The Nevada Tax Commission has approved the Early Start provisions for an adult-use cannabis regime that will allow the state to begin issuing recreational licenses by July, 1, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. The plan will allow current medical cannabis dispensary operators the first chance to participate in the adult-use industry.
According to Deonne Contine, Tax Department Director, the Early Start was necessary in order to meet requirements in Gov. Brian Sandoval’s proposed budget that includes $70 million from recreational cannabis sales over the next two years.
“If we don’t adopt the regulations, we will not have a temporary program,” Contine said in the report. “If we don’t have a temporary program, we will not have the revenue that’s included in the governor’s budget.”
Clark County, of which Las Vegas is a part, is set to begin licensing on July 1, and officials for Sin City and North Las Vegas plan to begin the licensing process on that date. In February, officials in Henderson implemented a six-month moratorium on recreational sales, which means the five dispensaries operating in the city will have to wait until at least August to participate in the recreational program.
“It’s great for the state. It’s great for the industry. I think it’s great for everybody,” said Armen Yemenidjian, owner of Essence Cannabis dispensaries. “This is a display in how Nevada gets things done.”
The regulations approved by the department do not allow liquor distributors to apply for distribution licenses due to the potential conflict with federal law.