Office of Cannabis Policy hosts town-hall Discussion on Industry

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To take the temperature of stakeholders involved, the office hopes to open up a conversation to better meet industry needs.

BANGOR - To open up a conversation about the industry, the Office of Cannabis Policy hosted a listening event on Wednesday to speak on policy and questions with the public. 

The town-hall style event aimed to gain a diverse perspective of stakeholders in the industry and to answer any questions or concerns the public may have. 

From small businesses to public health workers and even local government officials, attendees at the meeting came from a variety of fields; all effected by the industry.

"People wanna know what to do," Director of Stakeholder Relations Matt Grondin said. "What that means for their businesses, for their children, for their schools, their community. And so hopefully the Office of Cannabis Policy can do something through these conversations."

Currently, cannabis is legal for both medical and recreational use in the state.

Concerns raised throughout the meeting included transparency with testing products, public campaigns to lessen stigma, support for mom-and-pop shops, and restrictions on delivery and transportation of product.

Conversation also skimmed through a recent municipal reimbursement fund, which allows towns who opt-in on adult use establishments, to defray the cost of eligible expenses.

"It's so important to get out there and have these conversations to inform the work we do back in Augusta," Director Erik Gundersen said. "We could be regulators that sit in our high tower and just do what we need to do, but it's so important for us to get out and meet people where they're at."

Leaders already met in York and Kennebec counties, and will now meet in Hancock County in Ellsworth. 

Region: Maine