According to the Boston Globe and many other sources, Massachusetts Delays Recreational Cannabis and it took less than an hour. Only about a half-dozen state legislators, to approve a bill that would overturn significant parts of a marijuana legalization law that 1.8 million voters approved just last month.
With no public hearings and no formal public notice, the few lawmakers on Beacon Hill passed a measure on Wednesday – Massachusetts Delays Recreational Cannabis by half a year — from January to July 2018.
The measure that emerged from the unusual legislative action was sent for approval to Governor Charlie Baker, who has vociferously opposed legalization. Late in the day, he called a six-month delay “perfectly appropriate.”
“The legislature has a responsibility to implement the will of the voters while also protecting public health and public safety. This short delay will allow the necessary time for the Legislature to work with stakeholders on improving the new law,” Rosenberg said in a statement. “Luckily, we are in a position where we can learn from the experiences of other states to implement the most responsible recreational marijuana law in the country.”
The bill must still be signed by Gov. Charlie Baker before becoming law. The legislation would give the forthcoming Cannabis Control Commission an extra six months until March 15, 2018 to develop initial regulations, and applications for testing facility licenses and for retail sales from established medical marijuana dispensaries would be delayed until April 1, 2018.
Treasurer Deborah Goldberg would also have until September, instead of March, to set up the new Cannabis Control Commission.
“Our goal has always been to make sure that the intent of the voters is carried out,” House Speaker Robert DeLeo said in a statement. “The delay will allow the committee process to work through the law’s complicated implications and provide a process by which we can strengthen, refine and improve it.”
Will Luzier, who was part of the coalition that passed the marijuana ballot law, said he was “disappointed” that lawmakers are pushing back retail sales of marijuana.
Every state that passes legal marijuana, be it recreational or medical, goes through it’s own growing pains. From an increase in ER and veterinary visits due to children and pets finding and consuming hidden stashes, to people losing their jobs from eating too strong of edibles; Oregon is currently going through growing pains as it heads into the new year with new regulations and although Alaska legalized medical marijuana in the 90’s and recreational two years ago, it didn’t even start opening dispensaries until these last few months. Massachusetts Delays Recreational Cannabis – is simply following the president set by so many states that fail to enact what the people want.