There’s a golden rule in the medical marijuana business: Do everything in your power to appear legitimate, professional and law-abiding. In other words, don’t toe the line when it comes to ethics, legal issues or anything else that could tarnish the perception of the industry.
We’ve touched on this issue numerous times, because it’s so important to the ultimate success of individual dispensaries and the industry as a whole. But we keep seeing questionable practices that shed a bad light on the industry.
Last week, we wrote about two of them:
– A dispensary in Michigan – Your Healthy Choice Clinic – offered free marijuana to customers who registered to vote ahead of an election to seat city council members, causing some officials to question whether the business was trying to “buy votes.”
– Colorado-based Greenway University, which offers classes on growing and selling medical marijuana, was suspended after state education regulators found discrepancies in the owner’s application to run the school. Gus Escamilla allegedly stated that he had not been convicted of a felony, even though he had.
Now we have a another situation here in the Denver. The state’s Medical Marijuana Enforcement Division is renting office space from a pot lawyer who works with numerous dispensaries. According to the Denver Post, the division is paying attorney H. Alan Dill $1.3 million over five years to lease the space. Additionally, the office space is located “directly across the hall” from Dill’s law firm, which provides consulting, licensing and legal service to the medical marijuana industry. This relationship, some say, creates a conflict of interest. The enforcement division (as you’d expect) disagrees, saying the landlord-tenant relationship won’t influence its decisions.
Viewed together, these three incidents give ammo to those who want to ban dispensaries and shut down the entire medical pot business. Let these examples serve as lessons for the rest of the industry on what not to do.