AUGUSTA, Maine — Maine legislators on Tuesday sent a bill that would finally allow marijuana retail sales as voters demanded to Republican Gov. Paul LePage, who has vowed to veto it.
The Senate’s final passage of the bill comes after voters in 2016 approved retail marijuana sales. Possession of up to 2.5 ounces (71 grams) of marijuana already is legal in the state.
LePage, who vetoed a similar bill last fall, recently said he’d veto the latest bill because it doesn’t create a single program for both medical and recreational marijuana. But votes in the House and Senate suggest lawmakers may have the two-thirds support needed in each chamber to override a veto. LePage has 10 days to sign, veto or let the bill go into law without his signature.
Supporters say the bill provides needed changes to the voter-approved marijuana law to protect children. It eliminates marijuana social clubs, reduces the number of plants that people can have and prohibits sale near schools. The voter-approved law created a 10 percent sales tax on retail marijuana.