In The News

In The News

Thursday, April 20, 2017

On this "420" City Council Still In a “Haze” on Developing Medical Marijuana Ordinance

By Michael Nichols
Categories: Medical Marijuana

On the day before a national, informal “holiday” commemorating marijuana, the Lansing City Council Committee on Public Safety met to further review and discuss a proposed City Ordinance to provide for the regulation and licensing of medical marijuana establishments. Critics of the ordinance voiced concerns to the Committee of the Whole on April 19th, that this regulation of the industry by the use of zoning to restrict the locations in which facilities can operate, will cause many current provisioning centers to be forced to shut down amidst a battle for limited space. The issue is the requirement for space that meets all requirements of the proposed ordinance. One attendee commented that if the current draft ordinance were to be adopted, five out of every six dispensaries would be out of business. NLF Attorney Nick Calkins has been following the Lansing Ordinance and attended the committee meeting.

The current draft of the proposed ordiance allows provisioning centers to locate in commercial districts, as well as areas zoned heavy industrial, light industrial, and wholesale. Other medical marijuana facilities, such as processing centers and safety compliance facilities, can only be located in areas zoned heavy industrial, light industrial, and wholesale. These proposed restrictions create the need for medical marijuana establishments to locate in northern and southern parts of the city, which generally have an overall lower socioeconomic status. City Council members stated this effect was an unintended consequence. Some on the committee say they will continue to grapple with fine tuning the legislation to try and satisfy their constituents. The next meeting of the Public Safety Committee is scheduled for May 2, 2017 at 3:30 p.m.

For the lawyers who stay on the cutting edge of the legal changes at both the state and local level, call the Nichols Law Firm at 517.432.9000.

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Mike Nichols is a national leader in drunk driving defense. He is a member of the Forensic Committee and Michigan delegate to the National College for DUI Defense. He is also a Sustaining Member of the College. Nichols is also a founding member of the Michigan Association of OWI Attorneys; a member of the American Chemical Society; an associate member of he American Academy of Forensic Science, Adjunct Professor of Forensic Evidence in Criminal Law and OWI Law and Practice at Cooley Law School. He is also author of the West OWI Practice book and several chapters in other books on science and the law.

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