Local marijuana business creating new jobs, fair set for Saturday

Dennis Mansfield, Contributing Writer

KALKASKA – Officials with the Village of Kalkaska in recent years have worked to cultivate industry, based on Michigan’s changing medical marijuana laws.

And, now, it seems as though their efforts are about to bud, with at least two new companies creating dozens of new jobs for local residents.

Kalkaska County was tied for 41st out of 83 in the state with three other counties – Cass, Bay and St. Clair – with a 5.5-percent unemployment rate for July, according to statistics posted by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget.

One of the newly established businesses, All Green Transport, announced at the Kalkaska Village Council meeting on Aug. 12 that it was making a $13,500 donation to help fund a new K-9 unit. But, just as important, company representatives said they would soon be hiring a half-dozen drivers immediately, with that number possibly growing as high as 25 over time.

“And, they want to hire veterans,” said Denny Corrado, the village’s ordinance compliance officer.

All Green Transport president Chuck Fisher confirmed that the company will give preference to military veterans and former law enforcement personnel.

“Hiring the vets,” said Tim Ellis, council trustee, “that’s just the icing on the cake.”

However, as of the most recent council meeting on Monday, Sept. 12, Corrado said All Green Transport is still looking to hire its first veteran for its Kalkaska operation. That has led Corrado to reach out to veterans’ agencies and organizations to find potential drivers.

And now a second company, Pincanna, is hosting a job fair this Saturday, Sept. 14 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at All Seasons Resort on Cedar Street in Kalkaska to find employees for its new provisioning center.

According Stephanie Freedman, a spokeswoman for the Farmington Hills-based Pincanna, the new retail outlet for medical marijuana products, will be located at 786 S. Cedar St. in Kalkaska, in front of Shopko and Family Fare, just off of M-72.

The provisioning center, which is set to open this fall, will employ 12-15 people.

“Currently, in Michigan, a provisioning center is a licensed cannabis retailer for licensed medical marijuana patients to obtain a variety of cannabis products to treat different types of medical conditions,” Freedman said.

“As the recreational initiative was passed in November, provisioning centers will apply for licenses soon to sell to this market,” she added.

Job openings are slated to include store manager, assistant managers, patient care consultants, fulfillment specialists and receptionist.

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