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  • Published
    February 22, 2019

    State official apologizes as chaos reigns over sales of CBD products

    Last month, a state inspector gave Gary Runnells the bad news: She would certify his newly renovated commercial kitchen, but federal laws would not allow him to use it to make foods infused with hemp oil or sell them in his Newport health food store. Maine wanted food made with hemp-derived cannabidiol, or CBD, off the shelves, she said. But now a state Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry …

  • Published
    February 19, 2019

    State orders stores to remove edibles with CBD from their shelves

    State health authorities have ordered that edible products containing cannabidiol, or CBD, must be removed from stores because the hemp-derived product is not a federally approved food additive. Environmental health inspectors began informing businesses last week that they must remove all foods, tinctures and capsules from their shelves that contain the non-psychoactive chemical compound found in the cannabis …

  • Published
    June 27, 2018

    Maine House and Senate approve sweeping reform of medical marijuana bill

    The Maine Senate and House voted Tuesday night to pass a sweeping medical marijuana reform bill that overhauls the caregiver system. The bill, which now goes to Gov.Paul LePage, would let caregivers expand their business operations. For example, they could hire more than one worker, and sell up to 30 percent of their harvest to other caregivers and dispensaries. In exchange, however, they would have to submit to …

  • Published
    February 23, 2018

    Marijuana regulation bill omits licensing of social clubs; panel also votes not to share cannabis tax revenues with towns

    State lawmakers who are working to launch Maine’s adult-use cannabis industry have eliminated all references to social clubs from a proposed overhaul of the Marijuana Legalization Act. Voters approved social clubs as part of the legalization referendum in 2016, but lawmakers have repeatedly voted for delays in an effort to keep Maine from being the first state to license gathering places for marijuana users. Sen. …

  • Published
    February 2, 2018

    Maine lawmakers won’t extend moratorium on pot sales, but it’s still not for sale

    A bill to delay implementation of the Marijuana Legalization Act until the end of the legislative session died Thursday. The bill failed to win even a simple majority in the House, losing 65-81, prompting the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Roger Katz, R-Augusta, to declare it dead despite the fact that the Senate didn’t actually vote on it. As a result, the moratorium adopted by the Legislature last year to delay commercial…

  • Published
    January 26, 2018

    Panel votes to put new medical pot rules on hold until July

    The legislative committee that oversees Maine’s medical marijuana program wants to suspend controversial new rules cracking down on caregivers. The state Department of Health and Human Services finalized the rules last year and is scheduled to implement them on Feb. 1, but the Legislature’s Health and Human Services Committee wants to put those rules on hold while it considers new legislation that may nullify …

  • Published
    January 17, 2018

    Legalization panel votes to delay social cannabis clubs until 2023

    In their first major concession to Gov. Paul LePage, lawmakers crafting rules for Maine’s legal adult-use cannabis industry agreed Tuesday to ban social clubs until 2023. The Legislature’s Marijuana Legalization Implementation Committee voted 5-1 to delay social club licensing for five years in hopes of pacifying those who last year voted against a bill that would have launched the state’s recreational market. …

  • Published
    November 10, 2017

    Medical marijuana caregivers hit with flurry of new state rules

    Maine is cracking down on how caregivers grow and distribute medical marijuana, allowing surprise inspections and implementing a plant-to-patient tracking system. The state Department of Health and Human Services issued new rules Wednesday that tighten Maine’s fast-growing and changing medical marijuana program. RELATED HEADLINES Republicans say they’ll block marijuana bill again if it isn’t overhauled The …

  • Published
    October 14, 2017

    Revenue, cost estimates hazy on marijuana implementation

    With two weeks to go before lawmakers vote on new marijuana legislation, state analysts have yet to calculate the fiscal impact of Maine’s adult-use cannabis bill. Lawmakers tasked with setting up the new recreational market had projected Maine would collect about $21.4 million a year in taxes once the market matured. On Thursday, Oct. 12, the Legislature’s nonpartisan Office of Fiscal and Program Review told the …

  • Published
    August 17, 2017

    Mainers won’t be selling recreational pot by February deadline

    Maine won’t make its February deadline for beginning the sale of recreational marijuana and won’t be ready to do so until next summer, at the earliest, according to the committee tasked with implementing legalization. A special legislative commission finished its preliminary work on how Mainers can grow, sell and buy recreational marijuana Tuesday, tackling issues ranging from licensing fees to tax rates to …

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