Marijuana activists rally against changes to marijuana laws


BOSTON (WWLP) – Marijuana activists are calling on lawmakers to kill the House bill that would reform Massachusetts pot laws. They told 22News this proposal doesn’t respect the will of the voters.

Dozens of residents rallied with the Massachusetts Cannabis Reform Coalition and the “Yes on 4” group at the State House on Wednesday, protesting proposed changes to the voter-approved recreational marijuana law.

Opposition was expressed by a doctor who prescribes cannabis as an alternative to pharmaceuticals. Marijuana activists called on lawmakers to reduce the proposed 28 percent tax on pot sales.

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But lawmakers who support a higher tax rate argue that other states like Washington charge as much as a 37 percent excise tax on pot sales. The bill also allows city and town leaders to ban pot shops rather than have voters decide in a referendum.

“This sets up a scenario where a three person board of selectmen by a 2 to 1 vote could overrule the will of an entire town,” Jim Borghesani explained. “This is not what the voters backed in November.”

The bill currently being debated in the State House is separate from a similar proposal in the State Senate.

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