#vtpoli

Maida F. Townsend, Vermont House, Chittenden 7-4

I remain unconvinced about a tax and regulate system. It took everything I had to convince myself that I could/should support the measure which we passed this session… up to one ounce, the plants, plus the various safeguards, et cetera. I ultimately did so in the larger context of judicial reform.

Heady Vermont Staff
Heady Vermont Staff 7 Aug 2018

What, in your mind, is the ideal structure for a functional legal Tax and Regulate system? How would you work with other branches of government to create this kind of system?

I remain unconvinced about a tax and regulate system. It took everything I had to convince myself that I could/should support the measure which we passed this session… up to one ounce, the plants, plus the various safeguards, et cetera. I ultimately did so in the larger context of judicial reform.

How would you assess Vermont’s current medical marijuana program? How will you ensure that registered medical patients and caregivers have access to an abundance of high-quality cannabis products priced at or below market rates?
I support wholeheartedly medicinal marijuana. I rely on the committees of jurisdiction as well as the Department of Public Safety and the Department of Health for guidance regarding changes to the program.
How will you ensure that people who’ve been disproportionately affected by prohibition (such as convicts and People Of Color) will have an equal opportunity to participate in Vermont’s legal cannabis industry? In particular, how will you work for statewide expungement of convictions for possession?
The question presupposes an actual legal “industry.” If such were to come to pass, I would look to the committees of jurisdiction for vetted proposals to be brought to the Floor for consideration by the full House.
How will you make sure that all Vermonters have equal access to joining the legal cannabis industry as small and startup businesses?
Again, the question presupposes an actual legal “industry.” If such were to come to pass, I would look to the committees of jurisdiction for vetted proposals to be brought to the Floor for consideration by the full House.
Do you think state can sustain both a medical and a recreational program – or would you combine cannabis regulations into one system?
At present we now have co-existing both a medical and a recreational “program,” albeit not a tax and regulate “program.” Once again, I would look to the committees with responsibility for these matters to study the question and then for their guidance.
If tax-and-regulate is passed, how would you prefer to allocate cannabis revenues? To the general fund or to specific causes? If specific, please share any proposals.
I have no “proposals” as such. Even though there are several good purposes for which we need a yet-to-be-identified stable, ongoing source of revenue (such as accessible, high quality early child care; clean water; higher education; and mental health services, among others), I would need recommendations from the money committees as well as the policy committees.
Would you allow Vermont towns to enact temporary moratoriums or outright bans on legal cannabis businesses?
Municipal rights and responsibilities would be integral to establishing any tax and regulate program or legal cannabis industry. Municipal law is within my committee’s jurisdiction (House Government Operations), and we would do our our diligence. I cannot foresee the results in advance.

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