Local residents react to potential marijuana dispensary delay

A new bill could push back licensing dispensaries by six months

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Massachusetts lawmakers passed a bill on Wednesday that would push back the date to license marijuana dispensaries six months, to July of 2018.

Legislators said the delay would allow more time to address any issues that were not addressed in the new law passed by voters in December. Some voters told 22News they thought the extension could help make the law safer.

“I think they sometimes put these things out to get people aware, and then I think sometimes it is worth it to refine it; to make things safer, to make things better for everybody all around,” said Alison Gleason of Northampton.

Continuing Coverage: Marijuana News

However, some voters said they think legislators should leave the law the way voters approved it. “Once we make a decision as a community and as a state as the commonwealth of Massachusetts, it should just stay that way,” said Collin Fahey of Northampton.

As of December 15th, adults in Massachusetts over the age of 21 can possess and grow limited amounts of marijuana, and give it away to other adults in Massachusetts. The new bill would not impact these already enacted parts of the new law.

Governor Charlie Baker would have to sign the bill in order for it to take effect. The Governor said Wednesday he hadn’t yet read the bill, but a six month delay seemed “appropriate” to ensure things are done correctly.