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.

Peter Hirschfeld / VPR file

Matt Dunne is one of three Democratic candidates for governor heading into the primary, and he joined Vermont Edition for a one-on-one discussion.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

Lt. Gov. Phil Scott is running as a Republication candidate for governor, and he joined Vermont Edition on Wednesday for a one-on-one conversation in advance of August's primary. 

Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

Peter Galbraith, a Democratic candidate for governor, joined Vermont Edition on Monday for a one-on-one conversation. This interview is part of VPR’s "Meet the Candidates" series, where we will address a range of topics, but also want each participating candidate’s thoughts on four specific issues: gun control, taxes, marijuana legalization and health care.

Patti Daniels / VPR file

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Sue Minter stopped by Vermont Edition on Wednesday for a one-on-one interview as we look ahead to the August primaries. This interview is part of VPR’s "Meet the Candidates" series, where we will address a range of topics, but also want each participating candidate’s thoughts on four specific issues: gun control, taxes, marijuana legalization and health care.

Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

Attempts to legalize cannabis in Vermont fell short in the Statehouse this year. But lawmakers still managed to pass reforms to the state’s drug laws, and policy makers hope an expansion of the medical marijuana registry will help combat Vermont’s opiate addiction problem.

Jacob Goldstein

Farmers have started planting Vermont’s third hemp crop. Though their numbers are few, the acreage devoted to hemp has significantly increased this year, as has the direction of the state’s fledgling hemp industry.

Sen. Dick Sears, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, backs bill to expand domestic terrorism law to deal with cases like the alleged incident at Fair Haven Union High School
Angela Evancie / VPR

Backers of legislation to legalize marijuana say they're disappointed that they weren't successful this session. One problem was that the House and the Senate looked at the issue very differently.

Angela Evancie / VPR

Following the defeat this week of a marijuana legalization bill, House Democratic leaders are exploring the possibility of putting the issue to Vermonters in November with a non-binding referendum.

gaspr13 / iStock

Marijuana legalization is dead for the 2016 session. The Vermont House Tuesday rejected an amendment that would have decriminalized the growing of two plants by a vote of 77 to 70. Lawmakers earlier defeated a Senate plan for commercial marijuana sales.  

A marijuana plant.
La_Corivo / iStock.com

A long-awaited floor debate on the plan to legalize cannabis finally gets underway in the House today after lawmakers unexpectedly postponed discussion Monday night.

gaspr13 / iStock

The House Democratic leadership backed away from a vote on legalizing marijuana Monday night as a more modest compromise plan was being drafted for consideration.

Brennan Linsley / AP

House Speaker Shap Smith says the House will debate a bill legalizing marijuana Monday.

JJRD / iStock.com

Gov. Peter Shumlin wants House Speaker Shap Smith to bring a bill legalizing marijuana to the House floor for a vote, but Smith says he's not going to do this at this time because there's not nearly enough support in the House to pass the legislation.

Steven Senne / Associated Press

With the House and Senate deadlocked on a bill legalizing marijuana, a possible compromise is to present this issue to voters in a nonbinding referendum in November.

While Vermont's political system calls on voters to approve proposed Constitutional amendments using a statewide referendum, the process doesn't allow for the consideration of other issues using this approach.

gaspr13 / iStock

After a push from Governor Shumlin and a bill passed by the Senate, many people saw legal marijuana on its way in Vermont. Now, after many twists and turns, it's unclear what form any final bill on the issue might take. We’re coming back to the legalization debate and asking people on both sides about where the legislative process has taken us.

A majority of Vermonters say they support raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour. Democrats hope Gov. Phil Scott's opposition to the wage increase will hurt support for Republicans in the November elections.
Angela Evancie / VPR file

The House has given its final approval to legislation that allows law enforcement officials to use a saliva test to determine if a driver is impaired with a combination of alcohol and marijuana.

Charlotte Albright / VPR file

We tackle two big stories in Vermont news in today's program.

Chalabala / iStock

Law enforcement officials are urging lawmakers to establish a roadside system to determine if a driver is operating a car under the influence of drugs. The system uses a saliva test that can measure levels of marijuana and seven other commonly used drugs. But the potential testing raises civil liberties concerns.

Trevor Smith / iStock.com

The House Judiciary Committee scaled back a marijuana bill even further Friday in order to squeak it through the committee and keep the bill alive, setting the stage for a possible showdown with the Senate over legalization.

Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

A bill that would tax and regulate marijuana in Vermont underwent a sudden and drastic overhaul on Wednesday evening, and the latest version scraps legalization in favor of expanding existing decriminalization laws.

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