Hundreds Of Michigan Communities Ban Marijuana Businesses

Jan 31, 2019

More than 250 Michigan communities have banned marijuana businesses just two months after the state became the first in the Midwest to legalize the drug for recreational use.

Some cities and townships have enacted temporary bans until the state creates regulations to govern the recreational marijuana industry. The state Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs has until December to issue rules.

Michigan voters in November endorsed recreational marijuana for adults who are at least 21 years old.

At least 80 municipalities have reached out to law firm Dickinson Wright for legal advice regarding recreational marijuana, said Jessica Wood, a lawyer in the firm's municipal practice.

Many of the state's biggest cities, including Detroit and Lansing, haven't passed any restrictions.

Josh Hovey, the spokesman for the Michigan Cannabis Industry Association, believes that some communities are being cautious because of legal concerns, while others are following their community's values.

Barton Morris, one of the lawyers involved with the marijuana legalization campaign, believes attitudes will change over time.

"It's nothing that alarming," he said. "Just simply cities reacting out of fear."