Vermont lawmakers kill effort to create a commercial recreational marijuana market

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A state-regulated recreational marijuana market in Vermont will have to wait at least a year.

Vermont House lawmakers killed a bill Friday that would have created a regulated and taxed market for rec MJ sales, Vermont Public Radio reported.

According to VPR, House Speaker Mitzi Johnson said the legislation was “far too large of a policy change to be jumping into the last week or two of the session.”

Matt Simon, New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project, wrote in an email to Marijuana Business Daily on Monday that the advocacy group never expected the legislation to succeed in this year’s session.

“Gov. (Phil) Scott would definitely have vetoed the bill, and there would not have been nearly enough votes in the House for an override,” Simon wrote.

In addition, Simon noted that Scott created a study commission that is scheduled to make policy recommendations for a commercial MJ market later this year, “so many legislators felt it would be better to wait for those recommendations before moving forward.”

Simon wrote that the chances of passing a regulate and tax bill will be much better next year.

The advisory commission, he noted, will have made its policy recommendations, and so there will likely to be more lawmaker support.

The decision by lawmakers to scrap the bill has no impact on legislation passed in January that makes it legal for adults to use and possess small amounts of marijuana.