KALAMAZOO, Mich. — As Michiganders continue to react to the approval by voters of proposal one which legalizes the use of recreational marijuana, we’re learning what the timeline for the law’s rollout.
Josh Hovey, spokesperson for The Coalition or Regulating Marijuana Like Alcohol, said the Michigan Secretary of State will take three weeks to certify election results. Then 10 days after that, possessing, growing, and selling marijuana will be legal in Michigan.
"This will be kind of a gradual rollout that starts with personal freedom of possession and then get into the business aspect a couple years down the road,” said Hovey.
"Whether it take months, whatever, it's worth the wait and the majority of people are all headed in the same direction,” said Courtney Nelson, who voted in favor of legalization.
There are several reminders that Hovey had for those people excited to spark up a legalized joint.
"I think it's important to remember that just because possession is legal doesn't mean that when the initiative goes into effect that people can go outside and spark up a joint in celebration,” Hovey said.
He also said employers can still drug test and discipline workers for using the drug in violation of workplace policy.
Hovey said the business side of things will likely take a couple years. Municipalities have yet to decide if they’ll allow dispensaries or cultivators to set up shop, and set rules.
Cities also have yet to choose which commercial properties to zone for the cannabis industry.
Tim McGraw, founder of Canna-Hub, said that last step will determine how pricey those properties will be.
“What’s pretty typical is cannabis-zoned real estate goes for on average about double what typical real estate does,” McGraw said.
He said the more municipalities that opt out of allowing businesses to open could make property harder to find, which could result in those remaining property values tripling.
McGraw said Michigan is now the fifth largest cannabis market in the nation, which will increase demand for those specifically zoned properties.