HALLOWELL — Two downtown medical marijuana businesses were awarded preference for marijuana retail stores after a lottery at the City Council meeting Monday night, leaving an existing operator without a license to sell medical marijuana in Hallowell.

Cannabis Healing Center, opened in January 2017 by Derek Wilson, and newcomer Kennebec Cannabis, spearheaded by Allison Michaud of North Monmouth and Brian King of Hallowell, received the two available licenses subject to approval by code enforcement and other city officials.

The third applicant, Homegrown the Offering, a store run by Catherine Lewis at 109 Water St., was left without a retail license because the ordinance sets a limit of two in the downtown area.

All three downtown applications were submitted by parties with existing marijuana storefronts in Central Maine.

No one applied for licenses for other uses – indoor or outdoor cultivation, products manufacturing or product testing facilities.

King and Michaud’s business, The Frost Factory, LLC, operates a medical marijuana business on 68 Old Lewiston Road in North Monmouth. Their proposed Hallowell location, Kennebec Cannabis, is slated for 144 Water St.

Lewis’ original corporation, Homegrown Healthcare of Maine, LLC, operates a retail store and education manufacturing facility at 662 Stanley Road in Winthrop.

City Manager Nate Rudy said that three additional applications were rejected because they did not meet guidelines, citing that some were specifically for adult-use establishments.

A state license is a necessary for local licensing, and those rules have not yet been set by the Legislature, which convenes next month.

The licenses will be finalized after final inspections by local and State health inspections. If a health inspection is failed or another shortcoming disqualifies a lottery winner from a license, Homegrown the Offering will automatically be reconsidered.

Lewis said she was disappointed by the outcome of the lottery, but remained hopeful that future council action could permit her business to sell medical marijuana.

“I had hoped that licenses would be chosen on a first-come, first-served and qualification basis,” she said in an email Monday. “Maybe in the future the council will vote to add additional licensing that will allow our store the ability to serve our patients in town.”

Her business will continue to operate, selling cannabidiol (CBD) and other wellness products.

“I think (our business) is still going to be successful,” she said. “It’s not going to be as successful as it could have been.”

Before the lottery, Hallowell staff vetted the applications to determine if they fit guidelines outlined in the city’s ordinance. Those guidelines included checks of the applicant’s criminal record, assessment of the applicant’s “good moral character” and the applicant’s compliance with local and state laws.

City Clerk Diane Polky said the licenses must be renewed annually and a lottery only will happen in the event of a vacated license.

Councilor Kate Dufour believed holding the lottery before having adult-use rules from the Legislature put adult-use proprietors at a disadvantage.

Sam Shepherd can be contacted at 621-5666 or at:

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Twitter: @SamShepME