May 2, 2018: The Maine Legislature overrides Gov. Paul LePage’s veto of a bill that would bring about the sale of recreational marijuana, which voters decided to legalize under state law in a November 2016 referendum.

The House votes 109-39 and the Senate, 28-6 to secure the bill’s final passage. The next step is the rulemaking process, which a Maine Department of Administrative and Financial Services spokesman said would take no less than nine months.

Maine’s Legislature approved rules governing the sale of recreational marijuana in June 2019, and the law authorizing their final adoption took effect in September. The Office of Marijuana Policy completed its final adoption of them in November.

The bill was amended from a previous version by prohibiting marijuana social clubs and reducing from six to three the number of plants that may be grown for personal use.

Maine legalized the prescribing and use of marijuana for medical purposes in 1999. Marijuana possession and use remain illegal under federal law, but the law is generally unenforced.

Joseph Owen is a retired copy desk chief of the Morning Sentinel and Kennebec Journal and board member of the Kennebec Historical Society. He can be contacted at:

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