As medical marijuana applications go online, Kansas City man looks for new venture

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Applications are now available online for Missourians who hope to eventually grow medical marijuana as well as those who hope to use medical marijuana.

Although it's still weeks from happening, a local business owner in Kansas City's urban core has been counting the days to get to this moment.

Right now, Dre Taylor raises fish and goats. He also grows vegetables and herbs at his Nile Valley Aquaponics community garden. Soon, he hopes to be venturing into new business at a different location -- harvesting cannabis.

"There's going to be winners and losers, and hopefully at the end of the day, you can be come a winner," Taylor said.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services will only give out licenses to 60 cultivation facilities.

As of Tuesday, 155 have already pre-filed their application forms. The applications are available in the patient and facility "How to Apply" sections of the medical marijuana regulation page on the state's Health and Senior Services Department.

"There's a lot of barriers and hurdles and things to get through," Taylor said.

Barriers like costly fees. There's a $10,000 non-refundable application fee for those applying for the right to grow cannabis legally.

There's also a long list of criteria the state will go by when choosing who gets a license. Things like local economic impact and a strong businesses plan will earn a business high marks.

"I want to be able to provide opportunities for those in the urban core to be able to work. Especially for those who have been disenfranchised," Taylor said.

This is a dream that's taken Taylor years of planning and preparation. Now, he hopes his experience in agriculture will pay off in a big way.

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