Anchorage Assembly OKs pot shop license after owner pays fine

The Anchorage Assembly decided Tuesday night to let Bryant Thorp, an Anchorage pot shop owner accused of violating state and local law by giving away free samples at his business, keep his license — after Thorp paid the city a fine for violating several city regulations.  

In November, Thorp paid $1,100 in fines to the city for operating a pot shop without a license, giving away free samples and giving away marijuana that didn't meet labeling and packaging requirements, according to documents filed by the city.

The Assembly voted unanimously, with Assemblyman Patrick Flynn recused because of his involvement in a pot business, to allow Thorp to move forward, though not without warnings.  

Thorp hopes to open in a week or so, pending state and city inspections, he wrote in a text message Tuesday.

Thorp was issued two violation notices from the Alaska Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office in late October, after a media report that he had given out free samples of marijuana at his shop, Arctic Herbery. Under both state and local marijuana regulations, that's not allowed.

On Nov. 10, state officials decided not to pursue action against Thorp. Director Cynthia Franklin said the office lacked sufficient evidence. She told the Marijuana Control Board she was "fairly confident" Thorp understood what rules he broke and that he wouldn't do it again.

The Assembly had threatened to pull Thorp's license following the report of violations. On Tuesday, after saying Thorp had settled the issue by paying fines, Assembly members said they would give Thorp the benefit of the doubt and allow him to keep his license. But they also warned of consequences for future missteps.

"We will allow you to proceed, or I will, but, these kinds of things can't happen," Assemblyman Eric Croft said, addressing Thorp.

Devin Kelly

Devin Kelly was an ADN staff reporter.