A legislative committee is divided in half last Tuesday on the matter over which agencies should license and regulate marijuana businesses in Maine, emphasizing the challenging path ahead as the state moves toward retail sales of legal marijuana.

After weeks of talks, lawmakers did not coalesce behind just one strategy for which agency should take the lead in licensing the businesses which may grow, manufacture, test and sell marijuana products for the recreational market. While part of the committee wanted the Department of Administrative and Financial Services to manage all licensing, other members contended that the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry is better equipped to at least manage licensing for cultivation, testing and packaging of marijuana.

It’s a debate over process with possible consequences for the timing of retail marijuana sales in Maine, anticipated to start next year.

 

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