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Massachusetts Lawmakers Will Rewrite Recreational Marijuana Law

Lawmakers have delayed the rollout of recreational pot to sort out “several concerns.”

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Two Massachusetts legislators have been appointed to rewrite the state's newly approved recreational marijuana law. Because the state's Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act is an initiated state statute, and not an amendment to the state constitution, lawmakers still have the legal right to make changes to the law before it goes into effect.

The law, approved last November by a popular vote, originally planned for adult-use marijuana stores to open in January of 2018. Last month, legislators delayed that date until June 2018, in order to get a better handle on the logistics of the rollout.

According to local TV station WWLP, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker wants a new version of the marijuana law to be prepared by this June. State Sen. Patricia Jehlen and state Rep. Mark Cusack have been appointed to rewrite the law so that “significant changes” can be made “before retail shops open in 2018.”

Specific details on what might change have not been revealed at this time. Lawmakers have cited “several concerns” with the original law, including public safety issues and concerns over how many cannabis plants each individual is allowed to grow at home.  Taxation of recreational cannabis may also be addressed in the rewrite.