Marijuana will continue to be banned at several colleges and universities in Michigan, despite the passage of Proposal 1 that legalized recreational cannabis in the state. The initiative succeeded at the polls in last week’s midterm election with more than 55 percent of the vote.
No Sparking Up For Spartans
Administrators at Michigan State University sent a letter to the campus community on Monday informing students and staff that the results of the election would not change the university’s policy on cannabis.
“We would like to remind everyone that this new state law will not change policies prohibiting the use or possession of marijuana on any property owned or managed by MSU, and by MSU’s faculty, staff, or students on any MSU property or during off-campus MSU business or events,” the letter obtained by High Times reads.
Because of the continuing illegality of cannabis at the federal level, Proposal 1 will not apply on campus, according to the university.
“Marijuana use remains illegal and fully criminalized according to federal law, and MSU is subject to the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 and the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendment of 1989. In addition, the MSU Drug and Alcohol Policy prohibits the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, and use of controlled substances, illicit drugs, and alcohol on property governed by the Board of Trustees and at any site where university work is performed,” the notice continues.
The letter concludes with a warning of repercussions for violation of the school’s policy on marijuana.
“Employees and students who violate university policy prohibiting the use or possession of illegal drugs on campus will continue to be subject to legal and disciplinary action.”
Other Colleges Follow Suit
The University of Michigan released a similar statement last week, also noting that federal law would take precedence over Proposal 1.
“Therefore, the use, possession or cultivation of marijuana in any form and for any purpose continues to violate the U-M Alcohol and Other Drug Policy and is prohibited at the university,” the statement reads.
President Bob Davies of Central Michigan University also announced to students and staff that marijuana would still be banned on campus and at university functions.
“Prop. 1 does not change CMU policies or federal law — both of which prohibit the possession, use and distribution of marijuana by students, employees and any person on university properties and at all university events,” Davies wrote. “The use or possession of marijuana is still not allowed on university properties or in the conduct of university business away from campus.”
Oakland University President Dr. Ora Hirsch Pescovitz also announced the continued prohibition of cannabis at the college, noting that even the use of medical marijuana would not be allowed.
“As a recipient of federal financial aid and grant funding, Oakland University is required to adhere to regulations outlined in the Controlled Substances Act, the Drug Free Schools and Campuses Act and the federal Drug Free Workplace Act,” Pescovitz said. “All of these prohibit the possession, use and distribution of marijuana in all forms. Enforcement of federal law applies to violations for any reason, including use for medicinal purposes.”
Proposal 1 will go into effect 10 days after election results are certified by the state, most likely some time next month. Licenses for cannabis businesses will not be issued until at least one year after the initiative becomes effective.