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Lottery Determines Who Gets to Sell Medical Marijuana in Santa Ana

Cheers and sighs erupted at Santa Ana City Hall as would-be pot shop owners got their chance to obtain a permit to legally sell medical marijuana in the city.

Thursday afternoon's lottery was a result of the city-backed, voter-approved measure that says dispensaries can operate only in two industrial areas.

Applicants were selected during a lottery overseen by an independent accounting firm to ensure impartiality, city officials said. With more than 600 application fees paid at $1,690 each, the city brought in about $1 million in revenue. The city won't have a complete list of winners until Friday.

The randomly selected applicants now move on to the Regulatory Safety Permit phase of the process; that application costs $12,086 and is submitted to the Santa Ana Police Department. People can start applying for the permit Friday; the city then has 60 days to review the application.

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