Scott Twp. Marijuana Plant Will Hire Up To 40
A planned Scott Twp. medical marijuana plant will employe between 30 and 40 people by the time it’s fully operational next July, an official with the company building it said today. The jobs will entail cultivating marijuana, testing quality, managing the 60,000-square-foot plant, security and sales, said Jeremy Unruh, director of regulatory affairs for PharmaCann Penn Plant LLC. The minimum wage will start at $15 an hour with some employees earning six-figure salaries, Unruh said. The company plans to build the growing/processing plant at 104 Life Science Drive in the Scott Technology Park. It will meet the state requirement to be at least partially operational in six months, but will not be ready for normal day-to-day operations until July, Unruh said. Construction will cost between $10 million and $15 million and should begin in the next few weeks, Unruh said. Since June of last year, the state has awarded only 25 licenses to produce medical marijuana with two each in Lackawanna and Luzerne counties. The other Lackawanna plant, operated by Pennsylvania Medical Solutions LLC, stands on Rosanna Avenue in Scranton. One Luzerne plant, operated by Standard Farms LLC, is in White Haven with the other, licensed to by Pier Cove LLC, planned for the Humboldt Industrial Park in Hazle Twp. The legislation legalizing medical marijuana does not allow for further standalone growing/processing plants. Unruh and others founded Pharmacann in 2014. In Illinois, the company has cultivation plants in Dwight, south of Chicago, and Rochelle, west of DeKalb, along with four dispensaries. In New York, the company has a cultivation plant in Hamptonburgh in the Hudson Valley north of New York City, and four dispensaries. The New York and Illinois plants all opened in 2015, Unruh said. About half the local plant will focus on cultivation, production, testing and packaging with the other half for management and sales offices. Unruh said the plant will have cameras set for viewing at 200 angles and tight security to prevent theft and break-ins. The company will make its security camera views available to state regulators, even though the state does not require that. “We do that voluntarily,” Unruh said. The company will buy 18.5 acres for the plant from the Scranton-Lackawanna Industrial Building Co., the development arm of the Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce. Bruce Reddock, a chamber economic development specialist, said Pharmacann asked the chamber for help finding land about 18 months ago. The company applied unsuccessfully for a grower-processor license in the state’s first licensing round last year, but continued to pursue the land for the latest round. The state Department of Health announced the second-phase winners Tuesday. “PharmaCann is, if not the best, one of the best in the country at what they do,” Reddock said. “In all fairness, we’re looking at this as any other business given the regulations the state has set forth ... This is a company that has proven itself and we don’t want to restrict from creating a good number of high-paying or family sustaining jobs.” Contact the writer: firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9147; @BorysBlogTT on Twitter.