Detroit to Limit Medical Marijuana Provisioning Centers to 75


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  • Unanimously passed ordinance on Tuesday, July 31
  • The new ordinance sets the cap for provisioning facilities at 75
  • Stricter zoning requirements adopted for all medical marijuana facilities

Detroit has finally fully opted into the MMFLA by finalizing an ordinance that will allow an unlimited number of processing, cultivation, safety compliance and secure transport facilities (as zoning allows).  The unanimously approved ordinance sets the cap for provisioning and caregiver facilities at 75, with 60 provisioning facilities and caregiver centers already legally operating in the city.

The newly drafted ordinance also changes many of the procedures for future operation of caregiving facilities.  These changes are as follows:

  • Applications for medical marijuana caregiver centers will not be accepted after the effective date of the new ordinance
  • Caregiver centers legally established and issued a building permit or certification of occupancy before the effective date of the ordinance are lawful nonconforming users
  • Caregiving centers may convert to a provisioning center by submitting a change of use application
  • Caregiving centers that have pending or approved applications for a provisioning center license from the state must submit a change of use application within 30 days after the effective date of the ordinance

The ordinance identifies the buffer zones in which all medical marijuana facilities must be in compliance with to operate in Detroit.  They are as follows:

  • No operation within a drug free zone
  • Must be over 1000 radial feet from any zoning lot occupied by a religious institution
  • Must be over 1000 radial feet from any zoning lot with an unexpired conditional land use permit for a medical marijuana caregiver center or another medical marijuana facility

Detroit City Councilman James Tate explained that they are preparing for November’s recreational vote, “In plain speak, the reason why we’re doing this now is to ensure we’re in compliance with the ballot initiative.”  This may be the reasoning behind the stricter zoning requirements in the updated ordinance.

Overall, the newly adopted ordinance makes some significant changes to the medical marijuana facilities regulation throughout the city, as well as to the application process.  Language existing in the ordinance also encourages marijuana businesses in the city to provide community benefits, very similar to the way Grand Rapids is accepting licensing applications.

Curious about how the Detroit application process works? Check out our Detroit medical marijuana facilities application roadmap, which also goes into detail about the functionality of Detroit’s newly formed Medical Marijuana Facilities Review Committee.

Read the full ordinance here.

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