LANSING, MICH. - A leaked draft of state guidelines for operations in the Michigan Medical Marijuana industry shown at a cannabis conference in Lansing Sunday is comprehensive, cannabis experts said.
Applications for medical marijuana operations licenses in Michigan go live on Dec. 15. The state said it would post guidelines for licensing at the end of last week, but the information is missing from the website as of Sunday.
Rick Thompson, owner of Michigan Cannabis Business Development (MICBD) and organizer of Sunday's cannabis conference, said he and multiple others received leaked copies of the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs' (LARA) highly-anticipated emergency administrative medical marijuana guidelines from third parties.
"There are lobbyists and attorneys in Lansing that have this document already that have been reviewing it with their clients, reviewing it with their staffs to provide feedback to [LARA]," Thompson said. "It's our goal to provide that same level of feedback."
Thompson and cannabis industry attorney Paula Givens did not distribute copies of the document at the MICBD conference, but said they shared information they felt would help entrepreneurs with their licensing applications.
"These [guidelines] are not final," Thompson said. "They are not for sure, but we're going to give you what information we have readily available. That's what we did today."
Givens said the draft clears up many rules for potential medical marijuana licensees, including transportation and pickup.
"The rules do not demand that the secured transporter use an armored vehicle," she said. "Everybody wants to know, 'Can we do a drive-thru [dispensary]?' No drive-thru [dispensary]. 'Can we do a mobile delivery?' No, your marijuana facility has to be at a fixed location."
Givens said medical marijuana regulations are incredibly complex, but the draft is comprehensive, covering a wide range of topics.
"This is not the grey market, unregulated cannabis economy that Michigan has experienced in the last several years," she said. "This is real, regulated and compliant medical marijuana licensing."
LARA did not have a comment on the potential leak, but spokesperson David Harns released this statement on behalf of the Bureau of Medical Marihuana Regulation:
"The emergency administrative rules have not yet been published. We expect the rules to be finalized in the next couple days."
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