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CEO at one of MN's medical marijuana providers steps down

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The leader of one of the companies that grows Minnesota's medical marijuana is resigning less than a year after accepting the post.

LeafLine Labs announced that Manny Munson-Regala is stepping down, the Associated Press reports, after leaving his Health Department job to take over LeafLine in June.

LeafLine is one of two companies authorized by the state's Office of Medical Cannabis to provide marijuana to patients with certain medical conditions whose doctors have recommended the drug.

The company currently has one clinic in Eagan where it dispenses marijuana but plans to add three more – in St. Paul, St. Cloud, and Hibbing – this summer.

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Munson-Regala said the job was rewarding but the time commitment and sacrifice to family and friends was becoming exhausting, the Star Tribune reports, and LeafLine's board named one of the company's co-founders, Dr. Andrew Bachman, interim CEO.

Minnesota's medical marijuana program

Medicinal use of marijuana became legal in Minnesota last July 1. The number of patients authorized to use the drug remains relatively low – just under 1,000 – as of Friday.

Explanations for the modest use of marijuana include its high cost (no health insurers cover it) and the reluctance of some doctors to prescribe it.

The number of users is expected to grow later this year, though, after intractable pain joins the list of qualifying conditions.

The state's other marijuana provider is Minnesota Medical Solutions, which has clinics in Minneapolis and Rochester and plans to open others in Moorhead and Eden Prairie.

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