Marijuana

Kevin Wolf / Associated Press

Sen. Bernie Sanders introduced a bill Wednesday to end the federal prohibition on marijuana.

As Vermont officials and families are struggling to end the scourge of heroin across the state, Sanders says it’s disturbing that marijuana and something as deadly as heroin are classified the same in the eyes of the federal government.

Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

Assuming for a moment that elected officials decided it was time to legalize marijuana, what would a regulated cannabis market actually look like? That’s the question a key Senate committee has set out to answer, and lawmakers say that if legalization moves forward, they want to do it the Vermont way.

Kevin Wolf / AP

Sen. Bernie Sanders, speaking to college students at George Mason University Thursday, said he thinks the federal government should relax about weed.

Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

Next week, Vermont lawmakers will begin work on a bill that would create a legal market for marijuana in the Green Mountains.

Proponents say there’s a good chance the legislation will pass in 2016, but one group, Smart Approaches to Marijuana Vermont, is looking to slow the momentum behind the legalization movement.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Should Vermont legalize marijuana?  It's a question that has been animating public forums around the state over the last few months in anticipation of the next legislative session, where it is likely to spur even more debate.

Last week, a group gathered at Lyndon State College to exchange views.

Steven Senne / Associated Press

  House speaker and now gubernatorial candidate Shap Smith has come out in favor of the legalization of  marijuana and says he'll push for a bill in the 2016 session. Momentum for legalization has been building in the state and many proponents have hopes for action next year.

iStock


As of Tuesday afternoon, Vermont's largest city has a new top cop. Brandon del Pozo was sworn in as Burlington's police chief earlier today.

Alison Redlich / AP

Backers of a plan to legalize marijuana in Vermont have received some significant legislative support from House Speaker Shap Smith.

JJRD / iStock.com

A group of Vermont business leaders called the Vermont Cannabis Collaborative has been inviting public comment on the best way to create a safe, sustainable marijuana industry. Medical marijuana is already being legally distributed, but using it recreationally is still against state law.

Brennan Linsley / AP

If a Vermont State Senator and some advocacy groups in Windham County have their way, the phrase "Vermont Home Grown" could be a reference not just to food, but also to marijuana.

gaspr13 / iStock

Next year’s legislative session will be the last for Gov. Peter Shumlin, who announced in June that he won’t be seeking reelection in 2016. And some prominent lawmakers are hoping to get a marijuana legalization bill to his desk before he leaves office.

ElisabethAardema / iStock

While Vermont's lawmakers are unlikely to get around to deciding whether to legalize marijuana this session, the University of Vermont is hoping to keep the conversation about cannabis going with an online Cannabis Speaker Series.

Jeff Chiu / AP

Representatives Chris Pearson and Jean O’Sullivan introduced a bill this week to reinstate the prohibition of alcoholic beverages in Vermont, but they don’t want it to pass.

The bill, which would make possession of alcohol punishable by up to 30 years in prison and fines of $1 million, is the latest rhetorical flourish by lawmakers hoping to legalize marijuana in Vermont.

Courtesy / Castleton Polling Institute

The majority of Vermonters want the legislature to legalize marijuana, according to a recent poll.

The poll, conducted by the Castleton Polling Institute, said that 54 percent of Vermonters are in favor of legalization. The poll showed that 70 percent of Vermonters aged 18 to 44 are in favor of legalization, while just 28 percent in that age group are opposed. Support for legalization is lower among older residents, with 61 percent of Vermonters older than 64 opposed.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR/file

This week marks the 47th year that Washington County Sen. Bill Doyle has distributed his annual Town Meeting Day survey. This year's survey includes questions about taxes, the environment and the legalization of marijuana.

Peter Hirschfeld / VPR File

Chittenden Sen. David Zuckerman has introduced a bill to legalize marijuana in Vermont. But the legislation isn’t likely to pass anytime soon.

Zuckerman’s 44-page bill calls for the taxation and regulation of marijuana, and would essentially have the state treat cannabis the same way it does alcohol.

“It has the potential for economic development in the state, both from the production and sale of marijuana, but also in tourism attraction, and the various jobs affiliated with both of those scenarios,” Zuckerman says.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR/file

To legalize or not to legalize marijuana? That's been the question on many Vermonters' minds of late. To help them answer it, some here have been looking west, to Colorado, where recreational pot has now been legal for a year.

AndrewJohnson / iStock

A team made up of Vermont law enforcement, public officials and community leaders will head to Colorado on Sunday to gather information about that state’s experience with marijuana now that it’s legal there. 

Whether or not Vermont follows suit, it's likely pot-infused edibles will become more common.

Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

Legislators say Vermont’s medical marijuana law has by and large been a success. But they’re applying new scrutiny to a form of cannabis that is generating public health concerns in places where marijuana is available legally.

Why? Because smoking isn’t for everyone.

Angela Evancie / VPR

A new study says the biggest issue in the legislative debate over the legalization of marijuana is whether or not for-profit companies will be allowed to sell a variety of marijuana products.

But the "for profit" approach taken by the states of Colorado and Washington isn't the only option available to lawmakers.

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