Nevada is Getting Ready for Early Launch of Recreational Marijuana Sales

On May 8, 2017, the Nevada Tax Commission approved "early start" recreational sales licenses to be given to good standing Nevada medical marijuana facilities. The early start licenses will be effective as soon as July 1, 2017, and will expire January of 2018. According to the Las Vegas Sun, the reason "the temporary program was established [was] to allow the department to identify and solve problems with recreational weed before issuing more state certifications for the industry in 2018, said Deonne Contine, executive director of the Department of Taxation." 

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Photo Credit: Las Vegas ReLeaf

Now that this temporary program is set up. Nevada is preparing for a burst of new business. Last year, Las Vegas drew over 40 million visitors, and with the recreational sales of marijuana launching in 2018, a lot of business will be sprawling in Nevada. "According to Marijuana Business Daily, Nevada’s recreational market could generate $75 million or more in sales this year and $450 million-$550 million annually down the road. Tourist spending is expected to account for a heavy portion of sales." 

Nevada will be the fifth state with an operational recreational marijuana sales market. It will be the first to launch its market, following the November 2016 election where voters in Nevada, California, Maine, and Massachusetts voted for recreational use of marijuana to be legalized. Florida, Arkansas, and North Dakota passed medical cannabis initiatives. 

If you're curious on how this process works for acquiring an early recreational sales license in Nevada, Marijuana Business Daily states

Interested businesses must submit an application for a temporary rec license to the Department of Taxation by May 31. Application extensions may be possible under the regulations, so some businesses might be allowed to file as late as June 7.

Businesses must submit a nonrefundable $5,000 application fee along with license fees that will vary by license type. Growers will pay the most for a temporary license – $30,000. Retailers will pay $20,000, testing labs and distributors $15,000 apiece and product manufacturers $10,000.

Those license fees will be applied to whatever permanent fees the commission establishes for the full rec program. That means Nevada companies that want to participate in early rec sales won’t be charged twice for the same permit.