Maryland's Medical Cannabis Commission announced on Monday that it is hiring a diversity consultant.
Critics point to the lack of minority-owned businesses among those named as finalists to grow and process pot.
The diversity consultant will determine if, and how, the commission could do a disparity study. The state is in a classic catch 22 situation. A racial disparity study could help put extra weight to minority applications. But the study can't be done until there is an industry to examine.
The commission gave preliminary license approval to 102 dispensaries. The panel also addressed criticism over the lack of diversity among those already named as finalists to grow and process medical marijuana.