Listen to Stateside’s conversation with Michigan Radio’s Rick Pluta.
Today is 4/20, a day that holds a special significance for marijuana activists and consumers alike.
Stateside decided to mark the date by talking to Michigan Radio’s capitol bureau chief Rick Pluta about the latest developments in the process to license medical marijuana dispensaries.
Listen to the full interview above, or read highlights below.
On why the Michigan Medical Marijuana Licensing Board hasn’t issued a license in the 16 months since lawmakers approved regulating and taxing the medical marijuana industry
“The hold up is that they’ve been setting this up for so long that they’ve just now started executing the standards that the Legislature adopted. And the issue here is that some people say that the board and the state medical marijuana regulating agency are being a little too laid back on this …
There are 470-something applications pending, and yesterday, the marijuana licensing board issued just nine preliminary licenses. Which means they haven’t even gotten around to issuing a finalized license to a single medical marijuana business with the deadline to get all of them done less than two months away.”
On the application process
“Applications started coming in December of last year. The deadline was mid-February to get that in. And if you didn’t, and you’re an existing medical marijuana facility, then you got a cease-and-desist order from the state saying that you’re no longer eligible to operate and the fact that if you continue to operate, then that might affect your future ability to get a medical marijuana license.”
On why it’s taken nearly 10 years to regulate the industry
“Well, the medical marijuana law as it was adopted by voters was actually very confusing. And it just took that long