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Michigan Cannabis Security & Compliance

Michigan Cannabis Security, Surveillance, & IT Compliance

Michigan’s cannabis regulations are comprehensive, but by no means all-encompassing of how to run the most secure cannabis business. After the state legalized recreational cannabis in 2019, with 63 percent of citizens voting in favor of the amendment, new laws came to fruition that all cannabis dispensaries have to abide by to receive their license for legal and medical operations.

On their official website, the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) refers to cannabis as “marihuana,” so their laws are not necessarily scripted by experts in the modern cannabis/marijuana industry. Thankfully, we’re here to ensure your Michigan cannabis business defines the best practices in security, surveillance, and IT compliance. Woodrow Technologies fills in where the law fails.

In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know about Michigan’s cannabis rules and requirements. Meeting these requirements is essential to securing your Michigan cannabis license, no matter what type of cannabis operation or business you’re running, so it’s worth having an understanding of your commitment.

Michigan Cannabis Compliance Overview

Every cannabis dispensary, grow, manufacturing center or another type of cannabis business has to have a significant video surveillance system, even when transporting goods. The basic requirement is to have every single square foot of your business under surveillance (except the restrooms).

Your business has to keep track of who comes and goes from your property, where your cannabis products and cash are transported to, including the details of their journey. Video surveillance is a major component of cannabis security. It sounds like a lot to keep track of, and it is – but we’re here to help.

Michigan Marijuana Security

Areas Michigan Cannabis Law Requires Video Surveillance

Michigan requires video monitoring throughout your business and operations, all of which have to be stored in digital archives. While we believe it’s always safer and more secure to have your entire cannabis operation under surveillance, Michigan has a handful of must-haves. For example, any areas where cannabis products are weighed, stored, packed, loaded, and unloaded for transportation, prepared, or otherwise used or moved, has to be in sight of your surveillance system.

If your operation has a security room (it should), then you’ll need cameras there too. The same goes for the areas where your surveillance system is located, digital archives are stored, and all access points to those areas.

All of your businesses’ access points to your operation need to be watched. This includes both the entry and the exit. Basically, anywhere someone can get into your dispensary, grow, etc needs to have cameras on both sides of the door and show at least 20ft of space around the entry/exit.

If you’re running a dispensary, your point-of-sale locations, displays, and areas where your products are destroyed, need an individual camera covering each. You’ll also need a color printer capable of capturing still photos from the video surveillance system.

This sounds like a lot, but trust us, it’s more than worth the investment. While it might sound like Big Brother is watching everything you do, cannabis businesses are notoriously at-risk for theft, so these surveillance systems are as much about the state monitoring the legality of your work as they are about helping you should a bad actor infiltrate your business. Cannabis security cameras are integral to the safety and security of your cannabis business, as such it is written into Michigan state law.

Here’s what the law states explicitly when it comes to video surveillance:

  • (5) A licensee shall have a video surveillance system that, at a minimum, consists of digital or network video recorders, cameras capable of meeting the recording requirements in this rule, video monitors, digital archiving devices, and a color printer capable of delivering still photos.
  • (6) The licensee shall ensure the video surveillance system does all the following:
    • (a) Records at a minimum the following areas:
      • (i) Any areas where marihuana products are weighed, packed, stored, loaded, and unloaded for transportation, prepared, or moved within the marihuana facility.
      • (ii) Limited-access areas and security rooms. Transfers between rooms must be recorded.
      • (iii) Areas storing a surveillance system storage device with at least 1 camera recording the access points to the secured surveillance recording area.
      • (iv) The entrances and exists to the building must be recorded from both indoor and outdoor vantage points. The areas of entrance and exit between marihuana facilities at the same location if applicable, including any transfers between marihuana facilities.
      • (v) Point of sale areas where marihuana products are sold and displayed for sale.
    • (b) Records at all times images effectively and efficiently of the area under surveillance with sufficient resolution.

Michigan Cannabis Security Regulations

Michigan requires all cannabis business video surveillance to be able to clearly identify any persons, including facial features, and their behaviors (eg: handling cash). You can’t always guarantee that kind of quality at 720p, so getting something a little stronger will make all the difference.

Recording Quality, Duration, and Safety of Cannabis Video Surveillance

The minimum recording quality for Michigan cannabis businesses is 720p resolution. As experts, we know you need something better than 720p.

We believe a minimum recording quality of 1080 HD is a good place to start, but something higher will always pay off in the long run.

The only downside to 1080p, 4K, and 5K is the storage required for your digital archives. A lot of space is required to keep this kind of video quality and quantity. You literally have to be recording 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. While your cameras will be permanently mounted to specific areas in your operation, those with higher foot traffic will need a bigger backup.

The upside is that Michigan only requires you to keep a digital archive of your video surveillance for 30 days. In some states, the digital archive requirements are a lot longer, meaning a slightly larger investment in equipment.

The 30-day limit on digital archives is easy to automatically set up. That’s what we’re here for, and we’ll make sure you’re secure.

Michigan Cannabis Security

Cannabis Records & Alert Systems

On top of the quality and digital archives, Michigan cannabis compliance has to be retrofitted with failure, interruption, and tampering notifications. Here at Woodrow Technologies, that’s a big part of our expertise.

Any administrators on your security system will be immediately and consistently notified if anything happens with your video surveillance system. If someone tries to tamper with your cameras or archives, they’ll be subjected to the most frustrating and alarming noise. As an administrator on your IT compliance system, you’ll receive an email and other forms of contact notification every five minutes if someone or something disrupts your video surveillance system.

The notifications will only stop when everything is secured.

If you’re on the premises and you hear the alarms going off, the first thing you should do is ensure you and your team are safe. There is nothing more valuable than your lives, so they always take priority!

 Michigan law does insist that your surveillance recordings are stored in a safe and secure manner. We recommend keeping them onsite in a secure location, as well as having digital backups accessible via cloud or physical copies.

Any video systems you use have to display the exact time and date on the records, and the cameras have to be permanently secured in fixed locations.

What You Need to Submit to the State of Michigan

The short answer to this is… everything.

Your entire security plan has to be submitted to the state and approved so you can commence your operation.

Failure to stay compliant with Michigan’s cannabis laws could cost you significantly in the future. Many Michigan cannabis businesses don’t lose profits because of thefts, it’s because they fail to remain compliant. Depending on what part of Michigan you conduct your business in, there are local laws you’ll need to follow too. We can help navigate those too.

Why Use Woodrow Technologies For Cannabis Security in Michigan?

We hope that this blog post has provided you with insightful knowledge, tips, and tricks on how to best prepare your Michigan cannabis operation’s security & compliance solution.

Woodrow Technology Solution’s Phoenix-based team has been in operation since 2014, winning consecutive Best of IT Services in Chandler for 5 years and counting.

Our guiding principle is “Do The Right Thing!” We treat every customer, client, and task as if it were for ourselves.

Creating Best Practices in Michigan

When it comes down to it, you need a security & compliance system no matter what type of cannabis operation you’re running in Michigan.

Regardless of what government and law enforcement in Michigan think and need, a comprehensive security and surveillance system is the best practice for any cannabis business owner.

Are you based in Michigan and considering opening your own cannabis company? Get in touch with us today to see how we can guarantee a streamlined and successful path to compliance.