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.
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.
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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.

We're talking about issues around cannabis etiquette after legalization.
CreativeFire / iStock

If you're interested in using cannabis, when and where is it okay to do so while respecting the choices of others? With edibles in the mix, when and how should you notify others that something contains cannabis?

Marijuana is the term for the Cannabis plant primarily used in North America. Outside the region, most use the term Cannabis.
aga7ta / iStock

When it comes to cannabis, there are a ton of terms that get thrown around in laws, in conversation and on products or advertisements.

The specifics of Act 86 aren't clear to all. We answer your questions.
LPETTET / istock

On July 1, Vermont's Act 86 makes it legal for adults 21+ to possess an ounce of marijuana and cultivate a small number of marijuana plants under state law.

So far just a single grower in Massachusetts has been approved to start sowing marijuana seeds for adult-recreational use. The first crop of pot will be ready to harvest in the fall.

And the state has high expectations that suppliers of marijuana to shops will go green. New regulations set strict limits — some of the toughest in the nation — on the amount of energy growers can use to raise their plants.

Guard member on ground with a gun.
Spc. Avery Cunningham / U.S. Army National Guard

Starting July 1, it will be legal in Vermont for adults 21 and over to possess up to an ounce of marijuana. But Vermont National Guard soldiers might want to think twice before taking advantage of the new law.

A pile of paperclips that are various shades of green.
Viorika / iStock

Act 86 makes it legal for those age 21 and over to possess up to an ounce of marijuana in Vermont, as well as grow six plants (two mature, four immature) at home. But what’s appropriate at work?

Recreational marijuana sales are legal in Massachusetts starting Sunday (though, there aren’t any stores actually licensed and open to make sales). But most of the state’s cities and towns have either a ban or a moratorium on retail sales.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

For those with a green thumb, growing supplies are an essential step to taking advantage of Act 86 — Vermont's new marijuana law.

A photograph of the first page of a Vermont State Police training bulletin.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

Vermont's new marijuana law — allowing possession of a limited amount of the drug — goes into effect on July 1. The Vermont State Police has issued a training bulletin on how they plan to handle the new legislation, including some changes in how state troopers will deal with drivers.

More than a dozen women from around Vermont met in Morristown on Tuesday at a barn that has been converted to a retreat space. They were there to learn about starting and running a cannabis-related business in Vermont.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

They’ve been called Mary Janes, Puffragettes and the Women of Weed. Whatever you choose, women are making their mark on the rapidly growing cannabis industry — and Vermont women are no exception.

On Tuesday, Canada's senate passed a marijuana legalization bill. Retail stores could open in about two months.
Bilgehan Yilmaz / iStock

This week, cannabis legalization in Canada passed that country’s senate, the final hurdle for that legislation. So what will and won't be legal once the law takes effect?

t. John Flannigan, left, and Capt. James Whitcomb sit at a table looking at each other in front of recording equipment.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

Starting on July 1, it will be legal for adults 21 and older to possess up to an ounce of marijuana under Vermont state law — and that will bring about changes in how the police interact with motorists.

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