Next month some medical marijuana patients in Michigan may be caught in the lurch of regulatory chaos.
It’s anticipated that many medical marijuana businesses in the state will have to shut their doors Sept. 15, as state officials impose a deadline for businesses to have new licenses issued under the state’s program.
“You’re running a whole set of very serious risks if you operate after Sept. 15,” said Bob Hendricks, a marijuana business lawyer in Grand Rapids. “Risk of prosecution; risk of not getting a license at all ever.”
Hefty applications and heavy scrutiny from an appointed board has slowed the launch of the program — and regulators admit they won’t be able to license all of the businesses that have applied by Sept. 15.
State officials said patients will have to be vigilant about knowing where their medicine comes from.
“The whole point of these laws is for safe access for patients to medicine,” said Brandon Gardner, lead lawyer for Grand Rapids Cannabis Attorneys. “I think that’s really lost in these discussions.”
Medical marijuana was approved by Michigan voters in 2008, but the state attempted to clarify the loosely operating system with new laws in 2016. Those led to two sets of emergency rules. [Read more at Michigan Live]