PITTSFIELD, Mass. — None of the four candidates for medical marijuana dispensaries in Berkshire County were approved in the first round of licensing.
The state Department of Public Health on Friday released 20 provisional dispensary licenses for eight counties; left out were Berkshire, Franklin, Dukes and Nantucket.
The dispensary applicants, Phase 2, were weighed on "the qualityof the applications," according to the posting by the DPH. Scoring was based on geography, local support, ability to meet patient needs as well as public safety considerations including criminal back checks.
Qualifying applicants scored at least 137 or higher out of a scale of 0 to 163, with the other qualifiers taken into consideration.
Manna Wellness and Total Health and Wellness had applied for dispensaries in Pittsfield; Total Health and Wellness had already passed city permitting for a dispensary on Dalton Avenue. Total Health and Wellness Inc. is also seeking a license for North Adams. Two other entities were also seeking sites in South County: Greenhouse Dispensary Inc. in Lee and Prospect Lake Inc. in Great Barrington.
Manna scored a 120 for Pittsfield; Total Health and Wellness scored the lowest, at 76 for North Adams and 81 for Pittsfield. Greenhouse had 102 and Prospect Lake a 112.
Of the 20 licenses granted, only two are in communities west of Worcestor: Northampton and Holyoke.
Under the 2012 voter-approved law, at least one dispensary must ultimately be awarded to every county. The announcement from the DPH did not make clear when additional applications for licenses would be considered to fulfill this requirement.
Six Phase 2 applicants have been invited to reapply for alternate locations in a county that does not yet have a dispensary. None of the four applicants who had been seeking licensing in Berkshire County were among them.