Judge denies Nolan new trial in case over River Valley license November 21, 2022 By Griffin Coop Circuit Judge Herb Wright denied the owner of an embattled Fort Smith cultivation facility from intervening in a case that could determine his business’ fate and denied him a new trial in the matter in a pair of rulings issued Monday. Wright denied Storm Nolan, the owner of River Valley Relief cultivation facility, the opportunity to be a part of the case that has put his business on a path toward having its cultivation license stripped. In his ruling Monday, Wright said that he was denying this attempt to intervene for the same reasons that he denied Nolan’s previous attempt to intervene earlier this month. Wright had previously said the motion to intervene was “untimely and that there was no showing that relief could not be afforded to the parties in his absence.” Wright also denied Nolan’s motion for a new trial Monday, saying that, since Nolan was not allowed to intervene in the case, he was not a party to the case and that his motion for a new trial is “not properly before the Court and moot.” Nolan filed motions last week, asking to intervene in the case and for a new trial. Wright ruled earlier this month that the state Medical Marijuana Commission erred when it awarded a cultivation license to Nolan. Wright sided with plaintiff 2600 Holdings (doing business as Southern Roots) that Nolan’s application called for using a facility that was less than 3,000 from the Sebastian County Juvenile Detention Facility, which met the commission’s definition of a school. Wright also sided with 2600 Holdings that Nolan’s license was awarded to a business entity that was different than the one that originally applied for the license. Since Wright’s initial ruling, the state sent Wright a letter saying it was moving forward with revoking Nolan’s license. The Alcoholic Beverage Control division has set a Nov. 28 revocation hearing in which Nolan will go before director Doralee Chandler. A ruling by Chandler could be appealed to the full ABC board and a ruling by that board could be appealed to circuit court, according to Scott Hardin, spokesman for the ABC. Abtin Mehdizadegan, attorney for 2600 Holdings, filed an emergency motion with Wright last week, asking the judge to enforce the court, enjoin the ABC from holding the hearings and requiring state officials to show why they should not be held in contempt.