Ohio Nears Legalization of Recreational Marijuana Sales

Ohio is edging closer to allowing the sale of recreational marijuana, thanks to recent developments by the state Division of Cannabis Control. Approximately 60 dual-use provisional licenses have been awarded to various entities including medical marijuana dispensaries, cultivators, laboratories, and processors, as per the state’s online database.

While these provisional licenses mark progress, they do not automatically permit the sale of recreational marijuana. Instead, they serve as placeholders until businesses obtain a Certificate of Operation. This involves meeting stringent requirements such as passing inspections and ensuring staff can distinguish between medical and recreational sales.

According to Jamie Crawford, spokesperson for the Division of Cannabis Control, no Certificates of Operation have been issued yet for dispensaries to commence non-medical cannabis sales. The timeline for when recreational marijuana sales will officially launch in Ohio remains uncertain.

“There will be no one singular day when sales begin,” Crawford explained. “We will start issuing licenses, and it will be up to the retailer based on staffing, stock, and other considerations as to which day they will begin sales.”

Ohio legalized marijuana for adults aged 21 and above through Issue 2, a citizen initiative approved with 57% of the vote last year. Initial expectations suggested licenses might not be issued until August, following the opening of license applications earlier this month. Applications must be reviewed and decided upon by September 7.

Under Issue 2, Ohioans are permitted to grow up to six marijuana plants per individual and up to 12 per household. Although both the House and Senate proposed changes to marijuana legalization post-Issue 2, neither proposal advanced through the opposing chamber.

As Ohio moves closer to implementing recreational marijuana sales, developments continue to unfold amid legislative and regulatory frameworks shaped by public initiative and ongoing state oversight.

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