The state of Massachusetts officially legalized recreational marijuana at the beginning of July, but bureaucratic holdups and red tape delayed the start of legal sales. But now it appears the first legal sales may finally be around the corner.
Yesterday the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission issued the first official licenses to sell recreational marijuana to two cannabis companies. The state had previously hoped to get licenses out at the beginning of July or soon after, but various hold-ups prevented them from doing so.
However, that doesn't mean these dispensaries are ready to sell recreational cannabis. The Cannabis Control Commission's chairman said there are still a few more procedures and regulations that need to be put in place before they can start doing so, and that they're still "weeks away."
The biggest roadblock to licensing cannabis businesses have been local host agreements. Cannabis companies need an agreement with their local government allowing them to operate in their jurisdiction. However many local governments have imposed fees, taxes and other restrictions to slow down the process.
So Massachusetts may not have legal marijuana before Halloween, but they'll probably have it before Thanksgiving. And they'll definitely have it by Christmas.