Regulators took another step toward establishing Connecticut’s adult-use cannabis market July 28 when the state’s Social Equity Council approved five dispensary licenses.

The successful applicants will now be referred to the Department of Cannabis Protection for the next step in the licensing process, according to the Hartford Courant.

The state has not yet released the names of the successful applicants, the news outlet reported, but they will be identified after they advance to the Department of Consumer Protection.

The council ultimately denied one social equity retail application and approved a recommendation to reject nine applications due to ownership and control issues.

The Social Equity Council approved 16 adult-use cannabis cultivation licenses earlier this month.

RELATED: Connecticut Names 16 Adult-Use Cannabis Cultivation Applicants Approved for Next Steps in Licensure

“I am proud of the progress the SEC continues to make in reviewing social equity applications and creating opportunities for those are ready for a seat at the table,” Social Equity Council Executive Director Ginne-Rae Clay told the Hartford Courant. “The adult-use cannabis industry is alive and moving forward. The process for reviewing applications is designed to be inclusive of as many applicants as possible. Those applications denied under the non-lottery EJV review, can resubmit their applications and we encourage the applicants to do so.”

The Connecticut Legislature created the Social Equity Council through the state’s adult-use cannabis law, which Gov. Ned Lamont signed last summer. The council is tasked with overseeing the rollout of the state’s adult-use industry to ensure it benefits those most adversely impacted by the war on drugs.

Connecticut’s adult-use cannabis market is expected to launch by the end of the year.

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