultivator must
show good cause to DBR why the license should not be revoked for nonuse.
C. Classes of Cultivator Licenses
1. Cultivator licenses shall be divided into the following categories:
License Class Size of Facility*
Micro-license 0 – 2,500 sq. ft.
Class A 0 – 5000 sq. ft.
Class B 5,001 – 10,000 sq. ft.
Class C 10,001 – 15,000 sq. ft.
Class D 15,001 – 20,000 sq. ft.
2. For facilities over 20,000 sq. ft., please contact DBR prior to submitting the
application.
3. For the period of one (1) year from the effective date of these regulations,
only Micro-license, Class A, and Class B applications will be accepted. An
applicant who is considering eventually applying to operate a larger facility
may detail any such plan on the application.
4. Facility size shall be determined as a total of any area where marijuana
will be cultivated, stored, processed, packaged, and/or manufactured.
5. An authorized officer of the applicant shall certify the square footage
calculation.
D. Application for Cultivator License
1. DBR will evaluate applicants based upon the information provided by
applicants on the application forms/submissions and otherwise obtained
during the application process.
2. Each application for a licensed cultivator shall be on such forms and
through such submission mechanisms as designated by DBR.
3. All categories of cultivator applications shall be accompanied by a nonrefundable
application fee of five-thousand dollars ($5000).
4. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(i), cultivators shall only be
licensed at a single location registered with DBR and RISP, must abide by
all local ordinances, including zoning ordinances, and may be subject to
any additional location restrictions promulgated by DBR. With respect to
local zoning, medical marijuana cultivation may fall within various zoning
use categories including without limitation the following zoning use
categories: agricultural uses (such as greenhouse and nursery), industrial
uses (light and general), manufacturing and processing (such
as factory) or specific medical marijuana related use categories. Whether
medical marijuana cultivation is a permitted use, prohibited use or allowed
by special use permit within these or any other use categories is
determined by local zoning authorities. Furthermore, in accordance with
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(i):
a. Only one cultivator license will be issued per structural building.
b. The application must contain the following minimum information:
(1) The proposed physical location of the licensed cultivator (by
plat and lot number, mailing address, etc.), if a precise
location has been determined. If a precise physical location
has not been determined, a description of the general
location(s) where it may be sited, if approved, and the
expected schedule for purchasing or leasing said location(s).
(2) Approximate calculation of the square footage of the
proposed facility.
(3) Evidence of the location’s compliance or preliminary
determination of compatibility with the local zoning laws.
(4) Evidence that the physical location is not located within one
thousand feet (1,000’) of the property line of a preexisting
public or private school. For the purposes of this paragraph,
“private school” shall be deemed to refer to any nonpublic
institution of elementary or secondary (K-12th Grade)
education, accredited or recognized as a private school by
the department of elementary and secondary education or
the school committee of the city or town having jurisdiction
over private schools. For purposes of this paragraph, the
1000 foot distance shall be measured from the secured
cultivator premises, which shall include allotted outdoor
areas (such as parking and loading areas), to the property
line of the school, which shall include the school building,
land, and appurtenances.
(5) A draft diagram of the proposed facility, including where
within the facility the medical marijuana will be cultivated,
stored, processed, packaged, and/or manufactured, and
where security alarms and cameras and surveillance
recording storage will be located, and showing the location
of the facility relative to streets and other public areas.
(6) A description of objective parameters (such as distances
from streets and public areas) and/or proposed measures
(such as black-out window shades) that ensure that
marijuana at the premises shall not be visible from the street
or other public areas.
(7) Evidence of either ownership of property or agreement by
owner of property to allow the operation of a licensed
cultivator on the property, if property has already been
purchased or leased at the time of the application.
5. The application shall also provide the following minimum information:
a. The applicant’s legal and any d/b/a name(s), certificate of
incorporation or organization in Rhode Island or certificate of
authority to transact business in Rhode Island, articles of
incorporation or organization, and bylaws or operating agreement.
b. A business plan, including scope of activities, budget and resource
narratives, and timeline for initiating operations.
c. The legal name, current address, and date of birth of each officer
and director or member/manager of the applicant.
d. A list of all persons or business entities (legal names and current
addresses) that currently have or are expected to have direct or
indirect authority over the management or policies of the applicant.
e. If the applicant proposes to have a management agreement in
place, it shall also include a copy of the management agreement or
management agreement proposal and a list of persons who have
any ownership interest or operational control over the management
company.
f. A list of all persons or business entities (legal names and current
addresses) having any ownership interest in the applicant entity,
whether direct or indirect.
g. If the cultivator premises and/or other operational assets will be
owned or leased by a person or entity other than the applicant, the
legal name and current address of any such person or entity and a
list of all persons or entities (legal names and current addresses)
having any ownership in such entity, whether direct or indirect.
h. The legal names and current addresses of all creditors holding a
security interest in the premises and/or other assets to be used in
the cultivator operations, if any.
i. Tax Affidavit in accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 5-76-1 et seq.
j. All other information required by DBR as described in the
application form, including for example experience and regulatory
history of the applicant and its key personnel.
6. Only applications which DBR has determined to be complete (i.e.,
adequately address all application requirements above) shall be eligible
for review. An applicant who submits an incomplete application shall
receive written notification from DBR regarding the specific deficiencies
and shall be allowed to resubmit additional material to address these
deficiencies within a reasonable timeframe without additional application
fees.
E. Prerequisites to Issuance of Cultivator License and Commencement of
Operations
1. If an applicant seeking to operate as a licensed cultivator is notified that its
application has been approved by DBR, it shall complete the below steps
before a cultivator license will be issued.
2. Annual Cultivator License Fees
The annual license fee shall be determined by the below table and must
be paid in full before a license will be issued.
License Class Annual License Fee
Micro-license $5,000.00
Class A $20,000.00
Class B $35,000.00
Class C $50,000.00
Class D $80,000.00
3. Final Information and Documentation to be Supplied
The applicant must provide any updates to previously submitted
application information and the following additional items to DBR:
a. A sufficient description of the final physical location of the cultivator
premises (by plat and lot number, mailing address, etc.).
b. Evidence of complete compliance of the facility with the local
zoning laws in the form of a letter from an authorized zoning official
of the municipality and certification by an authorized officer of the
applicant as to compliance with any other applicable local
ordinances. See Section 1.5(D)(4).
c. Unless already provided at time of initial application, evidence that
the physical location for the cultivator premises is not located within
one thousand feet (1,000’) of the property line of a preexisting
public or private school. See Section 1.5(D)(4)(b)(4),
d. A current Certificate of Occupancy (or equivalent document) to
demonstrate compliance of the cultivator facility with the relevant
provisions of Chapters 28.1 and 27.3 of Title 23 of the R.I. General
Laws [Fire Safety Code and State Building Code, respectively].
e. Evidence of either ownership of property or agreement by owner of
property to allow the operation of a licensed cultivator on the
property.
f. A final diagram of the facility, including where marijuana will be
cultivated, stored, processed, packaged, and manufactured, and
where security alarms and cameras and surveillance recording
storage will be located.
g. The legal name, current address, and date of birth of any person
who will be an employee or agent of the cultivator at its inception.
h. Evidence of completion of divestiture plan pursuant to Section
1.5(E)(5)(e) and other individual relinquishment requirements
pursuant to Section 1.5(E)(5)(f).
4. DBR Pre-License Inspection
Before a cultivator license will be issued, a DBR inspection is required.
Approved applicants should contact DBR to coordinate said inspection.
Nothing in this paragraph should be construed as limiting inspections at an
earlier time in addition to the final pre-license inspection.
5. Divestiture of Prohibited Material Financial Interest and Control
a. A licensed cultivator and “key persons” thereof may not have any
“material financial interest or control” in another licensed cultivator,
a compassion center, or a licensed cooperative cultivation or vice
versa. See R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(1)(iii)(limiting a
compassion center to one additional location to cultivate its
marijuana); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(b)(1)(ii)(DBR minimum
oversight over compassion centers); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-
16(i)(cultivator to be licensed at one location only); R.I. Gen. Laws
§ 21-28.6-16(b)(2)(DBR minimum oversight over cultivators); R.I.
Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-3(4)(i) and R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-
3(12)(separately defining “compassion center” and “licensed
cultivator,” respectively); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(10)(DBR
authority to regulate operations of licensed cooperative
cultivations); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(q)(qualifying patient and
primary caregiver cardholders may only grow at one location).
b. R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(f) authorizes regulations regarding
testing of medical marijuana and marijuana product cultivated
and/or manufactured by licensed cultivators, which will include
ensuring the independence of third party testing providers.
Accordingly, a licensed cultivator may not have any material
financial interest or control in a Rhode Island DOH-approved third
party testing provider and vice versa.
c. “Material financial interest or control” shall mean: i) any ownership
interest, regardless of the size of the holding, and including any
ownership interest through a subsidiary or affiliate; ii) trusteeship,
mortgage, guarantor, endorser or surety relationship, or loan
relationship, except that loan relationship for the purposes of this
definition shall exclude accounts payable and accounts receivable
on account of a medical marijuana purchase order; iii) any other
beneficial financial interest such that the holder bears the risk of
loss (other than as an insurer) or has an opportunity to gain profit
from the operation or sale of the regulated medical marijuana
business; iv) operational control including but not limited to
interlocking directors or officers or through a management
agreement.
d. “Key persons” shall mean officers, directors, LLC
managers/members and any persons with managing or operational
control.
e. Therefore, if a licensed cultivator application is approved and any
prohibited material financial interest or control has been identified
by DBR or is otherwise known to the licensed cultivator applicant,
such interest or control must be divested prior to issuance of the
cultivator license. The plan of divestiture shall be filed with DBR.
f. If applicable, before issuance of the cultivator license, the cultivator
applicant entity and its officers, directors or managers/members,
and any other person with an ownership or controlling interest must
relinquish any caregiver registrations or cooperative cultivation
licenses held in order to comply with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-
16(a).
g. The duty to divest prohibited material financial interests and control
is a continuing obligation of licensure.
6. Registry Identification Card Requirements
Before issuance of the cultivator license, all officers, directors or
managers/members, employees, and agents must apply for a registry
identification card and submit to a national criminal background check as
provided in Section 1.6. Such individuals may be hired, appointed, or
retained prior to receiving a registry identification card, but may not begin
engagement in medical marijuana cultivation, storage, processing,
packaging, manufacturing, transport, or other medical marijuana activities
requiring a licensed cultivator license pursuant to the Act until receipt of
the card.
F. DBR Post-Licensure Inspection of Operations and Inventory
After the cultivator license is issued, the licensed cultivator shall notify DBR when
it obtains inventory and commences operations. DBR may conduct a postlicensure
inspection upon this commencement of operations, including but not
limited to inspection for compliance of medical marijuana and marijuana product
inventory with the tagging and tracking requirements set forth in Section 1.7(D).
Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to limit DBR’s general inspection
powers as delineated in Section 1.7(J).
G. Changes in Location, Floor Plan, Ownership and Control of Licensed Cultivator;
Continuing Duty to Update Application Information; Discontinuation of or Failure
to Launch Licensed Cultivator Activities
1. A cultivator license shall not be assigned or otherwise transferred to other
persons or locations, unless pre-approved in accordance with the below
paragraphs.
2. A licensed cultivator shall provide DBR with a written notice of any change
described below at least sixty (60) calendar days prior to the proposed
effective date of the change:
a. A change in ownership of the licensed cultivator.
b. Change in the membership of a board of directors, board of
trustees, or managers/members.
c. Change in corporate officer.
d. Merger, dissolution, or entity conversion.
e. Entering into a management agreement, changing management
companies, and/or material changes to an existing management
agreement.
f. Changes in the approved licensed cultivator premises.
g. Change to approved premises floor plan.
h. Proposed premises expansion.
3. Unless the licensed cultivator provides timely notification of the above
changes and receives prior DBR approval or waiver of the requirement of
prior notice and approval (for example a non-material change in ownership
or emergency situation as determined by DBR), the license shall be void
and returned to DBR.
4. As to any proposed change of ownership or to a management agreement
that will effect a change of majority control and/or decision-making
authority with respect to the operation of the licensed cultivator or as to
any proposed change in an approved licensed cultivator premises
location, DBR may require the licensed cultivator to follow the process for
a new application, which may include a new application fee. Additionally,
any increase in the size of the facility that causes the facility to be
reclassified based on the license fee structure set forth in Section
1.5(E)(2) shall require payment of the difference between the paid fee and
the fee applicable to the new classification of the facility. DBR, in its sole
discretion, may prorate the fee increase or may offer a rebate for a size
decrease.
5. For updates in information other than the categories requiring sixty (60)
calendar days prior notice, the licensed cultivator has a continuing
obligation to update, amend and/or correct any information requested
and/or submitted in the application process within ten (10) business days
after any change in the information submitted and/or any material change
in circumstances related to the application. This includes timely
notification and divestiture if a prohibited interest as delineated in Section
1.5(E)(5) is acquired by operation of law.
6. If the licensed cultivator proposes to alter the final floor plan previously
submitted and approved, the licensed cultivator must first submit a
renovation plan for DBR approval sixty (60) calendar days prior to
commencement of construction. The renovation plan must specifically
address quality control procedures for the protection of medical marijuana
and medical marijuana products from any contamination during the
construction process and further address any other criteria DBR requires.
7. The cultivator license shall be void and returned to DBR if the licensed
cultivator discontinues its operation, unless the discontinuance is on a
temporary basis approved by DBR.
H. Annual Renewal
1. Cultivator licenses shall be issued for one year terms.
2. Annual renewals shall be submitted on such forms and include such
information as prescribed by DBR.
3. An annual inspection shall be part of the annual renewal process.
1.6 Licensed Cultivator Cardholder Registry Identification Card
Provisions
A. Cultivator Cardholder Definitions
1. “Licensed cultivator cardholder” includes all officers, directors or
managers/members, employees, and agents who have been issued a
registry identification for their association with the licensed cultivator.
2. “Agent” of a licensed cultivator shall include, but not be limited to, “testing
agents.”
3. “Testing agent” shall mean an employee of an approved third party testing
provider who performs independent testing of medical marijuana and/or
marijuana products of the licensed cultivator in accordance with the DOH
Testing Regulations, once adopted.
B. Registry Identification Card Requirement, Eligibility, Annual Fee and Application
1. All officers, directors or managers/members, employees, and agents of
the licensed cultivator must apply for cultivator registry identification cards.
2. Each licensed cultivator shall maintain a current list of all licensed
cultivator cardholders associated with the licensed cultivator.
3. Licensed cultivator cardholders shall be at least twenty-one (21) years old.
4. There shall be a one hundred dollars ($100.00) non-returnable, nonrefundable
annual fee for a licensed cultivator registry identification card,
including each initial application and subsequent annual renewal.
5. Applications pursuant to this section shall be on such forms and through
such submission mechanisms as directed by DBR.
C. Criminal Background Checks
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(k), the cultivator applicant is
subject to a national criminal background check. This shall include all
officers, directors or managers/members, employees, and agents of the
licensed cultivator (hereinafter also referred to in this section as
“applicants”).
2. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(k)(2), disqualifying information is
defined as a felony drug offense conviction or a plea of nolo contendere
for a felony drug offense with a sentence of probation.
3. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(k), the national criminal
identification records check shall include fingerprints submitted to the
Federal Bureau of Investigation. Application for said records check may
be made to the Bureau of Criminal Identification of the Department of
Attorney General, RISP, or the local police department.
4. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(k) and § 21-28.6-16(k)(2), upon
the discovery of any disqualifying information, the office that conducted
the records check (the Bureau of Criminal Identification of the Department
of Attorney General, RISP, or the local police department) shall issue a
letter to the applicant disqualifying the applicant and informing the
applicant of the nature of the disqualifying information.
5. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(k) and § 21-28.6-16(k)(2), upon
discovery of any disqualifying information, the office that conducted the
records check (the Bureau of Criminal Identification of the Department of
Attorney General, RISP, or the local police department) shall notify DBR,
in writing of the fact that disqualifying information has been discovered
thus disqualifying the applicant.
6. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(k)(1), in those situations in which
no felony drug offense conviction or plea of nolo contendere for a felony
drug offense with probation has been found, the office that conducted the
records check (the Bureau of Criminal Identification of the Department of
Attorney General, RISP, or the local police department) shall inform the
applicant and DBR, in writing, of this fact.
7. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(k)(2), the applicant shall be
responsible for any expense associated with the national criminal
background check with fingerprints.
8. DBR will not require a person subject to a national criminal background
check under this subsection to undergo such a check more than once
every two (2) years, unless a more frequent time frame is mandated
and/or agreed to as part of a license disciplinary action.
D. Issuance of the Cultivator Cardholder Registry Identification Card
1. Once the licensed cultivator cardholder application is approved by DBR,
each approved officer, director or manager/member, employee, or agent
of the licensed cultivator is responsible for getting a registry identification
card from DOH.
2. The registry identification card shall contain:
a. The name, address and date of birth of the person.
b. The legal name of the licensed cultivator that the individual is
affiliated with.
c. The category of the person’s affiliation: officer, director or
manager/member, employee, or agent.
d. The date of issuance and expiration date of the registry
identification card.
e. A random registry identification number.
f. A photograph.
E. Expiration and Renewal of Cultivator Cardholder Registry Identification Cards
Cultivator cardholder registry identification cards shall expire one year after
issuance. Renewal applications shall be on such forms and through such
submission mechanisms as directed by DBR.
F. Change in Name or Address; Lost/Stolen Cards
1. In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(l)(1), a licensed cultivator
cardholder shall notify DBR of any change in his or her name or address
within ten (10) business days of such change. A licensed cultivator
cardholder who fails to notify DBR of any of these changes may be subject
to a fine up to one hundred fifty dollars ($150).
2. In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(l)(2), changes in name
and/or address require the licensed cultivator cardholder to remit a ten
dollar ($10.00) fee to DBR. Upon receipt of the notice and fee, DBR will
prompt DOH to issue an updated registry identification card. The licensed
cultivator cardholder shall be responsible for getting the updated registry
identification card from DOH.
3. In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(l)(3),if a licensed
cultivator cardholder loses his or her registry identification card (which
would particularly include a card suspected to be stolen), he or she shall
notify DBR and submit a ten dollar ($10.00) fee within ten (10) business
days of losing the registry identification card. Upon receipt of the notice
and fee, DBR will prompt DOH to issue a replacement registry
identification card. The licensed cultivator cardholder shall be responsible
for getting the replacement registry identification card from DOH.
G. Duty to Notify DBR of Disqualifying Criminal Information
In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(l)(3), a licensed cultivator
cardholder shall notify DBR of any disqualifying criminal convictions as defined in
§ 21-28.6-16(k)(2). Such notification must be made in writing within ten (10)
business days.
H. Termination of Cultivator Cardholder Registry Identification Card.
1. If a licensed cultivator cardholder violates R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16
(entitled “Licensed Cultivator”) or any portion of the DBR Regulations or
DOH Regulations which regulate licensed cultivators and licensed
cultivator cardholders, his or her registry identification card may be
suspended/revoked or subject to a fine as determined by DBR pursuant to
§ 21-28.6-16(e).
2. When a licensed cultivator cardholder ceases work with a licensed
cultivator, whether voluntarily or involuntarily or upon the licensed
cultivator closing, his or her registry identification card shall be null and
void. In that situation, the licensed cultivator and/or the licensed cultivator
cardholder shall notify DBR and the registry identification card shall be
returned to DBR within ten (10) business days. No hearing shall be
necessary to render the card null and void in this situation. In addition to
being null and void, a penalty of up to one hundred and fifty dollars ($150)
may be assessed for failure to return the card within the ten (10) day
period.
1.7 Licensed Cultivator Operational Provisions
A. State Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System
Upon direction by the DBR, each licensed cultivator shall be required to utilize
the state approved Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System to document
and monitor compliance with the Act, the DBR Regulations, and the DOH
Regulations, including but not limited to seed to sale tracking, inventory supply
tracking, adherence to restrictions on third party supply and sources of marijuana
and marijuana products and transfers thereof off the licensed premises, and all
testing compliance tracking. Licensed cultivators may be required to pay costs
associated with use of the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System which
may be assessed on an annual, monthly, per use, or per volume basis and
payable to the state or to its approved vendor.
B. Limitation on Sales and Transfers; Contract Requirements
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(e), licensed cultivators shall only
sell medical marijuana and marijuana products to Rhode Island registered
compassion centers. As part of such sales transactions, the licensed
cultivator may transfer and transport medical marijuana and medical
marijuana products to a registered compassion center. A licensed
cultivator may only receive medical marijuana and marijuana products
from a Rhode Island registered compassion center if the receipt is
pursuant to a written contract or purchase order for the cultivator to
process the medical marijuana into a product to be furnished back to the
compassion center.
2. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(e), all marijuana and marijuana
products possessed by a cultivator in excess of the permitted
“uncommitted inventory” as defined and delineated in Section 1.7(C)(3)
must be under “formal agreement” to be purchased by a compassion
center.
3. “Formal agreement” requirements shall be as follows: An executed written
contract or purchase order shall be required for all sales from a licensed
cultivator to a compassion center and shall contain the following minimum
terms: a) date of execution/placement of the contract/purchase order, b)
description and amount of product to be sold; c) the total and per unit price
of the product to be sold; d) the specific date or date range not spanning
more than (30) calendar days for fulfillment of the order and delivery or
pickup; e) the payment due date, as specifically agreed between the
parties, but if no date is specifically agreed to, payment shall be made
within sixty (60) calendar days of delivery or pickup. Contracts/purchase
orders pursuant to this paragraph may not be modified but may be
cancelled or voided by the creation of a new replacement
contract/purchase order.
4. In furtherance of the intent of R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(e) and pursuant
to its minimum oversight rulemaking authority under R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-
28.6-16(b)(2), DBR deems the sale and/or transfer of marijuana or
marijuana products, with or without consideration, to any other party that is
not a Rhode Island registered compassion center, including any transfer
between licensed cultivators, to be prohibited.
5. Any transfer to or from a third party testing provider shall be in accordance
with the DOH Testing Regulations, once adopted.
6. Unless specifically permitted by Section 1.7, no other licensed cultivator
sales or transfers of marijuana or marijuana products are permitted.
C. Inventory Limitations; Sources of Inventory
1. Marijuana Plant Inventory
a. Prior to the implementation of the Medical Marijuana Tracking
System, micro-licensees may not possess more than fifty (50)
mature marijuana plants and fifty (50) seedlings which must be
properly tagged and tracked in accordance with acceptable
alternative tagging and tracking under Section 1.7(D).
b. Prior to the implementation of the Medical Marijuana Tracking
System, Class A cultivator licensees may not possess more than
two hundred and fifty (250) mature marijuana plants and two
hundred and fifty (250) seedlings which must be properly tagged
and tracked in accordance with acceptable alternative tagging and
tracking under Section 1.7(D).
b. Prior to the implementation of the Medical Marijuana Tracking
System, Class B cultivator licensees will be limited to five hundred
(500) mature marijuana plants and five hundred (500) seedlings
which must be properly tagged and tracked in accordance with
acceptable alternative tagging and tracking under Section 1.7(D).
c. After implementation of the Medical Marijuana Tracking System,
licensed cultivators will not be subject to a numerical possession
limit for marijuana plants, provided every plant is properly tagged
and tracked in the Medical Marijuana Tracking System.
2. Wet Marijuana Inventory
Licensed cultivators will not be subject to a numerical possession limit for
the amount of wet marijuana provided the cultivator complies with the
following:
a. All wet marijuana is tagged and tracked in accordance with the
cultivator tagging and tracking requirements provided in Section
1.7(D).
b. All wet marijuana must be stored in an environment conducive to
the drying process and may not be stored in an environment that
artificially prolongs the drying process or preserves marijuana in an
unusable wet state.
3. Usable Marijuana Inventory
a. Pursuant to its authority under R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(d),
DBR establishes limits on the amount of “uncommitted inventory” of
usable marijuana a licensed cultivator may possess based on
licensed facility size as provided in the below table. “Uncommitted
inventory” shall refer to marijuana and marijuana product not under
formal agreement to be purchased by a compassion center.
License class
by size per
Section
1.5(C)(1)
Pounds of
dried
usable
marijuana
OR 10 mg THC
units of
infused
edible
product
OR Grams
of concentrate
OR any combined
amount of dried
usable marijuana,
infused edible
product, and/or
b. The above uncommitted inventory limits are derived from the
equivalency conversions delineated in DOH Regulations, Appendix
A. To any extent these equivalency conversions are inconsistent
with the DOH Regulations, the DOH Regulations shall be
controlling. Limits for combined inventory of marijuana in mixed
forms shall be calculated as a total equivalent to the maximum limit
of dried usable marijuana in pounds in accordance with the
equivalency conversions factors delineated in DOH Regulations,
Appendix A.
c. In accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(e), all marijuana
and marijuana product that exceeds the amount of uncommitted
inventory permitted by the above chart must be under formal
agreement to be purchased by a compassion center. If such
excess marijuana is not under formal agreement to be purchased,
the cultivator will have forty-five (45) calendar days to sell the
excess to a compassion center or destroy the excess in
accordance with the destruction guidelines in Section 1.7(I)(9).
d. Formal agreement requirements are set forth in Section 1.7(B)(3).
4. Sources of inventory for licensed cultivators shall be limited to “legally preexisting
inventory” and “clone cutting procurement” as delineated below.
a. Legally Pre-Existing Inventory: If a licensed cultivator or its officers,
directors, members/managers, or employees possessed medical
marijuana plants in compliance with the provisions of the Act before
the license was granted, such marijuana plants may be transferred
to the licensed cultivator inventory as a one-time transaction upon
licensure provided such marijuana plants are properly tagged and
tracked in compliance with Section 1.7(D). Except as provided in
concentrate that
does not equate
to more than the
maximum limit of
dried usable
marijuana in
pounds
Micro-license 2.5 max OR 3,320 max OR 308 max OR’’
Class A 5 max OR 6,640 max OR 616 max OR ?
Class B 10 max OR 13,280 max OR 1,232 max OR ?
Class C 15 max OR 19,920 max OR 1,848 max OR ?
Class D 20 max OR 26,560 max OR 2,464 max OR ?
the preceding sentence, transfers of marijuana and marijuana
product between the licensed cultivator and its officers, directors,
members/managers, and/or employees is strictly prohibited.
b. Clone Cutting Procurement: A licensed cultivator may acquire
marijuana plant cuttings to use as clones for plant development
(“clone cuttings”) not more than once per month in a single
transaction of not more than twelve (12) clone cuttings from a “nonaffiliated
licensed cooperative cultivation.” The clone cuttings may
be no longer than eight (8) inches in length, and may not contain
observable buds or flower. A licensed cultivator who acquires
clone cuttings must immediately tag such clone cuttings and track
them in accordance with the tagging and tracking requirements set
forth in Section 1.7(D). A licensed cultivator must keep records of
all clone cutting procurements as required by DBR. “Non-affiliated
licensed cooperative cultivation” requirements are further
delineated in Section 1.8(O).
D. Medical Marijuana and Marijuana Product Tagging for Cultivators
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(d), every marijuana plant
possessed by a licensed cultivator must be accompanied by a medical
marijuana tag.
2. Properly using tags with unique identifiers through the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System, payment of the annual license fee, and
compliance with the requirements of this subsection shall be deemed to
satisfy the requirements of R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(d).
3. If a licensed cultivator begins to operate prior to the implementation of the
Marijuana Program Tracking System, DBR will advise the cultivator of
acceptable alternative inventory tagging and tracking systems and
protocols. In such a case, any references to the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System in this section shall be deemed to include the
acceptable alternatives.
4. Cultivators must ensure that medical marijuana is marked with Medical
Marijuana Program Tracking System unique identifier tags through each
stage of production the cultivator is undertaking, from seed propagation
through packaging, as may be applicable.
5. Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System unique identifier tags shall
contain the following information and/or technical functions:
a. DBR license number.
b. Unique identifier(s) (such as barcodes and/or
numerical/alphabetical codes) that track marijuana product through
each stage of production.
c. Licensed premises location.
d. Any other information or technical functions DBR deems
appropriate (such as radio frequency identification).
6. Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System unique identifier tags shall
not be altered or duplicated.
7. Unique identifier tags shall be placed in a manner so as to clearly display
their association with a particular plant, plant material, or product, such as
affixed to the plant itself, on the growing receptacle, or in the growing
medium, by labeling drying racks and other receptacles that wet marijuana
dries on, by affixing the tag to the stalk for drying on the stalk, on a label
affixed to a storage/transport package and/or retail-ready package, and
other reasonable means.
8. The unique identifier tags may not be transferred or assigned except when
affixed to marijuana plants, wet marijuana, or usable marijuana which is
being sold/transferred/ transported in accordance with Sections 1.7(B) and
(I)(3).
9. Return of unique identifier tags by a licensed cultivator upon revocation or
abandonment of the license shall be specifically governed by DBR order
or agreement and/or coordinated efforts with law enforcement. Disposal
of unique identifier tags by a licensed cultivator as may be required by
DBR, such as in the regular course of tagging if different stages will
require different tag forms or such as recall of tags due to new technology,
shall be handled in accordance with further instructions provided by DBR.
10. In addition to any and all other disciplinary actions and civil and criminal
penalties authorized by the Act and the DBR Regulations in the event that
a licensed cultivator fails to comply with the unique identifier tags
provisions for licensed cultivators set forth above, the licensed cultivator is
subject to a fine between twenty-five dollars ($25) and five-thousand
dollars ($5,000) per mature marijuana plant that does not have the
required unique identifier tag. See R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-
15(b)(4)(untagged plants exceeding limits set by R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-
28.6-16 subject to minimum of the tag fee that would be paid by a
cardholder ($25), leaving discretion to DBR to establish a maximum
penalty); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16 (authorizing DBR to limit licensed
cultivator inventory).
E. Inventory Control
1. Upon direction by DBR, each licensed cultivator shall utilize the state
approved Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System for all inventory
tracking from seed to sale as further defined herein.
2. If the licensed cultivator is notified by DBR that the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System is not available, the licensed cultivator will be
provided with direction as to alternative inventory control measures, which
may include but are not necessarily limited to the licensed cultivator being
directed to:
a. Conduct an initial comprehensive inventory of all medical
marijuana, including usable marijuana available for sale, marijuana
plants and seedlings, unusable marijuana, and wet marijuana, as of
a date certain set by DBR.
b. Conduct subsequent comprehensive inventories at intervals not to
exceed twenty-four (24) months from the date of the previous
comprehensive inventory.
c. Conduct a monthly inventory review of stored, usable marijuana,
seedlings, plants, and wet marijuana.
3. Upon request, DBR may require the licensed cultivator to conduct and
provide the results of alternative inventory control measures outlined
above, regardless of the availability and use of the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System.
F. Minimum Security Requirements
1. Authority
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(b)(4) authorizes DBR to promulgate
regulations regarding the minimum security requirements for licensed
cultivators.
2. General Security Requirements
a. Each licensed cultivator shall implement appropriate security and
safety measures to deter and prevent the unauthorized entrance
into areas containing marijuana and the theft of marijuana.
b. Use or carry of firearms on the premises and/or perimeter of the
licensed cultivator is a prohibited form of security, except by
security guards licensed by the Office of the Rhode Island Attorney
General pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 5-5.1-13 and who are under
written contract to provide security services to the licensed
cultivator and by law enforcement personnel during duty.
c. The outside perimeter of the licensed cultivator shall have adequate
lighting to deter theft which may include motion activated lighting
acceptable to DBR.
d. Within any area where marijuana and marijuana products are
grown, cultivated, stored, weighed, packaged, processed, or
manufactured, any person who does not have a valid licensed
cultivator registry identification card shall be considered a “visitor”
and must be escorted at all times by a licensed cultivator registry
identification card holder. The licensed cultivator must maintain a
visitor log for any such activity as detailed in Section 1.7(F)(6)(c).
e. Each licensed cultivator shall ensure that the storage of marijuana
and any marijuana products is in a locked area, meaning that at all
points of ingress and egress, the licensed cultivator shall ensure
the use of a working commercial-grade door lock.
3. Security Alarm Requirements
a. Each licensed cultivator shall have a fully operational security alarm
system at the premises that will provide suitable protection against
theft and diversion, including alarms at all outside perimeter entry
points and outside perimeter windows.
b. A fully operational security alarm system may include a
combination of hard-wired systems and systems interconnected
with a radio frequency method such as cellular or private radio
signals that emit or transmit a remote or local audible, visual, or
electronic signal; motion detectors, pressure switches, duress
alarms (a silent system signal generated by the entry of a
designated code into the arming station to indicate that the user is
disarming under duress); panic alarms (an audible system signal to
indicate an emergency situation); and hold-up alarms (a silent
system signal to indicate that a robbery is in progress).
c. A fully operational security alarm system shall at a minimum
provide for immediate automatic or electronic notification to alert
municipal and/or state law enforcement agencies or public safety
personnel to an unauthorized breach or attempted unauthorized
breach of security at the licensed cultivator premises and to any
loss-of-electrical support backup system to the security alarm
system.
d. Each licensed cultivator shall establish a protocol for the testing
and maintenance of the security alarm system, which shall at a
minimum provide for a maintenance inspection/test of the alarm
system for each authorized location at intervals not to exceed thirty
(30) calendar days from the previous inspection/test and prompt
completion of all necessary repairs to ensure the proper operation
of the alarm system.
e. If the licensed cultivator premises suffers a failure of the security
alarm system, due to loss of electrical support, mechanical function,
or otherwise, that is expected to exceed an eight (8) hour period, in
addition to the notice requirements provided in Section 1.7(F)(3)(c)
and (F)(7), the licensed cultivator must also close the licensed
cultivator premises until the security alarm system has been
restored to full operation, or, if approved by DBR, provide
alternative security measures.
4. Video Surveillance Requirements
Each licensed cultivator must have a fully operational video surveillance
and camera recording system with appropriate protocols, which shall, at a
minimum, comply with the below requirements:
a. Video surveillance equipment shall, at a minimum, consist of digital
or network video recorders, video monitors, and digital archiving
devices capable of playback quality sufficient to identify and
monitor all individuals (including sufficient clarity of facial features)
and activities in the monitored areas.
b. The recording system must record in digital format.
c. The date and time must be embedded on the recording without
significantly obscuring the picture. Time is to be measured in
Eastern Standard Time.
d. All video surveillance systems must be equipped with a failure
notification system that provides prompt notification of any
surveillance interruption and/or the complete failure of the
surveillance system. Said notification must be routed to licensed
cultivator personnel specifically designated by management and to
DBR.
e. All video surveillance equipment shall have sufficient battery
backup to support a minimum of four (4) hours of recording in the
event of a power outage.
f. Video recordings must be archived in a format and maintained in a
manner that ensures authentication of the recording as legitimatelycaptured
video and guarantees that no alteration of the recorded
image has taken place.
g. Remote access to a continuous live feed video on a real time basis
must be available at all times to licensed cultivator personnel
specifically designated by management and to DBR. Additionally,
all video surveillance records and recordings must be made
available upon request to DBR.
h. The system must include a color printer or similar equipment
capable of printing still photos of a quality sufficient to identify
individuals and activities in the monitored areas.
i. Camera coverage is required for all areas where marijuana and
marijuana products are grown, cultivated, stored, weighed,
packaged, processed, or manufactured, including all areas of
ingress and egress thereto, security rooms (as defined below), all
points of ingress and egress to the exterior of the licensed
cultivator, and any computer or other digital access points.
j. Camera views of required coverage areas shall be continuously
recorded twenty (24) hours a day, (7) seven days per week.
k. All surveillance recordings must be kept for a minimum of sixty (60)
calendar days.
l. Surveillance recording equipment and all video surveillance records
and recordings must be housed in a designated, locked and
secured room or other enclosure with access limited to licensed
cultivator personnel specifically authorized by management (the
“security room”). The licensed cultivator must keep on site a
current list of all authorized employees and service personnel who
have access to the security room and a video surveillance
equipment maintenance activity log.
m. If the licensed cultivator suffers a failure of the surveillance system,
due to loss of electrical support, mechanical function, or otherwise,
that is expected to exceed an eight (8) hour period, in addition to
the notice requirements provided in Section 1.7(F)(4)(d) and
1.7(F)(7), the licensed cultivator must also close the licensed
cultivator premises until the video surveillance system has been
restored to full operation, or, if approved by DBR, provide
alternative premises monitoring.
5. Emergency Plan
The licensed cultivator shall develop and maintain an emergency plan with
procedures to be followed to prevent and, if not prevented, to adequately
address and mitigate consequences of theft or burglary or attempts
thereof, fire, natural disasters, and other emergencies, including
cybersecurity and data breach procedures to prevent a compromise of the
integrity of the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System. The plan
shall include training for employees on crime prevention and personal
safety techniques.
6. Security-Related Record-Keeping
The licensed cultivator shall maintain the following documentation on-site
and with digital back-up for a period of at least twenty-four (24) months
after the event:
a. Inventory records including, at a minimum, the date the inventory
was conducted, a summary of the inventory findings and the name,
signature and title of the individual who conducted the inventory.
b. All records of maintenance, inspections, and tests of the security
alarm and video surveillance systems and of servicing,
modifications, or upgrades performed on said systems. These
records shall include, at a minimum, the date of the action, a
summary of the action(s) performed and the purpose therefor, and
the name, signature and title of the individual who performed the
action(s).
c. Visitor logs which shall include the name of each visitor, the date
and time of the beginning and end of the visit, the reason for the
visit (i.e. maintenance, authorized pickup, etc.), the name of the
escorting licensed cultivator registry identification cardholder.
d. Emergency notification reports as required by Section 1.7(F)(7).
7. Emergency Notifications and Reports
a. Licensed cultivators shall provide notification of emergency events
to DBR and municipal and/or state law enforcement as outlined
below.
b. Immediately upon discovery of the event, the licensed cultivator
shall provide telephone notification to the appropriate municipal
and/or state law enforcement authorities regarding any of the
following “emergency events:”
(1) Theft or burglary or an attempt thereof.
(2) Any fire.
(3) A natural disaster that results in the destruction of or
damage to medical marijuana or marijuana products.
(4) A failure of the security alarm system or video surveillance
system, due to loss of electrical support, mechanical
function, or otherwise, that is expected to exceed an eight
(8) hour period.
(5) A security alarm activation.
(6) Any other event which requires response by law
enforcement or public safety personnel.
c. The licensed cultivator shall provide e-mail notification to DBR
immediately upon discovery of any data breach or cybersecurity
threat to the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System, and
within twenty-four (24) hours of discovery of any other emergency
event as defined above. A follow-up telephone notification to DBR
shall be provided no later than the next business day.
d. The licensed cultivator shall submit a follow-up written report to
DBR within five (5) business days for each emergency event. The
written report shall include, at a minimum, a description of the
event(s), identification of known or suspected cause(s) for the
event(s), any corrective action(s) taken to prevent a recurrence,
and the name, title, and signature of the individual preparing the
report.
e. Any notification and report of an emergency event required to be
made to DBR pursuant to these DBR Regulations shall be made
using the mailing address, telephone number, and/or e-mail
address provided by DBR to approved licensees.
f. Upon written direction to the licensed cultivator, DBR may require
that the written and telephone notifications and reporting must be
replaced or supplemented by notifications and reporting through the
Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System or any other
electronic system or means DBR mandates the licensed cultivator
to utilize.
G. Record-Keeping and Reporting
1. Authority
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(b)(3) authorizes DBR to promulgate regulations
regarding the minimum record-keeping requirements for licensed cultivators.
2. Operations Manual
Each licensed cultivator shall develop, implement, and maintain on the
premises an operations manual which addresses, at a minimum, the
following subject areas and requirements:
a. Procedures for the organization, administration, command, and
control of the licensed cultivator (including but not limited to
organizational chart, chain of command protocols, etc).
b. Procedures to ensure accurate record-keeping, including protocols
to ensure that all acquisitions and authorized sales of marijuana are
logged into the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System on a
real time basis and procedures on proper training and use of the
Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System and any other
tracking system used by the licensed cultivator.
c. Records retention policies.
d. Ethics and compliance policies.
e. Alcohol and drug free work place policy.
f. If applicable, medical marijuana manufacturing protocols, safety
measures, and training information.
g. Odor control and mitigation plan.
3. Personnel Records
Each licensed cultivator shall maintain a personnel record for each
employee or agent for a period of at least six (6) months after termination
of the individual’s affiliation with the license cultivator. Said personnel
record shall contain the following minimum documentation and
information:
a. An application for employment or offers to provide services as an
agent.
b. An employment or engagement description detailing duties,
responsibilities, authority, qualifications and supervision.
c. If applicable, a copy of any employment or engagement.
d. A record of any disciplinary action taken.
e. Documentation of all required training, which shall include a signed
statement from the individual indicating the date, time and place he
or she received said training, topics discussed, and the name and
title of presenters.
4. Additional Records to be Maintained
In addition to all other specific record-keeping requirements of the Act, the
DBR Regulations, and the DOH Regulations, the licensed cultivator shall
maintain the following records for a minimum of five (5) years:
a. All contracts and purchase orders with compassion centers,
including documentation of any cancelled contracts or purchased
orders and any contracts and purchase orders voided by
replacement contracts.
b. Invoices and any supporting documentation of all marijuana
purchases, acquisitions, sales, transfers, and payments.
c. Contracts pertaining to the security alarm and security camera
systems.
d. Contracts with vendors, including any approved third party testing
providers.
e. All records normally retained for tax purposes.
5. Storage of Records
Records pertaining to transactions occurring within the last six (6) months
shall be stored on the registered premises. Records dating further back
may be stored off the premises with DBR’s approval.
6. Responsibility for Loss of Records and Data
The licensed cultivator shall exercise due diligence and reasonable care in
preserving and maintaining all required records to guard against loss of
records and data, including cybersecurity of electronically-maintained
records.
H. Product Packaging and Labeling Requirements
1. Authority and Applicability
a. These product packaging and labeling requirements for licensed
cultivators are promulgated pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-
16(g). These requirements were developed jointly with DOH.
b. Licensed cultivators shall have ninety (90) calendar days from the
effective date of these regulations to comply with these
requirements.
c. Any container or packaging containing usable marijuana or
marijuana product, including both retail-retail ready packaging and
product otherwise packaged for the purpose of storage and/or
authorized transport, must:
(1) Protect the product from contamination.
(2) Not impart any toxic or deleterious substance to the usable
marijuana or marijuana product.
(3) Contain the Inventory tracking ID number assigned by the
Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System or, if prior to
the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System’s
implementation, an inventory tracking ID number generated
from an alternative inventory tracking system approved by
DBR.
(4) Be labeled with the quantity of the product.
d. The remainder of these product packaging and labeling
requirements only apply to retail-ready product packaging and
labeling. Such requirements only apply to a licensed cultivator if
the licensed cultivator is engaged in retail-ready product packaging
and/or labeling services as part of the services provided for sale of
a retail-ready product to a compassion center pursuant to a written
contract/purchase order.
e. Compliance with these product packaging and labeling
requirements shall include the requirement that the licensed
cultivator confirms before retail-ready packaging/labeling that the
product complies with the DOH Testing Regulation, once adopted.
2. Packaging and labeling shall not:
a. Make any false or misleading statements including particularly any
statements regarding health or physical benefits to the consumer
and the composition and profiles that are advertised/indicated in the
label.
b. Resemble the trademarked, characteristic or product-specialized
packaging of any commercially available snack, baked good, or
beverage.
c. Contain any statement, artwork, or design that could reasonably
mislead any reasonably prudent person to believe that the package
contains anything other than medical marijuana or marijuana
product.
d. Contain any seal, flag, crest, coat of arms, or other insignia that
could reasonably mislead any reasonably prudent person to believe
that the product has been endorsed or manufactured by the State
of Rhode Island or any agency thereof or municipality within.
3. Packaging for retail-ready medical marijuana and marijuana products shall
be opaque, light-resistant, and tamper-evident.
4. Packaging and labeling shall not be designed such that it would be
attractive to children. This requires the packing and labeling be in black
and white only, have no animal characters, and does not contain the word
“candy.”
5. Retail-ready medical marijuana and marijuana products must be packaged
in manner that is “child-resistant,” which for purposes of these Regulations
shall mean that the packaging is designed and constructed to be
significantly difficult for children under five years of age to open. Approved
methods include but are not limited to:
a. Solid or liquid marijuana products may be packaged in plastic four
mil or greater in thickness and be heat sealed with no easy-open
tab, dimple, corner, or flap.
b. Liquid marijuana products may also be packaged in a bottle and
sealed using a metal crown cork style bottle cap or other similar
sealing method pre-approved by DBR.
6. For solid edible marijuana products with more than one serving size in the
outer package, each serving must be packaged individually and placed in
a child-resistant outer package.
7. For liquid edible marijuana products with more than one serving in the
package, a measuring cap or dropper must be included in the package
with the product.
8. All retail-ready medical marijuana and marijuana products must include a
label affixed to the package containing the following information,
prominently displayed and in a clear and legible English language font:
a. The business or trade name of the selling compassion center.
b. Inventory tracking ID number assigned by the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System or, if prior to the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System’s implementation, an inventory tracking
ID number generated from an alternative inventory tracking system
approved by DBR.
c. Date of final packaging, and, if applicable, the recommended
expiration or “use by” date.
d. Total weight in ounces and grams or volume as appropriate.
Weight and volume must be determined using accurately calibrated
equipment which equipment must also comply with any other
applicable state laws.
e. Total estimated amount of THC and total estimated amount of
CBD.
f. For edible marijuana products, a list of all ingredients used.
g. A statement that discloses all pesticides applied to the marijuana
plants and growing medium during production and processing.
h. If solvents were used, statement that discloses the type of
extraction method, including any solvents, gases, or other
chemicals or compounds used to produce or that are added to the
extract.
i. Any applicable instructions for use and safe storage.
9. All retail-ready medical marijuana and marijuana products must include a
label affixed to the package containing the following warnings, prominently
displayed and in a clear and legible English language font. For products
other than edibles and topical applications, these warnings may be on an
insert provided with the packaging.
a. “Warning: Marijuana has intoxicating effects and may be habit
forming and addictive. The intoxicating effects of marijuana may be
delayed by up to two hours.”
b. “Warning: Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under its
influence.”
c. “Warning: There may be health risks associated with consumption
of marijuana.”
d. “Warning: For use only by adults twenty-one and older. Keep out of
reach of children.”
e. “Warning: Marijuana should not be used by women that are
pregnant or breast feeding.”
f. “Warning: Do not take this product across state lines.”
g. “Warning: For medical use by a registered patient only. Not for
resale.”
h. “Warning: This product is not certified to be free of contaminants.”
i. For product to be smoked, “Warning: Smoking is hazardous to your
health.”
j. If applicable, a warning regarding use or contact with any nuts or
other known allergens as defined in the federal Food Allergen
Labeling and Consumer Protection Act of 2004, as administered by
the federal Food and Drug Administration.
10. Notwithstanding any of the product labeling requirements set forth in this
Section 1.7(H), application may be made to DBR for approval to affix a
two inch (2”) by two inch (2”) logo or graphic, which may be colored, for
the purpose of identifying the compassion center selling and/or the
cultivator producing the product.
I. Other Licensed Cultivator Operation Requirements
1. Authority
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(b)(2) authorizes DBR to promulgate
regulations regarding the minimum oversight requirements for licensed
cultivators. The requirements set forth in this section are promulgated in
accordance with that statutory duty of general regulatory supervision over
the licensed cultivators.
2. Use on Premises Prohibited
Use of marijuana or marijuana products on the premises of the licensed
cultivator is strictly prohibited.
3. Transportation of Medical Marijuana to and from Licensed Cultivators
a. “Authorized transports” of marijuana and marijuana products to and
from licensed cultivators are limited to transports authorized in
Section 1.7.
b. “Registered/licensed facility” shall refer to a either a licensed
cultivator or registered compassion center that is party to an
“authorized transport,” as the context requires.
c. “Authorized transport vehicle” means a vehicle meeting the
following criteria:
(1) The vehicle bears no markings that indicate that the vehicle
is being used to transport marijuana nor indicates the name
of the registered/licensed facility.
(2) The vehicle is equipped with a global positioning system
monitoring device that is monitored by the originating
registered/licensed facility during an authorized transport.
(3) The vehicle has a locked storage compartment within which
the marijuana and marijuana product being transported is
secured.
d. “Detailed transport manifest” refers to a manifest which DBR may
be required to be generated through and/or maintained in the
Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System and that shall include
the following minimum information:
(1) Departure date and approximate time of departure.
(2) Names, location addresses, and registration/license
numbers of the originating and receiving registered/licensed
facilities.
(3) Product name or descriptions and quantities (by weight or
unit) of each product to be delivered to each specific
destination location(s).
(4) Arrival date and approximate time of arrival.
(5) Delivery vehicle make and model and license plate number.
(6) Names, registry identification card numbers, and signatures
of the delivery persons.
e. The originating registered/licensed facility shall ensure that all
delivery times and routes are randomized.
f. Authorized transports may only be made by cardholders affiliated
with the particular registered/licensed facility that is the source or
recipient party to an authorized transaction. Authorized transports
must be in compliance with one of the following minimum
requirements: (i) an authorized transport may use a single
authorized transport vehicle so long as it is operated/occupied by a
minimum of two authorized transport cardholders and is subject to
the requirement that at least one such cardholder shall remain in
the authorized transport vehicle at all times; or (ii) an authorized
transport may use two or more authorized transport vehicles that
are operated/occupied by authorized transport cardholders
provided the authorized transport vehicles are traveling together at
all times during the authorized transport.
g. During all authorized transports, the delivery persons must have on
their persons their licensed cultivator or compassion center registry
identification cards and the detailed transport manifest.
h. Any authorized transport vehicle carrying marijuana and marijuana
products shall travel directly from the originating registered/licensed
facility to the receiving registered/licensed facility. In case of an
emergency stop, a detailed written account must be maintained
describing the reason for the event, the duration, the location, any
activities occurring during the stop, and any personnel exiting the
vehicle during the stop.
i. Authorized transports shall be conducted in such a manner as to
ensure that marijuana and marijuana products are secured and
safe at all times during transport, which includes, but is not limited
to, the requirements that marijuana is not visible from outside the
authorized transport vehicle at that any ingestible marijuana
products that are perishable are adequately refrigerated, if
necessary.
j. Prior to leaving the originating registered/licensed facility for an
authorized transport to another registered/licensed facility, the
originating registered/licensed facility must weigh, inventory, and
account for on video all marijuana and marijuana product to be
transported.
k. For authorized transports to and from a compassion center, the
transport manifest shall be accompanied by a copy of any
contract/purchase order for which the transport is being made and
documentation of the actual payment date, if prepaid.
l. The detailed transport manifest shall be prepared by the originating
registered/licensed facility and transmitted in advance to the
receiving facility. Both facilities shall retain copies of detailed
transport manifests as part of their record retention responsibilities.
m. Within eight (8) hours of after arrival at the destination
registered/licensed facility, the receiving party shall re-weigh, reinventory,
and account on video for all marijuana and marijuana
product transported.
n. Both the originating and recipient registered/licensed facilities shall
timely adjust their records to reflect in its records the completed
authorized transport of marijuana, including logging such
information in the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System. All
records and entries in the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking
System shall be easily reconciled, by product name and quantity,
with the applicable detailed transport manifest. Any unusual
discrepancies in the quantity described in the detailed transport
manifest and the quantities received shall be reported to DBR and
municipal and/or state law enforcement within (24) hours.
o. Any vehicle accidents, diversions, or losses during authorized
transports of marijuana shall be reported to DBR and law
enforcement as an “emergency event” pursuant to Section
1.7(F)(7).
p. Transportation to or from a third party testing provider shall be in
accordance with the DOH Testing Regulations, once adopted.
4. Manufacturing and Extraction
a. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(h), licensed cultivators are
not permitted to manufacture marijuana using a solvent extraction
process that includes the use of a compressed, flammable gas as a
solvent.
b. Any other manufacturing method using a solvent extraction process
must be approved by DBR. If the manufacturing method uses a
flammable/combustible material or heat source, the method must
also be approved by the State Fire Marshall and/or local fire
department.
c. Only registered cultivator employees and agents may manufacture
marijuana products on the premises.
d. The licensed cultivator must maintain written standard operating
procedures for each manufacturing process, including step-by-step
instructions.
e. The licensed cultivator must ensure that for each manufacturing
process, all safety and sanitary equipment appropriate for that
manufacturing process, including any personal protective
equipment, is provided to any authorized cultivator cardholder who
will be involved in that manufacturing process.
f. All medical marijuana product manufacturing areas must be
adequately lit during manufacturing, cleaning, or other use.
g. All work surfaces on which medical marijuana products are
manufactured and the walls and floors in the areas in which such
products are manufactured shall be non-porous, non-absorbent,
and easily cleanable.
h. No eating or smoking shall be permitted in the manufacturing area.
i. The licensed cultivator must provide a training manual and
instructional training on each manufacturing process to any
authorized cultivator cardholder who will be involved in that
manufacturing process.
5. Required Employee and Agent Training
Each employee and agent of the licensed cultivator shall receive, at the
time of his or her initial appointment and every year thereafter, at a
minimum, training in the following:
a. The proper use of security measures and controls that have been
adopted and instruction on the licensed cultivator’s emergency
plan.
b. The use of the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System and
any other tracking systems used by the licensed cultivator for
persons responsible for using the system.
6. Minimum Sanitation and Workplace Safety Conditions
a. The licensed cultivator facility shall be maintained in a safe,
sanitary, and clean manner, with all operations in the cultivation,
receiving, inspecting, transporting, segregating, preparing,
manufacturing, packaging, and storing of medical marijuana and
marijuana products conducted in accordance with adequate
sanitation principles, as further detailed below.
b. The facility must meet the following minimum specifications:
(1) Adequate supply of potable hot and cold water.
(2) Non-porous, non-absorbent and easily cleanable floors,
walls, and ceilings in areas where marijuana is cultivated,
manufactured, and stored.
(3) Lavatory facilities that are readily-accessible to employees
and that comply with the Rhode Island State Plumbing Code
Regulation.
(4) Adequate hand-washing area(s): hand washing sinks with
effective hand-cleaning and sanitizing preparations (such as
soap dispensers) and disposable towels or an air dryer for
hands.
(5) Adequate screening or other protection against the entry of
pests and environmental contaminants.
c. All mechanical and electrical equipment shall be maintained in a
safe operating condition.
d. Waste disposal equipment shall be adequate and removal
schedules timely so as to minimize the risk of contamination to
medical marijuana and marijuana products, including the risk of the
waste becoming an attractant, harborage, or breeding place for
pests.
e. All waste (including all liquid, chemical, hazardous, pesticide,
manufacturing solvent and chemical waste) must be stored,
secured, and managed in accordance with all applicable federal,
state, and local statutes, regulations, ordinances, or other legal
requirements. Specific instructions for safe destruction of any
marijuana required to be destroyed and proper disposal of medical
marijuana waste are provided in Section 1.7(I)(9).
f. Floors, walls, and ceilings shall be kept clean and in good repair,
free from dust, debris, mold, mildew, and other contaminants and
potentially hazardous materials.
g. Lavatory facilities and hand washing areas shall be kept clean and
sanitary and in working condition at all times.
h. Toxic cleaning compounds, sanitizing agents, and other chemicals
shall be identified, held, stored and disposed of in a manner that
protects against contamination of medical marijuana and marijuana
products and in a manner that is in accordance with any applicable
local, state, or federal law, rule, regulation, or ordinance.
i. The licensed cultivator shall comply with all relevant statutes,
regulations, and requirements administered by the Federal
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), including
but not necessarily limited to standards for toxic and flammable
compounds and air contaminants.
j. All persons working in direct contact with medical marijuana and
marijuana products shall conform to hygienic practices while on
duty, including but not limited to maintaining adequate personal
cleanliness and washing hands thoroughly in an adequate handwashing
area before starting work and at any other time when the
hands may have become soiled or contaminated.
k. Any person whose medical condition, as determined by medical
examination or as observed by a supervisor, poses or reasonably
appears to pose a risk of contamination of medical marijuana
and/or medical marijuana products shall be excluded from medical
marijuana operations until the condition is cleared. Medical
conditions posing a risk of contamination include but are not
necessarily limited to open lesions, including boils, sores, or
infected wounds, or any other abnormal source of microbial
infection.
l. The licensed cultivator shall not permit the entry of any animal into
the premises. Service animals (as defined in the Americans with
Disabilities Act) are exempted from this prohibition.
m. In addition to the safety and sanitary equipment including personal
protective equipment that the licensed cultivator is required to
furnish its employees involved in marijuana manufacturing and
extraction pursuant to Section 1.7(I)(4)(e) of these regulations, the
licensed cultivator must also furnish its employees with proper
safety equipment for other types of work assigned as part of the
licensed cultivator operations.
7. Odor Control and Mitigation
a. Cultivation area(s) shall have ventilation and filtration systems
installed that prevent medical marijuana plant odors from exiting the
interior of the structure to an extent that would significantly alter the
environmental odor outside, while addressing the potential for mold.
b. The ventilation and filtration system, along with any plumbing
improvements, shall be installed in compliance with all applicable
codes and ordinances, including obtaining any necessary permits,
and inspected by the municipality.
c. Measures to assure compliance with this section shall be
documented in an odor control and mitigation plan acceptable to
DBR.
8. Pesticide Use and Records
a. The cultivation process shall use best practices to limit
contamination of medical marijuana and marijuana products,
including but not limited to mold, mildew, fungus, bacterial
diseases, rot, pests, pesticides, and any other contaminant
identified as posing potential harm.
b. The use of pesticides on marijuana plants in Rhode Island by
licensed cultivator will not be considered a violation of these
regulations provided that the product must satisfy all of the
following criteria:
(1) The product must be a “minimum risk pesticide” under 40
C.F.R. § 152.25(f), as the same may be amended from time
to time.
(2) The product must be labelled for use on “all plants,” “other
plants,” bedding plants, unspecified plants, or unspecified
crops.
(3) The label must not prohibit indoor or greenhouse use, as
applicable.
(4) All active ingredients must be eligible for food use as
determined by the federal Environmental Protection Agency
(EPA). See EPA’s Active Ingredients Eligible for Minimum
Risk Pesticide Products (last updated December 2015), as
the same may be updated and/or amended from time to
time. https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-
12/documents/minrisk-active-ingredients-tolerances-2015-
12-15.pdf.
(5) All inert/other ingredients must be eligible for food use. See
EPA’s Inert Ingredients Eligible for FIFRA 25(b) Pesticide
Products (last updated December 2015), as the same may
be updated and/or amended from time to time.
https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2016-
07/documents/section25b_inerts.pdf.
(6) The product must be a currently registered pesticide product
eligible for sale in Rhode Island as determined by the Rhode
Island Department of Environmental Management. To verify
a product’s registration in Rhode Island, please consult the
online National Pesticide Information Retrieval System
through the Center for Environmental and Regulatory
Information Systems. See
http://npirspublic.ceris.purdue.edu/state/state_menu.aspx?st
ate=RI.
(7) The product must be used in accordance with any and all
use instructions on the label.
c. No application of pesticides shall be made after the vegetative
stage of growth of the cannabis plant. The vegetative stage of
growth should be determined by visual buds or flower or by proxy of
the plant receiving less than eighteen (18) hours of light in a twentyfour
(24) hour period.
d. Pesticides shall be identified, held, stored and disposed of in a
manner that protects against contamination of medical marijuana
and marijuana products and in a manner that is in accordance with
any applicable local, state, or federal law, rule, regulation, or
ordinance.
e. As a DBR record-keeping requirement, licensed cultivators must
keep detailed records of any pesticide products used and
application regiments, including video recording during pesticide
applications which must cease if there is a failure or disruption of
the video surveillance system. This record-keeping requirement is
independent of that required of commercial pesticide applicators by
the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, and
is intended to apply in addition to that requirement, where relevant.
9. Safe Disposal of Medical Marijuana Waste and Safe Destruction of Usable
Medical Marijuana
a. Marijuana and marijuana product waste (including all liquid,
chemical, hazardous, pesticide, manufacturing solvent and
chemical waste containing any traces of marijuana) must be stored,
secured, and managed in accordance with all applicable federal,
state, and local statutes, regulations, ordinances, or other legal
requirements.
b. Prior to disposal, marijuana and marijuana product waste must be
made unusable and any marijuana plant material made
indistinguishable from other plant material. This may be
accomplished by grinding and incorporating the marijuana plant
waste with other non-consumable solid waste or other ground
materials so the resulting mixture is at least fifty percent nonmarijuana
waste by volume. Other methods to render marijuana
waste unusable must be approved by DBR before implementing.
Marijuana waste rendered unusable following an approved method
may be delivered to a licensed solid waste disposal facility in
Rhode Island for final disposition or disposed of in an alternative
manner approved by DBR.
c. Destruction of marijuana and marijuana materials other than waste
generated in the regular course of processing and/or manufacturing
(such as destruction of whole plants, wet, or usable marijuana that
are found to be in excess of statutory possession limits or
destruction of a contaminated batch of medical marijuana product)
shall be in a manner acceptable to DBR, which may include
consultation with law enforcement.
d. Destruction of marijuana and marijuana materials upon revocation
or abandonment of the license shall be specifically governed by
DBR order or agreement and/or coordinated efforts with law
enforcement.
e. Licensed cultivators must maintain accurate and comprehensive
records regarding waste material that accounts for, reconciles, and
evidences all waste activity related to the disposal of marijuana and
marijuana products (including any waste material produced through
the trimming or pruning of a marijuana plant prior to harvest). DBR
may mandate storage of any such records or summaries of such
records to be through the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking
System or any other electronic system DBR designates.
J. Inspections and Audits; Enforcement Actions
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(j), licensed cultivators are
subject to reasonable inspection by DBR. Accordingly, DBR and its
authorized representatives have authority to enter a licensed cultivator
premises at reasonable times and to inspect in a reasonable manner, the
premises and all equipment, materials, containers, and other things
therein, including without limitation all records, files, financials, sales,
transport, pricing, and employee data, research, papers, processes,
controls and to inventory any stock of marijuana, labels, containers,
paraphernalia and other materials and products.
2. DBR may review and audit the books and records of a licensed cultivator
to ascertain compliance with the Act, the DBR Regulations, and/or the
DOH Regulations. The licensed cultivator must make such books and
records immediately available for reviewing and copying by DBR. DBR
may retain an independent auditor to act as its agent for purposes of this
section, the cost of which shall be borne by the licensed cultivator.
3. Nothing herein shall be interpreted to limit the real time access of DBR
and DOH to information stored in the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking
System consistent with the Act.
4. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(e), if a licensed cultivator violates
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16 (entitled “Licensed Cultivator”) or any portion
of the DBR Regulations or DOH Regulations which regulate licensed
cultivators and licensed cultivator cardholders, DBR may suspend/revoke
a cultivator license and/or impose an administrative penalty, as
determined by DBR. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(l)(5), if a
licensed cultivator violates any other provision of the Act, the DBR
Regulations, or the DOH Regulations, the cultivator license may be
suspended/revoked.
5. If an officer, director or manager/member, employee, or agent affiliated
with a licensed cultivator violates the Act, the DBR Regulations, and/or the
DOH Regulations when acting in their capacity as an officer, director or
manager/member, employee, or agent of the licensed cultivator, the
licensed cultivator may be subject to suspension/revocation and/or
administrative penalties for failure to exercise adequate supervision.
1.8 Cooperative Cultivation Provisions
A. Authority and Effective Date
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(10), DBR is charged with
promulgating regulations governing the licensing and operation of
cooperative cultivations, and may promulgate regulations that set a fee for
a cooperative cultivation license.
2. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(1), cooperative cultivations
(defined below) must apply to obtain a license from DBR effective January
1, 2017. For cooperative cultivations in existence prior to January 1, 2017
that have submitted a completed cooperative license application no later
than January 1, 2017, the cooperative cultivation may continue its
operations until its license application is acted upon by DBR.
B. Cooperative Cultivation Definitions
1. “Cooperative cultivation” shall mean two (2) or more qualifying patient or
primary caregiver cardholders that elect to cooperatively cultivate
marijuana in the same dwelling unit or commercial unit within the limits
and subject to the requirements of a cooperative cultivation license under
the Act and these regulations. This excludes the situations of two (2) or
more qualifying patient or primary caregiver cardholder(s) who are primary
residents of the same dwelling unit where the medical marijuana plants
are grown and who do not elect to grow together within the limits and
subject to the requirements of a cooperative cultivation license under the
Act and these regulations; provided nothing herein should be deemed to
absolve persons in such a situation from complying with the requirements
that all medical marijuana plants must be properly tagged and not exceed
the plant limits of R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(q)(if election to grow as a
licensed cooperative cultivation is not made, no more than twenty-four
(24) plants may be grown at a single dwelling unit or commercial unit).
See also R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(entitled “Cooperative Cultivations”);
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-3(10)(defining “dwelling unit”); R.I. Gen. Laws §
21-28.6-3(3)(defining “commercial unit”).
2. “Licensed cooperative cultivation” shall mean a cooperative cultivation that
is required to obtain a license from DBR pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-
28.6-14 and shall include both “licensed residential cooperative
cultivations” and “licensed non-residential cooperative cultivations.”
3. “Licensed residential cooperative cultivation” shall mean a licensed
cooperative cultivation in a location zoned for residential use and that
complies with the provisions of Section 1.8(F)(3).
4. “Licensed non-residential cooperative cultivation” shall mean a licensed
cooperative cultivation that complies with the provisions of Section
1.8(F)(4).
C. Licensed Cooperative Cultivation “Member” Requirements and Restrictions
1. “Member” of a licensed cooperative cultivation means any qualifying
patient or primary caregiver with a registry identification card in good
standing with DOH who has elected to grow cooperatively with the other
members at the cooperative cultivation premises.
2. No other person other than a “member” may participate in the
management or operation of the cooperative cultivation or exert any direct
or indirect authority over the management or operations of the cooperative
cultivation.
3. If the cooperative cultivation organizes as a legal entity, then any
directors/officers and managers/members must be “members” of the
cooperative cultivation as defined above.
4. All “members” of a licensed cooperative cultivation must be listed on the
application.
5. No “member” of a licensed cooperative cultivation may grow medical
marijuana at any location other than the licensed cooperative cultivation
premises. R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(q).
D. Cooperative Cultivation Application and License Fees
1. There shall be a non-refundable application fee of fifty dollars ($50) for
initial cooperative cultivation license applications.
2. The annual license fee for residential cooperative cultivations shall be two
hundred and fifty dollars ($250).
3. The annual license fee for non-residential cooperative cultivations shall be
five hundred dollars ($500).
4. These annual license fees shall be in addition to the individual qualifying
patient and primary caregiver registration fees and medical marijuana
plant tag fees.
E. General Application Requirements for Cooperative Cultivation Licenses
1. Each initial application for a cooperative cultivation license shall be on
such forms and through such submission mechanisms as designated by
DBR and shall include:
a. The signature of the individual identified as being primarily
responsible for the license (“primary applicant”) and one designee.
b. A list of the legal name of each qualified patient cardholder and/or
primary caregiver cardholder that is or will be a member of the
cooperative cultivation and for each such person, their DOH
registry identification card number, date of birth, a mailing address
and phone and/or e-mail address at which they can be best
reached.
c. If the cooperative cultivation chooses to be organized as a legal
entity for legal purposes without the intent of generating profit, the
cooperative cultivation must also provide the following information
regarding any such legal entity:
(1) Legal and any d/b/a name(s), certificate of incorporation or
organization in Rhode Island or certificate of authority to
transact business in Rhode Island, articles of incorporation
or organization, and bylaws or operating agreement.
(2) The legal name, DOH registry identification card number,
date of birth, of any and all directors/officers or
managers/members of the cooperative cultivation, including
a mailing address and phone and/or e-mail address at which
they can be best reached.
d. Tax Affidavit in accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 5-76-1 et seq.
filled out by the “primary applicant” or legal entity who will hold the
license, if approved.
e. Evidence of compliance with location-specific initial application
requirements and security plan requirement as detailed in Sections
1.8(F)(6) and 1.8(G), respectively.
2. Only initial applications which DBR has determined to be complete (i.e.,
adequately address all application requirements above) shall be eligible
for review. A primary applicant who submits an incomplete initial
application shall receive written notification from DBR regarding the
specific deficiencies and shall be allowed to resubmit additional material to
address these deficiencies within a reasonable timeframe.
3. When a primary applicant for a licensed cooperative cultivation is notified
that the application has been approved by DBR, he or she shall complete
the below steps before a license authorizing operation of cooperative
cultivation will be issued:
a. Pay the annual license fee set forth in Section 1.8(D) above.
b. Provide any updates to previously submitted application
information.
c. Provide evidence of compliance with final location-specific
application requirements as detailed in Section 1.8(F)(7).
d. For non-residential licensed cooperative cultivations, provide a
copy of the security plan as required by Section 1.8(G).
e. Provide evidence of completion of divestiture plan pursuant to
Section 1.8(H).
F. Cooperative Cultivation Location Restrictions and Location-Specific Application
Requirements
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(3), a single structural building
may only have one cooperative cultivation operating in it. This precludes
a structural building with multiple units from having more than one unit
with a cooperative cultivation operating in it, unless a single cooperative
cultivation has been approved by DBR to occupy two or more connected
units provided any such approved occupation of multiple units does not
increase the applicable medical marijuana possession limits.
2. Cooperative cultivation licenses will only be issued for “secure indoor
facilities.” The secure indoor facility shall satisfy the following parameters:
a. Enclosed area with four walls and a roof.
b. Equipped with locks and any other appropriate security devices that
limit access to the members of the cooperative cultivation. Locks
and devices must be sufficient to discourage theft, unauthorized
entrance, and access by persons under eighteen (18).
c. Marijuana is not visible from the street or other public areas. See
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(4).
3. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(7)(ii), a licensed residential
cooperative cultivation must have displayed prominently on the premises
an affidavit by a licensed electrician that the cultivation has been
inspected and is in compliance with any applicable state or municipal
housing and zoning codes for the municipality where the licensed
residential cooperative cultivation is located.
4. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(7)(i), a licensed nonresidential
cooperative cultivation must have displayed prominently on the
premises documentation from the municipality where the single location is
located that the location and the cultivation has been inspected by the
municipal building and/or zoning official and the municipal fire department
and is in compliance with any applicable state or municipal housing and
zoning codes.
5. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(8), licensed cooperative
cultivations must report the location of the licensed cooperative cultivation
to RISP. Cooperative cultivation licensees and applicants may designate
DBR to report the location to RISP on their behalf through the application
process. If the cooperative cultivation licensee or applicant will self-report,
DBR will verify with RISP that they did in fact correctly report the
cooperative cultivation location. This reporting shall be made before a
cooperative cultivation license is issued.
6. Location-Specific Initial Application Requirements. In order to enable DBR
to ascertain compliance with the above location restrictions, the initial
application for the cooperative cultivation license must contain the
following information regarding the proposed physical location for the
cooperative cultivation licensed premises:
a. A sufficient description of the location (by plat and lot number,
mailing address, etc.).
b. A description of objective parameters (such as approximate
distances from streets and public areas) and/or proposed measures
(such as black-out window shades) that ensure that marijuana at
the premises shall not be visible from the street or other public
areas.
c. Evidence of either ownership of property by the primary applicant
person or legal entity applicant (as applicable) or any qualified
patient or primary caregiver cardholder that has been listed as
associated with the cooperative cultivation applying for the license,
or agreement by owner of property to allow the operation of a
licensed cooperative cultivation on the property.
7. Location-Specific Final Application Requirements: If an applicant for a
licensed cooperative cultivation is notified that the application has been
approved by DBR, it shall complete the below steps before a license
authorizing operation of cooperative cultivation will be issued:
a. For residential cooperative cultivation license applicants, submit an
affidavit by a licensed electrician that the location and cultivation (if
the cultivation predates the licensing requirement) has been
inspected and is in compliance with any applicable state or
municipal housing and zoning codes for the municipality where the
licensed residential cooperative cultivation is located.
b. For non-residential cooperative cultivation license applicants,
submit:
(1) Documentation from the municipal building and/or zoning
official and the municipal fire department indicating that the
location and the cultivation (if the cultivation predates the
licensing requirement) has been inspected by and is in
compliance with any applicable state or municipal housing
and zoning codes.
(2) A draft diagram of the premises, including where within the
facility the medical marijuana will be grown, stored, and
processed, and showing the location of the facility relative to
streets and other public areas.
c. For all cooperative cultivations, residential or non-residential,
provide any updates to previously submitted application information
regarding the location.
d. For all cooperative cultivations, residential or non-residential,
contact DBR to coordinate the pre-license DBR inspection. Nothing
in this paragraph should be construed as limiting inspections at an
earlier time in addition to the final pre-license inspection.
G. Security Plan Requirement – For Non-Residential Cooperative Cultivation
License Applicants Only
1. Non-residential cooperative cultivation license applicants must submit and
approved licensees must maintain a security plan that meets the below
general criteria.
2. Security and safety measures (such as locks and lighting) shall be
sufficiently designed to deter and prevent theft of marijuana.
3. The security plan must include an emergency plan component with
procedures to be followed to prevent and, if not prevented, to adequately
address and mitigate consequences of theft or burglary or attempts
thereof, fire, natural disasters, and other emergencies.
4. Use or carry of firearms on the premises and/or perimeter of the nonresidential
cooperative cultivation is a prohibited form of security, except
by security guards licensed by the Office of the Rhode Island Attorney
General pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 5-5.1-13 and who are under written
contract to provide security services to the non-residential cooperative
cultivation and by law enforcement personnel during duty.
H. Divestiture of Prohibited Material Financial Interest and Control
1. A licensed cooperative cultivation and “key persons” thereof may not have
any “material financial interest or control” in another licensed cooperative
cultivation, a compassion center, or a licensed cultivator or vice versa.
See R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-12(c)(1)(iii)(limiting a compassion center to
one additional location to cultivate its marijuana); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-
28.6-12(b)(1)(ii)(DBR minimum oversight over compassion centers); R.I.
Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(i)(cultivator to be licensed at one location only);
R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-16(b)(2)(DBR minimum oversight over
cultivators); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-3(4)(i) and R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-
28.6-3(12)(separately defining “compassion center” and “licensed
cultivator,” respectively); R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(10)(DBR
authority to regulate operations of licensed cooperative cultivations); R.I.
Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(q)(qualifying patient and primary caregiver
cardholders may only grow at one location).
2. “Material financial interest or control” shall mean: i) any ownership interest,
regardless of the size of the holding, and including any ownership interest
through a subsidiary or affiliate; ii) trusteeship, mortgage, guarantor,
endorser or surety relationship, or loan relationship, except that loan
relationship for the purposes of this definition shall exclude accounts
payable and accounts receivable on account of a medical marijuana
purchase order; iii) any other beneficial financial interest such that the
holder bears the risk of loss (other than as an insurer) or has an
opportunity to gain profit from the operation or sale of the regulated
medical marijuana business; iv) operational control including but not
limited to interlocking directors or officers or through a management
agreement.
3. “Key persons” shall mean officers, directors, LLC managers/members and
any persons with managing or operational control.
4. Therefore, if a licensed cooperative cultivation application is approved and
any prohibited material financial interest or control has been identified by
DBR or is otherwise known to the applicant, such interest or control must
be divested prior to issuance of the cooperative cultivation license. The
plan of divestiture shall be filed with DBR.
5. The duty to divest prohibited material financial interests and control is a
continuing obligation of licensure.
I. Prior Notice of Material Changes; Continuing Duty to Update Application; Change
in Location
1. A licensed cooperative cultivation shall provide DBR with written notice of
any change described below at least ten (10) business days prior to the
proposed effective date of the change:
a. Any disassociation of a member from the licensed cooperative
cultivation.
b. Any new member of the licensed cooperative cultivation.
2. A licensed cooperative cultivation shall provide DBR with written notice of
any change described below at least sixty (60) calendar days prior to the
proposed effective date of the change:
a. If organized as a legal entity, any change in such legal entity’s
organization (e.g. change in legal form from corporation to limited
liability company, change in the board of directors for corporation,
change in managers/members for limited liability companies, etc.)
b. Any request for change in the licensed and inspected location.
3. For updates in information other than the categories requiring the above
delineated prior notice, the licensed cooperative cultivation has a
continuing obligation to update, amend and/or correct any information
requested and/or submitted in the application process within ten (10)
business days of any change in the information submitted and/or any
material change in circumstances related to the application.
4. Requests for change in the licensed and inspected location for the
cooperative cultivation require following the location-specific application
requirements set forth in Section 1.8(F) and no move may take place
unless the request is approved by DBR after satisfaction of those
application requirements. If a move is approved, the DBR will provide
specific instructions for movement of medical marijuana, which may
involve consultation with law enforcement.
J. Licensed Residential Cooperative Cultivation Possession Limits
1. Marijuana plants possessed by a licensed residential cooperative
cultivation are limited to the number of plants that are properly tagged in
compliance with all provisions of Section 1.9 and as specifically capped in
accordance with subsection 1.9(D)(5) therein.
2. Possession of usable marijuana by a licensed residential cooperative
cultivation is limited to the lesser of: (a) ten (10) ounces of dried usable
marijuana as capped by R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(6)(ii); and (b) the
aggregate total maximum amount of dried usable marijuana that all
members of the cooperative cultivation are permitted to possess pursuant
to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(a), (e), and (o). Possession under this
paragraph may include any combination of dried usable, edible, or
concentrate marijuana that when calculated for total aggregate
equivalency amount to dried usable marijuana does not exceed the
maximum limit of this paragraph. Possession limits for marijuana
possessed in mixed forms shall be calculated as a total equivalent to the
maximum limit of dried usable marijuana in pounds in accordance with the
equivalency conversion factors delineated in Appendix A of the DOH
Regulations. This paragraph was developed jointly with DOH.
3. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(6)(ii), possession of wet
marijuana by a licensed residential cooperative cultivation is limited to the
lesser of: (a) fifty (50) ounces of wet marijuana (which, based on the
conversion factors adopted in Appendix A of the DOH Regulations, is the
equivalent of ten (10) ounces of dried usable marijuana as capped by R.I.
Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(6)(ii)); and (b) the aggregate total maximum
amount of wet marijuana that all members of the cooperative cultivation
are permitted to possess. This paragraph was developed jointly with
DOH.
K. Licensed Non-Residential Cooperative Cultivation Possession Limits
1. Marijuana plants possessed by a licensed non-residential cooperative
cultivation are limited to the number of plants that are properly tagged in
compliance with all provisions of Section 1.9 and as specifically capped in
accordance with subsection 1.9(D)(6) therein.
2. Possession of usable marijuana by a licensed non-residential cooperative
cultivation is limited to the lesser of: (a) ten (10) ounces of dried usable
marijuana as capped by R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(6)(i); and (b) the
aggregate total maximum amount of dried usable marijuana or its edible or
concentrate equivalent that all members of the cooperative cultivation are
permitted to possess pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(a), (e), and
(o). Possession under this paragraph may include any combination of
dried usable, edible, or concentrate marijuana that when calculated for
total aggregate equivalency amount to dried usable marijuana does not
exceed the maximum limit of this paragraph. Possession limits for
marijuana possessed in mixed forms shall be calculated as a total
equivalent to the maximum limit of dried usable marijuana in pounds in
accordance with the equivalency conversion factors delineated in
Appendix A of the DOH Regulations. This paragraph was developed
jointly with DOH.
3. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(6)(i), possession of wet
marijuana by a licensed non-residential cooperative cultivation shall be
limited to the lesser of: (a) fifty (50) ounces of wet marijuana (which, based
on the conversion factors adopted in Appendix A of the DOH Regulations,
is the equivalent of ten (10) ounces of dried usable marijuana as capped
by R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(6)(i)); and (b) the aggregate total
maximum amount of wet marijuana that all member of the cooperative
cultivation are permitted to possess. This paragraph was developed
jointly with DOH.
L. Odor Control and Mitigation
Licensed cooperative cultivations shall take any and all reasonable efforts to
prevent marijuana plant odors from exiting the interior of the approved structure
to an extent that would significantly alter the environmental odor outside. For
example, such reasonable efforts may include ventilation and filtration systems.
M. Manufacturing
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(s), patient and primary caregiver
cardholders are prohibited from the manufacture of marijuana using a
solvent extraction process that includes the use of a compressed,
flammable gas as a solvent. This prohibition extends to licensed
cooperative cultivations.
2. Any other manufacturing method using a solvent extraction process must
be approved by DBR. If the manufacturing method uses a
flammable/combustible material or heat source, the method must also be
approved by the State Fire Marshall and/or local fire department. The
licensed cooperative cultivation must provide any information and
documentation as required to consider any such requests for approval.
N. Safe Disposal of Medical Marijuana Waste and Safe Destruction of Usable
Medical Marijuana
1. Marijuana and marijuana product waste (including all liquid, chemical,
hazardous, pesticide, manufacturing solvent and chemical waste
containing any traces of marijuana) must be stored, secured, and
managed in accordance with all applicable federal, state, and local
statutes, regulations, ordinances, or other legal requirements.
2. Prior to disposal, marijuana and marijuana product waste must be made
unusable and any marijuana plant material made indistinguishable from
other plant material. This may be accomplished by grinding and
incorporating the marijuana plant waste with other non-consumable solid
waste or other ground materials so the resulting mixture is at least fifty
percent non-marijuana waste by volume. Other methods to render
marijuana waste unusable must be approved by DBR before
implementing. Marijuana waste rendered unusable following an approved
method may be delivered to a licensed solid waste disposal facility in
Rhode Island for final disposition or disposed of in an alternative manner
approved by DBR.
3. Destruction of marijuana and marijuana materials other than waste
generated in the regular course of processing and/or manufacturing (such
as destruction of whole plants, wet, or usable marijuana that are found to
be in excess of statutory possession limits or destruction of a
contaminated batch of medical marijuana product) shall be in a manner
acceptable to DBR, which may include consultation with law enforcement.
4. Destruction of marijuana and marijuana materials upon revocation or
abandonment of the license shall be specifically governed by DBR order
or agreement and/or coordinated efforts with law enforcement.
5. In addition to the above requirements, non-residential cooperative
cultivations must also maintain accurate and comprehensive records
regarding waste material that accounts for, reconciles, and evidences all
waste activity related to the disposal of marijuana and marijuana products
(including any waste material produced through the trimming or pruning of
a marijuana plant prior to harvest).
O. Prohibited and Permitted Sales and Transfers
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(c) and (i), a qualifying patient
cardholder or primary caregiver is prohibited from selling, giving, or
distributing marijuana to a compassion center after December 31, 2016.
This prohibition extends to sales and transfers by licensed cooperative
cultivations.
2. Clone Cutting Procurement
a. Section 1.7(C)(4)(b) of these regulations permits a licensed
cultivator to acquire from a “non-affiliated licensed cooperative
cultivation” not more than twelve (12) marijuana plant cuttings in a
single monthly transaction to use as clones for plant development
(“clone cuttings”). Such clone cuttings may be no longer than eight
(8) inches in length, and may not contain observable buds or
flower.
b. For purposes of the provisions of these regulations regarding clone
cutting procurement, a “non-affiliated licensed cooperative
cultivation” shall refer to a licensed cooperative cultivation that does
not have any members who are also officers, directors,
managers/members, employees, or agents of the licensed
cultivator which the licensed cooperative cultivation would be
supplying with clone cuttings.
c. Each licensed cooperative cultivation that elects to supply clone
cuttings as permitted by these regulations is limited to supplying no
more than two (2) licensed cultivators per month and must keep
records of all clone cutting procurements as required by DBR.
3. Except for clone cutting procurements as permitted above, transfer of
medical marijuana and medical marijuana products for consideration by
the licensed cooperative cultivation or any of its members is strictly limited
to transfer amongst members of that cooperative cultivation and to
transfer by caregiver members to their associated patients.
P. Documentation Required to be Posted on the Premises
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(7)(iii), the cooperative
cultivation license issued by DBR must be displayed prominently on the
premises. The license displayed shall be the document printed for the
most recent renewal period.
2. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(5), each member of the
licensed cooperative cultivation shall sign a written acknowledgement of
the limitations of the right to use and possess marijuana for medical
purposes in Rhode Island. Said acknowledgment shall be on such forms
as directed by DBR. This documentation must be displayed prominently
in the cooperative cultivation premises.
3. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(7)(i), a licensed nonresidential
cooperative cultivation must have the municipal
inspection/compliance documentation (as further described in Section
1.8(F)(4)) displayed prominently on the premises.
4. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(7)(ii), a licensed residential
cooperative cultivation must have the licensed electrician
inspection/compliance affidavit (as further described in Section 1.8(F)(3)))
displayed prominently on the premises.
5. As used in this section, the requirement of documentation being
“displayed prominently” shall be deemed satisfied by posting the
documentation on a wall with clear visibility and access within or
immediately outside the premises.
Q. Compliance Standards
1. Licensed cooperative cultivations must be organized and operated in a
manner to ensure compliance with all relevant state and local laws and
regulations and to safeguard against diversion of marijuana to illicit
markets.
2. The person identified as the primary applicant and the designee of the
licensed cooperative cultivation shall each be responsible for the
verification that each member of the cooperative cultivation is the holder of
a valid and active qualified patient or primary caregiver registry
identification card. This includes keeping on the premises copies of the
qualified patient or primary caregiver cardholder cards printed for the most
recent renewal period.
R. Inspections and Enforcement
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(6)(v), cooperative cultivations
are subject to reasonable inspection by DBR for the purposes of enforcing
applicable provisions of the Act, the DBR Regulations, and the DOH
Regulations. Because the Act and the DBR Regulations require
inspections for compliance with applicable state and local zoning, housing,
and fire codes, DBR may be accompanied by state or local officials
authorized to determine compliance with said codes as part of its
inspection pursuant to this section.
2. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(b), any violation of any
applicable provision of the Act, the DBR Regulations, or the DOH
Regulations may result in the revocation or suspension of the cooperative
cultivation license. Administrative fines may also be assessed in
accordance with R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-15 (entitled “Medical Marijuana
Plant Tags”) and Section 1.9(N) herein.
3. Nothing in this section shall alter or impair the ability of law enforcement to
confiscate excess, untagged, and/or invalidly tagged marijuana plants and
revoked and/or otherwise invalid plant tags in accordance with applicable
criminal law and procedures.
S. Medical Marijuana Plant Tag Procedures Upon Termination of Cooperative
Cultivation License
1. Subject to paragraph 2 below, upon termination of a cooperative
cultivation license, whether by voluntary dissolution and surrender of
license or by revocation of the license by DBR, the cooperative cultivation
shall destroy all medical marijuana and plants and return each and every
medical marijuana plant tag associated with the cooperative cultivation
within ten (10) business days of license termination.
2. If an individual registered patient or primary caregiver cardholder has
medical marijuana, plants and associated tags tied to a cooperative
cultivation grow location and the cooperative cultivation license for that
location is surrendered or revoked, the individual can only retain the
medical marijuana, plants and associated tags that are associated with
their individual registration (up to the individual maximum number of
plants) if the individual’s registration as a patient or caregiver is still in
good standing with DOH. A qualifying individual shall follow the following
steps prior to transportation of any marijuana plants.
a. The individual must apply to DBR for transfer of the marijuana plant
tags to a new location, on such forms and through such
mechanisms as DBR designates.
b. Then, DBR will verify with DOH the continued validity of the registry
identification card(s) for which the tags were issued as well as
confirm the registration of the new grow location.
c. Once the change of location application is processed, the transport
shall be conducted in the time period prescribed and be
accompanied by a DBR receipt.
1.9 Medical Marijuana Plant Tag Program
A. Scope of Section
1. This section applies to patient cardholders who have chosen to grow
medical marijuana for themselves as an alternative to use of a caregiver
or compassion center and to all caregiver cardholders.
2. Eligibility for medical marijuana plant tags: only persons for whom DOH
has approved an application as a qualified patient or primary caregiver
and issued a registry photo identification card to the applicant; or, for
qualified patients and primary caregivers who are renewing their medical
marijuana registration, for whom DOH has approved the renewal
application of the qualified patient or primary caregiver and issued a
registry photo identification card to the applicant.
3. Patient and caregiver cardholders who have elected to cooperatively
cultivate are further subject to all requirements of Section 1.8 regulating
licensed cooperative cultivations.
4. Medical marijuana tagging and tracking requirements for licensed
cultivators are set forth in Section 1.7(D).
B. Administration of Plant Tag Program
DBR and DOH have jointly determined that DBR will primarily administer all
aspects of the medical marijuana plant tag program in order to fulfill the state
obligation to monitor and verify compliance with the statutory requirements that
cardholders electing to grow do not exceed plant limits, properly tag all permitted
plants, and do not grow at more than one location. This Section shall be deemed
to be promulgated jointly with DOH. See R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-15 and § 21-
28.6-4; DOH Regulations § 4.9.
C. Plant Tag Program Timeline and Basic Guidelines
1. Pursuant to § 21-28.6-15(a) of the Act, effective April 1, 2017, every
marijuana plant possessed by a qualified patient or primary caregiver
cardholder must be accompanied by a physical medical marijuana plant
tag purchased through DBR and issued by DOH. Plant tags being issued
by DOH shall mean the following:
a. DOH has approved the application of the qualified patient or
primary caregiver and issued a registry photo identification card to
the applicant; or for qualified patients and primary caregivers who
are renewing their medical marijuana registration, DOH has
approved the renewal application of the qualified patient or primary
caregiver and issued a registry photo identification card to the
applicant.
b. DBR verifies with DOH the status of the card and any information
submitted on the DBR plant tag purchasing form in accordance with
§ 21-28.6-15(a)(2) of the Act. For plant tags issued to qualified
patient cardholders after January 1, 2019, DBR will verify both the
status of the card and the election to grow with DOH in accordance
with § 21-28.6-15(a)(3).
c. The plant tag set fee is paid to DBR and the plant tag is distributed
by DBR to the qualified patient or primary caregiver cardholder.
2. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-15(a)(1), medical marijuana plant
tags will be sold in “tag sets” of one plant tag for a mature plant and one
plant tag for a seedling.
3. No later than April 1, 2017, all qualified patient cardholders who choose to
grow for themselves must obtain at least one (1) medical marijuana plant
tag set and enough plant tag sets to properly tag every marijuana plant in
their lawful possession (up to the maximum number of tags that may be
issued pursuant to Section 1.9(D)(2) below).
4. No later than April 1, 2017, all primary caregiver cardholders must obtain
at least one (1) medical marijuana plant tag set for each qualified patient
cardholder to whom the primary caregiver cardholder is connected
through DOH’s registration process and enough plant tag sets to properly
tag every marijuana plant in their lawful possession (up to the maximum
number of tags that may be issued pursuant to Sections 1.9(D)(3) and
(D)(4) below).
5. Qualified patient cardholders who register with DOH after April 1, 2017
and who choose to grow for themselves must obtain at least one (1)
medical marijuana plant tag set within ten (10) business days of receiving
their registry identification card from DOH. Such patients are further
responsible for obtaining any additional medical marijuana plant tag sets
necessary and may not legally possess medical marijuana plants until
such time as the plant tags are obtained.
6. Primary caregiver cardholders who register with DOH after April 1, 2017,
must obtain at least one (1) medical marijuana plant tag set for each
qualified patient cardholder to whom the primary caregiver cardholder is
connected through DOH’s registration process within ten (10) business
days of receiving their registry identification card from DOH. Such
caregivers are further responsible for obtaining any additional medical
marijuana plant tag sets necessary and may not legally possess medical
marijuana plants until such time as the plant tags are obtained.
7. Any primary caregiver cardholder who becomes connected with any
additional qualified patient cardholder(s) through DOH’s registration
process after April 1, 2017, must obtain at least one (1) medical marijuana
plant tag set for each additional qualified patient cardholder within ten (10)
business days of said connection. Such caregivers are further responsible
for obtaining any additional medical marijuana plant tag sets necessary
and may not legally possess any additional medical marijuana plant(s)
until such time as the plant tags are obtained.
8. Every member of a licensed cooperative cultivation must be in compliance
with the above minimum tag requirements as a condition of the
cooperative cultivation license.
D. Maximum Number of Plant Tag Sets
1. The maximum number of medical marijuana plant tag sets that can be
purchased from DBR corresponds to the maximum number of mature
plants that may be possessed by the purchaser under the Act.
2. A qualified patient cardholder may purchase no more than twelve (12)
medical marijuana plant tag sets (comprised of twelve (12) mature plant
tags and twelve (12) seeding tags for a total of twenty-four (24) medical
marijuana plant tags), which corresponds to the possession limits of
twelve (12) mature plants and twelve (12) seedlings set by R.I. Gen. Laws
§ 21-28.6-4(a) and § 21-28.6-4(f), respectively.
3. A primary caregiver cardholder connected with one (1) qualified patient
cardholder through DOH’s registration process may purchase no more
than twelve (12) medical marijuana plant tag sets (comprised of twelve
(12) mature plant tags and twelve (12) seedling tags for a total of twentyfour
(24) medical marijuana plant tags), which corresponds to the
possession limits of twelve (12) mature plants per qualified patient
cardholder and twelve (12) seedlings derived from R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-
28.6-4(e) and § 21-28.6-4(f), respectively.
4. A primary caregiver cardholder connected with at least two (2) and up to
five (5) qualified patient cardholders through DOH’s registration process
may purchase no more than twenty-four (24) medical marijuana plant tag
sets (comprised of twenty-four (24) mature plant tags and twenty-four (24)
seedling tags for a total of forty-eight (48) medical marijuana plant tags),
which corresponds to the possession limits of twenty-four (24) mature
plants and twenty-four (24) seedlings set by R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(e)
and § 21-28.6-4(f), respectively.
5. A residential cooperative cultivation formed by two (2) or more qualified
patient and/or primary caregiver cardholders may purchase no more than
twenty-four (24) medical marijuana plant tag sets (comprised of twentyfour
(24) mature plant tags and twenty-four (24) seedling tags for a total of
forty-eight (48) medical marijuana plant tags), which corresponds to the
possession limits of twenty-four (24) mature plants and twenty-four (24)
seedlings set by R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(6)(ii).
6. A non-residential cooperative cultivation may purchase plant tag sets of no
more than the lesser of: (a) forty-eight (48) medical marijuana plant tag
sets (comprised of forty-eight (48) mature plant tags and forty-eight (48)
seedling tags for a total of ninety-six (96) medical marijuana plant tags),
which corresponds to the maximum possession limits for a non-residential
cooperative cultivation of forty-eight (48) mature plants and forty-eight (48)
seedlings set by R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-14(a)(6)(i); and (b) the number
of medical marijuana plant tag sets which would correspond to the total
maximum amount of mature plants that each individual qualified patient
cardholder and each individual primary caregiver cardholder growing at
the cooperative cultivation is permitted to grow under the mature plant and
seedling possession limits delineated above.
E. Plant Tag Fees
1. R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-15(a)(1) mandates that DBR charge an annual
fee for each medical marijuana plant tag set which shall include one plant
tag for a mature medical marijuana plant and one plant tag for a seedling.
Pursuant to the mandate, DBR hereby establishes the below annual fee
schedule.
2. Qualifying patient cardholder – Twenty-five dollars ($25) per plant tag set.
3. Reduced-registration patient – The fee shall be waived for patients for
which DOH has determined qualification for reduced-registration due to
income or disability status, as may be periodically determined by DOH.
4. Primary caregiver cardholder – Twenty-five dollars ($25) per plant tag set.
5. Caregiver registered with DOH to grow for reduced-registration patient(s) -
The fee shall be adjusted for caregivers registered with DOH to grow for
one (1) to five (5) qualifying patient cardholder(s) for which DOH has
determined qualification for reduced- registration due to income or
disability status. Specifically:
a. If a primary caregiver is registered with DOH to grow for reducedregistration
patients only, the plant tag fees shall be waived entirely.
b. If a primary caregiver is registered with DOH to grow for one (1) or
more reduced-registration patients and one (1) or more fullregistration
patients, the primary caregiver shall be required to
purchase at least one (1) plant tag set per full-registration patient at
the rate of twenty-five dollars ($25) per plant tag set. In this case,
the remainder of the plant tag sets up to the numerical limits
delineated herein may be obtained with a fee waiver; provided,
however, that no more than twelve (12) fee-waived plant tag sets
may be obtained per reduced-registration patient.
c. If a primary caregiver has used the plant tag fee reductions cited
above and then at any point prior to the next plant tag renewal date
that primary caregiver is in the position of having no associations
with any reduced-registration patients, the primary caregiver shall
take one of the following actions within ten (10) business days:
(1) Register with DOH to grow for one (1) or more other
reduced-registration patients;
(2) Register with DOH to grow for one (1) or more fullregistration
patients and pay the balance of what would have
been paid had the plant tag sets been obtained or renewed
with no reduced-registration patients; or
(3) If not registered with DOH to grow for any other existing or
new patients within ten (10) business days, destroy the
marijuana plants and then also return the plant tags within
an additional ten (10) business day period.
F. Applications and Processes for Obtaining and Renewing Plant Tags
1. Applications to obtain medical marijuana plant tags pursuant to this
Section and to renew said plant tags shall be on such forms and through
such submission mechanisms as directed by DBR.
2. Required application information shall include, but is not necessarily
limited to, the registry identification number of the applicant, and, if the
applicant is a caregiver, the registry identification number(s) of the
patient(s) the caregiver applicant is authorized to grow for, a sufficiently
specific identification of the single grow location selected by the applicant,
and current contact information.
3. Before issuing medical marijuana plant tags, DBR will verify with DOH the
validity of the applicant’s registry identification card and, if the applicant is
a caregiver, the validity of the registry identification card(s) of the
patient(s) the caregiver applicant is authorized to grow for as well as
confirm the registration of the grow location in accordance with R.I. Gen.
Laws § 21-28.6-15(a)(2) and R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-15(a)(3).
4. DBR will provide further guidance on the mechanism for paying the plant
tag set fees for initial applications and annual renewal.
5. DBR will provide further guidance on the mechanism for receiving plant
tags from DBR, including information about pick up schedule and
authorization.
G. Conditions for Obtaining and Maintaining Plant Tags
1. The rules in this subsection are deemed to be continuing conditions for
obtaining and maintaining medical marijuana plant tags.
2. A medical marijuana plant tag holder may not grow marijuana at more
than one location. R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(q).
3. Medical marijuana plant tags will only be issued under the express and
continuing condition that they will only be used for plants that are stored in
a “secure indoor structure.” The secure indoor structure shall satisfy the
following parameters:
a. Enclosed area with four walls and a roof.
b. Equipped with locks and any other appropriate security devices that
limit access to the individual authorized to grow the marijuana.
Locks must be sufficient to discourage theft and unauthorized
entrance.
c. Marijuana is not visible from the street or other public areas.
d. Reasonable efforts must be taken to prevent marijuana plant odors
from exiting the building to an extent that would significantly alter
the environmental odor outside.
e. For licensed cooperative cultivations, consult Section 1.8(F), for
any additional location restrictions and/or security requirements.
4. Medical marijuana plant tags may only be used by the individual and/or
licensed cooperative cultivation to whom and at the location for which they
were issued. They may not be transferred or assigned.
5. Medical marijuana plant tags shall not be altered or duplicated.
6. As a continuing condition of holding plant tags, plant tag holders may not
pursue any marijuana transaction that is in violation of the Act, including
pursuing such a transaction by online advertising.
H. Plant Tag Data
1. Medical marijuana plant tags shall be printed with, electronically
embedded with, or otherwise contain the following plant tag data:
a. Unique numerical or alpha-numerical identifiers:
(1) For a qualified patient cardholder who is growing individually,
the identifier shall correspond to his or her DOH patient
registry identification card number.
(2) For a primary caregiver cardholder who is growing
individually, the identifier shall correspond to his or her DOH
caregiver registry identification card number and the
number(s) of the qualified patient cardholder(s) he or she is
registered with DOH to grow for.
(3) For cooperative cultivations, the medical marijuana plant tag
shall contain identifiers that correspond to both the DBR
license number for the cooperative cultivation as well as the
DOH registry identification card numbers for the qualified
patient cardholders and/or primary caregiver cardholders
and their associated patients forming the cooperative
cultivation.
b. Expiration date of the plant tag.
c. Registered or licensed grow location.
d. Designation as to whether the medical marijuana plant tag is for a
mature plant or seedling.
e. Any other information DBR deems appropriate that is not subject to
the patient privacy provisions of the Act.
2. DBR and DOH will have access to the above medical marijuana plant tag
data, through the Medical Marijuana Program Tracking System, or, if the
System is not available, through other data sharing mechanisms.
I. Placement of Plant Tags
Plant tags shall be placed in a manner so as to clearly display their association
with a particular plant, such as affixed to the plant itself, on the growing
receptacle, or in the growing medium.
J. Duty to Update Application Information; Approved Transports of Tagged Medical
Marijuana Plants
1. The medical marijuana plant tag holder has a continuing obligation to
update all application information in a timely manner. Contact information
(legal name, physical and mailing address, phone number, e-mail
address, etc.) must be updated no later than three (3) business days after
the change.
2. Change of information regarding the grow location must be provided to
DBR at least ten (10) business days before the change.
3. Medical marijuana plant tags do not authorize transport of marijuana
plants outside the borders of the state of Rhode Island under any
circumstances.
4. Medical marijuana plant tags are non-transferrable to another location
within the state of Rhode Island unless the steps outlined in this section
are followed.
5. If an individual qualified patient cardholder or primary caregiver cardholder
who is not growing as part of a cooperative cultivation needs to change his
or her registered grow location, the individual shall follow the following
steps prior to transportation of any marijuana plants:
a. The individual must apply to DBR for transfer of the marijuana plant
tags, on such forms and through such mechanisms as DBR
designates.
b. Then, DBR will verify with DOH the continued validity of the registry
identification card(s) for which the tags were issued as well as
confirm the registration of the new grow location.
c. Once the change of location application is processed, the transport
shall be conducted within the time period prescribed and
accompanied by a DBR receipt.
6. The medical marijuana plant tag procedures surrounding any change in
grow location for a cooperative cultivation and transportation of the plants
of an individual patient or caregiver upon dissolution or disassociation with
the cooperative cultivation is addressed in Section 1.9(R).
K. Lost and Stolen Tags and DBR-Mandated Tag Replacement
1. Any stolen or lost medical marijuana plant tags must be reported to DBR
and law enforcement within one (1) business day that the tag holder
becomes aware of the theft or loss of the tags.
2. The circumstances surrounding the loss or theft must be disclosed to
DBR.
3. If DBR determines that the loss or theft of the tags is the result of improper
tag use in violation of these regulations or the Act, then DBR may refuse
to issue replacement tags.
4. For any periodic recall of tags by DBR (circumstances such as wearing
out, new technology, etc.), no replacement cost will be assessed to the tag
holder.
L. DBR Processes for Monitoring and Verifying Compliance with Tagging
Requirements and Marijuana Plant Possession Limits
1. If DBR has reasonable grounds to believe that a medical marijuana plant
tag holder, a primary caregiver who has not obtained or renewed tags, or
a qualified patient cardholder who has made an election to grow who has
not obtained or renewed tags, may be in violation of the tagging
requirements and/or plant possession limits set forth in the Act and/or
these regulations, the below steps may be taken to verify compliance or
prompt the person to come into compliance.
2. First Written Notice: A written notice may be sent to the person explaining
the tagging requirements and plant possession limits set forth in the Act
and these regulations and why the DBR has reason to believe the person
may be out of compliance and outlining the information the person may
provide and/or the action(s) the person may take to verify or come into
compliance. The recipient will have ten (10) business days from the date
of mailing to reply to this notice.
3. Second Written Notice: If the recipient fails to respond to the first written
notice with information that verifies compliance or fails to take the
necessary actions to come into compliance, a second written notice may
be sent and the recipient will have an additional ten (10) business days
from the date of mailing to reply.
4. Alternative Contact Attempt: If the recipient fails to respond to the second
written notice with information that verifies compliance or fails to take the
necessary actions to come into compliance, the DBR may attempt to
contact the person utilizing other contact methods through information
provided on any tag purchasing form submitted to DBR (e.g. telephone) or
other contact information reasonably obtained by DBR (e.g. public
telephone listings).
5. Reasonable Inspection: If an alternative contact attempt has been
unsuccessful or, if after ten (10) business days following an alternative
contact, the person has not yet provided information that verifies
compliance or taken the necessary actions to come into compliance, then
the person may be subject to reasonable inspection by DBR to ensure
compliance with the tagging requirements and plant possession limits set
forth in the Act and these regulations. DBR shall make an effort to
schedule inspections in advance.
M. Revocation of Medical Marijuana Plant Tags
1. R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-15(b)(1) authorizes DBR to revoke medical
marijuana plant tags for violation of any provision of the Act, the DBR
Regulations, or the DOH Regulations.
2. Grounds for revocation of medical marijuana plant tags shall include, but
are not limited to, failure to maintain or timely renew the required
underlying qualifying patient, primary caregiver, or cooperative cultivation
registration or license, as applicable, which is a legal prerequisite to
obtaining the medical marijuana plant tag and being able to grow medical
marijuana under the Act; having excess and/or untagged plants;
misrepresentation in applying for plant tags; permitting unauthorized use
of tags by another party; growing in more than one location; and
transferring plants from the registered grow location without complying
with the rules for said transport.
3. If DOH revokes the registration of a primary caregiver due to disqualifying
criminal information as delineated in the Act or for any other reason, that
primary caregiver’s medical marijuana plant tags shall be automatically
and immediately revoked by DBR.
4. If DOH revokes the registration of a patient for any reason, any medical
marijuana plant tags issued to that patient and/or issued to any caregiver
registered with DOH to grow for that patient shall be automatically and
immediately revoked by DBR.
5. Before medical marijuana plant tags are revoked pursuant to this section,
the tag holder will be given ten (10) business days advance notice to
destroy the marijuana plants that were previously associated with the plant
tags and to then return said plant tags within the 10 day timeframe.
6. The fact that a patient or primary caregiver is a member of a cooperative
cultivation shall not in any way preclude revocation of their medical
marijuana plant tags as provided in this subsection.
N. Administrative Penalties
1. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-15(b)(3), as to any patient
cardholder, primary caregiver cardholder, or licensed cooperative
cultivation who is found to have mature marijuana plants that are within
the relevant possession limits of the Act but which do not have valid
medical marijuana tags, DBR may impose an administrative penalty up to
the total fee that would be paid by a cardholder or licensee who purchased
medical marijuana plant tags for such plants in compliance with the Act.
2. Pursuant to R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-15(b)(4), as to any patient
cardholder, primary caregiver cardholder, or licensed cooperative
cultivation who is found to have mature marijuana plants that exceed the
relevant possession limits of the Act, DBR may impose an administrative
penalty of no less than the total fee that would be paid by a cardholder or
licensee who purchased medical marijuana plant tags for such plants in
compliance with the Act, which fee is twenty five dollars ($25) assessed
per plant. DBR hereby sets the maximum administrative penalty at five
thousand dollars ($5,000) assessed per plant. Within the $25 - $5000 fine
which may be assessed per plant under this paragraph, DBR adopts the
following schedule:
Number of plants exceeding the
relevant possession limits of the
Act
Fine assessed per plant
1 – 3 plants over limit $25 assessed per plant
4 – 8 plants over limit $100 assessed per plant
9 – 12 plants over limit $250 assessed per plant
13 – 15 plants over limit $1000 assessed per plant
16 – 24 plants over limit $2500 assessed per plant
25 or more plants over limit $5000 assessed per plant
O. Criminal Penalties and Law Enforcement
1. R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-15(b)(4) provides that any administrative
penalties for possession of marijuana plants in excess of the numerical
limits of the Act may be in addition to the criminal penalties provided for by
§ 21-33 28.6-9, subsection (c) of which provides for arrest and prosecution
under Chapter 28 of Title 21 (the “Rhode Island Controlled Substances
Act”).
2. Nothing in this section shall alter or impair the ability of law enforcement to
confiscate excess, untagged, and/or invalidly tagged marijuana plants and
revoked and/or otherwise invalid plant tags in accordance with applicable
criminal law and procedures.
3. DBR may notify law enforcement if it reasonably believes a tag holder is
engaged in a material violation of the Act or these regulations.
4. Law enforcement may be granted access to the Medical Marijuana
Program Tracking System to verify the validity of plant tags and tag data,
or, if the System is not available, through other data sharing mechanisms,
in accordance with applicable law.
P. Return of Plant Tags
1. When return of tags is required by these regulations, the medical
marijuana plants associated with those tags shall be destroyed prior to the
required return date.
2. A patient shall return his or her medical marijuana plant tags to DBR within
ten business (10) business days of any of the following occurrences: a)
election to no longer grow medical marijuana for himself or herself, b)
voluntary surrender of the registry identification card, or c) revocation of
the registry identification card.
3. A primary caregiver shall return all medical marijuana plant tags
associated with a particular patient within ten (10) business days of any of
the following occurrences concerning that patient: a) death, b) termination
of the relationship with the primary caregiver, c) voluntary surrender of the
registry identification card, or d) revocation of the registry identification
card. If during such ten (10) business day period, the primary caregiver
re-associates with another qualified patient cardholder through DOH and
re-associates the tags to the other existing or new patient by registry
identification number through DBR, the plant tags need not be returned.
4. A primary caregiver shall return each and every medical marijuana plant
tag within ten (10) business days of his or her voluntary surrender of or
DOH’s revocation of his or her registry identification card.
5. The fact that a patient or primary caregiver is a member of a cooperative
cultivation shall not in any way relieve his or her individual medical
marijuana plant tag return obligations under this subsection.
6. DBR will provide a person returning medical marijuana plant tags with a
receipt documenting the return.
7. For additional provisions regarding return of tags associated with licensed
cooperative cultivations, consult Section 1.8(S).
1.10 Severability
If any provision of the DBR Regulations, or the application thereof to any person
or circumstance, is held to be invalid, such invalidity shall not affect other
provisions or application of the DBR Regulations which can be given effect
without the invalid provision or application, and to this end the provisions are
declared to be severable.