Emergency measures considered to tackle Nevada marijuana shortage

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The state of Nevada is facing a crisis as retailers run out of marijuana less than two weeks after it legalised recreational use of the drug.

State officials are now considering emergency measures to improve distribution, according to the Reno Gazette-Journal.

New laws brought into force on July 1 allow alcohol wholesale distributors the exclusive right to transport marijuana from where it is grown and packaged to Nevada’s 47 licensed marijuana retailers.

However most do not yet meet licensing requirements, according to tax officials quoted in the report, and progress on applications has stalled.

Retailers are meanwhile running dry because “adult-use marijuana sales [are] already far exceeding the industry’s expectations”, tax department spokeswoman Stephanie Klapstein told the newspaper.

Governor Brian Sandoval was reported to have endorsed a statement of emergency by the tax department on the shortage, allowing state officials to rush through new legislation to resolve the crisis.

“Unless the issue with distributor licensing is resolved quickly, the inability to deliver product to retail stores will result in many of these people losing their jobs and will bring this nascent market to a grinding halt,” said Klapstein.

She added: “A halt in this market will lead to a hole in the state’s school budget.”

Nevada passed the law to legalise recreational use of marijuana in November, while medical use has been permitted since 2001.


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