So far, 167 Detroit pot shops have been closed down and dozens more are expected to get the same treatment.
Attorney for the city of Detroit, Melvin Butch Hollowell, said that 283 dispensaries were identified last year that are all operating illegally.
“At the time I sent a letter to each one of them, indicating that unless you have a fully licensed facility, you are operating at your own risk,” Hollowell told the Detroit Free Press.
Hollowell added that an additional 51 shops were earmarked to be closed in the coming weeks.
These closures will ultimately bring Detroit a step closer to its “goal” of only having 50 dispensaries operating in the state’s largest city.
Recently recovering from bankruptcy, Detroit has a population of nearly 700,000, down from 1.8 million in 1950 when it was a teeming city, before urban blight took hold.
Why are there so many illegal pot shops in Detroit? For one, it is practically impossible not to be considered illegal.
According to Detroit’s medical marijuana ordinances, which took effect March 1, 2016—eight years after voting to legalize MMJ—dispensaries are required to abide by zoning and other regulations in order to qualify for a license.
For example, according to the ordinances, a weed dispensary must be more than 1,000 feet away from churches, schools, parks, any place that sells alcohol, libraries, child care centers, arcades, youth activity centers, public housing and any other dispensary!
And they have to close by 8 p.m.
For those of you who live in a city or town of any size, try to imagine a situation in which, at all times, you are 1,000 feet away from any of the above. It’s not easy.
The new ordinances require operators to obtain a business license designed for the medical marijuana stores. And as of last week, only five had been licensed to legally operate within city limits.
One wonders what Michigan’s estimated 244,125 registered MMJ patients are supposed to do?
To add to the mess, applications are still stuck in the city’s bureaucratic maze awaiting approval.
Since the stricter-than-strict ordinances took effect, teams of city inspectors and cops have visited the stores to tell them they were not in compliance.
“We ask the court for order of closure and padlocking… We haven’t lost one of those cases yet,” Hollowell said.
Why such glee over cutting off MMJ users from their medicine?
It’s a sign of the sick times.
GOP thugs are getting away with dangerously assaulting the press, and Trump officials are obsessing over criminalizing a medicinal plant while a growing list of them are on the hot seat for practically committing treason. WTF?!?
We can only hope that Michigan, as predicted, will be the next state to legalize recreational marijuana.
You can keep up with all of HIGH TIMES’ marijuana news right here.