Bustleton civic group to host meeting on medical marijuana dispensary

The July 26 session will offer presentations by a physician expert and the licensed operator of a Krewstown Road dispensary.

A former Wawa at 8900 Krewstown Road was one of 27 locations selected by a secret state panel for dispensing medical marijuana. PHOTO: GOOGLE MAPS

A Northeast Philadelphia civic association will convene a public meeting on July 26, when people can learn about a medical marijuana dispensary that has been approved in the neighborhood.

The Greater Bustleton Civic League will host the director of operations for Holistic Pharma LLC, Keith Morgan, who will present his company’s plan for a new dispensary at 8900 Krewstown Road. In addition, the civic association will host a physician from Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, who will offer information about medical marijuana applications.

The meeting will run from 7 to 9 p.m. in the community room at American Heritage Federal Credit Union, 2060 Red Lion Road.

GBCL President Jack O’Hara described the meeting as an informational session. The civic association has no formal role in the licensing or approval process. Last month, the state Department of Health granted Holistic Pharma a license to operate at the Krewstown Road site. But some folks seem to be confused about what that means.

“What I have found out in discussion with residents is many of the people were thinking it was about a drug treatment center, like a methadone clinic,” O’Hara said. “I told them this has nothing to do with a methadone clinic. It’s medical treatment and it’s been approved … Before we have a discussion about whether we want this in Bustleton on Krewstown Road, I want an understanding of the topic.”

For the first hour of the meeting, a doctor will present a “tutorial” of sorts on medical marijuana within the context of Pennsylvania’s Medical Marijuana Act of 2016.

“What it is and how it’s used,” O’Hara said.

Morgan will take the floor for the second hour to discuss how the dispensary would operate and answer questions from the audience. The Health Department awarded Holistic Pharma a permit to operate in Bustleton and two other sites following a three-month application and review process dictated by the 2016 legislation. The company’s second and third locations are in the Norristown area and Bensalem.

Holistic Pharma needed no zoning accommodations for the Krewstown Road site, a former convenience store that was already classified for commercial use.

The Medical Marijuana Act calls for new dispensaries to open within six months, but state health officials have said the first dispensaries probably won’t open until next year. Before then, licensed growers and processors must start producing medical marijuana, while doctors and patients must obtain state certifications. ••

William Kenny can be reached at 215–354–3031 or wkenny@bsmphilly.com. Follow the Times on Twitter @NETimesOfficial.