Retired NFL star Calvin Johnson gets initial OK for MI medical cannabis permit

Be at the forefront of cannabis and psychedelics science and innovation. Register today & Save $200 on tickets to The Emerald Conference by MJBiz Science, April 1-3 in San Diego.

Calvin Johnson, a former standout receiver with the Detroit Lions, has received preliminary approval for a Michigan medical marijuana license to operate a dispensary.

Johnson and his wife, Brittney, were granted prequalification status by Michigan’s medical marijuana licensing board on a 4-0 vote Thursday, the Detroit Free Press reported.

Johnson and his business partner, former Lions and Seattle guard Robert Sims, were denied licenses in December for an MMJ dispensary, grow operation and processing facility in Webberville.

One reason the application was denied at the time were some unpaid traffic tickets issued in Atlanta to Johnson that were nearly 10 years old.

Johnson, who retired from the NFL after the 2015 season, has since paid the tickets, which prompted Michigan’s MMJ licensing board to OK his prequalification application for a dispensary, according to the Free Press.

The dispensary will operate as Michigan Community Collective. Johnson’s business partner is his wife, Brittney, and not Sims.

Johnson and Sims, who retired after the 2014 NFL season, are appealing their December denials, and a hearing is scheduled for April 11.

Michigan’s MMJ licensing board bestows prequalification status when an applicant has completed a background check but hasn’t been granted approval from the municipality in which they are hoping to do business.