Nevada Casinos Take Interest in Marijuana Industry

 In Blog: Industry

Regardless of the industry’s concerns, Nevada’s gaming industry could be cashing in on marijuana.

Governor Brian Sandoval Recently announced that he signed an executive order instructing Nevada’s Gaming Policy Committee to discuss and reconsider working with marijuana businesses.

Sandoval made it clear that gaming regulators are aware of rules regarding marijuana consumption on licensed gaming properties, but events and business connections with the marijuana industry should also be considered.

The 12-member Gaming Policy Committee, including Sandoval, will debate whether casinos can exchange money with marijuana businesses and if they can host events that promote the distribution or cultivation or marijuana.

Senator and member of the Gaming Policy Committee, Tick Segerblom, said “This is not about smoking marijuana at casinos, this is business. This is business conventions. This is money. This is where they can talk about insurance for dispensaries at a convention, or security. It’s one thing to sell marijuana at a casino, but it’s another to just talk business. Las Vegas could be the capital for these conventions, and Reno.”

Despite continuing to prohibit marijuana consumption on their properties, casinos have come across many “grey area” situations since the legalization of recreational marijuana in Nevada on January 1.

Chairman of the Nevada Gaming Commission, Tony Alamo, stated that he has received numerous calls from gaming officials who are curious about what consequences they would suffer if they allowed certain things on their properties.

Marijuana is a touchy subject with most gaming establishments mainly because of the rules and regulations that came into place in 2014, shortly before medical marijuana became legal in Nevada.

Licensees were warned to stay away from marijuana because it could lead to federal violations. Many gaming licensees were interested in getting involved with the marijuana industry, but everyone was aware of the guidelines. Everyone seemed to be on the same page with the topic until recreational marijuana was introduced.

A.G. Burnett, chairman of the Gaming Control Board, admitted that they need the federal government to take action. They Gaming Policy Committee has discussed and dealt with the situation in great detail, but they still don’t know exactly which rules to enforce.

Industry leaders have questioned if they can accept money from a marijuana business, and if they’re allowed to invest in the marijuana industry at all. Fearful of being faced with money laundering charges, they don’t exactly know where they stand. As the topic gets discussed more frequently, we can only hope that casinos will merge with the marijuana industry.

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