Head of RI's medical marijuana program has a new position

More than four months after Governor Lincoln Chafee put a hold on the state's medical marijuana dispensaries, the official in charge of the program has left for another position.

Charles Alexandre had many duties in his capacity as the Chief of Health Professionals Regulation, but his job managing the state's medical marijuana program was the most public.

Alexandre was deeply involved in the selection process for the state's yet to open medical marijuana retail stores. He also oversaw the day to day work of processing applications for new medical marijuana patients and caregivers.

The Rhode Island Department of Health says it was Alexandre's decision to switch positions and become the chief of the state's board of nursing. State officials haven't decided whether to fill his position. For now, the state's Director of Environmental and Health Services Regulation is overseeing the medical marijuana program.

In May of this year, Governor Chafee halted the process for licensing the state's so called compassion centers, following a letter from the U.S. Attorney's office warning that they violate federal law.

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