Recreational Cannabis in Michigan & Nevada’s Growing Pains


growing pains for recreational cannabis

Early this month, Michigan welcomed thousands of eager consumers. After becoming the 10th state to legalize recreational cannabis, thousands lined up for Michigan’s new market. Meanwhile, Nevada is facing its newest set of problems. As the first two years flew by, state legislators are wondering if the rush for legality caused growing pains for the industry.

Michigan’s Limits

On the first of December, customers waited in the cold for upwards of seven hours. Local consumer Devin Burnison said, “it was worth the wait!” The day was met with long lines with only four shops were open to the public.

WTSP reports that Michigan approved 12 more businesses for licenses; but, the process has been slow-moving as cultivators and producers are limited. Among those with licenses is Arbors Wellness, one of the first shops to offer medical cannabis back in 2008. Though the new market hasn’t hit the ground running, surrounding states have taken notice of the ‘Green Wave’. Illinois is set to start sells January 1st of 2020 while Wisconsin has only approved CBD, or cannabidiol, products. The state has warned citizens ahead purchasing from recreational-cannabis states and transporting within, however.

The spread of cannabis leads supporters to believe this is simply cause-and-effect in the case of federal legalization. With more licenses and providers coming to Michigan, however, things may look up sooner rather than later. You can find a full list of future shops set to open in Michigan here.

Nevada’s Compliance Board

Adversely, Nevada is dealing with a booming cannabis industry in the casino-based environment. Most see cannabis the same as they saw the casino-industry 50 years ago. Unfortunately, the new regulations are beginning to put a strain on the state’s success

The Nevada Independent reveals that the recently passed SB32 will “not only reveal who has a stake in the business; but, paint a picture of a rapidly changing industry that is becoming increasingly corporate, with ownership transfers so frequent that elected officials find it hard to keep up.” The bill also creates a Cannabis Control Board, not unlike the one that led casinos to where they are today.

“Opening up the information “ushers in a new era of transparency that will benefit the industry and the public.”

Las Vegas Gov. Steve Sisolak, The Nevada Independent

Sisolak has expressed concern about the finer details of recreational cannabis. He feels that the perceived rush to legalize may have thrown those details to the wayside. As a result, he created the cannabis-board. The decision, which has held up cannabis legalization including city-wide consumption lounges, has mixed feelings from the community. 

On one end, recent political finances have shined a light on possible corruption in the industry. While Sisolak hopes the board can address these concerns, its creation has held up progress regardless.

Former NV senator, Tick Segerblom, is worried that this may be doing more harm than good. The governor’s worries of deep corruption may be creating problems where they don’t exist. As they say, however, the road to success is paved with good intentions. 

Growing Pains…

For both states, the obstacles -both past and present- are a result of federal laws. Until federal legislation is a reality for cannabis, states will continue to have growing pains as they navigate the new industry. As an industry with strong local communities, it’s our duty to make our voices and opinions on the law heard. Regardless of your state’s current cannabis standing, reach out to local lawmakers to give support to either the MORE Act or STATES Act.

For more information on how to contact these individuals, check here. Follow Culture & Cannabis for more updates on your favorite cannabis markets and brands.

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Picture of Joycelin Arnold

Joycelin Arnold

Dating back to 2012, Joycelin has wrote for various online Video Game publications covering events and launches regularly. Cannabis has been with her throughout the journey, however. She officially joined cannabis industry in 2016 as a budtender and begin writing for brands and magazines in 2017. Outside of cannabis, she writes science fiction with one published novel, Siren, so far.

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