Attorney General Maura Healey took action that could help towns that want to delay or prohibit pot shops from opening in their communities.
Recreational marijuana supporters are calling it a major setback for the cannabis industry in Massachusetts.
Attorney General Maura Healey approved the town of Mansfield’s request to extend the delay on pot businesses in town until June 30, 2019.
The town wants the additional time to allow retail marijuana zoning.
The Attorney General’s office released a statement that reads, in part, “…Given ongoing regulatory activity by the Cannabis Control Commission, such temporary local moratoriums are consistent with state law.”
The Attorney General’s office has approved 55 zoning bylaws that allow for marijuana establishments and 25 more are pending.
Cannabis Control Commission Chairman Steven Hoffman told 22News, the commission issued final regulations in March in order to give communities appropriate time to create bylaws and ordinances that address the adult-use industry.
He said the commission traveled the state to make sure local officials have the information they need to make their own decisions about how marijuana establishments might fit into their cities or towns.
The Massachusetts spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project says the only people who will benefit from the attorney general’s ruling are illegal marijuana dealers.