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Grand Opening Delayed For Davison's First Medical Marijuana Facility


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DAVISON, MI -- The city of Davison's first medical marijuana facility has delayed its grand opening after city officials questioned whether it is legal.

 

Tucked on a discreet corner at the north end of Davison Village Mall off State Road, Sweet Relief -- a business describing itself on Facebook as an "alternative & holistic health" facility -- is offering marijuana strains with names like Orange Kush, Strawberry Blue, edibles including cooking oil, peanut butter cups, juice and tea drinks, extracts, lip balm and body lotion.

 

"I know it's been buzzing around town over the weekend," said Mayor Tim Bishop of residents discussing the new business.

 

City Manager Michael Hart said he became aware of the new business late last week and contacted Police Chief Bill Brandon about the new facility advertising its various products on the weedmaps.com website.

 

"I've handed it over to my chief of police and we're investigating it," said Hart. Mayor Bishop had the same message for a person who asked about the business during the Monday, Nov. 25, city council meeting.

 

"We know the moratorium had lapsed in September," Bishop said. "There is a state law that provides for a caregiver. We are trying to make smart decisions. We don't know what the status is regarding this operation."

 

Davison officials allowed a moratorium on medical marijuana dispensaries to expire in September 2013 and have their regulations fall into compliance with state medical marijuana guidelines.

 

Tim Smith, a caregiver with Sweet Relief, said the moratorium's expiration allowed the facility to open. The outlet provides easier access to patients it has in the Davison and Lapeer areas, he said.

 

He said the new facility is not a dispensary. He says it's more of an educational and consultation facility for people who want to learn about marijuana for treatment of ailments, cultivating their own plants and seeking doctor referrals.

 

"It won't be like a compassion club, where it's a farmers market, a lot of people there," said Smith. Any purchases of marijuana are solely between the caregiver and their designated patients. "It's not like you could ... come in and purchase something."

 

Following a discussion with Police Chief Brandon about their plans, Smith said all operations -- including a plan to have one-on-one consultations between patients and caregivers at the facility -- have been placed on hold.

 

"We want to be within the law 100 percent," said Smith. "We don't want to put anybody in jeopardy."

 

Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said an assistant in his office received a call from a Davison official about the medical marijuana act and law as it pertains to dispensaries.

 

"We get questions from time to time about the act and legality of dispensaries," he said. "The law in Michigan is clear, that only registered caregivers may provide marijuana to their patients. Caregivers may only have a maximum of five patients."

 

If the city decides they don't want caregivers and patients meeting at the facility, Smith said, "We'll keep that part out of it."

 

"It will be on the caregiver and patient to decide where they want to meet up," Smith said. "The way that the law is ever-changing, we never know what the future may hold."

 

The city does not have a medical marijuana ordinance in place. Bishop said the idea had gone before the planning commission while the state discussed the issue.

 

The planning commission and city attorney recommended that the city allow the moratorium to expire and to follow state and federal guidelines, Bishop said.

 

Councilman Paul Hammond said he'd not heard about the new facility until receiving emails from a resident and Hart over the weekend, but he questioned its legality.

 

"If it's a marijuana dispensary, they're illegal," said Hammond, adding dispensaries are not meant to be profit-making businesses. "Dispensaries are illegal and it has been turned over to our chief of police to investigate."

 

A February 2013 state Supreme Court ruling stated patient-to-patient transfers of marijuana could not take place at dispensaries. The ruling gave local prosecutors the power to declare any such locations a public nuisance.

But House Bill 4271, currently in committee, could allow provisioning centers with consent from municipalities that would allowndispensing of no more than 2.5 ounces of useable marijuana in a 10-day period between a qualified patient through a designated, qualified caregiver.

 

Any facility would have to be located at least 1,000 feet from the property line of a preexisting secondary or primary school, not share any office space with a physician, not use other than topical applications and would be prohibited from advertising medical marijuana for sale on billboards, television or radio.

 

Davison's code of ordinances refers to marijuana only in its controlled substance act, which bans the intentional use of any seeds or parts of the plants "For the purpose of causing a condition of intoxication, euphoria, excitement, exhilaration, stupefaction or dulling of the senses or nervous system."

 

Buying, selling or transferring of the seeds or plants, as well as any model airplane glue or any other toxic substance is also prohibited under the controlled substances act, along with the sale of marijuana or hashish pipes.

While declining comment on the potential legal aspect of the business, Bishop did note that new businesses are not required by the city to get a license to open.

"It's not spelled out in the charter that they can't open that kind of business," he said. Bishop had owned a sporting goods store on Main Street in the city's downtown area.

 

Hammond said his opinion was based on state law, adding "The council is not involved in this. It has nothing to do with the city council."

But resident and former councilman Kevin McKague said he is not pleased with the council's actions regarding medical marijuana.

 

"I'm a little disappointed in the city council. They seem to be really taken off guard by this," he said, after firing off emails to Hart, council members, state senators and representatives. "I don't know if the city is able legally to block them. I would love it if they did."

 

Smith said not everyone is going to agree with their type of business, but he wants to make sure city officials and law enforcement are in agreement with the facility before they open.

 

"As much as we want to do business in Davison, we don't want to break any laws, he said.

 

McKague would prefer medical marijuana to be handled by medical professionals in medical offices. Senate Bill 660 is up for consideration in the state House that would allow for sale of medical marijuana at pharmacies, with federal approval.

 

"Apparently, this law is just not written very well and needs to be tightened up," he said of the state Medical Marihuana Act in 2008 that voters approved. "Nobody seems to know what's in the law."

 

What a huge pile of confusion...

 

MLive article http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2013/11/grand_opening_delayed_for_davi.html

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Not confusing at all

 

Patient Caregiver Good.......Dispensary/Farmers Market/Sweet Relief/ Caves/repulicans......Bad

 

So please tell me you are not going to play semantic gymnastics with the term dispensary.

 

You WILL be raided, your assets seized, your patients compromised, ...then we will lose more of our rights thru the coa

 

What is the UPSIDE?........Profit?

Edited by beourbud
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Can we please get to a workable definition of "dispensary?" Is it to be considered a retail outlet for cannabis that caters to qualifying patients, a farm market, or a place where patients meet with their caregivers? is it something else? I have thought right along that the absence of a considered meaning only leads to confusion and misunderstanding.

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alas, when we do get definitions, they will differ from city to city, state to state, as they do now, leaving more confusion in the wake.

If laws do not change, a dispensary will need to orchestrate the 1/5 system, in a non profit way to comply. I wish them the best of luck,

but so far, we see them riding on semantics, or just their balls even.

 

 

d) Medical Marijuana Dispensary: Two or more caregivers operating from a single parcel with the intent to cultivate, dispense, sell, or provide medical marijuana to a patient. according to http://www.annarbormedicaldispensary.com/mi-and-a2-guidlines.html

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Exactly ! This is the reason that it may be the key.

 

There are distinctive non profit or not for profit models, and they remain open. A properly operated dispensary would not be making a profit in the first place.

 

There are some right in this state, although not 501c3, they are non profit centers, supplying medical marijuana, and are not being raided...hmmmm?

 

Ann Arbor Health Collective is a non-profit organization catering to the needs of Medical Marijuana patients in the state of Michigan. Our primary goal is to help the entire Medical Marijuana community by offering information, supplies, services and medicine to those in need.

 

Om of Medicine is a provisioning center and non-profit organization in Ann Arbor founded to assist our members in safely and securely obtaining medical cannabis in accordance with the Michigan Marihuana Act of 2008

 

A 501© cannot be involved in federally illegal transfer of marijuana. Period.

 

 

Amsterdam's Garden is a non-profit 501©(3) medical marijuana dispensary that is dedicated to providing safe and legal access for San Jose area patients. We are in full compliance with California Health and Safety Code §11362.5(Prop 215) and SB 420.,according to them

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