Thursday, May 22, 2014

The Great Green Rush

Last year, the Nevada Legislature passed SB 374. And after some initial hesitation, Governor Brian Sandoval (R) ultimately signed it into law. And with SB 374 becoming state law, medical marijuana dispensaries were finally cleared to open in the near future so patients could safely access the medicine they need.

Unfortunately for medical marijuana users, they ran into hiccups early this year when municipal governments throughout Nevada balked at the prospect of approving medical marijuana dispensaries. But in March, a major breakthrough occurred when the Clark County Commission approved a timeline to allow for new dispensaries in unincorporated Clark County communities. And later that month, the City of Las Vegas followed suit by announcing its own plans to draft regulations for medical marijuana dispensaries. And now, Las Vegas has finally approved specific locations for dispensaries.

And the City of North Las Vegas may also soon follow suit. At this point, Henderson and Boulder City are the only Las Vegas Valley municipal governments that are not moving forward on dispensaries. Boulder City has a ban in place. Henderson currently has a moratorium in effect until July... But with Henderson facing an increasingly nasty budget shortfall, the city may have to reconsider its stance on medical marijuana.

After all, medical marijuana is expected to bring more business to Southern Nevada. There's a reason why so many dispensary applications flowed into Clark County Government Center.

Hint: They want a piece of "The Great Green Rush". And as long as applicants are going into this for the right reasons and intend to serve patients in need, they have every right to go into this business. But of course, with every "rush" comes risk. So state & municipal authorities need to adopt wide regulations to ensure a fair market place.

There's a reason why all of this is happening. There's a reason why certain "entrepreneurs" are rushing to "embrace the weed". And there's a reason why the Nevada Legislature passed SB 374 in the first place.

It's because our legislators finally realized medical marijuana patients didn't deserve to be treated like criminals for daring to access the medicine they need. This is why we're now starting to experience "The Great Green Rush".

And all involved in this new "Rush" need to keep in mind who they need to serve.

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