No marijuana at liquor permit premises


COLUMBUS — As patio season gets in full swing, the Ohio Department of Commerce’s Division of Liquor Control (DOLC) and the Ohio Department of Public Safety’s Ohio Investigative Unit (OIU) remind Ohioans that marijuana use remains strictly prohibited in liquor permit premises.

After Ohioans voted to legalize the adult use of non-medical marijuana last November, the two Ohio agencies issued a memo to permit holders to emphasize that marijuana – in any form – cannot be used in their facilities or brought onto their properties. Since marijuana is still considered to be a controlled substance, the restrictions of Ohio Administrative Code 4301:1-1-52 remain in effect.

“Any liquor permit holders who knowingly or willfully permit the use of marijuana in, upon, or about their licensed permit premises are subject to administrative citation,” said Paul Kulwinski, DOLC Director of Licensing and Interim Superintendent. “By ignoring the law, bars, restaurants and any other liquor permit holders are putting their license in jeopardy. We urge liquor permit holders throughout the state to do everything possible to ensure their premises is a marijuana-free zone.”

Ohioans who suspect a liquor permit holder is allowing marijuana usage on its premises should contact their local OIU office.

In addition, the initiated statute passed by voters that took effect in December 2023 states that a non-medical cannabis consumer who uses non-medical cannabis in a public area is guilty of a minor misdemeanor. Additionally, Ohio’s law prohibiting smoking or vaping in public indoor spaces applies to smoking marijuana as well.

Non-medical cannabis is not yet available to purchase in Ohio dispensaries, and the general public is not yet permitted in dispensaries unless an individual is a registered patient or caregiver in the Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program (MMCP). There are currently no entities licensed to sell non-medical cannabis in the state of Ohio. In addition, individuals are not permitted to bring marijuana into Ohio that has been purchased in another state, as federal law prohibits traveling across state lines with marijuana.

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