Yesterday, the Michigan Marijuana Regulatory Agency (MRA) announced plans to expand the state’s social equity program. The changes impact both eligibility for the program and the benefits provided to those eligible.
On the eligibility side, the MRA has expanded the definition of disproportionately impacted communities from 41 to 184, substantially increasing the number of individuals eligible for social equity status. On the benefits side, the MRA will:
The expanded program appears to be an attempt to increase participation in the program and fulfill its stated purpose: “to promote and encourage participation in the marijuana industry by people from communities that have been disproportionately impacted by marijuana prohibition and enforcement and to positively impact those communities.” To date, MLive.com reports that only two recreational licenses have been awarded to participants in the social equity program—one for a retailer and one for an event organizer—although 172 applicants have been deemed qualified under the social equity program. In contrast, we and many observers believe that nearly all recreational licenses will be awarded to social equity applicants in Illinois.
The new social equity plan goes into effect June 1, 2020. Please check our blog for updates affecting the cannabis industry.
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