Some communities in Michigan will decide the fate of marijuana during the upcoming vote in November. The issue of cannabis will be on the ballot in at least 32 communities.
Among the counties to vote for are Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, and St. Clair. The move comes four years after the voters approved the recreational use of cannabis throughout the state. Back in 2018, Michigan was the first in the Midwest to legalize it. The initiative was approved by 56% and the state-licensed sales began in 2019.
Overall, cannabis sales in the states are booming. According to recent reports, the sales went up bringing more than $195 million in September. In the first nine months of this year the market increased by 56% as compared with the same period last year, the Michigan Cannabis Regulatory Agency said.
Thus, the communities throughout the state have to weigh on pros and cons. Some are concerned about illicit products entering the regulated market. The others worry about the lack of commercial spaces to sell and distribute marijuana. This happens because many municipalities do not allow the opening of retail stores.
This results in calls for a licensing moratorium by some producers. They urge lawmakers to prevent the opening of new cultivation businesses. They argue that it is impossible to survive as a company because of the overproduction of flowers on the market.
State’s governor Gretchen Whitmer has been a supporter of the cannabis industry. Earlier this year she approved administrative changes to regulate the process of distribution and sale of marijuana.
Amid fierce competition in the market and despite the increase in sales the prices are hitting the bottom. This is the reason the lobbyists push for the moratorium to prevent a decline in prices. The legislative act that legalized recreational marijuana in 2018 does not limit the licenses. In order for a moratorium to be adopted, three-fourths of the legislators would have to vote in favor.
Thus, including the cannabis issue on the ballot will decide the fate of sales and distribution which will have a serious impact on the local economy.