Local businesses discuss the legalization of marijuana in the workplace

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MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - On Friday, a panel of local professionals discussed what businesses can expect with the legalization of recreational marijuana as the law does not regulate the drug policies of employers.

It was all part of the annual presentation of the Michigan Future Business Index held at the Holiday Inn through the Michigan Business Network.

While reading the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act, the panel made of Ruth Solinski, human resources manager of RTI Surgical, and Laura Katers Reilly, a lawyer at Kendricks, Bordeau, Keefe, Seavoy & Larsen say their biggest challenge is the lack of accurate testing for marijuana in the blood stream.

Without that test, employers can't tell how much marijuana in the bloodstream and how long it's been there making it hard to define drug policies.

Some employers will have no choice but to maintain their policies, because marijuana is still illegal at the federal level.

The two also used Friday to inform employers that they are going to have to decide how to conduct themselves in an environment where pot is legal and labor is in short supply.

"It's really important that employers know they have a lot more authority in this that you think you have, familiarize yourself and have your HR department familiarize with the details," said Chris Holeman, the president of the Michigan Business Network.

"Predictability is everything in a sound business environment and so the more information people have the better," added Reilly.

For more information on the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act, click here.

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