The 2023 Maryland General Assembly recently reached the policy goal the state has been edging toward for years, approving regulations for recreational marijuana sales. Maryland residents aged 21 years and older will be able to purchase recreational marijuana starting on July 1, 2023, if Governor Wes Moore signs the legislation into law, which he is certain to do.
Cannabis was made legal in the state constitution by a ballot referendum that was approved by voters in November. Legislators promptly carried out their directives, prioritizing the historic reforms at the top of their to-do list even before the first session.
The comprehensive legislation established a framework for governmental monitoring and resolved a number of business-related issues, such as the types and number of marijuana licenses that can be issued as well as the amount of sales tax that must be charged by businesses. Overall, politicians from both chambers worked together to achieve two key objectives: stop unlawful sales before the deadline of July 1, 2023, and restore tax income and economic opportunity to areas that have been disproportionately disadvantaged by marijuana prohibition and punishment. Each purpose is interwoven throughout the entire 100-page document.
Senator Brian Feldman, a cosponsor of the legislation in the Senate, claimed that in the run-up to implementation, many of the broad objectives had been met. But he anticipates changes in subsequent sessions as legislators examine its structure.
The existing medical marijuana market will support the new market for the first six months. Additionally, the Maryland Marijuana Administration, a state body established under the bill, will be in charge of regulating both recreational and medical cannabis products. The former oversight authority will merge with the new one.
There are an estimated 100 medicinal cannabis dispensaries in Maryland that will be required to switch their licenses to be allowed to sell recreational marijuana. However, according to the law, dispensaries must keep enough product on hand for medical customers and provide express lanes or dedicated hours to make the shopping experience easier.
Medical dispensaries must pay the state 8% of their 2022 gross revenues as well as a minimum of $100,000 and a maximum of $2,000,000 to change their licenses. The conversion fee for medical processors and cultivators will be equal to 10% of their 2022 gross revenues, with the same maximum and minimum limits. The bill gives businesses a conversion period of 18 months, during which they must have finished paying the fee.
New dispensaries must be located at least 500 feet away from a learning institution, library, playground or public park. Dispensaries themselves must also be at least 1,000 feet apart.
As cannabis production ramps up to meet the growing demand for recreational marijuana in the state, plenty of opportunities will be created for numerous ancillary companies that follow in the footsteps of entities such as Advanced Container Technologies Inc. (OTC: ACTX), which specialize in availing what cannabis industry players need to serve their clients.
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CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.
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