Vermont Marijuana Legalization Ads Too Little, Too Late?

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Ads touting the legalization of recreational marijuana in Vermont have hit the airwaves.

But they may be for naught after a key state House panel delivered a potentially crippling blow to a legalization bill by voting to merely study the matter.

According to the Brattleboro Reformer, the House Judiciary Committee couldn’t muster enough support to pass a legalization bill the state Senate approved more than a month ago.

The proposal called for commercial cultivation, regulations and taxes on cannabis sales, and adults would have been able to buy small amounts of marijuana at licensed shops.

Instead of approving that bill, the House committee voted to create a seven-member advisory commission to study legalization and issue recommendations by Nov. 1, 2017.

If that bill does pass the full House, it’s next stop would be in a joint House-Senate conference committee.

Three members from each chamber would then need to forge a final bill – perhaps one more in line with what legalization advocates want – for their colleagues to vote on.

Lawmakers have until the end of the legislative session in early May to send a bill to the desk of  Gov. Pete Shumlin, who supports recreational cannabis legalization.

Meanwhile, the Vermont Coalition to Regulate Marijuana released 30-second and 60-second television ads urging viewers to tell their representatives to back legalization efforts.