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The Legal Status of Cannabis in Nevada?

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Cannabis is legal in Nevada for both medical and recreational use. Possession and transportation are allowed and adults 21 years and above can grow up to six cannabis plants per household if 2 miles (40 km) from the store or with a commercial license.  Medical marijuana was legalized by a 65% vote on November 7, 2000, while recreational marijuana was passed by a 54% vote on Question 2 on November 8, 2016.

Patients with “written documentation” from their licensed physician could qualify and are therefore encouraged to confidentially register with the state, for issuance of their Medical Marijuana Identification Cards.

Qualifying conditions in Nevada include:

  • AIDS
  • Anxiety disorder
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Anorexia nervosa
  • Cancer
  • Dependence on or an addiction to opioids
  • Glaucoma
  • Cachexia
  • Muscle spasms which include without limiting spasms brought about by multiple sclerosis
  • Seizures encompassing without limitation epilepsy induced seizures
  • Nausea
  • Severe/chronic pain
  • Medical conditions relating to HIV
  • Neuropathic conditions that may or may not cause seizures

Legislation allowing licensed sales got approved on a separate bill in 2013 which led to the first medical marijuana dispensary opening on July 31, 2015.

Legalization of Recreational Cannabis in Nevada

Cannabis in Nevada became legal following the passing of Question 2 on January 1, 2017. The first licensed sale took place shortly after on July 1, 2017.

Prohibition (1923): This state also banned cannabis during the nationwide trend against marijuana in the early1900ss.

Defelonization (2001): Prior to passing AB 453, Nevada remained the only state in which passing marijuana in any quantity was considered to be a felony.

Assembly Bill 453 contained a provision for making the possession of one once and below a misdemeanor punishable by only a fine and only culminating into criminal charges on a third offense.

Failed recreational use initiative – 2002: Question 9 Failed on the floor, which was a ballot measure meant to legalize marijuana did the purpose of recreation.  Also called the Decriminalization of Marijuana Amendment, this measure sought to legalize the possession of up to 3 cannabis ounces allowing it to be sold in dispensaries.

Failed recreational use initiative – 2006: Question 7, also known as the Regulation of Marijuana which was an initiative to legalize Marijuana for recreational use failed by a 44% vote in 2006. Thus initiative would have permitted adults to possess up to one ounce while making it legally obtainable from dispensaries.

Initiative to Regulate and Tax Marijuana (2016):  After Question 2 passed by a 54 percent vote on November 8, 2016, the possession and use of recreational cannabis were legalized for adults over 21 years of age from January 1, 2017. Thus initiative also allowed for the cultivation of not more than six plants for people who lived at a distance greater than 25 miles from a dispensary.

Consumption lounges (2021): Bill 341was signed by Governor Steve Sisolak on June 2021, allowing lounges for the purchase and consumption of cannabis that were alcohol-free. These lounges could either be stand-alone businesses or they could be attached to an existing dispensary. This law was effected on October 1, 2021, allowing for these lounges to be open by the end of that year once they were licensed.

These lounges were to offer tourists a private place for consuming cannabis other than in their homes. Nevada law explicitly states that these consumption lounges “cannot be near casinos, bars and/or any gaming machine areas”.

Lydia K. (Bsc. RN) is a cannabis writer, which, considering where you’re reading this, makes perfect sense. Currently, she is a regular writer for Mace Media. In the past, she has written for MyBud, RX Leaf & Dine Magazine (Canada), CBDShopy (UK) and Cannavalate & Pharmadiol (Australia). She is best known for writing epic news articles and medical pieces. Occasionally, she deviates from news and science and creates humorous articles. And boy doesn't she love that! She equally enjoys ice cream, as should all right-thinking people.