July 21, 2018

Scott to create pot legalization commission

By Alexandre Silberman

For VTDigger

Gov. Phil Scott plans to create an executive commission to study issues related to marijuana legalization in Vermont.

The panel will focus on safety impacts of legalization and may eventually look into sales and regulation. It will also spend time on youth education surrounding edible marijuana products and other forms of the drug.

“There are two, three bills that are still out there. This issue isn’t going away at this point, and it’s something that will be continuing,” Scott told reporters Monday.

The governor reiterated that driving impairment, road safety and education are his main concerns surrounding legalization.

The head of the commission, and its members, have yet to be named. Scott did not rule out the possibility of a legislative presence in the group and said he plans to announce more details within the next few weeks.

In May, Scott became the first governor in the nation to veto a bill that would legalize recreational marijuana. He sent S.22 back to the Legislature, but said he would be willing to support the bill if changes were made.

Vermont lawmakers became the first to pass a bill to legalize marijuana. Eight states and the District of Columbia have done so through referendums.

The legislation would have removed all criminal and civil penalties for adult possession of up to an ounce of marijuana. It also would have allowed people to grow up to two flowering and four immature plants at home, starting in July 2018.

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