Medical Marijuana Center?
According to people posting on michiganmedicalmarijuana.org, the Ypsi facility is set up as a club, with membership costing $12 a year and varieties of pot priced at $15-$20 a gram. One customer reports buying "a few grams of my meds"--and a chocolate brownie for $7, "which I thought was steep but it did its thing."
That's consistent with the way dispensaries operate in California, selling marijuana and foods laced with the herb to approved patients. But, according to Department of Community Health spokesperson James McCurtis, "since the law in Michigan does not address dispensaries or offer any regulating system for them, the Michigan Department of Community Health interprets the law as saying that it is illegal to operate a marijuana dispensary. In addition, marijuana is a Schedule I controlled substance, and it is illegal to buy and sell."
Mayor John Hieftje is being cautious, too. "The legal process is slow. There's no enabling legislation. We can't act independently of Lansing, and the situation's being looked at." Looking amused, he adds, "It's a puzzle we haven't figured out."
Longtime local attorney Dennis Hayes disagrees. "No such enabling ordinance is necessary," he wrote in an analysis he drafted for Bolgos. He cites Ann Arbor's local medical marijuana charter amendment, which voters approved back in 2004: "Fines and all other costs shall be waived upon proof that the defendant is recommended by a physician, practitioner or other qualified health professional to use or provide the marijuana or cannabis for medical treatment."
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