The Department of Health has announced that it will release the names of the dispensary merit selection panel members before the dispensary applications are reviewed.

At the request of the Hawai’i Dispensary Alliance, and many, many members of the community across Hawai’i, the Department of Health updated its FAQ document with a section discussing the release of the names of those who will comprise the dispensary application review panel. Originally slated to be released after the dispensary licensees were announced, DoH now says it will release the names once it constitutes the panel – after DoH staff have finished verifying the completeness of each application, but prior to the merit selection process.  Your Alliance now anticipates that the Department of Health will release the names of the panel members within the next few weeks.  The entire text of the Department of Health’s update is reproduced below and available here on page 4:

“Q: The rules provide that a review panel comprised of members designated by the department who have relevant expertise shall evaluate the applications and award points for each merit criterion. Will the department make public the names of the panel members?

A: Yes, it is the department’s intention to make public the names of the panel members.

The department’s original intention was to release the names of the panel members after the dispensary licenses were awarded. The reason for this was to ensure that the integrity of the review process is preserved and to prevent the panel members from being subject to inappropriate outside pressures.

In light of the extraordinary public interest in the names of the panel members, however, the department has decided that the names will be released prior to the issuance of the dispensary licenses.

All dispensary license applications were submitted by January 29, 2016. Currently, department staff are reviewing each application to verify that the application and supporting documentation is complete, that the information submitted is true and valid, and that it meets the requirements of section 329D-3, Hawaii Revised Statutes.

Once that step is complete, the applications that meet the 329D-3 requirements will proceed to the pool of applications that will receive further review and selection based on merit. The applicants that do not meet those requirements, and that therefore will not be reviewed for merit and selection, will be notified in writing.

The department will assemble the merit selection panel members after the verification of applications has been completed. Once the panel has been finalized, the names of the panel members will be released. 

We will update you as soon as DoH releases the names of the panel members, who we believe will be pulled from the Department of Health’s current staff. We will also provide as much information on each panel member as possible.

Contact the Alliance today if you have any questions about the process or the current legislative agenda of the industry and we will send you the February 2016 edition of our newsletter absolutely free to say thank you for your interest!

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DoH Announces that it WILL Release the Names of the Merit Panel Members before they Review the License Applications
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