Did Texas’ governor undermine the state’s medical marijuana program?

A “private edict” issued by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott “substantially weakened” the state’s nascent medical marijuana program, according to a cannabis business trade group.

The accusation was leveled by the Texas Cannabis Industry Association (TCIA) in an August 10 letter sent to Abbott and the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), the agency tasked with implementing the program.

TCIA alleges in the letter that DPS acted in bad faith by assigning just three licenses to grow and distribute medical marijuana following “behind-the-scenes input” from Abbott.

DPS had announced in September 2015 that it would be issuing 12 medical marijuana licenses based on the number of patients in Texas that would qualify for the program — nearly 150,000, according to TCIA. Then, in October 2016, the agency announced without explanation that only three licenses would be distributed — the minimum number of licenses allowed by the law. The agency also tacked on a requirement that state…

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