The money was supposed to fund veteran programs but instead Missouri is burning through cash to defend itself in court.

In 2018, Missouri voters approved a ballot measure to legalize medical marijuana in the state. Two years later and licensed sales have yet to occur. Instead, businesses that applied for a license and were rejected have filed more than 800 lawsuits against Missouri. To date, 785 of the cases remain unresolved.

Missouri regulators have spent $1.3 million in court fees defending themselves against the 853 appeals filed. Lisa Cox, the Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) spokeswoman, said these were a one-time fee associated with getting the program off its feet. There were 2,270 facility applications sent to the state, but only 348 licenses were awarded.

“The number of appeals is not an indication of flaws in the process, but rather the high number of applicants,” Cox told The St. Louis Dispatch.

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