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Regulate Medical Cannabis Dispensaries in Mississippi

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According to the department, information from the Mississippi Department of Revenue (MDOR) about the licensing and operation of dispensaries under the state’s medical cannabis regime was made public on Friday, April 15. Although we here at My Marijuana Cards sound like a broken record, it is becoming increasingly clear that entities wishing to obtain a license as soon as possible must have all of their ducks in a row when they submit applications in June (for non-dispensary establishments) and July (for dispensary establishments) (dispensaries). This fact is considerably more relevant in dispensary applications since no more than two dispensaries may be located within 1,500 feet of one another.

What Have We LEARNED About MS Dispensaries?

In addition to licensing and regulating medicinal cannabis shops, the MDOR’s Alcoholic Beverage Control Enforcement Division will enforce the rules and regulations that apply to dispensaries. In addition to what is previously specified in the Medical Cannabis Act, the dispensary application must contain the following information:

  • A list of all professional licenses held by each member, together with evidence of each member’s good standing;
  • evidence of compliance with local licensing, permits, ordinances, and zoning regulations;
  • schematic of the permitted premises, the specifications of which vary according to the stage of development at which the structure is being constructed;
  • the development of an operations strategy that addresses certain subjects;
  • a security plan; a sales tax permit; certificate(s) of occupancy; and other related documents
  • Copy of deed if the applicant owns the property; copy of the lease if the applicant is leasing property; a copy of the application;
  • a contingent agreement between the applicant and the owner of the purchase is dependent on receiving a license, or between the applicant and the landlord if the lease is based on obtaining a license;
  • a property survey done during the preceding year demonstrating that the dispensary’s placement does not violate the law’s geographic restrictions
  • When a main point of entry serves as an endpoint, measurements must be taken using a straight-line, point-to-point method; measurements must begin at the mid-point of the door if it is a single door and at the point where the doors meet if it is a dual door entrance; fingerprint cards for applicants and individuals who have an economic interest in the entity; and fingerprint cards for anyone who has an economic interest in the entity.

Do You Need To Be A Mississippi Resident?

The MDOR confirms that dispensary applicants do not need to be Mississippi residents.

  • As part of the application procedure, applicants are required to get tax permits.
  • Cultivators are required to levy a 5 percent excise tax, which is payable when the grower sells cannabis to a dispensary or a processing facility or when cannabis is transferred between affiliated companies.
  • Patients are subject to the regular 7 percent sales tax levied by dispensaries.
  • Special tax levies are also levied on marijuana dispensaries in Jackson and Tupelo, Mississippi.
  • At www.tap.dor.ms.gov, businesses may register for a tax account with the state of Mississippi.

Regulations Determined As Economic Interest For Cannabis

As defined in these draft regulations, “economic interest” means having an ownership interest in a business or in a partnership or limited partnership or stockholder who owns at least ten percent of the available stock, or it means having any other type of interest that entitles the individual or entity to regular payments for amounts that are based on a percentage of revenue derived from the sale of cannabis or cannabis products at any licensed dispensary. The following items are excluded from this definition:

  • Any investment over which the investor has no influence over the kind, quantity, or timing, including mutual funds, group investments, and so on;
  • Financial institutions that have made a loan to the dispensary with regular flat fee payments; operators under management agreements where the fee paid to the management company is a flat monthly rate or a percentage fee equal to less than 10% of the dispensary’s monthly gross revenue; or landlords who receive flat monthly rate lease payments from the dispensary.
  • The MDOR will notify applicants whether their application is complete or if any information is lacking.
  • Within 30 days after receiving the completed application, the MDOR will make a decision on it.
  • Applications will be handled in the order in which they are received, beginning with an examination of the information included within the application.
  • If the MDOR receives applications from dispensaries within 1,500 feet of one another, the company that gets the license first will have control.
  • Before the application is considered complete, both the $15,000 application cost and the $25,000 licensing fee must be paid.
  • Both payments may be returned if a license is refused because to the 1,500-foot distance limit between dispensaries.
  • If the refusal is for another reason, just the licensing cost will be returned.
  • Applicants must pay licensing and application fees via NIC Licensing Solutions using a credit card or ACH debit.

MMJ Dispensary License Agreements Must Be Completed On Time

Suppose the licensee’s dispensary is under construction when the MDOR issues the license. In that case, construction must be completed. The premises must open for business according to all legal requirements within the license’s 12-month term to avoid nonrenewal and need to submit a new application.

  • Licensees are permitted to transfer ownership interests, but they must first file an application and comply with all other conditions.
  • Licensees are permitted to move their dispensaries, but only after submitting an application and being given permission to do so by the state.

What & How Are These Mississippi MMJ Dispensaries Permitted To Sell?

These laws specify the security plans and methods, including alarm systems and video surveillance systems, that must be put in place to ensure the safety of employees. In the case of dispensaries, there are special advertising and marketing restrictions and building signage regulations that apply. Dispensaries are only permitted to sell medicinal cannabis, medical cannabis equipment, medical cannabis supplies, and instructional materials relating to medical cannabis.

  • Specific excluded items include clothing, food that does not contain cannabis, beverages that do not contain cannabis, propane or butane, and vaping products that do not contain cannabis.
  • Dispensaries cannot hire management companies to manage the dispensary without first obtaining approval from the MDOR.
  • Dispensaries can only conduct certain activities during normal business hours without separate approval from the MDOR.
  • The proposed regulations contain additional information regarding compliance with the seed-to-sale tracking system.
  • As applicable, dispensaries can only sell concentrated cannabis, edible cannabis products, and cannabis-infused products obtained from a processing facility or other dispensary licensed by the MDOH or MDOR.
  • Certain records must be kept onsite or electronically onsite for at least three years.
  • Dispensaries can only receive or ship medical cannabis products by using a licensed medical cannabis transportation entity.
  • Dispensaries and their employees have a duty to report certain occurrences, such as the loss or theft of medical cannabis products.
  • The proposed regulations set forth a chart detailing the penalties for various offenses.

My Marijuana Cards is here to help through these types of processes. Book an appointment online and talk with one of our trusted certified physicians today!