Whitmer's new Marijuana Regulatory Agency hits the ground running


Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. - TOM PERKINS
  • Tom Perkins
  • Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's new Marijuana Regulatory Agency is official on Tuesday.

Whitmer created the new agency with an executive order in March. The move establishes the MRA under the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, combining previously existing authorities into a new agency. It also disbands the state's previously established Medical Marihuana Licensing Board in order to "eliminate inefficiencies that have made it difficult to meet the needs of Michigan’s medical marijuana patients," Whitmer said at the time.

"I'm confident that the MRA is prepared to implement a fair and effective regulatory structure that protects Michiganders while providing an opportunity for businesses of all sizes to thrive," Whitmer says in a statement. "Having a single state agency dedicated to administering all state laws relating to marijuana will allow Michigan to continue to lead the nation in this emerging industry."

The agency has already hit the ground running, processing more than 180,000 applications for marijuana registry cards and clearing a backlog of 800 marijuana facility license applications from last year, according to a release. The agency says it will also create a set of industry "emergency rules" by summer and plans to begin to accept business applications by the fall. It also plans to increase its staff of 102 full-time employees to 150 in 2020.

The MRA will hold four public meetings each year. More information about the agency is available at michigan.gov/MRA.

It's a new era for marijuana in Michigan. Sign up for our weekly weed newsletter, delivered every Tuesday at 4:20 p.m.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at letters@metrotimes.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Detroit Metro Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Metro Times Press Club for as little as $5 a month.