Exterior view of the Compassionate Care Foundation marijuana grow facility, Monday July 22, 2013, in Egg Harbor Township. (Staff Photo by Michael Ein/The Press of Atlantic City)

Michael Ein

Doctors and patients on Monday can begin selecting the medical marijuana facility in Egg Harbor Township as their preferred site, the state Department of Health announced this week.

The Compassionate Care Foundation plans to operate an alternative treatment center in late September at the township’s Offshore Commercial Park office and storage park, off Delilah Road.

Registered patients and caregivers can sign up with this facility at, according to the DOH. It said patients are not limited by their geographic area, but may only register with one treatment center at a time. It does not cost anything to change registration. Patients would be treated in the order in which they signed up.

The announcement comes more than three years after then-Gov. Jon S. Corzine signed the initial legislation into law enabling access to marijuana for qualified patients at as many as six dispensaries in northern, central and southern New Jersey. However since then, one just facility has opened, in Montclair, Essex County. That location has been on hiatus since early July, after published reports indicated it needed to temporarily close in order to grow more supply.

Advocates, including Compassionate Care’s CEO Bill Thomas, have criticized New Jersey’s laws and regulations as unworkably stringent. Thomas said that while qualified patients can designate the center on Monday, it is not accepting appointments for treatment until after Labor Day.

The state health commissioner, Mary E. O'Dowd, said in a release that Compassionate Care’s opening would broaden the state’s medical marijuana program.

“Patients will now have more options in terms of locations and types of product, which some patients and caregivers have said they would prefer," she said. "One of the strains CCF is growing has a high cannabidiol (CBD) content and is low in THC (tetrahydrocannabinol).”

Compassionate Care is currently raising its crop in its secure warehouse.

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Senior copy editor for the Press of Atlantic City. Have worked as a reporter, copy editor and news editor with the paper since 1985. A graduate of the University of Delaware.

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