Medical marijuana dispensary a personal quest for business owner - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Medical marijuana dispensary a personal quest for Las Vegas business owner

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Las Vegas business owner Kathy Gillespie hopes to obtain a license to operate a medical marijuana dispensary in Clark County. (FOX5) Las Vegas business owner Kathy Gillespie hopes to obtain a license to operate a medical marijuana dispensary in Clark County. (FOX5)
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -

Following moves by Clark County and the city of Las Vegas on Wednesday, the race will soon be on to open the first medical marijuana dispensary in southern Nevada. 

Hopeful entrepreneurs will have a lot of hurdles in front of them, however. Those wishing to open a dispensary or grow facility will need to pass a background check, provide reference letters and come up with a lot of cash.

The application for a dispensary is $5,000. With the county only allowing for 10 dispensaries, that's a big gamble.

Kathy Gillespie is one of those people hoping to open a dispensary. Gillespie, who owns A&B Printing in Las Vegas, believes the risk is worth taking.

"The printing industry is not growing. It's not a growing business," Gillespie said. "We very much are interested in getting in on the ground floor and will be applying for a dispensary [license] and also a cultivation [license]."

The business endeavor is personal for Gillespie and her partner. Both of their mothers battled cancer. Gillespie believed medical marijuana would have eased her mother's pain, but she didn't want to turn to the black market.

"Quite honestly, to buy it on a dark street at night, we had no idea what we'd be giving them and getting," she said.

Gillespie has recruited an attorney, accountant and a security expert in her quest. She intends to call her business the Nevada State Dispensary.

In fact, Gillespie would like to have two locations. She's currently gathering materials for the lengthy application process.

"Resumes, bios, reference letters – we expect our application to be 400 to 500 pages," Gillespie said.

If county commissioners approve Gillespie's application during their June 5 meeting, it will then need state approval. Gillespie would then need to make sure her facilities are up to code.

"Making sure it passes security, fire regulations, air quality," she said.

Gillespie hopes to get out of the printing business all together and focus her attention on medical marijuana. She said her Las Vegas-based printing business could be converted into a dispensary.

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