By the end of the year, marijuana consumers in Alaska will be able to smoke cannabis in the same vicinity they brought it from.
According to Marijuana Moment, adults who are 21 will be able to purchase and smoke cannabis that is “regulated and taxed”, from “storefront dispensaries”. Alaska will be the only state that will be able to do so, though some states such as California and Denver currently allow it with some restrictions.
Kevin Meyer, Alaska Lt. Gov. signed for the regulations on Tuesday. Starting April 11, licensed retail businesses in the state will have the opportunity to apply for a “special onsite use endorsement,” after much indecisiveness on how to handle cannabis in the state.
This is exciting news for weed smokers, however flat out puffing after you buy your blend may be on hold. Exactly when the first marijuana smoking lounges will open for business is still undecided.
“This is something that’s not happening anywhere else in the U.S. yet,” executive director of the Alaska Marijuana Industry Association, Cary Carrigan, told the Associated Press. “As we start to develop this, people are really looking at us, so I know that everybody wants to get it right.”
Currently, there are rules that state that regarding the “consumption area” has to be separated physically from retail spaces. Businesses are also required to provide plans for security and sufficient ventilation. Still, Local governments do have the ability to tighten restrictions prohibit the use of cannabis on-site.
In related news, New Jersey governor Phil Murphy on Tuesday announced a bill that allows adults to use marijuana in the state.
According to CNBC, some of the largest cannabis companies in the world rallied together after news of the announcement which included details of the recommended taxes and an “expedited expungement process” for people that have been sentenced for “low-level marijuana offenses.”
“Legalizing adult-use marijuana is a monumental step to reducing disparities in our criminal justice system,” Murphy stated in a press release. “After months of hard work and thoughtful negotiations, I’m thrilled to announce an agreement with my partners in the Legislature on the broad outlines of adult-use marijuana legislation.”
The bill, if passed, will be overseen by a five-member Cannabis Regulatory Commission, who will all be chosen by the governor. The commission will oversee licensing application and regulations.