So the CRC had their one week delayed meeting, and much to their credit, they FINALLY got around to issuing some conditional conversion (10) and annual licenses (8) to non-ATC New Jersey businesses. While this is notable progress, the CRC is still subjecting license applicants to noncompliant delays in application review and processing.
While this blog’s constant focus on license application review process might seem like nit-picking in light of the entirety of the CRC’s overall good intentioned work, it’s highly relevant to the CRC’s ability to deliver an equitable market: the longer it takes to get a license for social equity and diversity owned businesses, the less likely it is that those applicants will succeed, and longer the ATC oligopoly will continue to own the New Jersey adult use cannabis market.
Issuing an invoice for a license shouldn’t take any entity 30 days, particularly if that holds up a awardee from getting their license and being able to move to the next step in the process, like submitting a conversion application.
In the clips below, you’ll see two different public speakers at yesterday’s CRC meeting bring up this issue, Chairwoman Houenou ask Executive Director Jeff Brown to address it, and then Jeff Brown either not understanding the issue at hand or avoiding addressing the concern directly. Jeff doesn’t acknowledge that 30 days for an invoice is the current status quo, that it’s an issue or that he will look into it or address it. He simply says your conditional license window doesn’t start until you pay and get the license, and his team is doing a great job. He ignores the fact that it creates an unnecessary 30 day delay for anyone who’s ready to submit their conversion. This kind of willful or blind ignorance to an issue in the process with a simple fix that the CRC has complete control over is a great example of an area for improvement for the CRC.
First Comment on the invoicing delay
Second comment on the invoicing delay
Jeff Brown deflecting on the issue when asked by the Chairwoman