It was this week that Michigan awarded its very first medical marijuana license.

The state granted licenses to four large grow operations in Chesaning, as well as a dispensary and processor in Ann Arbor, and a secure transport company in Lansing.

Business owners will not be able to operate for at least a few more weeks and no testing facility licenses were granted. This means marijuana and the products produced from the drug won’t be able to be tested or sold yet.

The companies who were granted the first licenses are also required to pay a regulatory assessment of $48,000 per license before they can start to operate.

“We’re excited that we’ve actually approved the first license, so we can move forward,” said Andrew Brisbo, director of the state’s Bureau of Medical Marijuana Regulation.

“We continue to work with the few (testing labs) who are close in the process to try and get them licensed as well. We’re aware of the fact that not having a licensed lab presents a challenge for the other types of facilities so we’ll work with them closely on how to proceed. I think we’ll have a few up at the August meeting for consideration by the board,” he also said.

Two more licenses were awarded to Cannarbor and Arbor Kitchen.

“I know the state is working diligently to get two labs pre-qualified and licensed. But the transition from emergency rules to the MMFLA (Medical Marijuana Facilities Licensing Act) has been difficult,” said James Daly who owns Cannarbor and Arbor Kitchen.

“It’s been a long and diligent process, but I’m very excited.”

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