Although recreational marijuana is slated to become legal in Massachusetts on Dec. 15, 2016, Massachusetts Sec. of State William F. Galvin announced on Nov. 28 that it could take longer than expected for the law to go into effect.
Under state law, a ballot initiative does not become a law in Massachusetts until it has been certified by the eight-member Governor’s Council. Because the election fell on a later than usual date, state officials have had less time to confirm the vote, focusing first on the presidential race results and then moving on to the state issue.
Speaking with The Boston Globe, Galvin explained that the delay in certifying the vote is not deliberate and that his office is only following state law.
“No one is trying to delay the marijuana question deliberately,” Galvin said. “It’s just the presidency of the United States is more important than legalizing marijuana.”
Despite being reticent about naming a specific date when the vote could be certified, Galvin estimated that the earliest the vote could be certified would be Dec. 14, calling it a “50-50 proposition.”