Groton medical marijuana dispensary set to open by end of October

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Groton — Following some construction delays, the Illinois-based Grassroots Cannabis expects its medical marijuana dispensary at 79 Gold Star Highway, called Herbology, to be open by the end of October.

A spokesperson said in an email last week, "Grassroots looks forward to sharing their unparalleled expertise in medical cannabis to further provide patients with access to safe and effective cannabis products, with the opening of an Herbology dispensary in Groton, CT — slated to open by the end of October."

On Dec. 11 of last year, the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection announced the awarding of nine new dispensary licenses, including one to Grassroots. The dispensaries were expected to open within 120 days of the announcement, per the terms of the application, or get approval from the Drug Control Division if there was a delay.

But only five of the nine have opened so far. A DCP spokesperson said in an email earlier this month that dispensaries are scheduled to open this month in Newington, by late October in Westport and at the end of the year in Stamford.

Grassroots originally planned to open Herbology at 78 Plaza Court, but the Drug Control Division approved the new location in February.

In April, Director of Drug Control Rodrick Marriott sent a letter asking Steve Weisman of Grassroots to update DCP monthly "describing your progress, detailing any additional delays and reasons for those delays, and any changes to your anticipated time-frame."

Medical Marijuana Program manager Xaviel Soto asked Weisman on May 15 if he was still on track to open July 19, according to emails DCP provided to The Day. Weisman replied that day, saying he expected to receive building permits "any day now" and anticipated being ready for a final inspection on July 28.

On July 14, Weisman emailed to say Grassroots immediately began demolition after receiving the building permit on July 1, but the contractor discovered black mold and plumbing issues.

"Looks like we are going to have to undertake some significant structural repair work and actually replace about 20 feet of the main water later coming into the property to comply with code," Weisman wrote. "All of these issues are fixable but are going to delay our completion date."

He said he believed with doubling some crews, they could be ready for the final certificate of occupancy inspection on Oct. 11. But on Aug. 12, he said Grassroots has made up some time on the project and should be ready for final inspection from Groton the week of Sept. 30; he set the same target in the most recent email update to the state, on Sept. 3.

As of Wednesday, construction on the site was ongoing.

e.moser@theday.com

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