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L.A. Officials Say System For Cannabis Licenses Was Open Early

They stated a dozen additional applicants accessed the system early

Hundreds of cannabis entrepreneurs rushed to turn in applications in September, eager to snap up the limited number of licenses that Los Angeles was offering up for new pot shops on a first-come, first-serve basis.

The hotly contested process soon came under fire: After the Department of Cannabis Regulation revealed that two applicants had gotten into the application system early after their passwords were reset, City Council President Herb Wesson called to suspend the licensing process and Mayor Eric Garcetti sought an independent audit.

Now the Department of Cannabis Regulation says that a dozen additional applicants got into the system seconds early, not because of password issues, but because the portal was open to everyone less than a minutebefore its official 10 a.m. launch time.

City records show that those 12 additional applicants accessed the system and started working on their applications up to six secondsbefore the official launch time. Department officials say their applications were “normalized” — pushed back in line to where they would have been if they were initiated at 10 a.m. — to prevent any unfair advantage.

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