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Newark business owner with marijuana conviction among the first to qualify for marijuana retail license (video)

Newark business owner Lucas Dobbins wears many hats

“I have a construction company and several rental properties,” Dobbins said.

But it wasn’t easy getting to where he is today. Dobbins says when he young, he got in trouble with the law for having marijuana on him.

“I don’t use it anymore, but when I was younger, I did,” Dobbins said. “I got caught with it and it was a terrible thing.  It was terrible in a small community, it was terrible for my family, and it was a horrible thing for my family to have to deal with.”

His misdemeanor possession charge was in the newspaper, he says, and it stuck on his record.

Newark man taking steps toward legally selling marijuana (video)

But now, what used to be a bad thing has become a good thing for him.

Because Dobbins has a marijuana-related conviction, he’s among the first in New York State who qualify to apply for a marijuana retail license.

“So it be, if you were convicted it makes you eligible to get your license,” Dobbins said. “If you have a productive business and they see that you’re a productive member of society that and the conviction makes it all go together.”

More: NYS will begin accepting applications for conditional, adult-use marijuana dispensaries

Applications for licenses opened last week

According to New York State’s website, applications opened Thursday. 

And Dobbins says he already completed his, for a conditional adult-use dispensary.

Moving forward, Dobbins says, there’s a grey area surrounding what sales will look like for people who get approved.

“Right now you don’t know about the funding,” Dobbins said. “You don’t know if whether you’re going to have to use their facility and you don’t even know where you’re going to be.  So it’s all pretty scary right now and not knowing is the biggest thing.”

Dobbins hopes to find out if his application was approved within the next week to 30 days.