Today, Michigan’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) issued an Advisory Bulletin on the Bureau of Medical Marihuana Regulation’s (BMMR) intended application process for medical marihuana facilities licenses. The Advisory Bulletin is just that—advisory—and is issued in anticipation of emergency rules that LARA plans to promulgate under the Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act (MMFLA) in November.

The Advisory Bulletin lays out a two-step application process for applicants seeking a medical marihuana facility license. The two phases, prequalification and the license application, are designed to allow applicants to start the licensing process before having found the location of their proposed medical marihuana facilities, which should give applicants—and BMMR—more time to adjust to the new lay of the land. BMMR will start accepting applications on December 15 of this year, but applicants will be able to choose whether to submit both parts of the application at once or just the prequalification application first.

During the prequalification step, BMMR will conduct a full background investigation of license applicants and their affiliates, which requires fingerprinting and includes checks into criminal and financial history, regulation and taxation compliance, and business litigation history. A brief outline of required supporting documentation is provided in the Advisory Bulletin.

LARA intends to tailor the second step of the application process to the five different facility license types: growing, processing, provisioning, safety compliance, and secure transportation. This step will require more information and documentation from applicants, including approval from the municipality where the facility will be located and a copy of the municipality’s authorizing ordinance; plans for technology, staffing, marketing, inventory, security, and recordkeeping; floorplans and layouts for the facility; and proof of the facility’s insurance, bond, or securities.

LARA’s Advisory Bulletin gives applicants a good sense of what to expect from the application process, but the emergency rules that will be issued in November may change the process before the application period starts in December. As we have previously reported, LARA is hosting a series of “road shows” in early November to provide additional information and training about this process.