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Maine Governor Signs Rules for Recreational Marijuana

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On June 27, Governor Janet Mills signed the Marijuana Rules bill into law. Recreational marijuana sales will finally begin in March 2020. Maine voters approved recreational marijuana 2 ½ years ago.

The bill’s signing was not done via public bill signing ceremony, the Portland Press Herald said. Even though sales are not beginning until March 2020, the rules take effect in September. The bill may have just been signed on June 27, but the law takes effect 90 days following the adjournment of the legislative session, which was June 20.

Governor Mills said, “Over the course of the last several months, my administration has worked quickly to implement the law regarding Maine’s adult-use recreational marijuana market as Maine voters asked the state to do 2½ years ago. The rule development demonstrates what can be accomplished when state government works with lawmakers, industry stakeholders and the public to accomplish a shared goal. With this law, we are one step closer to honoring the will of Maine voters.”

Cities and towns in Maine still have to “opt-into” the state’s recreational marijuana market. Those individual jurisdictions also have to set their local rules. Maine has 455 municipalities, and only 15 have “opted in” so far.

Governor Mills has been far more open to the will of the voters than her predecessor Governor Paul LePage.

Mills said, at a previous event, that, “I’m not opposed to adult-use recreational marijuana, not opposed to it at all. You’ve got to do three things with marijuana, cannabis: test it, track it and tax it.”