BOSTON (WWLP)-The Cannabis Control Commission is hearing from stakeholders as well as the public about regulations before creating guidelines and protocol for issuing licenses.
The Cannabis Control Commission held the first of eight “listening sessions”at the State House Monday to hear from organizations they invited with a known interest in development of pot regulations including law enforcement, marijuana reform activists and nurses.
James Zarvis, founder of the Easthampton Cannabis Ascension Network, said many residents expressed concerns over potential harm to children and asked the commission to address the zoning process.
“Having specific definitions to turn to for that and many other terms relating to cannabis is important to the zoning process and certainly an area in which the CCC could help provide support for us,” Zarvis said.
Stakeholders expressed concerns about potential issues and regulations, including edibles safety, licensing fees and smoking restrictions.
One entrepreneur spoke at the hearing who hopes to open a cannabis coffee house in Easthampton.
“The recreational cannabis market brings new opportunities for economic stimulus and for job creation,” Karima Rizk, owner of Cafe Vert, said.
She expressed concerns about regulations for where people can consume marijuana, including smoking in and around buildings or consuming edibles in certain locations.
The Commission has until mid-March to set guidelines, regulations and protocol for issuing licenses for Massachusetts’ marijuana industry.
Western Massachusetts residents can have their voices heard at a public listening session Wednesday at Holyoke Community College.
The Commission is also holding several other public hearings in the coming weeks:
October 4, 2017 Holyoke Community College
10:00 a.m. Kittredge Center, Rm 301/303
303 Homestead Avenue
Holyoke, MA 01040
October 5, 2017 Barnstable Town Hall
10:30 a.m. 367 Main Street
Hyannis, MA 02601
October 6, 2017 Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building
8:30 a.m. 2300 Washington Street
School Committee Chamber, 2nd floor
Roxbury, MA 02119
October 10, 2017 West Tisbury Public Library
10.30 a.m. 1042 State Road
Vineyard Haven, MA 02568
October 11, 2017 Worcester Public Library, Saxe Room
10:00 a.m. 3 Salem Square
Worcester, MA 01608
October 12, 2017 One Ashburton Place, 21st Floor
9:00 a.m. Boston, MA 02108
October 13, 2017 Berkshire Community College
1:00 p.m. K111 Lecture Hall
1350 West Street
Pittsfield, MA 01201