Three medical marijuana businesses randomly selected for licensing
CIty of Mount Pleasant holds random drawing for 58 businesses
Three of 58 total medical marijuana applications were selected for conditional authorization Feb. 14 at Mount Pleasant City Hall.
Cary Investments, which entered just one application, was one of the companies randomly selected by City Clerk Jeremy Howard. Most other entities had anywhere between 4-9 applications.
"We're ecstatic," said Cary Investments manager Glenn Bordine. "It's been a long road. We've been working on this for years."
The three conditionally authorized winners of the medical marijuana lottery were 3967 Euclid, Cary Investments and HG Lansing. The runner-up, and first on the waiting list, was Green Bronco.
The random drawing consisted of 58 ping pong balls, numbered 1-58. The first round was to randomly assign numbers to applications. The second was to determine conditional authorization for the trio of medical marijuana businesses.
"It's the first time we've had to do a lottery," Howard said. "We tried to make things as transparent as possible."
There was a $200 application fee and a $5,000 administrative fee for entering a company into the random selection. The city received 58 applications from 22 prospective medical marijuana business owners.
Howard said the city commission has not yet discussed recreational marijuana plans.
In order for the conditionally authorized companies to move on in the process, they need to complete final authorization.
Sometime in the next 30 days, the applicant must submit paperwork for the facility-specific step of the application for a state operating license and submit an application for special use with authorization.
Within six months, the company must obtain a special use authorization. Last, the state operating license must be in a company's possession in the next 18 months.
"They'll have to finish whatever constructing work and close out any permitting, just like any other business," said city planner Jacob Kain. "They'll have 18 months to get their final license."
Bordine, 38, was in attendance for the drawing, and Cary Investments only put in one application. When Bordine arrived at city hall, he didn't expect to win.
"I mean, (nearly) 1-in-60 odds," Bordine said. "I was thinking about having to relocate. That was in the back of my mind."
Larren Investments entered nine applications, the most of any entity – a total cost of $46,800. All nine applications are on the waiting list, and the highest is five spots behind Green Bronco.
Howard will keep the waiting list established until the maximum number of facilities, three in this case, are operating in the city. Once all operations begin, the waiting list will be discarded and Howard will refund the annual administrative fee of $5,000.
Companies can withdraw themselves from the waiting list at any point to get a refund sooner than later.
"It'll be interesting to see if anyone pulls out or wait it out to see what happens as the first three go through," Howard said. "There's an opportunity where if the first three aren't able to get their final authorization, we will go to the next person on the waiting list."
The only way another lottery will be held is if there becomes an opening due to one of the three entities dropping out after being in full operation.
3967 Euclid is set to be located at 1005 Corporate Dr., which is off N. Mission Street and behind Meijer.
Cary Investments will be at 309 W. Michigan St., located near the Blackstone Bar and Triple Deuce Party Store. The store name is Consano. Bordine said he hopes to someday use it for recreational marijuana sales.
"More people need to go to these city hall meetings and make sure these commissioners are held accountable and make good choices on our policies," Bordine said.
Bordine said the goal is to have Consano operating within 90 days.
"We'll have a grand opening," Bordine said. "If the city lets us, we will have a pig roast out front and give out free sandwiches. We will figure something out."
HG Lansing is going to be placed in a strip mall off Old U.S. 27, which currently includes JR Haircuts, Hunan House, Cherry Berry and Metro PCS. The address is 2157 S. Mission.
Of the three conditionally authorized companies, just one – 1005 Corporate Drive – has a vacant building. Kain said 3967 Euclid could take longer to start up because they have to construct the building from scratch.
Cary Investments and HG Lansing already have buildings ready to use.
"Somebody who already is planning to use a building doesn't have to make a lot of modifications," Kain said. "Theoretically, it should be a faster process. There's a number of other things that could speed up or slow down the process, but that's the only one we know of right now."
There is to be no smoking, inhalation or other consumption of marijuana on or within the premises of any facility. Civil infraction costs are $500 for the first violation, $2,500 for a second offense and $5,000 for each subsequent offense.