Alaska to weigh three onsite marijuana consumption proposals

The Alaska Marijuana Control Board next month will consider three proposals to allow onsite consumption in marijuana retail stores.

Under the board members’ recommendations, which will be considered at a July 11-14 meeting:

  • Customers would be allowed to try marijuana at a store, then would have to leave the premises. The site couldn’t provide amusements like pool tables or TVs but would be permitted to have couches, chairs and coffee tables. The proposal also includes a two-year moratorium on such sites.
  • Consumption of edibles would be permitted, but cannabis consumers wouldn’t be allowed to smoke onsite.
  • Only cannabis purchased at the establishment could be consumed onsite. Facilities would also have to invest in a proper ventilation system to mitigate smoke, and local authorities must give permission for consumption at the store.

Cannabis industry officials believe legalizing public consumption at cannabis retail stores and other venues could spur marijuana sales and open new business opportunities.

Several Alaska companies have filed applications for onsite consumption, indicating they’re prepared to go online once licensing is in place.

However, any endorsement by the board of onsite consumption isn’t likely until 2018.

The matter won’t come up for vote until August at the earliest because of a 30-day public comment period, said board member Brandon Emmett, whose efforts helped revive the onsite consumption issue.

The public won’t be able to comment on agenda items at the upcoming meeting.

– Associated Press