Medical marijuana

Islanders want their pot, too

Islanders want their pot, too

Residents urge state commissioners to help them navigate federal obstacles

THE “LISTENING TOUR” by the board charged with regulating the state’s emerging marijuana industry landed on Martha’s Vineyard Tuesday, where the two members heard pleas from pro-pot advocates to help their island as well as Nantucket steer clear of the federal obstacles no other communities in Massachusetts face. About 70 people crowded into the West(...)

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Lawmakers reach pot compromise

Lawmakers reach pot compromise

Bill boosts tax up to 20 percent, creates unique mechanism for local control

FIRE UP THE SMOKING lamp. House and Senate negotiators finally reached a compromise on amending the voter-approved law legalizing marijuana in Massachusetts, agreeing to levy a tax of up to 20 percent and approving a different process to implement bans or restrictions based on election results from last November. “Compromise means you get some of what(...)

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Cusack denies retaliation over Lottery move

Cusack denies retaliation over Lottery move

House to vote on pot bill that sets tax rate to 28%

THE HOUSE CHAIR of the Legislature’s marijuana committee denied that his ire at State Treasurer Deborah Goldberg over a potential Lottery headquarters move out of his hometown was connected to his push to remove control of the impending marijuana industry from her office. “It’s not about any one person, but it’s the simple premise that(...)

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House guts voter-approved pot law

House guts voter-approved pot law

Measure overhauls key pieces from tax rate to oversight

THE MASSACHUSETTS HOUSE will unveil a measure Wednesday that completely overhauls the voter-approved referendum legalizing recreational marijuana while also moving oversight of medical marijuana under the same regulatory umbrella. About the only thing the 48-page bill, a copy of which was obtained by CommonWealth,  leaves in place from the question put before voters last November(...)

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Holyoke’s mayor isn’t afraid of pot

Holyoke’s mayor isn’t afraid of pot

Alex Morse sees potential for urban farming in his old city’s mills

Photographs by Mark Morelli  OUTSIDE HOLYOKE CITY HALL is a stone fountain that once gurgled with water, offering a more wholesome substitute for alcohol to “a thirsty humanity,” as the inscription reads. Erected in 1901, the monument was one of several put up by the Women’s Christian Temperance Union around the country as part of(...)

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Banking on the pot industry

Banking on the pot industry

Conflicts with state laws and federal regulations create anxiety for most banks

AT LEAST ONE Massachusetts bank is offering services to the nascent legal marijuana industry in the state despite uncertainty over federal drug and banking regulations that still classify all pot sales as money-laundering, making it a risky venture both for the businesses and financial institutions. According to marijuana and banking industry officials, family-owned Century Bank(...)

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Pot opponents mislead on costs, local aid threat

Pot opponents mislead on costs, local aid threat

Referendum critics falsely claim Colorado revenues fail to cover regulation expenses

LT. GOV. KARYN POLITO suggested earlier this week that passage of the ballot question legalizing recreational marijuana could lead to a reduction in local aid to pay for regulating the new industry and public safety costs, but there is little evidence to support her claim. At a meeting of the Local Government Advisory Commission on Tuesday,(...)

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Pot campaign bashed for appeal

Pot campaign bashed for appeal

Critics say using drug crisis to raise funds is “deeply troubling”

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE A FUNDRAISING APPEAL from the marijuana legalization campaign has drawn the ire of health care professionals and parents of children who died from opioid addiction after the group pitched legal marijuana as an alternative to prescription pain drugs in spite of the state’s medical marijuana program. Will Luzier, the campaign manager(...)

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Pot supporters say ballot question about fairness

Pot supporters say ballot question about fairness

Pols in favor say it's a matter of racial justice as well as new revenue

STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE AS PROPONENTS GATHERED outside the State House Wednesday to urge support for marijuana legalization and condemn arguments against it as rooted in fear, opponents of a ballot question to allow the adult use of marijuana released a list of 119 members of the Legislature opposing legalization. Massachusetts voters will decide at(...)

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Medical pot dispensaries can cash in with ballot question

Medical pot dispensaries can cash in with ballot question

Nonprofits get first crack at licenses, exemptions under referendum

THE MEDICAL MARIJUANA INDUSTRY in Massachusetts, which has been struggling to get off the ground, could hit the jackpot if voters this fall approve a ballot question legalizing the commercial sale and recreational use of the drug. The ballot question gives the operators of medical marijuana dispensaries, even those who have only filed applications for a(...)

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