Maine Governor Certifies Pot Vote But Urges Moratorium on Sales

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Maine Governor Certifies Pot Vote But Urges Moratorium on Sales

Flickr / Maine Department of Education / CC BY-SA 2.0

Maine Gov. Paul LaPage on Dec. 31, 2016, signed a proclamation certifying the state’s narrow vote to approve adult-use of marijuana, according to a Jan. 3, 2017, article in the Portland Press Herald.

LaPage confirmed the signature during a Jan. 3, 2017, radio show program during which he also urged Maine legislators to set a moratorium on marijuana sales until arrangements are made to regulate retail sales and fund state oversight by the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry.

“There’s nothing I can do until the Legislature gives me money to set up the infrastructure,” he said on WVOM, a radio station in Bangor, Maine.

The new law, which goes into effect on Jan. 30, 2017, will allow residents 21 years of age or older to possess up to 2.5 ounces of pot and grow up to six marijuana plants for personal use.

LaPage said Colorado’s experience with adult-use marijuana has raised some concerns, including a spike in resident applications for medical marijuana licenses, which allows residents to avoid paying state sales taxes. Colorado, LaPage said, sees most of its marijuana sales tax revenues from tourists.

“So now [Colorado officials] are collecting just a fraction of the taxes that they thought they would,” LePage said. “We really need to sit down and look at this, and if we are going to tax, let’s tax it, and if we are not going to tax it, let’s not even bother doing it.”

The staff byline designates content that has been written by a staff writer of MJINews.

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