Nevada is running out of weed – the legal kind.
About a week after the state legalized the use of recreational pot, the state’s 47 licensed marijuana stores are nearly depleted. The unexpected shortage was caused by a bottleneck in granting distribution licenses and legal challenges.
California officials better be watching carefully. Its voters legalized recreational marijuana use in November and come next Jan. 1 you will be legally allowed to buy marijuana in cities where it’s allowed.
What’s the big deal in Nevada? Well, when you consider that the state anticipates collecting at least $70 million in recreational marijuana taxes in the first two years, then you understand the urgency.
State officials are in such a hurry to fix the problem that Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval on Friday supported the Department of Taxation’s proposal to allow the state to grant an emergency regulation that could help stores restock.
The Reno Gazette-Journal reports that under the emergency regulations the taxation department would consider a larger pool of applicants for distribution licenses, potentially alleviating the shortages. The Nevada Tax Commission will vote on the regulation on Thursday.
Also playing into the weed shortage is the fight between the state and Nevada’s powerful liquor industry that sued the state to get a cut of the marijuana business. Nevada has filed an appeal with the state’s supreme court. State tax regulators have said most liquor wholesalers that have applied to distribute marijuana have not yet met the licensing requirements, according to FOX13, Salt Lake City.