YOUR BUSINESS AUTHORITY
On a recent visit with Alex Paulson, co-owner of Easy Mountain Cannabis Co. in Republic, he mentioned the dispensary has been turning away visitors daily since recreational marijuana was approved by Missouri voters in November. Many didn’t realize adult-use weed wasn’t legalized as soon as Amendment 3 passed. It’s an example of some uncertainty rising amid the changing landscape in the state’s marijuana industry.
The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, which oversees the state’s marijuana program, put together a weed-related FAQ on its website. Here are some excerpts:
When will adult-use marijuana be available to consumers?
As of Dec. 8, 2022, consumers are allowed to legally possess up to 3 ounces of marijuana. However, marijuana will not be available for consumers to purchase in a Missouri licensed dispensary facility until medical facility licensees convert their licenses to comprehensive facilities. On Dec. 8, the department began accepting requests for existing medical facility licensees to convert to a comprehensive facility. Because the department has 60 days from receipt to approve those requests, adult-use product could be available as early as February. Once approved, it is up to each comprehensive dispensary to decide when it will begin selling marijuana for adult use.
When will the department be accepting microbusiness facility license applications?
The department will begin accepting microbusiness facility license applications on or before Sept. 4. Application forms will be made available no later than June 6.
What is a microbusiness facility?
A microbusiness facility refers to either a microbusiness dispensary or a microbusiness wholesale facility, both of which conduct operations related to marijuana for medical and adult use. A microbusiness is different from a medical or comprehensive facility because it is designed to provide a path to facility ownership for individuals who might not otherwise easily access that opportunity, such as those with a net worth of less than $250,000 or veterans with a service-connected disability. In order to qualify for a microbusiness facility license, applicant entities shall be majority owned by individuals who each meet at least one of a number of qualifications set forth in the Missouri Constitution.
What are possession and tax rate differences in the medical program versus adult-use program?
As of Dec. 8, all approved patient identification cardholders are allowed a standard allotment of 6 ounces (or more based on physician recommendation) within a 30-day period, with medical purchases at a 4% tax rate.
Adult-use marijuana may be purchased by consumers who are at least 21 years of age. Up to 3 ounces may be purchased in a single transaction, and consumers may be in possession of up to 3 ounces of marijuana at any time. Adult-use purchases will be taxed at 6% in addition to any local taxes.
What will be required for a consumer to make a purchase from the dispensary for adult use?
Consumers will be required to present a valid government issued photo ID when purchasing adult use products at a dispensary.
Applications for unemployment aid for the week ending Dec. 31 fell by 19,000 to 204,000, according to the Labor Department. About 1.69 million people were receiving jobless aid the week that ended Dec. 24, about 24,000 fewer than the prior week.
The Labor Department also reported job openings in November remained high. There were 10.46 million job vacancies on the last day of the month, down slightly from 10.51 million in October. It equates to nearly 1.7 jobs for every unemployed person, which remained elevated from 1.2 positions per job seeker before the coronavirus pandemic.
As for unemployment rates nationally, in Missouri and the Springfield metropolitan statistical area, all remained low in November. The U.S. total was 3.5%, while the seasonally adjusted rates for Missouri and the Springfield MSA were 2.7% and 2.2%, respectively.
When compiling our publication’s Open for Business section, I frequently leave out some interesting tidbits, due to space, among other considerations. Here are a couple recent items:
Birch & Willow Spa
First-time business owner Jami Kysar, who teamed with her mother, Jodi Lilly, to open their Branson spa in November, was candid about delays pushing back their originally targeted May launch date. The buildout took six months, and getting design plans approved by the city was a four-month process. But with the doors now open and ribbon-cutting with the Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and Convention & Visitors Bureau complete, Kysar said the delays were a learning experience that gave her confidence to overcome future challenges in the day-to-day spa operations.
Heirloom Candle Bar
Opening her second business in less than two years, Rose Cochran, who co-owns the do-it-yourself candle concept with husband Garrett, said she initially wanted to open Heirloom and Fleur Floral Studio LLC, which launched in February 2021, in separate storefronts. Ultimately, the married mom of a 1-year-old chose to have the ventures co-exist in the same Rountree neighborhood building rather than try to dash between two different locations. She thought the latter option could lead to strain on family time, which proved to be the most important factor in her decision.
Contact Mike Cullinan
Heirloom Candle Bar moved; art supply thrift store Arrow Creative Reuse opened; and Rockford, Illinois-based Beef-A-Roo debuted in Springfield.