GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - The Grand Rapids City Commission Tuesday night approved a licensing ordinance for recreational marijuana facilities in the city.

The ordinance establishes the framework for local licensing and regulation of marijuana establishments and facilities as authorized under the Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act (MMFLA) and Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act (MRTMA).

Medical marijuana businesses would be regulated and zoning approval would serve for license approval during the first six months under the proposed ordinance.

The licensing ordinance:

  • Act as a de facto opt-in for recreational marijuana uses
  • Require a local license for all marijuana license types
  • Track licensee commitments (such as in the MIVEDA, or as the Planning Commission's conditions of approval)
  • Provide for additional enforcement capabilities
  • Require basic energy reporting & Universal Design
  • Require energy efficiency for marijuana growers
  • Allow zoning approvals for medical marijuana uses received prior to April 2020 to act as a temporary operating license

The ordinance also gives the city an important tool where they can follow up on agreements made by the applicant during the application and review process for enforcement actions, if needed, and helps support the city's sustainability and accessibility goals. 

It includes a requirement for all facilities that grow marijuana to report basic energy usage data to the Grand Rapids 2030 District, which will help the city and related utilities better understand the energy and water needs for the marijuana industry.

The ordinance was developed in collaboration with the Disability Advocates of Kent County and representatives from the cannabis industry.

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