Marijuana

Understanding Act 86: Vermont's Recreational Pot Law

Gov. Phil Scott signed Act 86 into law in January 2018, making it legal for adults 21 and older to possess an ounce of marijuana and cultivate a small number of marijuana plants under state law starting July 1, 2018.

Read Act 86 as enacted here.

Confused by the language? Check out our pot glossary.

Have questions about what the law means for you? Review our FAQ.

Marijuana plants.
Labuda / iStock

By a vote of 23 to 5, the Vermont Senate gave its preliminary approval to a so-called tax-and-regulate marijuana bill Thursday. Under the bill, pot could be legally sold in retail outlets beginning in 2021.

As marijuana becomes legal around the country, blacks and Latinos are often left out of new business opportunities. Advocates say people of color are often reluctant to join the growing legal marijuana economy because they were targeted far more often than whites during the war on drugs. Studies show members of such communities were arrested and jailed for illegal marijuana use far more often than whites.

Lawmakers are drafting rules to regulate the cultivation, manufacture and sale of cannabis. But what Vermont's rules will be and if there's support to make them law remains an open question.
Seastock / iStock

Last year Vermont legalized the possession and personal use of small amounts of marijuana. Now Vermont lawmakers are drafting rules for a legal and regulated system to buy, sell and grow cannabis. We're looking at what's being proposed for commercial cannabis in Vermont.

Marijuana plants.
gaspr13 / iStock

The Senate Judiciary Committee is quickly moving ahead with a tax-and-regulate marijuana bill, but the plan could face an uncertain future with the Scott administration because it doesn't include the driver impairment measures that the governor says must be part of the bill.

Sen. Dick Sears, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, standing and speaking to people gathered.
Angela Evancie / VPR File

Senate leaders say they hope to quickly pass a bill that would create a retail marijuana market that the state would tax and regulate.

House Speaker Mitzi Johnson, left, and Senate President Pro Tem Tim Ashe have competing views on the wisdom of moving to a tax-and-regulate model for cannabis sales in Vermont.
Peter Hirschfeld / VPR file

Senate President Pro Tem Tim Ashe said lawmakers in his chamber will fast-track legislation that would create a retail market for cannabis sales in Vermont, but House Speaker Mitzi Johnson said she isn’t convinced Vermonters are ready for a tax-and-regulate system.

Marijuana plants.
gaspr13 / iStock

The Governor’s Marijuana Advisory Commission has issued its final report.

The Governor's Marijuana Advisory Commission is ready to share its findings and recommendations on new pot laws in Vermont.
Labuda / iStock

Even though it's now legal to possess, consume and grow small amounts of marijuana in Vermont, that doesn't mean we've seen the end of pot legislation. The Governor's Marijuana Advisory Commission has been evaluating what has happened in other states and listening to Vermonters' thoughts on the future of pot laws. We'll hear the results from the co-chairs of the commission.

Close-up photo of cannabis plant
Yarygin / iStock

Vermont State Police have disbanded a decades-old program that used military helicopters to spot illicit cannabis farms from on high.

The first retail marijuana store east of the Mississippi could open soon in Northampton, Massachusetts.

CBD products, from oil to food to skin care products, are becoming more common in Vermont and across the country. But questions remain about their legality and how they affect people.
Flickr / Wikimedia Commons

Cannabidiol, often called simply CBD, is becoming big business in Vermont and across the country. Found in items ranging from baked goods to skin creams, it's often followed by claims it can help with everything from headaches to anxiety.

But there's a lot of uncertainty around CBD, its legal status, health benefits, and how it affects people. We're talking about CBD, how the compound is used and how it works.

Starting Wednesday, the sale of recreational marijuana begins in Canada following a law passed over the summer.

The law says anyone in Canada over the age of 18 is allowed to possess marijuana, provided it's less than 30 grams — just over an ounce. Canadians can also grow up to four marijuana plants in their home and buy from a provincially regulated retailer.

Marijuana plants.
gaspr13 / iStock

Supporters of a retail cannabis market in Vermont have a powerful new ally in their corner, as the Vermont Democratic Party has formally endorsed the creation of a taxed-and-regulated system for marijuana sales.

A stock photo close up of the blue lights atop a police cruiser.
deepblue4you / iStock.com

Vermont’s law enforcement agencies are adding nine new "drug recognition experts," or DREs, as the state sees an increase in the number of drug-impaired driving incidents and crashes.

Updated at 8:51 a.m. ET

More than 70 people overdosed in or around a historic Connecticut park near the Yale University campus on Wednesday after receiving what authorities believe was synthetic marijuana laced with the powerful opioid fentanyl. Although there have been no deaths, at least two people suffered life-threatening symptoms, according to authorities.

The VPR-Vermont PBS Poll found that 27 percent of Vermonters are either very likely or somewhat likely to consume cannabis in the near. Of those, about one quarter say their interest is due to the advent of legalization.
Liam Elder-Connors / VPR file

Thousands of Vermonters say they're more likely to consume cannabis now that the drug is legal in this state, according to results of the new VPR - Vermont PBS Poll. But experts say it’s tough to know precisely how the advent of legalization will affect usage rates in Vermont.

Prevention Works! VT is hoping to make marijuana a less desirable choice for youth in Vermont.
Jessica Hyde / istock

It's now legal to possess and grow limited amounts of marijuana under Vermont law if you're over 21. The law, which was passed in January, took effect on Sunday.

Small-dose pot brownies being sized and packaged in Boulder, Colorado, in 2014.
Brennan Linsley / AP

Vermont's new law allows for possession of up to one ounce of marijuana - that includes as a component in edibles. The problem is, the state doesn't have the local capability to measure how much cannabis, by weight, as an ingredient is in brownies, cookies or other edibles.

Mike Hoffman and Ryan Podd of Northern Roots Nursery, in Hyde Park, stand among a greenhouse full of the hemp plants they cultivate for CBD production at Heady Vermont's Legalization Celebration on July 1.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

Temperatures in the 90s seemed to keep attendance down at Heady Vermont's July 1 Legalization Celebration in Johnson. However, those who braved the heat experienced live music, workshops and a cannabis-themed marketplace.

Bychykhin_Olexandr / iStock.

Sunday marks the first day small amounts of cannabis are legal for those 21 and older in Vermont. Here's what you need to know.

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