Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulation officials have indicated they will not shut down current medical cannabis dispensaries operating in the state, but if they are shuttered by police it will damage their chances of being granted a license when the state begins issuing them later this year, according to a Detroit Free Press report.

“The department will not shut down dispensaries, but it will be a business risk for them to continue to operate because they could be shut down by law enforcement and it could be an impediment to getting a license,” said Andrew Brisbo, director of the Bureau of Medical Marijuana Regulation.

In a statement to the Free Press, representatives from LARA said that the approach allows existing operators to “wind down while giving adequate time for patients to establish connections to caregivers to help ensure continuity of access.”

The agency will issue emergency rules in place in the interim, after consulting with the state Attorney General’s Office, and will begin issuing licenses on Dec. 15. Any dispensary operating at that time will jeopardize its chances at obtaining a license.

Previously, Donald Bailey, chairman of the Michigan Medical Marijuana Licensing Board, said that he wanted to see dispensaries close their doors by Sept. 15 if they wanted to be considered for a license in December.

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