Nevada Cannabis Companies Win Big in Recent Legislation

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Cannabis companies in Nevada urged for changes to their state’s adult-use and medical cannabis programs which were acknowledged through several passed legislations.

In Nevada, cannabis companies lobbied for changes to be made regarding the state’s adult-use and medical cannabis programs. The recent legislative session answered their calls when they approved various bills which would benefit the cannabis industry (1).

The new pieces of legislation were signed into law in June 2023, by Governor Joe Lombardo. Among the newly enacted laws were reassessing penalties for operating violations, eliminating and capping various fees, and creating a dual license to be used by retailers serving both recreational consumers and medical patients. The bills shared bipartisan support in the state’s Democrat-controlled Legislature.

Industry insiders shared with MJBizDaily (1), that the policy changes will aid operators in saving tens of thousands of dollars per year in business expenses while also expanding their retail access.

“As the legal cannabis industry continues to evolve and look for ways to better serve consumers with safe and affordable products, we are grateful that our state legislators and Gov. Lombardo responded with a slate of supportive legislation,” said Scot Rutledge, a partner at Argentum Partners, a government affairs and marketing firm based in Reno (1).

With these latest developments, hopefully they will help Nevada’s cannabis sales which were down from their original peaks seen in 2021 (1). Cannabis companies are also eager and looking forward to the introduction of consumption lounges, mainly located within Las Vegas.


When Senate Bill 195 (SB 195) passed it allowed cannabis operators a break from the overwhelming fees and other costs needed for compliance.

According to MJBizDaily, key takaways from the bill were (1):

  • Eliminating the regulatory practice of “stacking” charges or violations. Under the new law, operators will be cited for a single violation rather than multiple citations for the same offense.
  • Eliminating the regulatory practice of “time-and-effort” billing, in which licensees were charged high hourly rates by the state’s Cannabis Compliance Board (CCB) for routine audits, inspections and investigations.
  • Lowering the maximum penalty for any single business violation from $90,000 to $20,000.

“If you look at some of the complaints in Nevada, you will see that they were most often in the six figures,” Layke Martin, executive director of the Nevada Cannabis Association said (1). “Many of the times, they were for administrative violations.”

Under Senate Bill 277 (SB 277), it implemented new benefits for retailers, consumers, and the supply chain in the state of Nevada, as well as, reduced the maximum fees for almost every cannabis license (3). There was some resistance within the industry.

“The result was that the fees for initial licensing and renewal of an adult-use cannabis license were reduced, except for the initial issuance of an adult-use retail license, which remains unchanged at $20,000,” Melissa Waite, an attorney in Las Vegas, said (1). “The bill includes many other changes that undoubtedly benefit the industry.”

MJBizDaily noted that SB 277 listed (1):

  • The creation of a dual license for medical and recreational retailers, allowing them to serve any type of customer.
  • Increasing the purchasing limits of flower from 1 ounce to 2.5 ounces.
  • Increasing the purchasing limits of cannabis concentrates from an eighth of an ounce to a quarter of an ounce.

Nearly one third of the state’s 100 cannabis retailers will be able to benefit from the dual license.

Also included in the cannabis-related legislation (1):

  • Establishing a working group to study psychedelics.
  • Creating an employment path in the industry for former convicts.
  • Revising the excise tax on wholesale cannabis to 15% of the actual sales price, rather than 15% of the “fair market value” set by the Nevada Department of Taxation. Fair market value often inflated the actual cost of goods sold, industry representatives said.

With these laws, they will hopefully ease some of Nevada’s cannabis industry’s challenges.

“This is a recognition that the cannabis industry is a significant player in the state’s economy,” CCG Executive Director Tyler Klimas told MJBizDaily (1). “And we’re evolving appropriately.”

As these laws begin to take effect, Nevada’s cannabis industry players will definitely take advantage of these changes and benefits.


  1. Casacchia, C. Nevada Marijuana Companies Cite Big Wins from Legislative Session (accessed Jul 25, 2023).
  2. SB195 (accessed Jul 25, 2023).
  3. SB277 (accessed Jul 25, 2023).