Lawmakers in Massachusetts have already put their stamp on the state’s newly-passed adult use marijuana legalization law by delaying the start of retail sales by 6 months; now they are looking to pass more sweeping changes to place more restrictions on certain aspects of the law.
State Senator Jason Lewis and Representative Hannah Kane have filed bills that would, among other things, drop the possession limit for adults in their own home from 10 ounces to 2 ounces; reduce the maximum number of plants that can be grown at home from 12 plants per household to 6; create a further 2-year delay on the manufacture and sale of cannabis edibles and concentrates; allow city and town councils to ban marijuana businesses, as opposed to holding a special election to institute a ban as is called for in Question 4; and add language that says anyone suspected of driving under the influence of marijuana would have to submit to a field sobriety test or face arrest.
"People are seeing this as a direct attack on Question 4, a substantial revision of a new law that was passed by 54 percent of the voters," said Jim Borghesani, spokesman for the Yes on 4 Campaign. "People are very upset about the scope of this legislation."
"I do not have a philosophical concern with legalization," said Rep. Kane. "What I've attempted to do here is to ensure that we've taken into consideration some of the public health, public safety and local control concerns that we had when talking to people about the ballot question."
As I’ve mentioned before, government officials may well be the biggest obstacle to legalization with their uncanny ability to delay, defer and weigh down good laws with excessive taxes, regulations and what they feel is in the “best interest” of the very people that passed the measure as it was.