Welp, here we go again. One step forward and FIFTEEN steps back. Not only will Maine voters not get any of what they voted for in fine print when approving commercial sales in 2016, but now Maine business owners who do nothing but give back to our state and economy will be robbed of years of hard work, dedication, and loyalty.
How’s that for a headline?
It appears that Mainers were sold on a lie that the residency requirement would ensure a fair program. What we now have is corporate cannabis regulation where small businesses will be destroyed by out-of-state, money hungry corporations.
What happened and why are Mainers associated with cannabis so pissed off?
On Monday, an agreement between the Office of Marijuana policy and Wellness Connection ended the 4 year residency requirement for operating a recreational marijuana business. Maine Wellness Connection, who already operates medical dispensaries in several locations including Portland and South Portland, is 49% owned by a Delaware investor and challenged the requirement back in March. In its lawsuit, Wellness argued that a residency requirement violates its constitutional right to interstate commerce by explicitly favoring Mainers over non-residents (boo hoo!!!!).
TLDR: you no longer have to be a Maine resident to open a recreational marijuana business in Maine.
What will happen if this is not reversed?
It’s predicted that due to the dropping of the residential requirement, wealthy out-of-state marijuana companies will flood the Maine market with cheap, low-quality cannabis which will in turn drive smaller Maine-owned companies out of business. Once the smaller companies are out of business, the corporate out-of-state companies will raise prices. The decision essentially invites out-of-state investors into Maine’s projected $180 million a year adult-use market. Ever played Monopoly?
Not only all this, but it’s also rumored to be underway to overturn Maine’s state residency requirement for medical marijuana providers as well.
What can you do?
What you can do is write to and call Governor Janet Mills and demand that this be reversed. Share this article with your friends and tell them to do the same. Secondly, you can educate yourself on knowing where your cannabis is coming from. Buy from Mainers, not corporate, out-of-state, money hungry operations. Support our local Maine businesses—always. Maine businesses support Maine businesses. The extra few dollars is worth it and will help out our own economy in the long run.
Share your opinion here:
Governor Janet Mills
1 State House Station
Augusta, ME 04333