Chapter 3796:3-1 Generally

3796:3-1-01 Number of processor provisional licenses.

(A) Until September 8, 2018, the director of the department of commerce or the director's designee may issue up to forty processor provisional licenses, in consideration of the ranking of the applicants in accordance with the criteria listed in section 3796.09 of the Revised Code and this chapter.

(B) Beginning September 9, 2018, the director or the director's designee, may issue additional processor provisional licenses, if the population of this state, the number of patients seeking to use medical marijuana products, and availability of forms approved by the state of Ohio board of pharmacy in accordance with section 3796.06 of the Revised Code support additional licenses, at the discretion of the director.

(C) In the event additional provisional licenses are deemed necessary, the department will follow the application procedures outlined in rule 3796:3-1-02 of the Administrative Code.

Effective: 9/8/2017
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 09/08/2022
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 3796.03
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 3796.03 , R.C. 3796.09

3796:3-1-02 Processor provisional license application.

(A) The department shall provide advance notice to the public indicating the commencement date and time period for accepting applications. The director shall have the right to amend the notice prior to the deadline for submitting an application. The director shall publish such amended notice in the same manner as the original notice. The director shall also have the right to cancel a notice of open application prior to the award of a processor provisional license.

(B) The provisional license application shall be submitted in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and this chapter. The application will include instructions for completion and submission. An applicant for a processor provisional license shall submit, in accordance with the application instructions, the following:

(1) A non-refundable application fee as set forth in rule 3796:5-1-01 of the Administrative Code;

(2) A business plan, which, at a minimum, shall include:

(a) The legal name of the applicant;

(b) The type of business organization of the applicant, such as individual, corporation, partnership, limited liability company, association or cooperative, joint venture, or any other business organization;

(c) Confirmation that the applicant is registered with the secretary of state as the type of business submitted pursuant to paragraph (B)(2)(b) of this rule, a certificate of good standing issued by the secretary of state, and a copy of the applicable business documents governing the operations and administration of the business;

(d) The proposed physical address of the applicant's facility;

(e) An organizational chart of the company, including name, address, and date of birth of each principal officer and board member of the processor, provided that all those individuals shall be at least twenty-one years of age;

(f) Experience with the manufacture of medical marijuana, agricultural, or horticultural products;

(g) All persons subject to the criminal records checks shall submit both an Ohio bureau of criminal identification and investigation criminal records check and a federal bureau of criminal investigation criminal records check pursuant to division (B) of section 3796.12 of the Revised Code;

(h) Any instance in which a business that any person associated with the applicant had managed or served on the board of the business and was convicted, fined, censured, or had a registration or license suspended or revoked in any administrative or judicial proceeding;

(i) Evidence that the applicant owns the property on which the proposed processor will be located, has executed a lease for the property that does not contain any use restrictions that would otherwise prevent the processor from operating pursuant to Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, or has secured the ability to purchase or lease the property that does not contain any use restrictions that would otherwise prevent the processor from operating pursuant to Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code;

(j) A location area map of the area surrounding the proposed processor that establishes the facility is at least five hundred feet from the boundaries of a parcel of real estate having situated on it a prohibited facility, as measured under rule 3796:5-5-01 of the Administrative Code;

(k) For any instance in which an applicant or any person associated with the applicant is currently or was previously licensed or authorized in another state or jurisdiction to cultivate, produce, test, dispense, or otherwise deal in the distribution of medical marijuana in any form, the following:

(i) A copy of each such licensing or authorizing document verifying licensure in that state or jurisdiction;

(ii) A statement granting permission to contact the regulatory agency that granted the license, accompanied by the contact information, to confirm the information contained in the application; and

(iii) If the license, authorization, or application was ever warned, fined, denied, suspended, revoked, or otherwise sanctioned, a copy of documentation so indicating, or a statement that the applicant was so licensed and was never sanctioned; and

(l) Documentation that the applicant is currently in compliance, or will be in compliance prior to the issuance of a certificate of operation, with all building, fire, safety, and zoning statutes, local ordinances, and rules and regulations adopted by the locality in which the applicant's property is located, which are in effect at the time of the application, including but not limited to building department approval demonstrating compliance with rules adopted by the board of building standards pursuant to Chapters 3781. and 3791. of the Revised Code and any applicable zoning considerations.

(3) An operations plan that establishes policies and procedures that the applicant will implement for the safe, secure, sustainable, and proper processing of medical marijuana, which, at a minimum, shall include:

(a) Processing and extraction techniques;

(b) A list of medical marijuana products proposed to be manufactured with estimated cannabinoid profiles, if known, including varieties with high cannabidiol content;

(c) Facility specifications, designating the areas in the facility where the extraction and processing activities will occur, and evidencing that the applicant will comply with the requirements of Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and will operate in accordance with the rules promulgated pursuant to Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code;

(d) The implementation of standards and guidelines for processing of plant material, refining of medical marijuana extracts, and manufacturing of medical marijuana products, including safety protocols and equipment; and

(e) Facility staffing and employment matters, which, at minimum, shall include:

(i) Employee training standards for the safe operation and maintenance of any and all equipment that will be used for processing medical marijuana conducted on an annual basis;

(ii) Employee training standards for the safe use, handling, storage and disposal of any and all chemicals that will be used for processing medical marijuana, in accordance with OSHA protocols, conducted on an annual basis;

(iii) Employee training standards for the safe and sanitary execution of any applicable post-extraction refining protocols, conducted on an annual basis;

(iv) Employee training standards for the safe and sanitary execution of any applicable manufacturing processes, including any applicable food safety standards under Chapter 901:3-1 of the Administrative Code conducted on an annual basis; and

(v) Employee compliance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code;

(4) A quality assurance plan that establishes policies and procedures for a safe, consistent supply of medical marijuana, which, at a minimum, shall include:

(a) Intended use and sourcing of extraction equipment and associated solvents for the extraction of medical marijuana, or, in the case of non-solvent extraction, the intended physical methods and equipment;

(b) Intended use and sourcing of all non-marijuana ingredients utilized in the manufacture of medical marijuana products, including methods to verify or ensure the safety and integrity of those ingredients, as well as their potential to be allergens or to contain allergens as a result of their specific manufacturing;

(c) Compliance with Chapter 901:3-1 of the Administrative Code in the production of edible medical marijuana products;

(d) Best practices for the packaging and labeling of medical marijuana, such that it maintains medicinal integrity for the expected shelf-life;

(e) Implementation and compliance with the inventory tracking system;

(f) An inventory control plan;

(g) Standards for the disposal of medical marijuana waste and other wastes; and

(h) Recall policies and procedures in the event of contamination, expiration, or other circumstances that render the medical marijuana unsafe or unfit for consumption, including at a minimum, identification of the products involved, notification to the dispensary or others to whom the product was sold or otherwise distributed, and how the products will be disposed of if returned to or retrieved by the applicant.

(5) A security plan that establishes policies and procedures to prevent theft, loss, or diversion from a processor and protect facility personnel, which, at a minimum, shall include:

(a) Record keeping policies and procedures that will ensure the facility complies with rule 3796:3-2-08 of the Administrative Code;

(b) A security plan in accordance with rule 3796:3-2-05 of the Administrative Code;

(c) Transportation policies in accordance with rule 3796:5-3-01 of the Administrative Code; and

(d) A plot plan of the processing facility drawn to a reasonable scale that designates the different areas of operation, including, but not limited to, the marijuana extraction and production areas, with the mandatory access restrictions.

(i) If the building is in existence at the time of the application, the applicant shall submit plans and specifications drawn to scale for the interior of the building.

(ii) If the building is not in existence at the time of application, the applicant shall submit a plot plan and a detailed drawing to scale of the interior and the architect's drawing of the building to be constructed.

(6) A financial plan, which, at a minimum, shall include:

(a) The identity and ownership interest of every person, association, partnership, other entity, or corporation having a financial interest, direct or indirect, in the processor with respect to which licensure is sought;

(b) A cost breakdown of the applicant's anticipated costs in building the facility and implementing the policies and procedures submitted as part of the application and the source of funding for the associated costs;

(c) Documentation acceptable to the department that the individual or entity filing the application has sufficient liquid assets for a processor provisional license, which are unencumbered and can be converted within thirty days after a request to liquidate such assets. Documentation acceptable to the department includes a signed statement from an Ohio licensed certified public accountant attesting to proof of the required amount of liquid assets under the control of an owner or the entity applying, if such a statement is available at the time of application. The documentation must be dated within thirty calendar days before the date the application was submitted. The following shall be considered sufficient liquid assets:

(i) Two hundred fifty thousand dollars for a processor provisional license; or

(ii) One hundred thousand dollars for a processor provisional license, if at the time of application, the applicant has previously been issued a cultivator provisional license or cultivator certificate of operation and the processor will be located in the cultivator's existing facility;

(d) Information verifying that the applicant will be able to conform to the financial responsibility requirements under rule 3796:3-1-05 of the Administrative Code; and

(e) A record of tax payments in the form of tax summary pages for individuals and businesses at the state and federal level in this state and in all jurisdictions in which an applicant has operated as a business and for every person with a financial interest of one percent or greater in the applicant for the five years before the filing of the application, unless the department determines that documentation should be submitted for all individuals and entities.

(7) Any other information requested in the application instructions that the department deems necessary to evaluate and determine the applicant's suitability to operate as a processor.

Effective: 9/8/2017
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 09/08/2022
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 3796.03
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 3796.03 , R.C. 3796.09

3796:3-1-03 Processor application review.

(A) The department, an independent contractor selected by the department, or a combination of the two shall review the submitted applications as described in this chapter and the application instructions. In order to receive consideration under paragraph (B) of this rule, an applicant shall:

(1) Demonstrate sufficient liquid capital pursuant to rule 3796:3-1-02 of the Administrative Code and an ability to meet the financial responsibility requirements under rule 3796:3-1-05 of the Administrative Code;

(2) Certify in writing at the time of application that an owner or prospective owner, officer or prospective officer, board member or prospective board member, administrator or prospective administrator, employee or prospective employee, agent, or other person who may significantly influence or control the activities of the processor has not been:

(a) Convicted of a disqualifying offense, as defined in rule 3796:1-1-01 of the Administrative Code; or

(b) Issued a certificate to recommend or applied for certification under section 4731.30 of the Revised Code;

(3) Verify that the proposed facility is not located within five hundred feet from a prohibited facility, which shall be measured in accordance with rule 3796:5-5-01 of the Administrative Code;

(4) Certify that the local jurisdiction where the facility is proposed has not passed a moratorium or taken other action that would prohibit the applicant from operating as a medical marijuana processor;

(5) Certify that an owner or prospective owner, officer or prospective officer, board member or prospective board member, administrator or prospective administrator, employee or prospective employee, agent, or other person who may significantly influence or control the activities of the processor does not have an ownership or investment interest, a compensation arrangement with, or share any corporate officers or employees with any of the following:

(a) A laboratory licensed under Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code; or

(b) An applicant for a license to conduct laboratory testing under Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code;

(6) Provide documentation sufficient to establish that the applicant is in compliance with the applicable tax laws of this state and any jurisdiction where the applicant operates and conducts business;

(7) Submit an application with the applicable fee under rule 3796:5-1-01 of the Administrative Code during the established application submission period established under paragraph (A) of rule 3796:3-1-02 of the Administrative Code. The application shall be submitted in accordance with the application instructions and forms issued by the department. The department may remove an application from consideration for any of the following:

(a) Failure or refusal to submit information required under rule 3796:3-1-02 of the Administrative Code or requested by the department during the application submission or review process;

(b) Inclusion of information in the application that misleads the department, misrepresents a material fact, or fails to disclose a material fact to the department;

(c) Submission of an application that is in violation of the application instructions issued by the department, or includes forms issued by the department that have been altered.

(B) The applicants shall be ranked using an impartial and numerical process taking into account the criteria identified in rule 3796:3-1-02 of the Administrative Code, as developed by the department, an independent contractor selected by the department, or a combination of the two. The applicants will be ranked based on the following criteria, at a minimum:

(1) A business plan, which, at a minimum, shall include:

(a) A proposed business model demonstrating a likelihood of success, a sufficient business ability, and experience on the part of the applicant;

(b) An organizational chart of the company, including name, address, and date of birth of each principal officer and board member of the processor, provided that all those individuals shall be at least twenty-one years of age;

(c) Experience, which includes information on business licenses held by any person affiliated with the applicants, regardless if said license is active, revoked, suspended, or expired. If expired, applicant shall provide the grounds behind the expiration. The information provided on business licenses shall include the type of license, the licensing agency, the date the license was obtained, and a summary of any negative actions taken against each license.

(d) Evidence that the applicant owns the property on which the proposed processor will be located, has executed a lease for the property that does not contain any use restrictions that would otherwise prevent the processor from operating pursuant to Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, or has secured the ability to purchase or lease the property that does not contain any use restrictions that would otherwise prevent the processor from operating pursuant to Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code; and

(e) Documentation that the applicant is currently in compliance, or will be in compliance prior to the issuance of a certificate of operation, with any local ordinances, rules or regulations adopted by the locality in which the applicant's property is located, which are in effect at the time of the application. Such documentation may include, but is not limited to, local building department approval demonstrating compliance with rules adopted by the board of building standards pursuant to Chapters 3781. and 3791. of the Revised Code to construct the proposed facility, local approval to operate as a medical marijuana processing facility, and evidence that the applicant's proposed location is in compliance with any other local ordinances, rules or regulations adopted by the locality in which the applicant's property is located, which are in effect at the time of the application.

(2) An operations plan, which shall include but not be limited to:

(a) Documentation of processing and extraction methods, techniques, and standards that will provide a steady, uninterrupted supply of medical marijuana;

(b) A list of proposed medical marijuana products to be manufactured with estimated cannabinoid profiles, if known, including varieties with high cannabidiol content;

(c) Facility specifications, designating the areas in the facility where the extraction and processing activities will occur, and evidencing that the applicant will comply with the requirements of Chapter 3796. Of the Revised Code and will operate in accordance with the rules promulgated pursuant to Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code;

(d) The implementation of standards and guidelines for processing of plant material, refining of medical marijuana extracts, and manufacturing of medical marijuana products, including safety protocols and equipment; and

(e) Facility staffing and employment matters, which shall include, but not be limited to:

(i) Employee training standards for the safe operation and maintenance of any and all equipment that will be used for processing medical marijuana;

(ii) Employee training standards for the safe use, handling, storage, and disposal of any and all chemicals that will be used for processing medical marijuana, in accordance with OSHA protocols;

(iii) Employee training standards for the safe and sanitary execution of any applicable post-extraction refining protocols;

(iv) Employee training standards for the safe and sanitary execution of any applicable manufacturing processes, including any applicable food safety standards under Chapter 901:3-1 of the Administrative Code; and

(v) Employee compliance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code.

(3) A quality assurance plan, which shall include but not be limited to:

(a) Intended use and sourcing of extraction equipment and associated solvents for the extraction of medical marijuana, or, in the case of non-solvent extraction, the intended methods and equipment, with details including, but not limited to, make and model of anticipated equipment, throughput capacity, and secondary processing or clean-up strategies for extracts;

(b) Intended use and sourcing of all non-marijuana ingredients utilized in the manufacture of medical marijuana products, including methods to verify or ensure the safety and integrity of those ingredients, as well as their potential to be allergens or to contain allergens as a result of their specific manufacturing;

(c) Compliance with Chapter 901:3-1 of the Administrative Code in the production of edible medical marijuana products;

(d) Best practices for the packaging and labeling of medical marijuana, such that it maintains its medicinal integrity for the expected shelf-life;

(e) Implementation and compliance with the inventory tracking system;

(f) An inventory control plan;

(g) Standards for the destruction of medical marijuana and disposal of waste; and

(h) Recall policies and procedures in the event of contamination, expiration, or other circumstances that render the medical marijuana unsafe or unfit for consumption, including at a minimum, identification of the products involved, notification to the dispensary or others to whom the product was sold or otherwise distributed, and how the products will be disposed of if returned to or retrieved by the applicant.

(4) A security plan, which shall include but not be limited to:

(a) Policies and procedures to ensure a secure, safe facility to prevent theft, loss, or diversion and protect facility personnel;

(b) Physical equipment used to monitor the facility and meet the security requirements under Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code;

(c) Emergency notification procedures with the department, law enforcement, and emergency response professionals;

(d) A plot plan of the processor facility drawn to a reasonable scale that designates the different areas of operation, including the marijuana extraction and production areas, with the mandatory access restrictions; and

(e) Transportation policies and procedures, which includes the transportation of medical marijuana from a processor to a dispensary and from a processor to a testing laboratory in the state of Ohio, in accordance with rule 3796:5-3-01 of the Administrative Code.

(5) A financial plan, which, at a minimum, shall include:

(a) The identity and ownership interest of every person, association, partnership, other entity, or corporation having a financial interest, direct or indirect, in the processor with respect to which licensure is sought;

(b) A cost breakdown of the applicant's anticipated costs in building the facility and implementing the policies and procedures submitted as part of the application and the source of funding for the associated costs;

(c) Documentation acceptable to the department that the individual or entity filing the application has secured sufficient liquid assets as required in rule 3796:3-1-02 of the Administrative Code for a processor provisional license that are unencumbered and can be converted within thirty days after a request to liquidate such assets.

(i) Documentation acceptable to the department shall include, as evidence of compliance, a signed statement from an Ohio licensed certified public accountant attesting to proof of the required amount of liquid assets under the control of an owner or the entity applying, if such a statement is available at the time of application.

(ii) The documentation must be dated within thirty calendar days before the date the application was submitted.

(d) Information verifying that the applicant will be able to conform to the financial responsibility requirements under rule 3796:3-1-05 of the Administrative Code; and

(e) A record of tax payments in the form of tax summary pages for individuals and businesses at the state and federal level in this state and in all jurisdictions in which an applicant has operated as a business and for every person with a financial interest of one per cent or greater in the applicant for the five years before the filing of the application, unless the department determines that documentation should be submitted for all individuals and entities.

(6) Any other information that the department deems necessary to evaluate and determine the applicant's suitability to operate as a medical marijuana processor.

(C) In addition to the criteria established in paragraph (B) of this rule, the department may also consider the following when awarding a provisional license:

(1) Principal place of business;

(a) The applicant must provide documentation establishing that its principal place of business is headquartered in Ohio. The applicant may also provide the names, addresses, and verification of any persons associated with the applicant that have established residency in Ohio.

(b) The applicant may also provide a plan for generating Ohio-based jobs and economic development.

(2) Environmental plan;

(a) The applicant must demonstrate an environmental plan of action to minimize the carbon footprint, energy usage, environmental impact, and resource needs for the processing and manufacture of medical marijuana.

(b) The applicant must describe any plans for the use of energy efficient lighting, use of alternative energy, the treatment of waste water and runoff, and scrubbing or treatment of exchanged air.

(3) Employment practices, in which the applicant must demonstrate a plan of action to inform, hire, and educate minorities, women, veterans, disabled persons, and Ohio residents;

(4) Verification of economically disadvantaged groups; and

(a) The applicant must demonstrate the following:

(i) It is owned and controlled by a United States citizen who is a resident of this state and is a member of one of the economically disadvantaged groups set forth in division (C) of section 3796.09 of the Revised Code. As used in this section, "owned and controlled" means that at least fifty-one percent of the business, including corporate stock if a corporation, is owned by persons who belong to one or more of the groups set forth in this rule, and that those owners have control over the management and day-to-day operations of the business and an interest in the capital, assets, and profits and losses of the business proportionate to their percentage of ownership; or

(ii) It is owned and controlled as a woman-owned business by a United States citizen who is a resident of this state. For purpose of the paragraph, "owned and controlled" has the same ownership and control requirements as listed in paragraph (C)(4)(a)(i) of this rule.

(5) Research plan, in which the applicant must provide the department with a detailed proposal to conduct or facilitate a scientific study or studies related to the medicinal use of marijuana.

(D) The department may request additional information as part of the application review process from an applicant that otherwise meets all of the requirements under paragraph (A) of this rule. The applicant shall have thirty calendar days from the date the applicant receives the department's request to provide the information. If the applicant fails to provide the requested information within thirty calendar days, it will result in an abandoned application. An abandoned application shall not receive further consideration.

(E) An applicant forfeits all fees associated with an abandoned application. The department shall not be required to act on an abandoned application and the application may be destroyed by the department. An abandoned application will not prevent an applicant from applying for a provisional license in the future if the department issues additional provisional licenses pursuant to paragraph (B) of rule 3796:3-1-01 of the Administrative Code.

Effective: 9/8/2017
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 09/08/2022
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 3796.03
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 3796.03

3796:3-1-04 Processor provisional license award.

(A) A provisional license shall be issued to the qualified applicant receiving at least the minimum required score in each category and the highest total score overall as compared to the other applicants.

(B) In the event that two or more qualified applicants for a processor provisional license receive the same total score, and awarding a provisional license to all tied applicants would violate paragraph (A) of rule 3796:3-1-01 of the Administrative Code, the department shall select the applicant that received the highest score in the operations plan category. In the event that the applicants received the same score in the operations plan category, the department shall select the applicant that received the highest score in the security plan category. If a tie score still remains, the tied applicants will be interviewed by an unbiased panel selected by the department.

(C) If no qualified applicants are found during the process described in rule 3796:3-1-03 of the Administrative Code, a provisional licensee fails to fulfill the conditions in the application, or a certificate of operation is revoked, the department may, at the discretion of the director, announce another period to submit applications in accordance with rule 3796:3-1-02 of the Administrative Code. If the department announces another application period, a qualified applicant that submitted an application during the previous application period, but was not issued a provisional license, may re-submit an application and the application fee under rule 3796:5-1-01 of the Administrative Code shall be waived.

(D) No person shall hold or be granted more than one processor provisional license or processor certificate of operation at any time. No person shall hold a financial interest in or be an owner, partner, officer, director, shareholder, member, or other person who may significantly influence or control the activities of more than one processor. No corporation, partnership, limited liability partnership, limited liability company, or other entity or subsidiary thereof shall hold a financial interest in or be an owner, principal officer, partner, shareholder, member, or other person who may significantly influence or control the activities of more than one processor.

Effective: 9/8/2017
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 09/08/2022
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 3796.03
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 3796.03 , R.C. 3796.09

3796:3-1-05 Processor financial responsibility.

(A) A provisional licensee shall provide evidence of financial responsibility before a certificate of operation can be issued, which may be payable to the department for any of the following reasons:

(1) A processor fails to adhere to the security plan approved by the department or otherwise operates the facility in a manner that allows for or results in theft, loss, or diversion of medical marijuana;

(2) A processor engages in activities prohibited under rule 3796:3-2-07 of the Administrative Code; or

(3) A processor has its certification of operation fined, suspended, or revoked, resulting from activities prohibited under rule 3796:5-6-02 of the Administrative Code.

(B) Evidence of financial responsibility shall be provided by the following:

(1) Providing and maintaining at its own expense any insurance coverage and terms of insurance required and approved by the department, including, but not limited to, products liability and general liability, prior to the issuance of a certificate of operation, if such products are in existence at the time of issuance or the time of renewal for the certificate of operation; and

(2) Establishing and maintaining an escrow account in a chartered financial institution in Ohio in the amount of two hundred fifty thousand dollars, with escrow terms, approved by the department, that it shall be payable to the department in the event of circumstances outlined in paragraph (A) of this rule. A financial institution may not return money in an escrow or surety account to the processor that established the account or a representative of the processor unless the processor or representative presents a statement issued by the department indicating that the account may be released; or

(3) Providing a surety bond naming the processor as principal of the bond, upon terms approved by the department, in the amount of two hundred fifty thousand dollars, payable to the department in the event of circumstances outlined in paragraph (A) of this rule. Bond terms include the following:

(a) The business name and registration number on the bond must correspond exactly with the business name and registration number in the department's records.

(b) A copy of the bond must be received by the department before a certificate of operation is issued.

(c) The bond shall not be canceled by a surety on less than thirty days' notice in writing to the department. If a bond is canceled and the processor fails to file a new bond with the department in the required amount on or before the effective date of cancellation, the processor's license shall be revoked. The total and aggregate liability of the surety on the bond is limited to the amount specified on the bond.

(4) The department shall permit a processor to reduce the escrow or surety bond by seventy-five thousand dollars upon the successful achievement of each of the following milestones, resulting in a potential elimination of the escrow account or surety bond:

(a) A determination by the department that the processor remained fully operational without substantial interruption and was able to provide and maintain an uninterrupted supply of medical marijuana, in accordance with rule 3796:3-1-07 of the Administrative Code, and demonstrates an ability to comply with the requirements of Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, as determined by the department, for a period of one year;

(b) A determination by the department that the processor remained fully operational without substantial interruption and was able to provide and maintain an uninterrupted supply of medical marijuana, in accordance with rule 3796:3-1-07 of the Administrative Code, and demonstrates an ability to comply with the requirements of Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, as determined by the department, for two consecutive years; and

(c) A determination by the department that the processor remained fully operational without substantial interruption and was able to provide and maintain an uninterrupted supply of medical marijuana, in accordance with rule 3796:3-1-07 of the Administrative Code, and demonstrates an ability to comply with the requirements of Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, as determined by the department, for three consecutive years. A processor that achieves three consecutive years of compliance, pursuant to this rule, shall have the escrow or surety bond requirement waived.

(5) A processor will not be held in default should the failure to comply be the direct result of an event or effect that cannot be reasonably anticipated or controlled, such as an act of God or nature and not the result of a lack of good faith effort.

(C) The required insurance policy and surety bond shall be written by an insurance company formed, licensed or eligible, and authorized or approved to write such insurance in the state of Ohio under Title XXXIX of the Revised Code.

(D) The department may waive any of the requirements of this rule on a temporary or permanent basis, if it is determined by the department that the financial responsibility instruments listed in this rule are not in existence in the insurance market.

Effective: 9/8/2017
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 09/08/2022
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 3796.03
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 3796.03 , R.C. 3796.09

3796:3-1-06 Processor certificate of operation.

(A) A provisional licensee is prohibited from operating as a licensed processor and performing any processing or manufacturing activities until a certificate of operation is issued by the department. The information and plan submitted by a provisional licensee shall become mandatory conditions that must be met before a certificate of operation can be awarded.

(B) A provisional licensee shall have six months from the date they are notified of selection for a provisional license to obtain a certificate of operation. A certificate of operation shall be issued once all applicable inspections are passed, a certificate of occupancy issued by the building department having jurisdiction for such use is obtained, and the provisional licensee demonstrates that it conforms to the specifications of the application, as well as the requirements imposed by law and rules. If a certificate of operation is issued, the provisional license becomes null and void.

(C) The department shall not award a certificate of operation to a provisional licensee if the provisional licensee has not met all of the specifications in the application and passed all applicable inspections under rule 3796:3-3-01 of the Administrative Code within six months of written or electronic notification of the applicant's selection for a provisional license. If the provisional licensee fails to remedy the deficiencies in accordance with rule 3796:3-3-01 of the Administrative Code or otherwise satisfy the six-month time period established under paragraph (B) of this rule, the director, at his or her discretion, may extend the time period for the processor to obtain a certificate of operation or take action pursuant to rule 3796:5-6-01 of the Administrative Code.

(D) In addition to entities authorized to purchase medical marijuana pursuant to Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code from a processor possessing a certificate of operation, medical marijuana may be sold to a laboratory licensed under Chapter 4729-13 of the Administrative Code, to possess dangerous drugs and controlled substances for scientific and clinical purposes.

(E) The certificate of operation, a copy of the current certificate of occupancy for the facility, and any other certificate, business license, or other authorization required to conduct production activities, shall be posted in a conspicuous place within the facility and made available to the department and all fire code officials upon request.

Effective: 9/8/2017
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 09/08/2022
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 3796.03
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 3796.03 , R.C. 3796.09

3796:3-1-07 Uninterrupted supply of medical marijuana.

(A) A processor shall ensure that a consistent supply of medical marijuana is available to be sold to licensed dispensaries. Evidence of a consistent supply may be shown by:

(1) Not more than thirty days elapsing between shipments totaling at least one lot of medical marijuana products, as defined in rule 3796:1-1-01 of the Administrative Code, to any licensed dispensaries.; or

(2) Maintaining an inventory of at least five hundred grams of medical marijuana extract that is ready for immediate use in the manufacture of marijuana products.

(B) If the director believes a processor has failed to meet the requirements of paragraph (A) of this rule, the director may issue a notice of insufficient business activity to a licensed processor. The notice shall include the factual basis for the director's belief, including any appropriate supporting documentation.

(C) Upon a notice issued pursuant to paragraph (B) of this rule, a licensed processor may respond with any evidence sufficient to prove that the processor has met, and continues to meet, the standards established by paragraph (A) of this rule.

(D) If a processor fails to respond to a notice issued, or the director determines the evidence provided is insufficient to establish one of the conditions in paragraph (A) of this rule, the director shall move to revoke the processor certificate of operation pursuant to rule 3796:5-6-01 of the Administrative Code.

(E) At any time prior to the issuance of a notice of insufficient business activity, a processor may petition the director to toll computation of the timeframes provided in paragraph (A) of this rule. Such a petition shall provide the following:

(1) An explanation of the facts and circumstances that will not allow the processor to ensure a consistent supply of medical marijuana as required in paragraph (A) of this rule; and

(2) A plan for how and when the processor will be able to meet the requirement of paragraph (A) of this rule, with specific attention to how such a plan will allow the processor to meet the standards established in paragraph (A) of this rule.

(F) Upon receipt of a petition under paragraph (E) of this rule, the director may stay the requirement of paragraph (A) of this rule for a processor. A director's order staying the requirement of paragraph (A) of this rule shall state the date upon which the stay is lifted using information provided by the processor in accordance with paragraph (E)(2) of this rule.

Effective: 9/8/2017
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 09/08/2022
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 3796.03
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 3796.03

3796:3-1-08 Processor transfer of ownership or location.

(A) A provisional license granted pursuant to this rule is nontransferable.

(B) A certificate of operation shall be issued for the specific processor and location identified on the application, and is valid only for the owner, premises, and name designated on the certificate of operation and the location for which it is issued. A certificate of operation may only be transferred or assigned if the department determines that the proposed ownership or location change complies with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, and the following:

(1) Upon any request for a change in ownership, the processor shall:

(a) Notify the department in writing of the proposed ownership change;

(b) Facilitate the submission of both an Ohio bureau of criminal identification and investigation criminal records check and a federal bureau of criminal investigation criminal records check pursuant to division (B) of section 3796.12 of the Revised Code;

(c) Demonstrate to the department that the person acquiring the interest meets the requirements under rules 3796:3-1-02 and 3796:3-1-03 of the Administrative Code and the processor will remain in compliance with its application for a processor provisional license, Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, under the proposed ownership structure; and

(d) Submit a new application in accordance with rule 3796:3-1-02 of the Administrative Code if the transfer of ownership would result in a new controlling shareholder or shareholders outside of the current ownership structure approved by the department. For purposes of calculating a controlling interest, the department will consider all transfers of ownership that occur in a given calendar year and calculate such transfers in the aggregate.

(2) Upon a request for a change in location, a processor shall:

(a) Notify the department in writing of the proposed location change;

(b) Submit plans and specifications for the new facility in accordance with rule 3796:3-1-02 of the Administrative Code; and

(c) Demonstrate to the department that the new location meets the applicable requirements of rule 3796:3-1-02 of the Administrative Code and that the processor will remain in compliance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code at the new location.

(C) A processor requesting a change in ownership or location shall submit the applicable fee under rule 3796:5-1-01 of the Administrative Code. A proposed change in ownership or request for a change in location shall not be effective until approved in writing by the department.

(D) A processor receiving approval from the department for a change in location shall have ninety days from the date of approval, unless an extension is granted at the discretion of the department, to transfer inventory and begin operations at the new location, subject to the following restrictions:

(1) The transition period shall not begin until the new location is ready to begin production and has passed an inspection by the department under rule 3796:3-3-01 of the Administrative Code.

(2) No product or plant material may be transferred to or processed at the new location prior to the beginning date of the approved transition period.

(3) Any plant material, medical marijuana extract, or medical marijuana products remaining at the original location past the ninety-day transition period shall be destroyed in accordance with rule 3796:3-2-03 of the Administrative Code.

(4) The processor shall notify the department in writing or by electronic transmission once the transfer of inventory is complete and production has begun at the new location.

(E) Upon inspection and verification by the department that the new location is in compliance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code and the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, the department shall issue a license modification reflecting the new location. The modified license shall have the same expiration date as the previously issued license.

Effective: 9/8/2017
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 09/08/2022
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 3796.03
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 3796.03 , R.C. 3796.09

3796:3-1-09 Processor certificate of operation renewal.

(A) Every processor certificate of operation issued by the department under this chapter shall expire annually on the date it was issued. A renewal application for a processor, accompanied by the proper renewal fee established under rule 3796:5-1-01 of the Administrative Code, shall be filed with the department at least thirty days prior to the expiration date of the certificate of operation.

(B) The department shall grant a renewal application if the application is filed in a timely manner, the processor submits the corresponding renewal fee, the department confirms that nothing warrants the denial of the renewal under rule 3796:5-6-01 of the Administrative Code, and the processor passes a full inspection, unless a full inspection was passed within three months before the renewal date.

(C) If a renewal application is not filed prior to the expiration date of the certificate of operation, the certificate of operation shall be suspended for a maximum of thirty days, at which point it will be deemed expired if the processor has not successfully renewed the certificate of operation under paragraph (B) of this rule. Upon expiration of the certificate of operation, the processor shall not engage in any processing activities in furtherance of the business of manufacturing medical marijuana products. The department shall not renew the certificate of operation and the facility shall permanently cease its operations.

Effective: 9/8/2017
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 09/08/2022
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 3796.03
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 3796.03

3796:3-1-10 Winding down.

(A) If a processor decides to voluntarily surrender or not renew its certificate of operation and permanently discontinue business operations, the processor shall provide written notice to the department at least ninety days prior to the effective date of the closure. If the closure is the result of an eviction, the processor shall immediately notify the department of the eviction notice and the effective date of the notice. This notice shall be provided prior to the processor taking any steps to discontinue business operations.

(B) A processor that notifies the department of its intent to voluntarily surrender or not renew its certificate of operation under paragraph (A) of this rule shall submit, within sixty days of the effective date, a written plan of closure for approval by the department. This plan shall include, at a minimum:

(1) The sale of medical marijuana inventory at market rate;

(2) The destruction of medical marijuana on hand at the facility on the effective date of the closure;

(3) The sale or removal of equipment and products ancillary to the manufacturing of medical marijuana products;

(4) The removal or disposal of any solvents or other chemicals used in the manufacture of medical marijuana products, which shall be carried out in accordance with all applicable local, state, and federal laws;

(5) The retention of all records required to be maintained in accordance with the applicable records retention schedules;

(6) The steps that will be taken to maintain compliance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, the rules promulgated in accordance with Chapter 3796. of the Revised Code, and any other conditions required by the director until the approved closure date; and

(7) The closure and intended use of the premises in which the processor was located.

(C) The director shall approve or deny a processor's plan of closure within thirty days of receipt. The director may request additional information if approval or denial of the plan cannot be determined based on the information provided.

Effective: 9/8/2017
Five Year Review (FYR) Dates: 09/08/2022
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 3796.03
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 3796.03