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Opening a pot dispensary takes cash, a team, and location

Reported by: Kelsey Thomas
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Updated: 4/10 3:56 pm

LAS VEGAS (KSNV & MyNews3) -- Now that it's legal to buy medical marijuana in Clark County, business leaders across the valley are scrambling to open the first dispensaries and cultivation facilities.

Attorney Bruce Gale is one Las Vegas man hoping to cash in on cannabis.

Medical marijuana has been called the "Green Rush" and its legalization has had unintended consequences that one might call the "Land Rush."

A rush to buy or lease buildings in the valley to open a budding business is part of Clark County's burgeoning medical cannabis industry, Gale says.

"People basically have about 35 days, [in which] they have to close escrow on the property, and or negotiate a lease,” Gale said. "It's very difficult."

Andrew Gennuso, a promotions manager at a strip nightclub, says, "I think the biggest challenge really is from our best indication, there's anywhere from 200 to 400 really qualified applicants."

Gennuso is an advocate for a specific strain of marijuana that helps people with epilepsy. It's a way to treat people who suffer from debilitating seizures.

"I think when you really start to look at medical marijuana the industry as a whole, you really start to see there's actually sides to the industry that are beyond just recreational," Gennuso said.

Gennuso and his business partner hope to open a dispensary and cultivation facility inside these buildings on Sunset Road, but he admits the cost to open one isn't cheap.

"It does take outside funding," Gennuso said.

Gennuso can expect to shell out thousands of dollars for fees and licenses. He also must have at least $250,000 in liquid assets.

"Many people are looking for individuals or entities to partner up with, a dance partner if you may," Gale said.

Gale says investors are just part of the equation for a growing enterprise.

"I equate it to a three legged stool," Gale said.

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