Maine voters approved cannabis legalization in 2016 along with several other states. But unlike the other states that voted to legalize cannabis for adult use in 2016, Maine is way behind schedule when it comes to implementing a taxed and regulated adult-use cannabis system.
California and Nevada already allow adult-use cannabis sales, and Massachusetts is set to begin sales this summer. Meanwhile Maine, due to a prior veto of regulation legislation by its Governor, has yet to even fully pass a bill with industry regulations in it. The Legislature passed a bill last year, but with it being vetoed by Maine’s Governor, the bill died.
It appears that round two of the showdown between the Maine Legislature and Maine’s Governor has begun, per the legislative alert I received today which can be found below:
This week, the Maine House and Senate overwhelmingly passed LD 1719, which would set up Maine’s adult-use marijuana market. We were neutral on the bill, as it removed social club licensing from the initiative voters passed in 2016. LD 1719 also reduced the number of plants adults can cultivate at home from six to three flowering plants. That said, it’s been 18 months since Maine voters passed Question 1, and it is time that adults had a legal place to purchase marijuana.
Given the veto-proof margins that LD 1719 passed by, we are uncertain if Gov. LePage will veto the bill. If he does, many lawmakers will have to change their votes to sustain his veto. We will keep you posted on what happens next!
Maine Political Director
Marijuana Policy Project