MUSKEGON, MI – Someone driving by Sozo, Levels or Timber in Muskegon may not know what sort of business goes on inside because their business signs are deliberately vague.
Those who know, know they’re in the marijuana business. Others are left guessing.
Strict rules on signs have prevented the 11 recreational marijuana dispensaries in Muskegon from outwardly advertising their wares.
Images of marijuana leaves, the words “marijuana” and “cannabis” and green cross symbols have been outlawed on exterior signs of the city’s marijuana-related businesses.
But that is changing.
The city commission on Tuesday, Nov. 22, agreed to relax the rules, meaning marijuana businesses have no more restrictions on their exterior signs than any other business. They simply must follow zoning rules for the areas in which they’re located.
“It just didn’t seem fair to those businesses that they had restricted signs compared to other businesses,” Muskegon Planning Director Mike Franzak told MLive.
Back when the first dispensaries opened three years ago, it was unclear how business would go, Franzak said.
“When the marijuana ordinances were first passed there was a little concern about what the industry would be like,” he said. “They’ve been really good tenants …and beautified the area.”