Vermont: Measure Permitting Retail Marijuana Sales Moves Forward

Senate-backed legislation to regulate retail sales of marijuana to adults continues to advance in Vermont.

Members of the House Ways and Means Committee voted 7 to 3 this week in favor of the bill, S. 54. The proposal now awaits consideration from the House Appropriations Committee. If approved, it will go before the full House for a vote.

Senate lawmakers have already approved a version of the bill by a veto-proof supermajority.

As approved by House lawmakers, the measure would establish tax rates and other regulatory measures on the sale of commercially marketed cannabis products. In 2018, lawmakers approved legislation legalizing the personal possession and private cultivation of marijuana by those ages 21 and older. However, that law did not establish a structure for the retail production and sale of marijuana.

To date, only one state — Illinois — has taken legislative action to authorize adult-use cannabis sales.

It remains uncertain where Republican Gov. Phil Scott stands on the bill. In the past, he has expressed skepticism toward the notion of legalizing marijuana sales, but some insiders indicate that he has softened his stance in recent months.