On July 1st of 2017, Nevada’s new recreational marijuana program officially began. Less than two weeks later, a state of emergency was called. Not because of hospitalizations or crime, but because the state is running out of medical marijuana to sell on the legal market. This shocking news was announced by the State Department of Taxation, according to the Reno Gazette-Journal.
Officials from the State Department of Taxation said that Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval endorsed their idea of a “state of emergency.” What this would do is place an emergency regulation into effect.
From here, the department could look at other possible people who may be allowed to distribute the marijuana. This goes against what was originally agreed upon as to who could sell the marijuana:
According to the Reno Gazette-Journal: “As the state law legalizing recreational marijuana was passed in November, wholesale alcohol distributors were promised exclusive rights to transport wholesale marijuana for the first 18 months of legal sales. Since November, the state has received seven applications from liquor wholesalers.”
When the news emerged of a possible state of emergency on Friday, the Department hadn’t yet granted extra distribution licenses. Despite this, some dispensaries won’t be getting shipments of marijuana for a while.
“Based on reports of adult-use marijuana sales already far exceeding the industry’s expectations at the state’s 47 licensed retail marijuana stores, and the reality that many stores are running out of inventory, the Department must address the lack of distributors immediately. Some establishments report the need for delivery within the next several days,” department spokeswoman Stephanie Klapstein said Friday.
As for the liquor wholesalers who may be interested in becoming dispensaries, only seven have applied for licenses since the law was passed in November.
“We continue to work with the liquor wholesalers who have applied for distribution licenses, but most don’t yet meet the requirements that would allow us to license them. Even as we attempted to schedule the final facility inspection for one of the applicants this week, they told us their facility was not ready and declined the inspection,” Klapstein said.
We won’t know officially how much revenue recreational marijuana will bring to Nevada in state tax revenue until September. However, the Nevada Dispensary Association has already estimated that dispensaries made around $3 million and the state around $1 million in the first four days of business.