Marijuana industry leaders converge on Vegas for convention

LAS VEGAS - Reno's city prosecutor has decided to follow Las Vegas' lead and will not prosecute minor possession of marijuana cases until pot becomes legal in Nevada.

City Attorney Karl Hall says it doesn't make sense to file new charges against people accused of having less than an ounce of pot.  Especially, after the state voted to legalize recreational marijuana on Nov. 8.  The law goes into effect on Jan. 1.

However, officials in Washoe County and Sparks are not on board.  They say they'll continue to enforce the law until the start of 2017.

The news comes as more than 10,000 cannabis industry leaders from around the country have converged on Las Vegas for a convention.  At ShowGrow, marijuana professionals are looking at everything from equipment and fertilizer to an actual mockup of a dispensary.

"What we've done with the ShowGrow concept is to offer safe access, in essence, with a fun environment," said David Barakett, CEO of ShowGrow.

At the convention, businesses offer a glimpse into what Nevada's marijuana industry could look like in the future.  State lawmakers will soon tackle a bill that would require edibles to be packaged in non-descript, child-proof packaging.

Manufacturers like California-based Kush Bottles are already working on meeting those standards.

"Our efforts have always been about building a platform around child-resistant, pharmaceutical-grade packaging," said Nick Kovacevich, CEO of Kush Bottles.

Another issue facing the industry is that marijuana businesses have had a hard time finding buildings in which to set up shop.

Kalyx Development Ceo George Stone says commercial real estate inventory is low, and the number of landlords willing to rent to marijuana businesses is even smaller.

"So they typically reject them because sometimes if a landlord has a mortgage, the mortgage prohibits activities that are illegal, Stone said.  "Even though it's state legal, it's federally illegal."

So will Nevada's marijuana industry continue to cater only to cash clients?

Stone says some 300 small banks nationwide are taking advantage of relaxed regulations by the U.S. Treasury to do business with cannabis-based businesses.

"It's too small of an industry for the big banks to worry about dealing with this, so they've chosen not to, but they have the mechanisms to do it," Stone said.

When recreational marijuana becomes legal in Nevada in January, sales won't begin right away.  At least two state lawmakers say they'll work on a temporary program allowing medical marijuana facilities to make recreational sales until full regulations are in place.


More Stories

Don't Miss

  • #OurPain
    Copyright 2017 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Halloween Happenings
    Copyright 2017 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Politics Now
    Copyright 2017 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Connect with 8 News NOW
    Copyright 2017 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Community Calendar
    Copyright 2017 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories

Latest News

Video Center