PHOENIX — When Arizona voters legalized medical marijuana last fall, Gerald Gaines said he was determined to prevent the black market culture he had seen in Colorado.
Gaines’ company, Compassion First Arizona, sets up medical marijuana dispensaries. He says to be truly non-profit, any excess revenue will go to Arizona charities.
“You’ll see the funds go straight from the dispensary to the Arizona Community Foundation and it can only give to 501-C3 non-profits, so it’s very transparent to be able to see where the money is going,” Gaines said.
Gaines said his service is the first of its kind, and dispensary managers will decide which non-profits benefit from the revenue overflow.
“The issue is, this is worth $5 billion in Arizona,” said Gaines. “A lot of people are trying to get a piece of that pie. We see that pie best going to the people of Arizona through charities to help support them.”
While his charity donation model is the first of its kind for Arizona dispensaries, Gaines hopes others will follow suit.
He said deserving charities could be things such as substance abuse programs and domestic violence shelters.
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