GULF SHORES, Ala. (WKRG) — Gulf Shores could be in the running to enter the medical marijuana industry.

The Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission has begun the application process for those looking to cultivate, process and dispense medical marijuana.

Gulf Shores resident Ryan Shamburger is hoping to land one of 12 licenses available for cultivation.

“I hope dispensing sites will be allowed in Gulf Shores for two reasons, the folks in our community who are suffering from these really terrible conditions and the symptoms that follow them, and for the business opportunity that will bring in more revenue for the city,” said Shamburger.

Before anyone can participate, cities and counties across the state must first approve rules allowing for businesses to exist.

Shamburger is pushing for the new initiative, which requires a zoning amendment. City of Gulf Shores representative Grant Brown breaks down how this process will work.

“When an application for a zoning amendment comes to us, that will go in front of our planning commission, the planning commission will then ask questions and weigh in on the pluses and minuses related to the community and then that will be sent to city council for review,” said Brown.  

The City of Gulf Shores could take up the request at the next city council meeting, which is Sept. 26.

If the city moves forward to authorize a medical marijuana business, Shamburger would still have to submit an application to the state and then be selected for one of the limited licenses. The cannabis commission said the earliest medical marijuana could be available in the state is late next year.