Politics

The latest news on Long Island politics.

One of four companies granted state licenses last week to operate medical marijuana dispensaries on Long Island has a notable investor: Hempstead Town Councilman Bruce Blakeman.

Blakeman, a Republican who has served on the town board since 2015, is a shareholder in PalliaTech, a Massachusetts-based biotech firm that plans to open a dispensary in Nassau, as well as in Orange and Queens counties.

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The company has yet to reveal where in Nassau it wants to operate, but Blakeman said he will not take part in any siting decisions.

If the company does seek a location in Hempstead, Blakeman said he would not participate in the town approval process.

“If there is any issue before the Hempstead Town Board, I would certainly recuse myself,” he said.

Hempstead Town Councilman Bruce Blakeman, a Republican, is shown on June 19, 2015. Photo Credit: James Escher

Blakeman, an attorney and former presiding officer of the Nassau County Legislature, reported PalliaTech assets worth between $50,000 and $100,000 while running for Congress in 2014, according to his financial disclosure.

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He said he still owns “a small minority interest” in the company.

Nassau has one licensed medical marijuana facility, operated by MedMen in New Hyde Park. PalliaTech and Manhattan-based Fiorello Pharmaceuticals received the state licenses last week to open the new dispensaries in the county. Suffolk also will get two new dispensaries.

Paul LaRocco