Last year, a total of four states voted to legalize the recreational use of cannabis. Although most of the attention has been focused on California, Massachusetts, and to some extent, Nevada, the small northeastern state of Maine is in the midst of constructing a lucrative cannabis market of their own.
While lawmakers are reluctant to become the first state in the country to allow social marijuana clubs, this hasn’t stopped lobbyists from using big bucks to help garner more influence over regulations. In just a four-month span between December 2016 and March 2017, clients have paid lobbyists over $140,000 for cannabis-related representation in the capital of Augusta.
Some of these influencers ranked among the top spenders are strictly involved in the cannabis industry, such as the pro-marijuana organization Maine Professionals for Regulating Marijuana, who spent $54,338. There are also a handful of local medical dispensaries involved, along with outside companies in the banking, gambling, utilities, and tobacco sectors.
Despite neighboring Massachusetts having more than five times the population of Maine, the Pine Tree State is still expecting a recreational…