Nevada NewsMakers

News - December 28, 2018 - by Ray Hagar

By Ray Hagar
Nevada Newsmakers

Sooner or later, Las Vegas may have 'pot lounges,' as a place where the city's thousands of tourists can legally consumer Nevada's recreational marijuana products, Clark County Commissioner Jim Gibson said on Nevada Newsmakers.

Currently, Nevada's tourists break the law if they consume marijuana that they can legally purchase in Las Vegas. Current Nevada law allows for the consumption of recreational marijuana for those 21 and older. But only in the confines of your home.

"I imagine that at some point in time, we are going to see them because there is no other legal place to consume marijuana today, other than their homes," Gibson said about pot lounges. "And if you are one of 40 million people who are going to visit here, if you buy it and want to consume it here, you are going to have to illegally."

The current situation with tourists and Nevada's marijuana laws concerns Gibson.

"The thing that I am concerned about is that we have a whole lot of consumption that is happening illegally and we voted as a state to legalize it," he said. "So there are some disconnects along the way."

Gibson is not involved in the pro-marijuana movement embraced by Commissioner-elect Tick Segerblom. But he sees the logic in the lounges.

"I think at some point that will happen," he said "It is not something that is my initiative but I have heard Tick Segerblom talk about it. He favors doing something soon. So at some point in time when we can get people involved in the industry to help us to understand how it ought to work, so that we might regulate it, then there will be a discussion about it."

The pot lounges, however, are not high on Gibson's to-do list.

"I have only spoken to a couple of licensees who are interested in doing it," he said. "I really think they are having a difficult time with what the revenue piece is, what is the return on that investment?"

Buy-in and a pot-lounge business plan from Nevada's legal marijuana industry is necessary before the subject is taken up by the Commission, Gibson said.

"I think until we understand it (opinion of marijuana industry), it would be premature to strike out and try to do something," he said. "I don't oppose the lounges, it is more a matter, functionally, how do we regulate them?"