Metrc loses appeal over tag fees
Metrc, Missouri’s chosen track and trace provider for the medical marijuana program, has lost an appeal in which it hoped to receive affirmation it could charge medical marijuana facilities directly a fee for tags.
In the original contract, the State of Missouri required fixed pricing for the services.
The Court affirmed Cole County Circuit Court Judge Dan Green’s ruling that Metrc could not charge for tags.
Currently, facilities have purchased and are utilizing Metrc tags that they have paid for outside of the state contract. The additional fees for tags are in violation of Green’s earlier ruling. Metrc was not held in contempt for the violation.
“We fail to see any connection between interpretation of Metrc’s contract, which was awarded by OA on April 5, 2019, and 19 C.S.R. 30-95.025, which was promulgated by DHSS as an emergency rule on May 24, 2019 with an effective date of June 3, 2019,” reads the opinion, signed by Judge Cynthia Martin. “Metrc’s contract does not incorporate by reference DHSS rules addressing implementation of Article XIV, section 1 of the Missouri Constitution. And Metrc does not contend that its contract is ambiguous as to require resort to extraneous evidence to determine the parties’ intent. We thus agree with the trial court’s conclusion that 19 C.S.R. 30-95.025 is irrelevant to interpreting the parties’ contract.”
Greenway will continue coverage. Read the opinion in full below.
“By once again preventing hidden fees from being passed along to patients and the cannabis industry, today’s appeals court ruling is a resounding victory for Missouri’s medical marijuana program,” said MoCannTrade Executive Director Andrew Mullins. “The seed-to-sale tracking system approved by Missouri voters plays a key role in ensuring medical marijuana is safely and securely handled all the way from cultivation to a dispensary sale. However, allowing a vendor to charge both the state and the industry for this service would have simply driven up costs without any practical rationale. We thank the Office of Administration and Missouri Department of Health for protecting the more than 75,000 Missouri medical marijuana patients and 338 facility license holders from these excessive, hidden fees.”
After the jump, view past articles about Metrc’s legal journey in Missouri: