Maine

Wed
13
Sep

Lawmakers want to double sales tax for recreational marijuana

Maine lawmakers want to double the recreational marijuana sales tax to 20 percent.

The Legislature's marijuana legalization committee will consider the issue at a Sept. 26 public hearing. Lawmakers say they'll likely postpone legalization of recreational marijuana sales past February.

The committee had supported adding a 10 percent excise tax on business owners who sell marijuana on top of the 10 percent sales tax. A draft marijuana bill released Tuesday calls for a 20 percent sales tax.

Committee co-chair Democratic Rep. Teresa Pierce said the tweak was due to the committee's lack of taxing expertise. She said an excise tax could allow more predictability.

Tue
12
Sep

Maine high court to decide if medical marijuana covered by workers' comp

The Maine Supreme Judicial Court will decide if state law requires Workers’ Compensation Insurance to pay for a millworker’s medical marijuana or if the insurer could be charged as an accessory in a drug deal under federal law.

Justices are set to hear arguments in the case Wednesday at the Capital Judicial Center in Augusta, which will be the first time the state’s highest court has considered the question of insurance reimbursement for the cost of medical marijuana.

The case pits a former Madawaska mill employee, injured on the job, against the company that administers the mill’s insurance for injured workers.

Tue
29
Aug

Head of US Border Patrol in Maine warns that marijuana legalization won't halt seizures

he top U.S. Border Patrol agent in Maine cautioned residents Monday that officers will still confiscate marijuana when they encounter it and that even family connections to the cannabis industry can disqualify someone from federal employment.

Chief Daniel Hiebert, who heads the Houlton sector of the Border Patrol, said Maine voters’ legalization of recreational marijuana last November and the state’s well-established medical marijuana program do not change his agents’ obligation to follow federal law.

Tue
08
Aug

Maine Committee Recommends Against Adding Marijuana Blood-Level Limit to OUI Laws

A committee convened by the Maine Department of Public Safety says it doesn’t believe that Maine needs to set a limit for determining whether a motorist is impaired by marijuana. The recommendation is likely to stir debate among law enforcement officials and legislators as implementation of the voter-approved recreational marijuana law plods forward.

Committee chair Scot Maddox said the state need not alter its operating under the influence law or create new blood-level limits for THC, the psychoactive component in marijuana. Instead, he said lawmakers should provide additional funding to train police officers, prosecutors and even judges to recognize marijuana impairment and its dangers while driving. He said there should also be a robust public education campaign.

Fri
04
Aug

Proposal Would Limit Mainers to 12 Personal Marijuana Plants

Maine legislators have introduced a new proposal limiting the amount of marijuana plants citizens grow on their land for personal use.

The Portland Press Herald reports the plan limits the amount of mature plants to 12. The plants also must be tagged with a name and a Maine driver’s license number.

Supporters of the proposal say it would limit large unlicensed marijuana crops that have led to violence in other states. Opponents say it limits the amount of personal plants currently allowed by law and it blocks farmers from renting their land to others interested in growing their own.

Republican Sen. Roger Katz, co-chairman of the Legislature’s marijuana legalization committee, says they are trying to "find the middle ground."

Mon
31
Jul

States forge path through uncharted territory to legal pot

Legal weed has unleashed an entrepreneurial spirit across the USA and holds the potential to reshape communities, but voter-approved relaxation of drug laws may bring consequences we don't yet understand as we soften the war on drugs.

A USA TODAY Network investigation into marijuana legalization reveals increases in marijuana-related car crashes and in hospitalization of kids who steal their parents' pot, of black-market smuggling rings and the challenges of running cash-based businesses that can’t use traditional banks because of federal regulations.

Mon
31
Jul

In Maine, the marijuana comes to you

PORTLAND, Maine — Logan Martyn-Fisher checks his phone's GPS one more time and pulls up at the Portland Amtrak station, thousands of dollars of marijuana concealed in a pair of colorful beach totes sitting on the back seat of his BMW SUV.

He’s looking for a guy who’s looking for pot.

Maine doesn’t yet allow legal marijuana sales, so Martyn-Fisher, his girlfriend and their BMW have carved a niche for themselves in a state where possessing, growing and consuming cannabis now is permitted. This past fall, Maine voters legalized marijuana as of the start of this year, but lawmakers still are developing a system of state-regulated stores to sell it.

They hope to have the stores open by February 2018.

Wed
26
Jul

Maine Department of Labor Advises Employers to Stop Testing Employees for Cannabis

The Maine Department of Labor has advised most employers in the state not to test job applicants for marijuana use. It is currently illegal for employers to reject applicants who test positive for cannabis, because they may be legally using marijuana for medical reasons. Now that recreational use is legal in the state, employers can no longer fire an employee who tests positive for marijuana use, and must instead prove that they were impaired while at work.

Mon
24
Jul

What Maine's new recreational marijuana market will look like

Maine lawmakers are coalescing around a rough plan for the state’s new recreational marijuana industry after months of wonky hearings and with weeks more to go before a final proposal that could come by summer’s end.

Voters backed legalization by a slim margin in the 2016 election, approving a law allowing Mainers over age 21 to possess 2.5 ounces of marijuana. It said marijuana would be taxed at 10 percent and built on a statewide cultivation cap of 800,000 square feet.

Mon
24
Jul

Marijuana shop promises free weed to cleanup the city of Gardiner

Some are calling his methods controversial, but Dennis Meehan says the community is reaping high rewards. Literally.

Meehan discussed the success of a recent social media campaign in which he promised free cannabis to anyone 21 and over who donated their time to a community cleanup project over the weekend.

Meehan and his wife are caregivers and owners of the Summit Medical Marijuana shop in Gardiner.

On Monday, he posted on the company's Facebook page promising up to 2 grams of free cannabis for filling up trash bags with garbage collected around the city Saturday.

He says by Friday the post had been shared hundreds of times and had tens of thousands of views.

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