Lume Cannabis Co. has over 30 dispensaries all over Michigan but apparently, that’s not enough. After being denied a license to open up shop in the Village of Pinckney, Lume sued the small town and lost.
Lume’s suit argued that Pinckney’s residency requirement for opening a cannabis business and favoring local merchants was discriminatory. Sound familiar? It seems pretty close to what happened in Detroit when Crystal Lowe sued the city for “unfairly favoring” Detroit residents for recreational cannabis business licenses.
Some people just don’t take rejection well. Unlike in Detroit, however, where the legacy clause was deemed unconstitutional and the city had to start all over, Lume’s case was shot down.
Last week U.S. District Court Judge Gershwin A. Drain decided that Lume “faced no harm” in not receiving the license, according to Crain’s Detroit Business.
“Without a viable MRTMA (Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act) claim, Lume’s case goes up in smoke,” the judge wrote.
You see, Pinckney only has one marijuana license available. It’s a seriously small town with a population of only about 2,500. Three companies applied for the village’s sole license — Lume Cannabis Co., The Means Project, and QPS Michigan Holdings LLC. Lume was ranked dead last, losing points for not having a clean energy plan and choosing not to repurpose a blighted building for its dispensary, which is a standard set in place by the town.
Pinckney is well within its rights to create whatever standards it wants to rank companies wanting to open a marijuana business there. It’s part of Michigan law for towns that limit the number of cannabis licenses available.
The Means Project, which is based in Howell, won the license bid late last year but has been held up by Lume’s lawsuit. The company has spent a reported $2.2 million so far to convert the abandoned Pinckney Elementary School into a marijuana growing, processing, and retail facility.
Lume Cannabis is considered the largest single-state adult-use cannabis operator in the country. In 2021, Lume opened 16 recreational marijuana dispensaries. In January 2022 the company opened its 30th dispensary, falling right in line with its plans to have 100 recreational stores in Michigan by 2024.
No shade to Lume, but it’s nice to see the little guy get a chance for once instead of all the opportunities being gobbled up by giant companies.