Portland, the largest city in the state of Maine, recently began accepting license applications and permit applications for marijuana cultivation facilities, manufacturing facilities, testing facilities, and small scale caregivers. As of July 1, the city is also accepting license applications for marijuana retail stores. Applications for all categories of marijuana licenses are available here.
Applicants must obtain a conditional license from Maine’s Office of Marijuana Policy for the appropriate category of marijuana establishment prior to filing a complete local license application. While the city will accept the majority of these license applications on a rolling basis, complete applications for marijuana retail stores must be filed by August 31, 2020 in order to be considered.
Portland imposed a cap of 20 retail stores, and will be scoring each application at the end of the application period. Applications will be scored based on the following criteria:
- At least 51% owned by socially and economically disadvantaged individual(s) (6 points)
- At least 51% owned by individual(s) who have been a Maine resident for at least five years (5 points)
- Owned by individual(s) with experience running a business in a highly regulated industry, such as marijuana, liquor, banking, etc. with no history of violations or license suspensions or revocations (6
- Owned by individual(s) who have previously been licensed by the State of Maine or a Maine municipality for non-marijuana related business, with no history of violations or license suspensions or revocations for a minimum of 5 years (4 points)
- Owned by individual(s) who have been a registered caregiver in the State of Maine for at least two years (3 points)
- Ownership of proposed retail location by applicant; or at least five year lease for proposed retail location (4 points)
- Evidence of at least $150,000 in liquid assets (2 points)
- Business plan committing to social and economic development, by including three or more of the following:
- 1. Create at least full-time jobs paying a minimum of $15/hr;
- 2. Provide PTO (or vacation/sick time) and health benefits to employees;
- 3. Provide at least one annual training around diversity, cultural awareness, sexual harassment, or workplace violence. Training must be in addition to any required by the State or City;
- 4. Annual contribution of 1% net profits as a restricted donation to the City for youth education on substance use education and prevention (4 points)
Regulations promulgated by the City Manager provide more detail on the evidence required to obtain points in any of the above-listed categories. The regulations are included in the retail license application packet.
If you have questions about the local permitting and/or licensing process in Portland or other municipalities in the State of Maine, please contact a member of our Licensing and Regulatory Compliance division.