Missouri Real Estate & Cannabis Regulations

Cannabis Status: Open

MISSOURI CANNABIS LICENSE APPLICATIONS – Starting April 15 and running through April 29, Missouri has opened a second round of microbusiness license applications.

. Contact WeCann for Missouri cannabis license application.

On Tuesday, November 8th, 2022, the citizens of Missouri voted in favor of a constitutional amendment that permits the recreational use of marijuana for individuals over the age of 18. Starting last December 8th, 2022, individuals residing in Missouri were able to legally possess and use cannabis for recreational purposes.

Name: Missouri
Population: 6,168,000
Median Income: $61,043
Cannabis Uses: TBD
State Cannabis Overview: In November 2022, Missouri voters decisively approved Amendment 3, thereby legalizing the recreational use of marijuana for individuals aged 21 and above. This significant legislative change not only permits adults to buy and hold cannabis but also initiates a process for the expungement of previous non-violent cannabis offenses, indicating a significant step towards criminal justice reform. Following this amendment, Missouri began transitioning from its medical marijuana system, set up in 2018, to a broader recreational cannabis market. By October 2023, Missouri initiated a lottery to allocate six microbusiness licenses per each of the state’s eight congressional districts, resulting in a total of 48 licenses. In each district, two licenses were designated for microbusiness dispensaries and four for wholesale operations. The state plans to continue this expansion by issuing 48 additional licenses in both 2024 and 2025, with specific application periods to be announced on the Department’s website.

Missouri Cannabis & Commercial Real Estate Research

Introduction

In a significant move to expand its cannabis industry, Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) has announced the commencement of a second round of microbusiness license applications for the state’s burgeoning cannabis sector. This initiative marks a pivotal moment in Missouri’s approach to cannabis legalization and microbusiness empowerment, offering unique opportunities for marginalized and under-represented individuals to participate in the legal marijuana market.

The Application Process

Starting April 15 and running through April 29, the DHSS will accept applications for microbusiness licenses electronically via their online registry portal. This process is designed to streamline and simplify the application phase, enabling prospective entrepreneurs to submit their applications efficiently and securely.

The Lottery System

A distinctive aspect of Missouri’s microbusiness license allocation is the lottery system. Scheduled for June 2024, the lottery ensures a fair and unbiased selection process. The results, eagerly anticipated by applicants, will be posted on the Department’s website in July, fostering transparency and public trust in the process.

Distribution of Licenses

Missouri’s commitment to equitable distribution is evident in its plan to issue six microbusiness licenses in each of the state’s eight congressional districts. This approach ensures a widespread and balanced allocation, with a total of 48 licenses up for grabs in this round.

Eligibility and Restrictions

Microbusiness licenses cater specifically to entities and individuals who meet certain eligibility criteria, emphasizing inclusivity and fairness. Importantly, applicants cannot already own a license in any medical, comprehensive, or other marijuana facilities, ensuring new entrants have a fair chance at success. The program also stipulates that each applicant may only apply for one license, either for a dispensary or a wholesale facility.

Applicants must be majority owned and operated by individuals who meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • Have a net worth of less than $250,000 and an income below 250% of the federal poverty level.
  • Possess a valid service-connected disability card from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or successor agency.
  • Be a person, or a person whose parent, guardian, or spouse has been arrested for, prosecuted for, or convicted of a non-violent marijuana offense, excluding convictions involving provision of marijuana to a minor or driving under the influence of marijuana. The legal issue must have occurred at least one year prior to the application.

Or reside in a ZIP code or census tract where:

  • At least 30% of the population lives below the federal poverty level.
  • The unemployment rate is 50% higher than the state’s average.
  • The historic rate of incarceration for marijuana-related offenses is 50% higher than the state’s rate.
  • Have graduated from an unaccredited school district, or lived for three of the past five years in a zip code with an unaccredited school district or equivalent designation.

Financial and Residency Requirements

With an application fee set at $1,500, Missouri aims to keep the process accessible while ensuring serious commitments. Notably, there is no residency requirement, broadening the pool of potential applicants. Eligibility extends to those with a net worth under $250,000, veterans with service-connected disabilities, individuals or their close relatives with past non-violent marijuana offenses, or residents from economically disadvantaged areas or those with educational setbacks.

Real Estate Required at Time of Application (GOOD PLACE FOR CALL TO ACTION)

As applicants are required to have a proposed location when they apply, it is imperative that interested applicants get a head start on finding the ideal location. Let our expert real estate procurement team help you find the ideal location for your cannabis business today.

Community and Location Considerations

Applicants must propose a facility location compliant with local guidelines, maintaining a respectful distance from schools, daycares, and churches. This requirement underscores the program’s commitment to community harmony and legal compliance, necessitating collaboration with local governance to meet zoning requirements.

The Selection Process

To uphold the integrity of the selection process, the Missouri Lottery will conduct the drawings without knowing the applicants’ identities. Applicants will be sorted by district and license type, each assigned a unique identifier, with 16 separate lottery sets ensuring a thorough and unbiased selection.

Conclusion

Missouri’s innovative approach to cannabis microbusiness licensing represents a significant step forward in promoting inclusivity and economic opportunity within the cannabis industry. By employing a lottery system and setting forth clear eligibility criteria, the state aims to foster a diverse and vibrant cannabis market, providing new opportunities for those historically marginalized or underrepresented in the industry.

As Missouri prepares to embark on this exciting new chapter, the cannabis industry and prospective entrepreneurs alike await the outcome of the lottery with keen anticipation, ready to contribute to the state’s growing cannabis ecosystem.

Adult use microbusiness application will be accepted between July 27 and Aug. 10

The application will be available by June 6 and the DHSS plans to issue six microbusiness licenses in each of Missouri’s eight congressional districts (for a total of 48 microbusiness licenses) through a random lottery drawing scheduled for October.

  • Essentially social equity licenses
  • The Department will issue an additional 48 in 2024, and another 48 in 2025
  • Applicants will need to provide the proposed facility address in their application
    • Limit of one license per person.  Part of app – attestation that none of the owners have ownership of another medical, comprehensive, or microbusiness license
  • Applicants limited to one app each (regardless of ownership percentage)
  • Applicants must be majority owned and operated by individuals who each meet at least one of the following eligibility requirements:
    • Have a net worth of less than $250,000 and have had an income below two hundred and fifty percent of the federal poverty level; or
    • Have a valid service-connected disability card issued by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, or successor agency; or
    • Be a person who has been, or a person whose parent, guardian or spouse has been arrested for, prosecuted for, or convicted of a non-violent marijuana offense, except for a conviction involving provision of marijuana to a minor, or a conviction of driving under the influence of marijuana. The arrest, charge, or conviction must have occurred at least one year prior to the effective date of this section; or
    • Reside in a ZIP code or census tract area where:
      • Thirty percent or more of the population lives below the federal poverty level; or
      • The rate of unemployment is fifty percent higher than the state average rate of unemployment; or
      • The historic rate of incarceration for marijuana-related offenses is fifty percent higher than the rate for the entire state; or
    • Graduated from a school district that was unaccredited, or had a similar successor designation, at the time of graduation, or has lived in a zip code containing an unaccredited school district, or similar successor designation, for three of the past five years.

Contact us for cannabis license application support.

Zoning

The Department’s conversion application process does not include a local zoning verification step. Adherence to local zoning regulations will need to be ensured following the conversion, and any changes to the zoning regulations will be handled on an individual basis during this transition period. The Article XIV includes provisions relating to the local zoning of comprehensive facilities, so it is advisable to contact your local government for guidance on any relevant zoning requirements.

Feel free to contact us to get to know more about cannabis zoning in Missouri.

Tax Rate

Local jurisdictions in Missouri have a January 24th deadline to approve a cannabis tax ballot measure for the April election, adding an additional 3% local tax on top of the statewide 6% statewide sales tax. (4% for medical statewide tax)

St. Louis, chesterfield, Ballwin, Festus, Florissant, Kirkwood, Manchester, O’Fallon, Richmond Heights, and St. Ann are some cities with it on the ballot

State setbacks

Unless expressly allowed by the local government, no medical or marijuana facility, including any offsite warehouses, shall be sited, at the time of application for license, certification, or local zoning approval, whichever is earlier, within one thousand feet (1,000′) of any then-existing elementary or secondary school, daycare, or church.

Local control

No cities can opt out without a general election ballot measure during a presidential election year (starting 2024)

Application criteria suggested to be included by ordinance.

The application period has closed for medical cultivation, testing, manufacturing and dispensary license. Only applications for Seed to Sale and Transportation certifications are available for submittal.

Application forms and procedures for microbusiness lottery: The department will begin accepting microbusiness facility license applications on or before September 4, 2023. Application forms will be made available no later than June 6, 2023.

St. Louis

Chesterfield

Ballwin

Festus

Florissant

Kirkwood

Manchester

O’Fallon

Richmond Heights

St. Ann

Visit CREC Portal for more information on Missouri Cannabis Real Estate.

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