LANSING — When Michigan's medical marijuana licensing board couldn’t come to a consensus on the first two applications for licenses to transport and sell cannabis, regulators realized that getting applications through a new licensing process was going to be harder than they anticipated.
So instead of the five meetings set for the rest of the year, the board added two meetings to its schedule on Tuesday to tackle the hundreds of license applications that are pending.
The timing of the meetings — one in April and two in May — is particularly crucial for 215 marijuana businesses across the state who face a June 15 deadline before their temporary operating status expires. If they haven’t gotten a state license and approval from communities that have passed medical marijuana ordinances by then, they’ll have to shut down.
“The main reason we’re adding the meetings is to get through more applications and pre-qualifications in a quicker time frame,” said David Harns, spokesman for the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.