Proposal would shut down all medical marijuana dispensaries in M - WNEM TV 5

Proposal would shut down all medical marijuana dispensaries in Michigan

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A proposal by a member of the state's Medical Marijuana Licensing Board has dispensary owners worried about their ability to get a license.

Board member and retired Michigan State Police Sergeant Don Bailey said dispensaries should close their doors until the state makes license applications available.

Bailey's proposal could not force dispensaries to close, but if they don't it would prevent them from getting a license this winter.

“There needs to be access for patients and that’s what it was all about,” said Chad Morrow, a medical marijuana advocate.

Michigan dispensary owners said if the proposal is approved, it would prevent northern Michigan patients from getting access to regulated, or what they call “safe,” medical marijuana.

“That’s what this particular law was to get people away from, we were supposed to make safe access to patients not put them in the back alley,” Morrow said. “It was about compassion it was about giving these patients access. Throughout multiple court opinions, supreme court opinions and several them, it’s been widdled and destroyed.”

At the meeting board member Bailey cited a Supreme Court case and said that every dispensary in the state is in violation of the Medical Marijuana Act.

His proposal would close all dispensaries until mid-December.

However, Morrow said the effects would last much longer. 

“In December you can start applying, but nobody is going to get approved and get licensed by then and get everything up and running until the spring of next year, so we are talking 4 to 6 months of no medicine,” he said.

Following the raids in Gaylord last month, one dispensary stayed open. They plan to remain open even if the proposal is passed.

“It will affect our business in a negative way, but we'll survive without it ‘cause we are a natural health store,” said Frank James, owner of AllWell Natural Health. “We are getting up in arms. We're not given honest answers. We are not given anyone to speak to. Everything is ambiguous, so we are kind of left in the dark.”

The Medical Marijuana Licensing Board will make their decision on the proposal at a special meeting next month.

Copyright 2017 CBS News / 9 & 10 News. All rights reserved. 

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