Livingston County Receives Funding for Cannabis Education and Outreach

March 28th, 2024 Safety & Education
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The Livingston County Board of Commissioners recently endorsed a resolution to utilize grant funds in support of the Health Department's ongoing efforts to provide educational and outreach initiatives centered around medical cannabis. This financial backing is part of a broader appropriation by the Michigan Legislature, dedicating a total of $3 million to "Marihuana Operation and Oversight Grants." These grants are distributed among Michigan counties to foster educational and outreach endeavors pertinent to the state's medical cannabis and adult-use cannabis programs.

The specific allocation for each county is detailed on the website of the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs' Cannabis Regulatory Agency, with Livingston County receiving an allocation of $55,573. The determination of grant amounts is influenced by the ratio of registry identification cards issued or renewed within each county as of September 30th, 2023.

Matt Bolang, the Health Director of the Livingston County Health Department (LCHD), elaborated on the objectives of these funds. According to Bolang, the primary aim is to cultivate messaging campaigns that bolster awareness and understanding concerning the responsible use of cannabis. This includes highlighting the risks associated with misuse or underage consumption and emphasizing the criticality of secure storage practices.

Addressing some common misunderstandings about the grant's purpose, Bolang clarified, "The funds are essentially earmarked for elucidating the risks associated with cannabis consumption, promoting safe storage methods, and preventing access by minors."

Furthermore, the LCHD plans to collaborate with Washtenaw County to explore efficient strategies for disseminating educational content to the community. Reflecting on the history of the grant, Bolang remarked, "This marks roughly our fifth year of benefitting from this funding source. Community members might recall the billboards along the highways in recent years, addressing chronic usage and the health implications linked to cannabis. Our intention is to continue with similar informational initiatives."

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