What you need to know about legalized recreational marijuana in Michigan
Michigan voters legalized the use of recreational marijuana in November 2018, and have since been patient as the program rolls out. Before you start picking up gummies and rollies, here are seven fast facts you need to know.
1. Recreational marijuana could be available for legal purchase as soon as November.
Michigan voters approved ballot Proposal 1 in November 2018 legalizing recreational marijuana. According to recent press reports, the state will begin accepting applications for recreational business licenses on Nov. 1, expecting to award licenses later that month.
2. Regulations on who can use, how much and where.
Individuals must be 21 or older to use marijuana recreationally. Individuals can carry up to 2.5 ounces of flower and may store up to 10 ounces in a locked container at home. For cannabis concentrates, the limit is 15 grams. Each residence can grow up to 12 plants for personal consumption (selling requires a license) as long as the plants are not visible to the public. Employers can still drug test and enforce zero-tolerance policies. Landlords can also prohibit smoking and growing. Public consumption, driving under the influence, and carrying outside the State of Michigan are all illegal.
3. Medical cardholder privileges versus recreational users.
Dispensaries can now carry both recreational and medical marijuana, but they must be kept separate because the products are regulated differently. Medical marijuana may have higher levels of THC to treat patients, and there is no age limit for medical usage.
4. State tax revenue
In addition to boosting the economy through business, legalization means that the state government can earn tax revenue from marijuana sales. The state is expected to generate up to $200 million annually from taxes and fees, which will fund road repairs, public schools, local governments and research concerning cannabis as a treatment for veterans.
5. Local community ordinances ban dispensaries, but voters can overturn.
Although Proposal 1 passed with 55.9% of the popular vote, Section 6 states that “a municipality may completely prohibit or limit the number of marihuana establishments within its boundaries.” Hundreds of municipalities throughout Michigan, have banned recreational marijuana businesses from operating within their jurisdictions. However, voters have the power to overturn those decisions.
6. A bill currently in the Michigan legislature would clear marijuana records for 235,000 low-level offenders.
The law didn’t pardon those previously convicted. Sponsored by state senator Jeff Irwin, Senate Bill 0416 would expunge the records of 235,000 Michiganders convicted of marijuana possession or use.