The marijuana business has been booming in Arizona especially after the legalization of pot. While many Maricopa County dispensaries are expanding, and hiring more staff, in some rural parts of Arizona that is not the case.
ABC15 has learned that thousands of medical marijuana cardholders are still struggling to get access to the products, almost ten years after it was legalized. That is because dispensaries that once held licenses in these areas have closed up shop and moved to more populated communities. Several years later, the state has still not opened up the application process to allow prospective business owners to apply for licenses to establish new dispensaries in these communities.
Ivan Riesgo used medical marijuana oils and topicals for back and knee pain. What was once a 5-minute drive to the dispensary had now turned into an almost hour-long drive to Tucson, to get access to his choice of medicine, for his pain and discomfort.
In other parts of Arizona like La Paz, Greenlee, and Apache counties, cardholders were driving 2-3 hours to get to the closest dispensary.
“We are talking about veterans, we are talking about people with cancer, people with other disabilities, and they have