As the likely costs and regulations of starting up an Ohio medical marijuana dispensary come into focus, one local — and experienced — medical marijuana purveyor is keeping his distance, for now.
Kevin Spitler, owner of Toledo Hemp Center, at 815 Phillips Ave., said he’s glad to see the law being implemented but doesn’t see himself as one of the licensed vendors.
“The list of requirements is huge. There’s no way I can come up with the funding. I’ve got everything I have into this,” Mr. Spitler said of his business selling products made from hemp, which comes from the marijuana plant, but doesn’t have the plant’s psychotropic properties.
Regarding a potential dispensary, he said, “I haven’t explored it extensively. I would have to sit down with a potential business partner.”
IN PICTURES: Toledo Hemp Center
Gov. John Kasich in 2016 signed a law making Ohio the 26th state with medical marijuana. The law does not permit smoking marijuana or home-growing. That means using it in edible, oil, vapor, patch, tincture, and plant matter form.
The regulations for the grow operations and the dispensary operations are being developed by separate state agencies, with goals of allowing implementation of the law in October, 2018.
In the meantime, patients with one of 20 debilitating diseases or conditions contained in the law will be able to go to Michigan or some other state that already has a medical marijuana system and legally obtain pot to bring back to Ohio.
A Toledo native, Mr. Spitler ran a medical marijuana dispensary near Kalamazoo for three years before his store was ordered to close because of a change in Michigan law.
Now he sells hemp products — oils, pills, lotions, and edibles made with cannabinoids extracted from hemp. He has loyal, repeat customers who say his