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Recreational Marihuana

Michigan voters will be deciding in November whether to to approve Proposal 18-1, which would legalize recreational marihuana and create the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marihuana Act (MRTMA). If Proposal 18-1 passes, each community would be required to decide if it is going to allow or prohibit state-licensed recreational marihuana establishments.

This has many local governments asking questions and trying to figure out how the MRTMA would interact with existing medical marihuana laws, like the Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act, PA 281 of 22016 (MMFLA).What are the potential impacts to local municipalities? When would the MRTMA take effect?

Here are some resources to help answer your questions:

Medical Marihuana

Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act (MMFLA), 2016

Gov. Snyder signed medical marihuana legislation to regulate dispensaries and clarify the legality of edible products in Michigan. The new law will allow licensed dispensaries to operate in communities that choose to allow them. Growers, processers, testing facilities, and transporters will also be licensed and regulated.

The MMFLA took effect Dec. 20, 2016—however it includes an additional delay in implementation of 360 days to enable the state to establish the licensing system required by the Act. A person cannot apply to the state for a license of any kind under the MMFLA until December 15, 2017. And, no one can apply to the state for a license of any kind under the MMFLA unless a municipality adopts an ordinance authorizing that type of facility.

MMFLA Resources:

LARA Bureau of Medical Marihuana Regulation, MMFLA Emergency Rules, Dec. 4, 2017

LARA Medical Marihuana Facility Licensing Division FAQs

Michigan Municipal League report: Medical Marihuana Facilities - Opt In/Opt Out, updated May 4, 2018 to include LARA Rules and the November ballot proposal ,

League training (PowerPoint), State and Local Regulation of Medical Marihuana, 10/3/17

Michigan Municipal League Fact Sheet: Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act

Michigan Municipal League Fact Sheet: Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act Q&A

Risky Business? The Trump Administration and the State-Licensed Marijuana Industry, Robert A. Mikos, 2017 University of Illinois Law Review Online (2017)

On the Limits of Supremacy: Medical Marijuana and the States’ Overlooked Power to Legalize Federal Crime, Robert A. Mikos, 62 Vanderbilt Law Review 1421 (2009)

Marijuana Localism, Robert A. Mikos, 65 Case Western Reserve Law Review 719 (2015)

Marijuana Law, Policy, and Authority, Robert A. Mikos, (2017) (textbook and companion website)

The Economic Impact of a Strong Regulatory Framework for Medical Marijuana in Michigan, (Dr. Gary Wolfram, President of Hillsdale Policy Group, Ltd.; William E. Simon, Professor of Economics and Public Policy, and Director of Economics at Hillsdale College, February 2016)

OPT IN Sample Resolutions:

Bay City, HRC (pop. 34,932); Resolution - intent to opt-in to MMFLA

Benton Harbor, HRC, (pop. 10,038); MMFLA opt-in Resolution

Niles, HRC, (pop. 11,600); Resolution – intent to opt-in to MMFLA

Omer, HRC 4th Class, (pop. 313); Resolution—intent to opt-in to MMFLA

Portage, HRC (pop. 46,292); Resolution - intent to opt-in to MMFLA


OPT IN Sample Ordinances:

Sample MMFLA opt-in ordinance, generic municipal

Adrian, HRC (pop. 21,133); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Ann Arbor, HRC, (pop. 113,934); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Bangor, HRC, (pop. 1,885); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Battle Creek, HRC, (pop. 52,347); (includes opt-in ordinance, zoning ordinance, permit application, and planning commission report)

Bay City, HRC, (pop. 34,932); MMLFA opt-in ordinance, medical marihuana website

Breedsville, GLV (pop. 199); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Buchanan, HRC (pop. 4,456); Resolution – intent to opt-in to MMFLA; opt-in ordinance; zoning amendment ordinance

Camden, GLV (pop. 512); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Chesaning, GLV, (pop. 2,394); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Clare, HRC (pop. 3,118); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Constantine, GLV, (pop. 2,076); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

DeTour, GLV (pop. 325); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Eau Claire, GLV, (pop 625); MMFLA opt-in ordinance, zoning amendment ordinance

Evart, HRC, (pop.1,903); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Hartford, HRC (pop. 2,688); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Hazel Park, HRC, (pop. 16,422); opt-in ordinance

Kalamazoo, HRC, (pop. 74,262); (includes ordinances, maps, and public forum feedback)

Kalkaska, GLV, (pop. 2,020); MMFLA opt-in ordinance, zoning ordinance

Kingsley, GLV (pop. 1,480) MMFLA opt-in ordinance, zoning ordinance

Lansing, HRC (pop. 114,297); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Marshall, HRC (pop. 7,088); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Morenci, HRC, (pop. 2,220); zoning amendment ordinance; MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Newaygo, HRC, (pop. 1,976); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Niles, HRC, (pop.11,600); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Reading, HRC, (pop. 1,078) MMFLA opt-in ordinance

River Rouge, HRC (pop. 7,903); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Vassar HRC, (pop.2,697); zoning ordinance – principal uses; zoning ordinance – special permit, zoning map

Webberville, GLV (pop. 1,272); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

Ypsilanti, HRC (pop. 19,435); MMFLA opt-in ordinance

OPT OUTSample Ordinances/Resolutions

Eaton Rapids, HRC (pop. 5,214); not authorizing MMFLA facilities

Monroe, HRC, (pop. 20,733); not authorizing MMFLA facilities

Norton Shores, HRC (pop. 23,994); prohibiting MMFLA facilities

Oak Park, HRC, (pop. 29,319); prohibiting medical marihuana facilities

Potterville, HRC (pop. 2,617); not authorizing MMFLA facilities

Saint Clair, HRC (pop. 5,485); prohibits MMFLA facilities

Stephenson, HRC (pop. 862); not authorizing MMFLA facilities


Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (MMMA), 2008


In 2016, there were

· 148.908 applications for medical marihuana registry identification cards were filed

· 218,556 qualifying patients and 38,107 primary caregivers

·1 registry identification card was revoked

· 1,758 physicians provided written certification for qualifying medical marihuana patients

MDCH keeps a confidential list of the individuals to whom it has issued cards, which is exempt from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act.

In November 2008, Michigan voters passed a referendum to enable certain specified persons to legally obtain, possess, cultivate/grow, use, and distribute marijuana. The "Medical Marihuana Act" went into effect on December 4, 2008.

Ter Beek Supreme Court Ruling (Feb. 6, 2014) A local ordinance cannot prohibit the usage of medical marihuana in Michigan by claiming cover under the federal Controlled Substances Act.

Ter Beek v Wyoming amicus brief filed by the Michigan Municipal League’s Legal Defense Fund Board on behalf of the city of Wyoming.

McQueen Supreme Court Ruling
This ruling limits medical marihuana sales to caregiver to patient, prohibiting patient to patient sales.

MMMA Resources:

Michigan Attorney General's Formal Opinion Issued June 28, 2011

A Local Government View of the MMMA by Gerald A. Fisher, Consultant

The "Medical Marihuana Act"

Department of Community Health Administrative Rules, effective April 4, 2009

State of Michigan "Medical Marihuana Program" (MMMP)

State of Michigan "Medical Marihuana Q&A"

State of Michigan Prosecuting Attorneys Association PowerPoint (PDF)

Video on Pre-Con Education Session: Medical Marihuana Act and Your Community




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