| The term “legalization” is used to describe a variety of legal
scenarios following repeal of the marijuana prohibition laws (see Primer) One of
those scenarios is called “taxation and regulation,” and it is with such
a system that H01371 would replace the current marijuana prohibition
laws. Like post-Prohibition laws that control the alcohol industry, this bill would regulate all commercial cultivation, processing, distribution
and sale of cannabis (the botanically correct term), and impose a hefty
excise tax, based on potency.
bill is modeled after Chapter 138 of the Massachusetts General Laws,
the Alcohol Beverage Control Act. Cannabis would be sold at retail by
licensed vendors to persons over 21, in sealed one-ounce boxes bearing
the identity of the cultivator, the grade, and a tax stamp (as depicted in this website's logo) evidencing
that all required taxes have been paid. Cannabis would be sold in natural
form only, without any additives. It would be illegal to sell beverages
or snacks containing THC. Sales by vending machine are prohibited.
Commercial cultivators, processors,
distributors and retailers would be licensed by a Cannabis Control
Authority. An additional class of license, called farmer-processor-retailer
license, would permit sales directly from the farmer to the consumer.
Licensees are subject to oversight by the local licensing authorities.
As alcohol control laws allow adults to brew their own beer
or make their own wine and share it with their friends, non-commercial
(“backyard”) cultivation and giving it away would not be regulated.
operation of a motor vehicle under the influence of marijuana remains
a crime, and the law changes nothing with regard to minors.
The bill has been referred to
the Joint Committee on the Judiciary.