Nevada Dispensaries Running Out Of Marijuana A Week After It Was Legalized

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As of Friday, the Department of Taxation had issued zero distribution licenses to alcohol wholesalers, because of incomplete applications and zoning issues, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported.

Dispensaries began selling marijuana on July 1, and allow customers age 21 and older to buy an ounce of marijuana, or an eighth of an ounce in edibles.

Gov. Brian Sandoval has now endorsed the Department of Taxation's proposed "statement of emergency", the agency announced [PDF] on Friday, which would allow state officials to consider adopting a temporary regulation [PDF] to get sales going again.

"Based on reports of adult-use marijuana sales already far exceeding the industry's expectations at the state's 47 licensed retail marijuana stores, and the reality that many stores are running out of inventory", she said, "the Department must address the lack of distributors immediately".

"We continue to work with the liquor wholesalers who have applied for distribution licenses, but most don't yet meet the requirements that would allow us to license them".

Nevada is the only state with legalized marijuana that has such an arrangement. Several establishments told state officials they expected to run out in the coming days.

Nevada Dispensaries Running Out Of Marijuana A Week After It Was Legalized

Almost 50 dispensaries in the state have licenses to sell marijuana for recreational use.

Riana Durrett, executive director of the Nevada Dispensary Association, estimated sales of around $3 million during the first four days of business.

While the recreational use of marijuana has only been legal in Nevada for a week, authorized dispensaries are already running out of weed.

The department attempted to rectify the problem by allowing businesses that transport medical marijuana to distribute, but a last-minute court battle kept that right exclusively to the wholesale alcohol distributors.

Stephanie Klapstein, a spokeswoman for the Department of Taxation, told the Reno Gazette-Journal that a collapsed marijuana market would have far-reaching consequences.

Earlier this year, the Department of Taxation tried opening distribution to other types of businesses when it saw insufficient interest and readiness from the liquor industry, only to be stopped in court in May, when they sued to hang onto their first dibs. The state's tax commission is set to vote on Sandoval's new measure this week. An additional 10% marijuana sales tax goes into the state's rainy-day fund.

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