HCN News & Notes

Lawmakers Vote to Delay Marijuana Sales

BOSTON — A handful of state lawmakers voted quietly Wednesday to delay the likely opening date for recreational marijuana stores in the Bay State by half a year — from January to July 2018.

The measure was sent for approval to Gov. Charlie Baker, a vocal opponent of the legalization of marijuana who called the six-month delay “perfectly appropriate.”

The bill was passed by just a small number of legislators — formal sessions for the two-year legislative session have already ended — during informal sessions during which action is usually limited to non-controversial items.

The measure passed Wednesday does not effect provisions of a marijuana-legalization law that 1.8 million voters approved in November, that were already in effect. These include personal possession inside and outside a person’s primary residence and home growing. Those provisions went into effect Dec. 15.