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Nevada Passes Bill to Establish a Cannabis Compliance Board

June 6, 2019

The Nevada Assembly recently passed Assembly Bill 533 that will establish a cannabis compliance board to oversee the medical and adult-use marijuana industry. Governor Steve Sisolak will now appoint five members to cannabis compliance board which will take over as the regulating body from the Nevada taxation department.

Cannabis Compliance Board

As their first order of business the Cannabis Compliance Board will be drafting regulations for marijuana delivery services in Nevada. They will also be evaluating a study surrounding the licensing of public consumption lounges and halt any licensing of these lounges until they have completed their review. The findings of the study will then be submitted to Nevada lawmakers in the next legislative session and they will decide on how to proceed.

The city of Las Vegas has voted to allow public consumption lounges, however, this bill supercede those licensing decisions and give legislators time to understand the pros and cons. The bill that legalized recreational marijuana in Nevada in 2016 did not permit public consumption but now advocates are supporting the idea of lounges so that people have somewhere to go to legally enjoy cannabis.

Transparent Cannabis Licensing

Governor Steve Sisolak has been very vocal about wanting to create a marijuana regulatory system modeled after the state’s Gaming Control Board. In January, he pointed out that, “Nevada’s gaming industry is seen as the international gold standard, and there is no reason we cannot take steps to ensure our marijuana industry is viewed the same way.”

Transferring the regulatory authority to the Cannabis Compliance Board is designed to improve the standards of compliance in Nevada’s cannabis industry and create a policy of transparency. Nevada’s Department of Taxation was accused late last year of withholding information related to a licensing round for cannabis businesses.

Drafting More Regulations

Gov. Sisolak acted quickly to sign a transparency law that forced the state to disclose all of the adult-use business applicants since the program began, including information regarding the licensees in the recent round. Nevada is still in litigation with applicants who are fighting for a redo of the licensing.

In addition to cannabis delivery and consumption lounges on the agenda, the Cannabis Control Commission will also be drafting regulations for hemp and revising some regulations pertaining to inventory control. It is likely that, these changes will affect how producers and retailers handle track-and-trace. Hopefully the creation of the new board will not only improve licensing but make the industry as a whole more efficient.