Licensed cannabis cultivation in Greene County has been legal only for medical purposes under the enacted Substitute House Bill (Sub. H.B.) 523 of the State of Ohio since September 8, 2016. The Ohio Administrative Code (OAC) 3796:2-2-07 restricts licensed medical cannabis cultivators to growing only cannabis crops with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content of 35 percent or less. They may only sell these to licensed medical cannabis manufacturers and dispensaries, and not directly to medical cannabis cardholders.
Municipalities and townships within Greene County are allowed by the Act’s Sec. 3796.29 to limit the number of, or totally ban, medical cannabis facilities within their jurisdictions, including medical cannabis cultivation facilities.
To operate a medical cannabis cultivation facility in Greene County, either a Level I or Level II medical marijuana cultivator license is required. This is issued by the Ohio Department of Commerce through its Medical Marijuana Control Program (MMCP) which is the regulatory and licensing body for medical cannabis in the state.
The Level I medical cannabis cultivator licensee may grow up to 25,000 square feet of cannabis crop canopy, whereas the Level II medical cannabis cultivator licensee may only grow up to 3,000 square feet. The Level II licensee may, however, apply for expansion upon reaching that limit. Data from April 11, 2023, shows that 32 medical cannabis cultivator licenses were issued statewide by the MMCP, including 20 Level I licenses. One of the Level I licensees is in the City of Yellow Springs in Greene County.
All owners and employees of companies applying for a medical cannabis cultivation license have to be cleared through a criminal background check. The following fees are payable:
Level I Medical Cannabis Cultivation Facility:
Application Fee: $20,000
First License Fee: $180,000
Subsequent Annual License Renewal Fees: $200,000
Level II Medical Cannabis Cultivation Facility:
Application Fee: $2,000
First License Fee: $18,000
Subsequent Annual License Renewal Fees: $20,000
There must be a distance of more than 500 feet between a licensed medical cannabis cultivation facility and any church, school, playground, library, or public park. The high level of security required by OAC 3796:2-2-05 includes the facility being fully fenced-in and gated, with a commercial-grade locking mechanism. The perimeter of the facility must be lighted adequately. There must be a security system equipped with alarms and surveillance cameras working around the clock and connected to the MMCP and local law enforcement. Recorded footage stamped with date and time must be retained for a minimum of 45 days. Only authorized personnel of the facility must be allowed to enter.
OAC 3796:4-2-04 mandates that licensed medical cannabis cultivation facilities must have an MMCP-approved laboratory test random samples of cured dried cannabis from every cannabis crop batch. Only after the laboratory has sent the test results to the Ohio Marijuana Enforcement Tracking Reporting & Compliance (METRC) online system can the licensed cultivator sell any part of the crop batch that was tested.
Licensed cannabis manufacturing in Greene County is legal only for medical purposes under the State of Ohio’s enacted Sub. H.B. 523, provided the municipality or township allows it. OAC 3796:3-2-07 restricts licensed medical cannabis manufacturers to the processing of only medical cannabis products that do not have a THC content over 70 percent.
To operate a medical cannabis manufacturing facility in Greene County, a medical marijuana processor license is required, to be applied for with the MMCP. The processor license has the same application requirements, site limitations, and regulations on security as the ones for the medical cannabis cultivator license.
The payable fees are as follows:
Medical Cannabis Manufacturing Facility:
Application Fee: $10,000
First License Fee: $90,000
Subsequent Annual License Renewal Fees: $100,000
Data from December 21, 2022, shows that 44 medical cannabis processor licenses were granted across the state by the MMCP, including one in the City of Yellow Springs in Greene County.
The high level of security required by OAC 3796:3-2-05 for licensed medical cannabis manufacturers entails the same measures as those that licensed medical cannabis cultivators are required to maintain. OAC 3796:5-2-01 adds that authorized visitors must be asked for a valid government-issued photo ID, have their entry and exit recorded, and be escorted by personnel throughout their stay.
OAC 3796:3-2-06 mandates the same testing and inventory tracking requirements as those for licensed cultivators. OAC 3796:3-2-02 requires that all packaging for medical cannabis products be light-resistant, tamper-evident, childproof, and labeled according to its specifications.
Licensed cannabis retail in Greene County is legal only for medical cannabis and medical cannabis products sold solely to medical cannabis cardholders, and only if the municipality or township permits it, as mandated by the enacted Sub. H.B. 523 of the State of Ohio. As mentioned earlier, medical cannabis must have a maximum content of 35 percent THC while medical cannabis products must have a maximum content of 70 percent THC.
To operate a medical cannabis retail facility in Greene County, a medical marijuana dispensary license is required, to be applied for with the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy. The fees to be paid are the following, according to OAC 3796:6-5-01:
Medical Cannabis Dispensary:
Application Fee: $5,000
First License Fee: $70,000
Subsequent Annual License Renewal Fees: $70,000
Data from April 27, 2023, shows that 77 medical cannabis dispensary licenses were issued throughout the state by the MMCP, including one in the City of Beavercreek in Greene County.
Medical cannabis dispensaries are mandated by OAC 3796:6-2-02, OAC 3796:6-2-07, and OAC 3796:6-3-16 to abide by the same requirements as those for medical cannabis cultivators and manufacturers in terms of license application, site location, and security. Additional authority to enter licensed medical cannabis dispensaries is, however, granted to medical cannabis cardholders. Furthermore, licensed dispensaries are required to be manned by security guards during their business hours.
A licensed dispensary that intends to offer drive-through purchase services must seek further approval from the Board of Pharmacy. This means leveling up security, as well, such as using bullet-resistant glass.
The following forms of medical cannabis and medical cannabis products are allowed for licensed retail sale to medical cannabis cardholders by OAC 3796:8-2-06 and OAC 3796.06, provided a dose or serving does not exceed 55 milligrams in THC content:
Cannabis plant parts such as flowers, buds, shakes, or trim
Edible cannabis products
Medical cannabis forms meant for smoking or combustion are forbidden.
OAC 3796:6-3-08 requires licensed medical cannabis dispensaries to ask each purchaser for a current medical cannabis card and another valid government-issued photo ID card. These will be checked against the online Patient and Caregiver Registry of the MMCP. Every purchase must be logged into the inventory system connected to the MMCP database.
Every 90 days, the licensed dispensary is allowed by OAC 3796:7-2-04 to sell only a 90-day supply of medical cannabis to a medical cannabis cardholder in two equal purchases. The medical cannabis cardholder may purchase a 46-day supply only for the initial purchase on a newly-released physician’s recommendation.
According to OAC 3796:8-2-04, the 90-day supply differs between terminally ill medical cannabis cardholders and regular medical cannabis cardholders, as follows:
90-day Supply of Medical Cannabis for Terminally Ill Medical Cannabis Cardholders:
Cannabis plant materials: 10 oz or 283.5 grams
Ointments, Lotions, Creams, Transdermal Patches: 29.5 grams of THC
Tinctures, Oils, Capsules, Edible Medical Cannabis Products: 11 grams of THC
Vaporizing Oils: 59 grams of THC
90-day Supply of Medical Cannabis for Regular Medical Cannabis Cardholders:
Cannabis plant materials: 9 oz or 254.7 grams
Ointments, Lotions, Creams, Transdermal Patches: 26.55 grams of THC
Tinctures, Oils, Capsules, Edible Medical Cannabis Products: 9.9 grams of THC
Vaporizing Oils: 53.1 grams of THC
It is illegal to deliver even medical cannabis to medical cannabis cardholders in Greene County in accordance with OAC 3796:6-3-08. Only the delivery of medical cannabis from one licensed medical cannabis facility to another is legal.
Residents of Greene County may apply to the MMCP for a medical cannabis card by first getting a diagnosis for a qualifying medical condition from a doctor issued by the State Medical Board of Ohio with a certification to recommend (CTR) treatment with medical cannabis. The following are those qualifying medical conditions:
Sickle cell anemia
Post‐traumatic stress disorder
Chronic traumatic encephalopathy
Traumatic brain injury
Inflammatory bowel disease
Positive HIV status
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
Acquired immune deficiency syndrome
Chronic, severe, or intractable pain
Spinal cord disease or injury
Inflammatory bowel disease
Additions by the State Medical Board
The physician’s recommendation certifying the diagnosis will be posted by the doctor by creating the patient’s account on the MMCP online Patient & Caregiver Registry. The email address of the patient will be included. An account will also be opened for any necessary caregiver, which likewise necessitates the caregiver’s email address. Both the patient and the caregiver must show the doctor their valid government-issued photo ID card.
The patient and the caregiver will receive separate emails from the registry, from which they can log in to finish their applications. The fee for patients is $50 while it is $25 for caregivers. To get a 50% discount, veteran or indigent patients or caregivers must send the listed required documents by mail to the following address:
State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy
MMCP Patient Registry
77. S. High Street, 17th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
The approved medical cannabis card will appear on the registry account of the patient or caregiver and may be [downloaded and printed](https://medicalmarijuana.ohio.gov/Documents/PatientsCaregivers/Quick Reference Guide - Activating Your Medical Marijuana Card.pdf#:~:text=PLEASE%20NOTE%3A%20The%20Board%20of%20Pharmacy%20will%20not,you%20to%20purchase%20medical%20marijuana%20at%20a%20dispensary.). Medical cannabis card holders may show a licensed dispensary the electronic card on their smartphone or the printed card, but always together with a separate valid government-issued photo ID card.
According to the Ohio State University’s Moritz College of Law Drug Enforcement and Policy Center, the MMCP there are no special taxes on medical cannabis but for every purchase, a medical cannabis cardholder pays the usual state sales tax of 5.25 percent and local sales tax of 0.25 percent to 2.25 percent, depending on the locality.
The MMCP’s historical sales data for medical cannabis products shows its earliest entry dated April 30, 2019, at a total of $5.2 million. The entry for April 23, 2023, shows a total of over $1.28 billion.
Medical cannabis was legalized in Greene County in 2016.
Data from the Greene County Sheriff's Office on the FBI’s Crime Explorer page shows that in 2015, the year prior to medical cannabis legalization, there were 12 marijuana offense arrests, all for possession.
In 2017, which was the year after the legalization of medical cannabis, there were 20 marijuana offense arrests, also all for possession.
In 2021, which is the latest available data, there were 14 marijuana offense arrests, comprised of 10 arrests for possession and four arrests for sales or manufacturing.
The number of DUI arrests was as follows in those years:
2015: 86 arrests
2017: 67 arrests
2021: 37 arrests