One day after the Massachusetts House voted to raise the proposed tax on retail marijuana sales to 28 percent, the Senate overwhelmingly voted (30-5) to preserve the 12 percent maximum endorsed by voters in a ballot question last November.
The proposed legislation is now headed to a conference committee with hopes that a final bill will be sent to the Governor by next Friday, June 30. The selling of marijuana for recreational purposes is currently illegal in Massachusetts but the proposed legislation should allow retail shops to begin sales to the general public in July 2018.
Meanwhile, the state’s Supreme Judicial Court has indefinitely extended its deadline to decide whether there is a scientifically established correlation between marijuana use and impaired driving. That case, Commonwealth v. Thomas Gerhardt, has been under consideration since oral arguments in January 2017.