7 Michigan Communities Vote to Keep Marijuana Businesses Out

7 Michigan Communities Vote to Keep Marijuana Businesses Out

[Canniseur: It’s disappointing that communities are disallowing cannabis businesses from operating in their towns. But at the same time, the communities allowing cannabis business are being set up to leverage the situation. Ann Arbor, MI comes to the forefront of cities poised to take advantage of legalized cannabis sales.]

It was not a good night for marijuana businesses in Michigan Tuesday with voters in three of four metro Detroit communities voting against proposals to allow legal weed into their towns.

Voters in Keego Harbor, Walled Lake and Allen Park defeated proposals by wide margins that would have allowed marijuana businesses into their towns.

Lincoln Park was the exception approving a proposal to allow all cannabis business categories into their town.

In six other communities across the state, four communities said no to marijuana. Proposals to allow marijuana businesses failed in Hudson and Mt. Pleasant, while voters approved ballot issues to ban marijuana businesses in the Upper Peninsula’s Marenisco Township and South Haven in southwest Michigan.

There was some good news for marijuana that happened in mid-Michigan’s Crystal Township and Northfield Township, north of Ann Arbor, where residents gathered petition signatures to ban pot shops, but voters rejected those measures.

Last year, statewide voters approved a ballot proposal that legalized marijuana for adult recreational use by a 56-44% margin. And while local leaders can decide to allow or ban cannabis businesses, they can’t stop residents from possessing, using or growing marijuana in their homes.

In metro Detroit:

  • The Keego Harbor City Council adopted an ordinance prohibiting legal weed shops from locating in the city, but citizens gathered enough signatures to put the issue on the ballot. The proposal would allow four medical marijuana dispensaries and four recreational retail stores. But voters defeated the measure by a 163-309 vote margin.
  • In Walled Lake, the city council had approved an ordinance that would allow three recreational marijuana stores, but the ballot proposal bumped that up to eight retail stores. Voters said no by a 596-886 vote margin. The city has already passed an ordinance that will allow three growing operations, three processors, three transporters and two testing facilities.
  • In Allen Park, a proposal to allow three marijuana retailers and three micro businesses — which allow for growing, processing and selling up to 150 plants — as well as licenses for consumption spaces and special events where marijuana can be consumed was defeated by a 1,921-3,051 margin.
  • And in Lincoln Park, voters said yes by a 1,751-1,374 vote margin, to a proposal that will allow for two medical and two recreational marijuana shops and one license each for growers, processors, testing facilities, secure transporters and micro businesses.

Most of the communities that have already had ballot proposals on marijuana proposals — Highland Park, Royal Oak Township, Crystal Lake and Vanderbilt — have voted to prohibit the businesses. The city of Pontiac was the exception when voters last year passed a proposal by one vote that would allow up to 20 marijuana dispensaries and an unlimited number of other marijuana businesses into the city.

Roughly 1,368 communities across the state have told the state that they are opting out of marijuana businesses, although some of those communities have said that they will reevaluate that decision after seeing how the state rules develop and how the marijuana market shakes out.

Original Article: 7 Michigan communities vote to keep marijuana businesses out

Recreational Weed Probably Won’t Be for Sale in Michigan until March, April

Recreational Weed Probably Won’t Be for Sale in Michigan until March, April

[Canniseur: If a delayed launch means a steady flow of cannabis for both medical AND recreational use, I’m all for the extra time. A successful state-wide, legal cannabis rollout is worth the wait.]

Nearly a year after Michigan voters approved legalizing marijuana for adult recreational use, the state is getting ready to hand out the business licenses that will usher in the beginning of retail sales.

But don’t pull out your cash just yet. Sales of marijuana for adult recreational use probably won’t begin until March or April of next year. That’s because the state is worried about a shortage of pot for medical marijuana users, and the first harvests for the recreational market won’t be ready until next spring.

And the state hasn’t decided yet whether it will allow medical marijuana growers, processors and dispensary owners to transfer existing medical marijuana flower and infused products to the recreational market.

“It’s incumbent upon us to ensure that there’s access for medical patients through the medical marijuana facilities,” said Andrew Brisbo, director of the state Marijuana Regulatory Agency. “So I would err on the side of caution and ensuring better access to their needs instead of moving products into the broader adult use market.”

House of Dank

Budtender Elizabeth Clifford being the counter at House of Dank, a medical marijuana dispensary in Detroit in October, 2019. (Photo: Kathleen Gray, Detroit Free Press)

For some, it’s a disappointing delay for a market that has been itching to start since voters approved legalizing marijuana last November 56-44%.

Read the rest of this story at: Michigan recreational weed: When legalized marijuana will be for sale

Michigan Bill to Ban Growing Marijuana at Home Fails

Michigan Bill to Ban Growing Marijuana at Home Fails

[Editor’s Note: These potential recreational marijuana law changes got shot down in flames. The more rational Republicans saw this as it was; A power play to abuse the voters in Michigan who voted a law into effect.]

LANSING – Marijuana enthusiasts will be able to grow pot at home after all as the state Senate failed on Thursday to muster a supermajority vote to make changes to the recreational marijuana ballot proposal voters approved in the Nov. 6 election.

The biggest change in the bill proposed by Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof, R-Grand Haven, would have dropped the provision that would allow people to grow 12 plants at home for personal use.

Meekhof said he wanted to prevent a flood of marijuana into neighborhoods by people growing their own pot, but by 8:30 p.m. Thursday, it became clear that he didn’t have the three-quarters supermajority vote necessary to make changes to the ballot proposal.

“I’m very disappointed. I knew it would be a heavy lift,” he said. “What we’re going to be allowing to happen is going to make our society less safe.” Under legislative rules, Thursday was the last day that the bill could be considered in the Senate in order to comply with a five-day rule before it could be considered in the state House of Representatives. The Legislature is scheduled to adjourn for the year next week before the five days expires.

Meekhof’s efforts to rally the 29 votes needed to move the changes fell short. He didn’t have the support of all 26 Republicans in the Senate and Democrats were unwilling to challenge the proposal that passed by a 56-44 percent margin on Nov. 6. In addition to a ban on homegrown pot, Meekhof also wanted to lower the 10-percent excise tax rate to match the 3-percent tax on medical marijuana. But the lower tax was also expected to serve as a disincentive for communities to allow marijuana businesses into their towns because the tax revenues would be low.

The marijuana legalization law, which into effect on Dec. 6, prohibits home growers from selling their products, although they can give it away. Legal weed won’t be commercially available until the state develops the rules and regulations that will govern the recreational market and begins awarding licenses in early 2020. As a result, the home grow option was an important one for the people who spearheaded the campaign to legalize marijuana for adult recreational use. Meekhof also wanted to shift how the tax revenue was distributed, shifting money that was supposed to go to schools, roads and communities that allow marijuana businesses to instead give those tax dollars to law enforcement and the communities. The chances of passing the changes to the approved ballot proposals, however, were always slim in this lame duck session. Because the two proposals were passed by the voters, the Legislature needs to muster a supermajority — three-quarters  votes — in both the House of Representatives and Senate.  Republicans hold a 27-11 super majority in the Senate, but only a 63-47 edge in the House. They would need 29 votes in the Senate and 83 votes in the House to pass the changes to the marijuana law. “The state has said they’re in support of recreational marijuana, but this part (the home grow provisions) is something they wish they would have done better,” Meekhof said. Before giving up on his bill, Meekhof said he was hoping for some “harmonic convergence” with members in the House of Representatives. But it didn’t come to pass.

The marijuana legalization includes a provision that gives the state Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs the authority to regulate and license marijuana businesses. Meekhof’s proposal changes that so that a politically appointed licensing board — similar to how the medical marijuana industry is regulated — also has the authority over licensing businesses in the recreational marijuana industry.

Original Article: Michigan bill to ban growing marijuana at home fails

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