Rhode Island has had one of the more comprehensive medical marijuana programs on the East Coast for more than 10 years. But with eight states legalizing recreational adult cannabis use, and neighboring Massachusetts set to cash in next year, lawmakers in Rhode Island are trying their best to make sure they don’t miss the boat.
As the Democrat-controlled Rhode Island General Assembly prepares to start their spring session, Rep. Scott Slater is pushing recreational cannabis legalization in an attempt to set up a regulated market before similar shops can open across the border in Massachusetts.
With Massachusetts lawmakers delaying the voter approved recreational sale start date until at least the beginning of 2018, Slater sees the coming legislative session as a prime opportunity to leapfrog the neighboring state.
“We’ll definitely be able to beat Massachusetts to the punch,” Slater told the Associated Press. “They seem to keep delaying it.”
Slater believes that the current Rhode Island legalization legislation, aptly named Senate Bill 420, has enough support to pass this session if brought to a vote, with the state’s Governor Gina Raimondo also expressing interest in…