BOSTON – A company run by former U.S. Rep. William Delahunt is suing the commissioner of the state Department of Public Health in an effort to get licensed to operate medical marijuana dispensaries in Taunton, Plymouth and Mashpee.

Medical Marijuana of Massachusetts, Delahunt’s group, filed a civil complaint Tuesday in Suffolk Superior Court alleging the DPH violated its own regulations in June when it eliminated dispensary applicants who had already been given provisional approval.

The document notes that Medical Marijuana of Massachusetts received the highest score of any applicant in a previous state review.

“What perplexes me is how we could be rated No. 1 by the independent group of experts that was created by the department, then have those decisions rescinded,” Delahunt said in a phone interview Thursday.

When asked for comment on the lawsuit, a DPH spokesman issued a written statement.

“We are pleased that multiple courts have validated our comprehensive process to ensure patient access and public safety across the commonwealth,” the department’s statement reads. “We are focused on moving forward with our inspection phase and the open county process to fulfill the will of voters.”

The DPH has won court cases against four other applicants who sued it.

The Medical Marijuana of Massachusetts suit lists DPH Commissioner Cheryl Bartlett as the defendant and suggests the department wrongly let negative publicity sway its actions.

Bartlett removed herself from the medical marijuana licensure process after questions circulated about her past ties to Delahunt, to whom she had previously donated money.

The civil complaint also seeks a court injunction preventing the state from licensing any dispensary in Taunton until the dispute is resolved.

Stating that the DPH erred in rescinding the provisional licenses, Medical Marijuana of Massachusetts claims it will “suffer irreparable harm” if it loses the opportunity to open the first dispensary in Taunton.

The state is currently accepting …read more