Yes, marijuana cultivation is legal in Lancaster County. In 2016, Senate Bill 3 legalized medical marijuana in Pennsylvania. Recreational marijuana remains illegal in the State.
The Pennsylvania Department of Health regulates and issues permits to no more than 25 growers/processors in the State. The application process for a cultivator applicant includes:
The cultivators whose permits are granted must complete a training course that lasts for two hours. In addition, the department may provide for other requirements they deem necessary through temporary regulations.
Pennsylvania Code, Title 28, Section 1151.23 states that a cultivator may only grow, store, harvest, or process seeds, medical marijuana plants (both mature and immature), and medical marijuana in an indoor and secure facility. The cultivation facility must have an enclosed and locked area that is out of the public eye.
Moreover, Title 28, Section 1151.27 of the Pennsylvania Code states that a medical marijuana cultivator is required to install a system to record, monitor, and regulate:
Yes, medical marijuana manufacturing is allowed in Lancaster County. The application process for cultivators and manufacturers is the same. The first six months after the Pennsylvania Department of Health determines the manufacturer is operational is crucial. Within the time frame, the manufacturer shall provide the department with a projected amount of medical marijuana it will produce and in what form. In case there is a potential decrease or increase in the projected amount of medical marijuana, the manufacturer shall inform the department in writing immediately within the subsequent 6-month period.
Title 28, Section 1151.27 of the Pennsylvania Code says that a processor/ manufacturer must process medical marijuana plants in a safe and sterile manner. The following conditions apply:
Furthermore, Section 1151.34 states that a processor/manufacturer shall seal medical marijuana in a package that minimizes exposure to oxygen. It must be:
Yes, medical marijuana retail is legal in Lancaster County. The Pennsylvania Department of Health issues retailer permits for no more than 50 dispensaries in the State. Each dispensary is authorized to have no more than three separate locations.
The application process for dispensaries includes:
The dispensaries whose permits are granted must complete a two-hour training course. Additionally, the department may provide for other requirements they deem necessary through temporary regulations.
The registered patient must be a Pennsylvania resident and must have a serious health condition confirmed by a certifying physician who is registered under the State’s medical marijuana program. Minors with serious medical conditions may also get medical marijuana through a registered caregiver.
Before dispensing medical marijuana to a patient or caregiver, the dispensary shall:
Furthermore, Section 1151.28 states that the manufacturer may only process medical marijuana for dispensing to a patient/ caregiver in the following forms:
Medical marijuana delivery to residential addresses is not permitted in Lancaster County. As far as medical marijuana delivery is concerned, only business-to-business transaction is allowed— from a medical marijuana cultivator/ processor to a medical marijuana dispensary and vice versa.
Pursuant to Pennsylvania Code, Section 1161.35, a dispensary may deliver medical marijuana only to a medical marijuana organization between 7 am and 9 pm for the purposes of delivering medical marijuana among the licensed retail facilities and returning medical marijuana to cultivators/manufacturers. The licensed dispensaries may not deliver or transport to any location outside of Pennsylvania.
The approved medical conditions stated by the Pennsylvania Department of Health are any one of the following:
To get a medical marijuana card in Pennsylvania, you need to:
If you have questions or concerns, you may contact:
Pennsylvania Department of Health
Health & Welfare Building
625 Forster St., 6th Floor
Harrisburg, PA 17120
According to the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue, cultivators and manufacturers are mandated by law to pay a 5% excise tax on the gross receipts from medical marijuana sales to the dispensary. Medical marijuana is not subject to sales tax in the State.
The Office of the Governor of Pennsylvania published a 2019 report that states medical marijuana sales grossed over $132 million a year after the official start of selling the product (2017). Four years later, the total medical marijuana sales skyrocketed close to $2.6 billion, and more than 31.2 million medical marijuana products have been sold by cultivators, manufacturers, and dispensaries.
As of 2019, the Pennsylvania government collected more than $2 million in tax revenue from cultivators and manufacturers. The figure shows that the medical marijuana industry helps boost the Pennsylvania economy.
According to the data generated from the Pennsylvania State of Police, the DUI cases in Lancaster County from 2019 to 2020 and 2021 increased from 171 arrests to 365 and 396, respectively. Meanwhile, the number of drug offenses in Lancaster County varies drastically during 2019, 2020, and 2021— from 277 cases to 560 and 405, respectively.
The legalization of medical marijuana in Pennsylvania took place in April 2016. However, the 2019 records from the State’s crime database are the earliest available data.