Guam’s Cannabis Control Board Starts Writing Industry Rules

The Pacifi Daily News Reports……..Guam’s newest public board has started writing the rules for the new cannabis industry, even as more questions are being raised.

Questions such as where tourists can legally smoke marijuana or how soon the island will have a testing laboratory are being considered.

Guam on April 4 became the latest U.S. jurisdiction to legalize limited recreational marijuana use by people at least 21 years old, five years after voters approved medical marijuana.

The nine-member Guam Cannabis Control Board met for the second time on Tuesday. Members gave updates about the status of each committee’s tasks. All members were present.

Dafne Shimizu, Guam Cannabis Control Board vice chairwoman and co-chair of the rules and regulations committee, and the director of the Department of Revenue and Taxation, laid out the different parts of what the regulations could look like, including the procedures and grounds for issuance, renewal, suspension or revocation of a registration to operate a cannabis establishment, to civil penalties and health and safety rules for manufacture and cultivation.

“If tourists can purchase the products, where will they be able to consume them?” Shimizu asked.

It’s one of the 40 questions from the public about Guam’s recreational cannabis law that board member William Parkinson has compiled to be answered by the appropriate agencies and released to the public.

“Where can I get cannabis seeds?” and “Will I go to jail if I smoke in public?” are also asked by community members, based on the preliminary list, along with, “Will smoking affect my benefits, as a veteran?”

Department of Agriculture Director Chelsa Muña-Brecht said at the meeting that the Guam Economic Development Authority is willing to look into the possibility of offering qualifying certificate tax breaks for anyone interested in setting up a cannabis testing laboratory.

Members said GEDA representatives may have to be invited during the next board meeting to hear more about this.

Attorney Vanessa Williams, chairwoman of the board, said there could be draft rules by September, which will be made available for a public hearing, but that it’s a tentative timeline.

The required economic impact study could commence by September, based on the process that the Guam Visitors Bureau has to go through. It will made available to the public for review as well, she said.

The administrative adjudication process also requires that the draft rules be reviewed by agencies such as the Department of Administration, the Office of the Attorney General, the governor and the Legislature, Williams said.


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