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Medical Marijuana

In the year 2000, Nevada voters passed Question 9, amending the state constitution to sanction medical marijuana and, specifically,to allow physicians to authorize qualified patients to consume marijuana. However, no provision was made for patients to obtain it other than growing their own.

In 2013,the Nevada legislature passed, and Governor Sandoval signed into law, Senate Bill 374, which directs the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services to develop regulations for, and oversee the creation of, licensed establishments to produce, test, and dispense marijuana and marijuana-infused products.

In April of 2014, the Division of Public and Behavioral Health of the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services (the “Division”) issued regulations for the operation of medical marijuana establishments. On November 3, 2014, the Department of Health and Human Services – Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health (DPBH) released the scores and rankings of the medical marijuana establishments that had submitted an application to DPBH to allow them to operate a medical marijuana establishment in the State of Nevada. For more information about the Division’s regulations and Nevada’s medical marijuana program please visit their website at http://dpbh.nv.gov/Reg/Medical_Marijuana/.
 
One of the Division’s requirements is that a specific location for a medical marijuana establishment must be identified in the application. In order for a proposed medical marijuana establishment to receive the Nevada state registration certification, it must be in compliance with local government.
 
The City of Sparks, at the direction of the Sparks City Council, has amended its municipal code to license medical marijuana establishments and allow them to locate in certain non-residential zoning districts.  As of this date, the status of this process is as follows:
  • On April 28, 2014 the Sparks City Council amended the City’s zoning code to permit the establishment of medical marijuana cultivation facilities, independent testing laboratories and facilities for the production of edible marijuana products or marijuana-infused products in the I (Industrial) zoning district.
    • The zoning ordinance and staff report are available on our City Council Agenda Page
    • The location of these facilities must also comply with NRS 453A restrictions which prohibit medical marijuana establishments from locating within 1,000 feet of a public or private school providing formal education to pre-school/kindergarten to 12th grade or within 300 feet of a ‘community facility’. The latter includes licensed day care facilities, public parks, playgrounds, public swimming pools, recreational facilities for children or adolescents, churches and other places used for religious worship.
    • These medical marijuana facilities are permitted subject to a registration certificate from the State of Nevada and an administrative review by the City of Sparks.  The application is found here.  And a registration certificate from the State of Nevada.
  • On May 27, 2014 the Sparks City Council amended the City’s zoning code to permit the establishment of medical marijuana dispensaries in the C2 (General Commercial) zoning district, the Mixed-Use Commercial portion of the TOD (Transit Oriented Development) district and limited areas of the I (Industrial) district.
    • The zoning ordinance changes and staff report are available on our website here.  The location of these facilities must also comply with NRS 453A restrictions which prohibit medical marijuana establishments from locating within 1,000 feet of a public or private school providing formal education to pre-school/kindergarten to 12th grade or within 300 feet of a ‘community facility’. The latter includes licensed day care facilities, public parks, playgrounds, public swimming pools, recreational facilities for children or adolescents, churches and other places used for religious worship.  In addition, a dispensary cannot be located within 1,000 feet from a Nevada licensed substance abuse treatment center.
    • Dispensaries are permitted subject to a registration certificate from the State of Nevada and an administrative review by the City of Sparks.  The application is found here.
  • On August 25, 2014, the City Council adopted new business license procedures and fees for the operation of medical marijuana establishments (Chapter 5.80 – Licensing of Medical Marijuana Establishments). A separate business license will be required for every operation within each medical marijuana establishment. The regulations establish operation requirements and procedures. The business license fees are:
    • For medical marijuana cultivation, a base fee of three thousand dollars ($3,000.00) per year plus, for each quarter based on the establishment’s gross receipts for the previous quarter, an additional one dollar ($1.00) for each thousand dollars ($1,000.00) in gross receipts (or portion thereof) in excess of ten thousand dollars ($10,000.00).
    • For a medical marijuana facility for the production of edible marijuana products or marijuana-infused products, a base fee of three thousand dollars ($3,000.00) per year plus, for each quarter based on the establishment’s gross receipts for the previous quarter, an additional one dollar ($1.00) for each one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) in gross receipts (or portion thereof) in excess of ten thousand dollars ($10,000.00).
    • For a medical marijuana dispensary, a base fee of five thousand dollars ($5,000.00) per year plus, for each quarter based on the establishment’s gross receipts for the previous quarter, an additional five dollars ($5.00) for each one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) in gross receipts (or portion thereof) in excess of ten thousand dollars ($10,000.00).
    • For self-cultivation, self-growing or self-production of medical marijuana, the person must register annually with the City of Sparks. There is no fee associated with the required registration.

For your convenience to understand the process here is a link to a flowchart illustrating the approval process for the City of Sparks.

Questions regarding the City’s regulations for medical marijuana establishments may be directed via email at mmquestions@cityofsparks.us or by calling Armando Ornelas at 775.353.1644 or Karen Melby at 775.353.7878.