Home Uncategorized Marijuana bills roll through the House

Marijuana bills roll through the House

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A trio of bills to regulate recreational marijuana could be heading to the Senate this week after a series of votes by House lawmakers on Tuesday.

The bills offer competing visions for what recreational cannabis will look like in the state, and marijuana advocates are frustrated because all three differ from the initiative that voters approved by a large margin last fall.

“The Legislature was charged with implementing Initiative 190, not repealing it and rewriting it,” said Pepper Petersen, president and CEO of the Montana Cannabis Guild, on Tuesday evening. “The voters gave us a clear signal of what they wanted, and these [legislators] clearly do not respect the voters.”

House Bill 701 was introduced by Rep. Mike Hopkins, R-East Missoula, and is backed by Gov. Greg Gianforte. It is seen by many as the bill most likely to eventually land on the governor’s desk. It strays from Initiative 190 in that it would require counties to vote on whether to allow recreational marijuana businesses in their community, and it would open the door for out-of-state producers to enter Montana’s recreational market. House Bill 670 was authored by Rep. Derek Skees, R-Kalispell, and is more closely aligned with last year’s initiative. House Bill 707, authored by Rep. Brad Tschida, R-Missoula, would treat recreational marijuana like alcohol and allow the state to tax it wholesale. [Read More @ Sidney Herald]

 

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