80°F
weather icon Clear

Amendment unmasks names of Nevada marijuana businesses, owners

Updated March 28, 2019 - 7:09 pm

Who are the players behind Nevada’s booming legal marijuana industry, which saw more than $400 million in sales in its first year? We could soon find out under a new amendment to a Senate bill approved by lawmakers Thursday.

Senate Bill 32 was amended Thursday to ensure the names of those who are awarded marijuana licenses would become public record.

State law allows the names of marijuana license holders and businesses to stay hidden. In December, the state awarded 61 recreational marijuana licenses, and it has not released the names of the recipients.

Several companies that were denied licenses have sued the Tax Department, challenging the application and license awarding process, including 11 cannabis business owners who sued after not receiving a license in December.

This week, the Department of Taxation presented an amendment to Senate Bill 32 aimed at adding significantly more transparency to the industry and the licensing process by making the names of the businesses public and disclosing how the department scores each applicant.

But some, like Sen. Ben Kieckhefer, R-Reno, questioned whether the initial amendment went far enough, as the business owners would have been able to hide behind business names and limited liability companies.

Tax Department Executive Director Melanie Young said the new language is about providing “maximum clarity” for the public.

The amendment was added to the bill and approved by members of the Senate Committee on Revenue and Economic Development Thursday. The bill now heads to the full Senate for a vote.

Helen Kalla, spokeswoman for Gov. Steve Sisolak, said the governor’s office pressed for the change in language to “remove any ambiguity in the language and make as clear as possible the governor’s desire for greater transparency in the marijuana licensing process.”

Contact Capital Bureau Chief Colton Lochhead at clochhead@reviewjournal.com or 775-461-3820. Follow @ColtonLochhead on Twitter.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Politics Videos
Bernie Sanders Unveils Affordable Housing Plan - Video
Bernie Sanders sits down with the Las Vegas Review-Journal to talk about his new affordable housing plan he unveiled at Plumbers & Pipefitters.
Jim Marchant talks gun control and Dreamers - Video
Republican Candidate for District 4 Jim Marchant talks about gun control and immigration policies. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Hurricanes, Gender, and Science in the Press
Imagine if the mainstream media’s current hurricane-sized obsession with scientific accuracy applied to gender.
Cory Booker on college tuition and minimum wage
Cory Booker talks on the RJ Politics podcast about college debt, informing workers about their rights and livable wages.
Nevada Politics Today: Teacher raises - VIDEO
Jason Goudie, the chief financial officer for the Clark County School District, talks about teacher pay and raises. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Media's Double Standard On Incitement And Trump - Video
Over the weekend, an Elizabeth Warren-supporting socialist who opposed gun violence used a rifle to commit a mass murder in Dayton, Ohio. The media has downplayed that aspect of the tragedy.
Project Our Care Tour Kicks Off In Las Vegas
U.S. Rep. Dina Titus joined health care advocates and local residents as part of Protect Our Care’s nationwide bus tour kick off in Las Vegas on Monday, August 5, 2019. (Mat Luschek / Review-Journal)
Bernie Sanders talks about guns, response to El Paso shooting
Sen. Bernie Sanders spoke about his response and continued policy ideas about guns and gun control to the Review-Journal after a panel of other topics. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pete Buttigieg On Gun Control And Climate Change - Video
Pete Buttigieg talks about his campaign for the 2020 election and how Nevada is a vision of what the future can be.
Beto O'Rourke speaks in Las Vegas
Presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke spoke to supporters at the East Las Vegas Community Center in Las Vegas, Thursday, Aug. 2, 2019. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former Nevada Senate leader Kelvin Atkinson sentenced to prison
Former Nevada Senate Majority Leader Kelvin Atkinson, who pleaded guilty to misusing campaign funds, was sentenced to 27 months in prison on Thursday, July 18, 2019. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Trumps Strength is also a Weakness - Video
One of Donald Trump’s greatest strengths — his ability to shape national narratives — is also a great weakness.
Tax the Rich Bus Tour makes a stop in Las Vegas - Video
The Tax the Rich Bus has stopped in Las Vegas as part of its summer tour. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Assemblywoman Daniele Monroe-Moreno hosts BBQ - Video
Assembly Woman Daniele Monroe-Moreno hosts BBQ to bring the community together to hear about the candidates up for election and for people to gather and have fun.
Democrat Virtual Caucus - Video
Elizabeth Warren visits Las Vegas
Senator Elizabeth Warren made a campaign stop at the East Las Vegas Community Center on Tuesday July 2, 2019. (Mat Luschek / Review-Journal)
Aaron Ford Speaks About Bill AB431
AB431 is a bill sponsored by Nevada Assembly Speaker Jason Frierson to restore the right to vote for formerly incarcerated individuals. Attorney General Aaron Ford spoke at the AM&E Church in North Las Vegas about the bill, on Monday, July 1, 2019. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
THE LATEST
Sisolak signs public records reform bill into law

Gov. Steve Sisolak signed a bill that strengthens Nevada’s public records law, making it easier and cheaper for people to get public records and providing for fines if public agencies willfully flout the law.